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The Beginner's Guide to Writing an Essay | Steps & Examples
An academic essay is a focused piece of writing that develops an idea or argument using evidence, analysis, and interpretation.
There are many types of essays you might write as a student. The content and length of an essay depends on your level, subject of study, and course requirements. However, most essays at university level are argumentative — they aim to persuade the reader of a particular position or perspective on a topic.
The essay writing process consists of three main stages:
- Preparation: Decide on your topic, do your research, and create an essay outline.
- Writing : Set out your argument in the introduction, develop it with evidence in the main body, and wrap it up with a conclusion.
- Revision: Check the content, organization, grammar, spelling, and formatting of your essay.
Table of contents
Essay writing process, preparation for writing an essay, writing the introduction, writing the main body, writing the conclusion, essay checklist, lecture slides, frequently asked questions about writing an essay.
The writing process of preparation, writing, and revisions applies to every essay or paper, but the time and effort spent on each stage depends on the type of essay .
For example, if you’ve been assigned a five-paragraph expository essay for a high school class, you’ll probably spend the most time on the writing stage; for a college-level argumentative essay , on the other hand, you’ll need to spend more time researching your topic and developing an original argument before you start writing.
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Before you start writing, you should make sure you have a clear idea of what you want to say and how you’re going to say it. There are a few key steps you can follow to make sure you’re prepared:
- Understand your assignment: What is the goal of this essay? What is the length and deadline of the assignment? Is there anything you need to clarify with your teacher or professor?
- Define a topic: If you’re allowed to choose your own topic , try to pick something that you already know a bit about and that will hold your interest.
- Do your research: Read primary and secondary sources and take notes to help you work out your position and angle on the topic. You’ll use these as evidence for your points.
- Come up with a thesis: The thesis is the central point or argument that you want to make. A clear thesis is essential for a focused essay—you should keep referring back to it as you write.
- Create an outline: Map out the rough structure of your essay in an outline . This makes it easier to start writing and keeps you on track as you go.
Once you’ve got a clear idea of what you want to discuss, in what order, and what evidence you’ll use, you’re ready to start writing.
The introduction sets the tone for your essay. It should grab the reader’s interest and inform them of what to expect. The introduction generally comprises 10–20% of the text.
1. Hook your reader
The first sentence of the introduction should pique your reader’s interest and curiosity. This sentence is sometimes called the hook. It might be an intriguing question, a surprising fact, or a bold statement emphasizing the relevance of the topic.
Let’s say we’re writing an essay about the development of Braille (the raised-dot reading and writing system used by visually impaired people). Our hook can make a strong statement about the topic:
The invention of Braille was a major turning point in the history of disability.
2. Provide background on your topic
Next, it’s important to give context that will help your reader understand your argument. This might involve providing background information, giving an overview of important academic work or debates on the topic, and explaining difficult terms. Don’t provide too much detail in the introduction—you can elaborate in the body of your essay.
3. Present the thesis statement
Next, you should formulate your thesis statement— the central argument you’re going to make. The thesis statement provides focus and signals your position on the topic. It is usually one or two sentences long. The thesis statement for our essay on Braille could look like this:
As the first writing system designed for blind people’s needs, Braille was a groundbreaking new accessibility tool. It not only provided practical benefits, but also helped change the cultural status of blindness.
4. Map the structure
In longer essays, you can end the introduction by briefly describing what will be covered in each part of the essay. This guides the reader through your structure and gives a preview of how your argument will develop.
The invention of Braille marked a major turning point in the history of disability. The writing system of raised dots used by blind and visually impaired people was developed by Louis Braille in nineteenth-century France. In a society that did not value disabled people in general, blindness was particularly stigmatized, and lack of access to reading and writing was a significant barrier to social participation. The idea of tactile reading was not entirely new, but existing methods based on sighted systems were difficult to learn and use. As the first writing system designed for blind people’s needs, Braille was a groundbreaking new accessibility tool. It not only provided practical benefits, but also helped change the cultural status of blindness. This essay begins by discussing the situation of blind people in nineteenth-century Europe. It then describes the invention of Braille and the gradual process of its acceptance within blind education. Subsequently, it explores the wide-ranging effects of this invention on blind people’s social and cultural lives.
Write your essay introduction
The body of your essay is where you make arguments supporting your thesis, provide evidence, and develop your ideas. Its purpose is to present, interpret, and analyze the information and sources you have gathered to support your argument.
