Unveiling the Art of Critical Analysis: A Comprehensive Guide to Writing Analytical Essays


Analytical Essay

To get through your academic career successfully, you need to have excellent analytic skills. It is important to note that analytic skills are crucial to handling most college-level essays effectively. Having these skills will guarantee that you can write any essay and acquire outstanding grades. To add to that, attaining analytic skills will assist you in managing real-life situations. Analytic skills expound your ability to think critically and analyze factors that surround you with a bit of leeriness to make sure that you can comprehend each aspect of a specific difficulty. These skills are also applicable in conversations or debates that require you to support your claims. Establishing a rigid argument goes a long way and demonstrates your opinion’s validity to your opponent.

So, What is an Analytic Essay?

An analytic essay is a type of paper where you present a claim and then analyze it using backing arguments. The scope of topics for this type of paper encompasses analyzing a book, journal, article, or a particular event or film. In case your essay is on a specific article, you are required to analyze the author’s primary points, style, and intentions.

To write an excellent analytical essay, you need to have a good glimpse of its origin, nature, and purpose: the analysis of a particular problem assigned by a college instructor. A student should critically look at the allocated issue and explore both its merit and demerit points. Afterward, you need to develop your points further based on whether they agree or disagree with their nature. The justifications and backing ideas should be rational and followed up by a well-reasoned train of thoughts.

Analytical Essay Topics and Ideas

Keep in mind that your topic should be original, do not choose a problem that has already been over-examined from various or all aspects. The primary reason professors do not give students a particular topic to discuss is to boost their creativity based on the issues they choose to cover.

Therefore, if you are stuck on how to select an appropriate analytical essay topic, below are steps that will guide you:

  • Brainstorming – This is a suitable way of generating ideas. On a separate paper, write down all possible problems connected to your studied subject area.
  • Researching – To make writing a more streamlined task, visit the web or your school library for information on the chosen topic.
  • Analyzing – In order to attain a high-quality paper, you should make sure that the discovered sources are of high quality. Based on the amount of information available, you can decide which topics can be covered better than others.
  • Evaluating- It is an excellent step to assess the chosen topic and run it by your instructor. You can consult your professor to assert whether the issue you wish to examine relates to the essay prompt. Ensure to pick something that is your area of proficiency.
  • Titling – An original and eye-catching title can grab your audience’s attention and engage them from the start.

How to choose a topic for an analytical essay

Steps to Take Before Writing

Find the Core of Your Analytical Essay

Most times, an analytical essay includes writing about and examining a book or a movie. Occasionally, the essay prompt will ask you to concentrate on a particular issue or problem about the plot and characters. You are obligated to decide what exactly you are going to focus on and which path to take. Establishing a rigid claim will guarantee a better comprehension for the reader.

Decide What You Will Write About

Ensure to read the assigned task carefully. If you are provided with a variety of topics to choose from, you should pick the one you feel is interesting and you are most confident about. In case you are supposed to come up with your topic, settle on something simple. If your essay is a book analysis, you can assess the characters’ actions, relationships, and the assumptions that the author might have had when writing the book. Suppose your paper is to examine a historical event, for instance. In that case, you can concentrate on the primary forces that caused the occurrence, such as leaders, vital figures, or social and political issues. Selecting an appropriate direction will give you a great start forward to achieving a top-notch paper.

Begin with the Thesis Statement

The thesis is a statement that lets your audience know your stance on the specific issue you are writing about. It has to be clear-cut and straight to the point. In order to prevent confusing your reader, you should avoid any ambiguity in your statement. An excellent example of a proper thesis statement would be: “The characters of “To Kill a Mockingbird” suffer great injustice because of racism and prejudice.” Here you would examine how the characters’ lives were impacted by the racist society that victimizes people and judges them based on the color of their skin.

Find Additional Evidence

In order to build a strong paper and persuade the reader to accept your perspective, you need to support your thesis with valid evidence. You need to be thorough with the subject of your analysis to have the necessary evidence. Suppose it is a book, read it keenly, highlight the most significant points and use it to your advantage. An example would be the reaction of the people of Maycomb towards the events of  Tom Robinson’s trial and his death. Were they shocked? Sorry? Confused? It all backs your argument and embodies racism.

Write an Essay Outline

The structure is a vital part of an excellent assignment. Students need to create an outline, also known as a plan to make it easier to proceed with the paper. Typically, an essay has a five-paragraph structure consisting of the introductory paragraph, the main body(comprising three paragraphs), and a conclusion.

Create a Strong Analytical Essay Thesis

The thesis statement is the primary claim of the essay. It’s a claim developed to attest to an assumption created by the writer using research findings, facts, examples, and statistics. For particular topics, it is crucial to present the external forces that contributed to the development of your thesis statement. The point of the thesis is to introduce the most important information at the very beginning. It programs the reader in the direction of the essay topic and focuses them on the primary point.

The thesis statement explains to the reader the significance of your subject matter. It guides your audience on what to expect in the paper as they move forward. Your thesis must consist of an idea on something, and it should not be “Romeo and Juliet”; it has to be something like “The tragedy of young love experienced by Romeo and Juliet due to the social conflicts of two influential families.” The rest of the essay is your backing evidence of the thesis. It arranges examples and details that convince the reader to accept your point of view.

In case you are writing about historical events, it is vital to present the outside elements (books or manuscripts) that led to your analytic essay. Suppose you are writing about scientific research, it is essential to consider the scientific method.

Your thesis needs to be controversial and debatable. To come up with a respectable statement, you are required to do thorough research. This section of work should be a high influential statement that powerfully affects the topic of choice.

