A formal essay is a piece of writing that students are often asked to cope with, but you may be surprised to know that other people are sometimes required to write formal essays as well: prospective employees, grant writers and other professionals as well. Therefore, it will serve you well to know how to write a formal essay (and how to do it quickly).
The purpose of this type of writing could be to inform or persuade, but commonly teachers will require formal writing for even narratives or personal essays.
It is entirely possible to write an essay of this nature for a class or for work in an hour or less. Here is how:
1. First 15 Minutes: Brainstorming
This is the step noooobody likes to do, but it is not a waste of time! Choosing a solid topic, creating a verifiable thesis statement and coming up with three or so excellent bits of proof will save you many times in writing.
Jot down your plan (it does not have to be an outline) so that you do not forget it after you start writing. Dr. James A. Bedner, from the University of Edinburgh, suggests sticking to the tried-and-true 3-part formula: introduce, expand, and conclude. In other words, create a plan for an introduction paragraph, body paragraphs, concluding paragraph.
2. Next 30 Minutes: Write Furiously
Whatever you do, get your ideas out. Follow your plan closely. If you must get this essay written in an hour, it’s too late to let your mind wander during the writing stage.
While writing, make sure that every sentence supports the topic of its paragraph and that paragraph supports the thesis. This is the main structure of your essay, so it is crucial that every point leads to another and always backs to the thesis.
Do not worry about the fundamentals too much. You will fix them later.
3. Last 15 Minutes: Proofread
Now is the time to catch any spelling or grammar errors. Read each sentence from the capital letter to the period, making sure that there are no fragments or run-ons.
‘You write just like you talk,’ should not be considered a compliment, according to Bednar, so be sure to use more formal language than you would if you were having a conversation on the particular topic.
What Are the Specifics?
Formal writing is necessary for academic and scientific settings and can be employed in any class you take.
This type of writing should be organized with a clear introduction, body and conclusion. It has a thesis statement – the central idea – and it has a few logical, provable points to support the thesis. It will have a specific format, usually predetermined by the person who is going to read it. This could include the font style, font size, margins and spacing, and the presence of a title or a cover page.
You should be careful to abide by all standard writing guidelines. Dr. Bednar says that this means avoiding contractions and unnecessary capitalization as well as using language that is clear and precise.