Length of the body text
The length of the body depends on the type of essay. On average, the body comprises 60–80% of your essay. For a high school essay, this could be just three paragraphs, but for a graduate school essay of 6,000 words, the body could take up 8–10 pages.
To give your essay a clear structure , it is important to organize it into paragraphs . Each paragraph should be centered around one main point or idea.
That idea is introduced in a topic sentence . The topic sentence should generally lead on from the previous paragraph and introduce the point to be made in this paragraph. Transition words can be used to create clear connections between sentences.
After the topic sentence, present evidence such as data, examples, or quotes from relevant sources. Be sure to interpret and explain the evidence, and show how it helps develop your overall argument.
Lack of access to reading and writing put blind people at a serious disadvantage in nineteenth-century society. Text was one of the primary methods through which people engaged with culture, communicated with others, and accessed information; without a well-developed reading system that did not rely on sight, blind people were excluded from social participation (Weygand, 2009). While disabled people in general suffered from discrimination, blindness was widely viewed as the worst disability, and it was commonly believed that blind people were incapable of pursuing a profession or improving themselves through culture (Weygand, 2009). This demonstrates the importance of reading and writing to social status at the time: without access to text, it was considered impossible to fully participate in society. Blind people were excluded from the sighted world, but also entirely dependent on sighted people for information and education.
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The conclusion is the final paragraph of an essay. It should generally take up no more than 10–15% of the text . A strong essay conclusion :
- Returns to your thesis
- Ties together your main points
- Shows why your argument matters
A great conclusion should finish with a memorable or impactful sentence that leaves the reader with a strong final impression.
What not to include in a conclusion
To make your essay’s conclusion as strong as possible, there are a few things you should avoid. The most common mistakes are:
- Including new arguments or evidence
- Undermining your arguments (e.g. “This is just one approach of many”)
- Using concluding phrases like “To sum up…” or “In conclusion…”
Braille paved the way for dramatic cultural changes in the way blind people were treated and the opportunities available to them. Louis Braille’s innovation was to reimagine existing reading systems from a blind perspective, and the success of this invention required sighted teachers to adapt to their students’ reality instead of the other way around. In this sense, Braille helped drive broader social changes in the status of blindness. New accessibility tools provide practical advantages to those who need them, but they can also change the perspectives and attitudes of those who do not.
Write your essay conclusion
My essay follows the requirements of the assignment (topic and length ).
My introduction sparks the reader’s interest and provides any necessary background information on the topic.
My introduction contains a thesis statement that states the focus and position of the essay.
I use paragraphs to structure the essay.
I use topic sentences to introduce each paragraph.
Each paragraph has a single focus and a clear connection to the thesis statement.
I make clear transitions between paragraphs and ideas.
My conclusion doesn’t just repeat my points, but draws connections between arguments.
I don’t introduce new arguments or evidence in the conclusion.
I have given an in-text citation for every quote or piece of information I got from another source.
I have included a reference page at the end of my essay, listing full details of all my sources.
My citations and references are correctly formatted according to the required citation style .
My essay has an interesting and informative title.
I have followed all formatting guidelines (e.g. font, page numbers, line spacing).
Your essay meets all the most important requirements. Our editors can give it a final check to help you submit with confidence.
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An essay is a focused piece of writing that explains, argues, describes, or narrates.
In high school, you may have to write many different types of essays to develop your writing skills.
Academic essays at college level are usually argumentative : you develop a clear thesis about your topic and make a case for your position using evidence, analysis and interpretation.
The structure of an essay is divided into an introduction that presents your topic and thesis statement , a body containing your in-depth analysis and arguments, and a conclusion wrapping up your ideas.
The structure of the body is flexible, but you should always spend some time thinking about how you can organize your essay to best serve your ideas.
Your essay introduction should include three main things, in this order:
- An opening hook to catch the reader’s attention.
- Relevant background information that the reader needs to know.
- A thesis statement that presents your main point or argument.
The length of each part depends on the length and complexity of your essay .
A thesis statement is a sentence that sums up the central point of your paper or essay . Everything else you write should relate to this key idea.
The thesis statement is essential in any academic essay or research paper for two main reasons:
- It gives your writing direction and focus.
- It gives the reader a concise summary of your main point.
Without a clear thesis statement, an essay can end up rambling and unfocused, leaving your reader unsure of exactly what you want to say.
A topic sentence is a sentence that expresses the main point of a paragraph . Everything else in the paragraph should relate to the topic sentence.
At college level, you must properly cite your sources in all essays , research papers , and other academic texts (except exams and in-class exercises).