Below are a couple of examples of thesis statements that illustrate how essential a strong statement can be.

                        For example:

A thesis statement containing the following, Mark Twain’s Huckleberry Finn is an outstanding American novel, is exceptionally imprecise, and does not tell anything about your perspective and paper. Conversely, Through its contrasting river and shore scenes, Twain’s Huckleberry Finn indicates that to find the true expression of American democratic ideals, one must leave “civilized” society and go back to nature, is very clear and specific, giving an excellent idea of what the reader should expect as they go further into your paper.

Create an Analytical Essay Outline

In order to learn how to write an analytical essay, students should organize the structure of the paper because it makes the whole writing process simpler. Experts suggest having up to five paragraphs on your paper outline. Nonetheless, the intro-body(s) – conclusion formula is a staple in any analytical essay outline.


  • Familiarize the reader
  • Identify the focus/ purpose
  • Framework the scope
  • State the thesis


  • Topic sentence 1
  • Backing facts
  • Concluding sentence 1
  • Topic sentence 2
  • Supporting facts
  • Concluding topic sentence 2
  • Topic sentence 3
  • Backing facts
  • Concluding topic sentence 3


  • Restate thesis
  • Summarize the argument

Writing an Analytical Essay Introduction

Begin with some background information. Experts recommend that one should use a hook statement to make the intro strong. For the hook to have a powerful impact, it should be exciting and surprising enough to grab your audience’s concentration. This is the best opportunity to do it, and you should not take your possibilities on having a shoddy hook.

A hook consists of one to two sentences purposed to grab the reader’s concentration from the opening lines of the analytical essay. It is essential to choose a hook related to your work’s mood and the intended audience.

  • It could be a funny joke/ anecdote,
  • Trembling statistics,
  • A rhetorical question to incite debate,
  • Proven fact,
  • Quote from a prominent/ influential person,
  • A literary device like a metaphor or simile,

Or a combination of several together. After the hook, you should introduce your thesis statement, which describes your paper’s subject and your viewpoint on the statement.

Although there is no particular format for the introduction, adding background information is the most common method of developing one. You should provide background info that is significant to your thesis. The information should start broad and narrow in towards the thesis while remaining relevant.

Below is a summary of the introduction:

  • Hook Statement/ Brief Introductory Point
  • Background Info (Narrowed)
  • Transition sentence
  • Thesis statement

Building a fascinating and entertaining introduction is an excellent way to set the foundation for your readers to enjoy the rest of the essay. Ensure that they are captivated from the first to the very last lines, and do not disappoint them.

Write Your Body Paragraphs

The primary goal of the body paragraphs is to ascertain the thesis statement. Every paragraph should concentrate on a particular aspect of the thesis.

            For example:

If the thesis of an analytical essay is focused on the evolution of Good Will Hunting, the body paragraphs should individually hold their point; one body paragraph can concentrate on his dwindling self-guilt, and the second could discuss the ever-increasing support system and its influence on his mentality.

The body paragraphs should sustain a proper structure:

  • Topic sentence: In one straightforward and effective sentence, introduce the central point of the body paragraph.
  • Analysis: Assess/analyze your backing evidence. Discuss how the evidence supports your thesis statement. This is the most crucial part of the whole analytical essay writing process and should take about one or two sentences.
  • Evidence: The analysis is developed from the backing proof you find (examples, facts, statistics, etc.), meaning they should always go together. Ensure that these two parts connect straightforwardly.
  • Concluding sentence: Restate your analysis to your reader and its essence to the point at hand.

The reader should clearly understand the argument or point you are trying to prove after reading a single paragraph. The length of every essay will vary depending on the topic and the depth of the issue.

How to Write a Conclusion for an Analytical Essay

The conclusion wraps the entire essay. Begin by restating your thesis statement. The essence of this is to show your viewer that you have attested the thesis statement and summarize the steps you took. Also, the conclusion can assist the viewer in comprehending your ideas and their organization into a consistent piece.

It is crucial to make a smooth transition from the body paragraphs to the conclusion. To prevent interrupting the flow of your paper, avoid jumping quickly from the body paragraphs to the conclusion. Paraphrasing your thesis statement is the best way to remind the viewer about it. Afterward, you need to summarize the primary ideas of body paragraphs by unearthing the most crucial facts.

It is necessary to create an overall concluding statement in order to end the entire essay. This can be either what you have learned from writing the paper or what your reader should take away from your work.

Just a reminder of how the structure should be:

  • Rephrase the thesis statement
  • Summarize primary points
  • Overall concluding statement

Ending with a hook is a perfect way to conclude an analytical essay. Playfully refer to the hook that will remind the reader of the intelligent hook they read at the start of your paper.

Analytical essay outline structure

That is how to write a conclusion for an analytical essay. Below are some writing tips to assist you in succeeding with this type of writing at any academic level.

General Tips & Advice

Scrutinize your work for grammar and spelling mistakes. Plenty of spelling and grammar errors can make the tremendous effort you put in your paper go in vain. Usually, essays with great content are graded poorly because of grammar mistakes. Ensure that you countercheck your writing for errors to receive the grade you have earned or allocate this task to a professional editor.

Read the entire essay aloud. It might appear silly, but it works. Unexpectedly, most errors get revealed when you listen to what you wrote. Some things sound out of the ordinary, and you are likely to discover the mistakes in that way. The rhythm and flow of the essay are easier to check when hearing the text instead of reading it. Reading your writing aloud will give you a unique chance of becoming your own reader.

You need to double-check facts, names of the people you are referencing, the list of characters of the book you are analyzing, and the correct spelling of places and events. It is essential to be thorough with these things to exemplify your professionalism and concentration to detail.

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