Add a citation whenever you quote , paraphrase , or summarize information or ideas from a source. You should also give full source details in a bibliography or reference list at the end of your text.
The exact format of your citations depends on which citation style you are instructed to use. The most common styles are APA , MLA , and Chicago .
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15 Example Article Topics (Writing) (pdf) | B2 First (FCE)
Articles are usually expected to be less formal than essays . Because they are intended to entertain, you can use more relaxed language, using contractions, phrasal verbs and more informal words. Also, it is common to use rhetorical questions and exclamation marks to keep the reader engaged or to make a point. You should address the reader directly and you can use humour where you think it’s appropriate.
How to write B2 First (FCE) article?
B2 First (FCE) Article: Writing Topics
B2 first (fce) article topic 1.
You have just seen the following advertisement:
Write your article .
B2 First (FCE) Article Topic 2
You have seen this in an international students’ magazine:
B2 First (FCE) Article Topic 3
You have been asked by the editor of your school’s English language magazine to write an article about some typical food and drink from your country. Are there any typical dishes that you would recommend to a foreign visitor?
B2 First (FCE) Article Topic 4
A magazin efor young people called Pastimeshas asked you to write about your favourite hobby. Write an article, describing your hobby and explaining why you would recommend it to other readers.
B2 First (FCE) Article Topic 5
You have received this invitation from a magazine called Animal Lifle.
We have heard you know a lot about animals. Could you write an article for us explaining to our readers which animals make good pets and how to look after them?
B2 First (FCE) Article Topic 6
An international magazine has asked you to write an article describing your home town and saying what attractions it has for young visitors.
B2 First (FCE) Article Topic 7
You see this announcement in an international magazine for young people learning English.
Get Your (FCE) Article Checked!
B2 first (fce) article topic 8.
A small town in your country is hoping to attract foreign tourists. You have been asked to write an article for an international travel magazine describing the town briefly and explaining what tourists can see and do there.
B2 First (FCE) Article Topic 9
An Internet magazine has a page where people can recommend books they have read to others. Write an article for the magazine saying what you liked and disliked about the book you have read and what type of people you think might enjoy it.
B2 First (FCE) Article Topic 10
You have seenthis announcement in an international magazine for young people.
B2 First (FCE) Article Topic 11
You have seen this announcement in an international student magazine.
B2 First (FCE) Article Topic 12
You have seen this announcement on an international student website:
B2 First (FCE) Article Topic 13
You see this advertisement in a magazine.
B2 First (FCE) Article Topic 14
Your school magazine has asked you to suggest how television, especially for young people, could be improved in your country. Write an article for the magazine, making your suggestions.
B2 First (FCE) Article Topic 15
An English language magazine has invited its readers to write an article about what their lives would be like without computers.
B2 First (FCE) Article: Writing Topics (PDF)
Download B2 First (FCE) Article: Topics (PDF)
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Practice tests online, would you pass b2 first (fce).
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Article review writing format, steps, examples and illustration PDF Compiled by Mohammed Yismaw
2021, Article review writing format, steps, examples and illustration PDF Compiled by Mohammed Yismaw
The purpose of this document is to help students and researchers understand how a review of an academic journal is conducted and reported in different fields of study. Review articles in academic journals that analyze or discuss researches previously published by others, rather than reporting new research results or findings. Summaries and critiques are two ways to write a review of a scientific journal article. Both types of writing ask you first to read and understand an article from the primary literature about your topic. The summary involves briefly but accurately stating the key points of the article for a reader who has not read the original article. The critique begins by summarizing the article and then analyzes and evaluates the author’s research. Summaries and critiques help you learn to synthesize information from different sources and are usually limited to two pages maximum.
Harald von Kortzfleisch , Christoph Kahle
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Nuria Gonzalez Alvarez
Creativity and Innovation Management
Firms tap into user knowledge to learn about the users’ needs. While users have been recognized as a valuable source of knowledge for innovation, few studies have investigated how their knowledge is integrated into innovation processes in the context of complex products and systems (CoPS). The purpose of this study is to reveal the practices of CoPS manufacturers to facilitate user knowledge utilization for innovation. We investigate two case companies, a medical device manufacturer and an aircraft manufacturer, and report on seven managerial practices for utilizing user knowledge. We adopt the absorptive capacity model in structuring our findings and elaborate three of the model's sub-capabilities (recognition of the value of user knowledge, acquisition of user knowledge, and assimilation/transformation of user knowledge) by proposing that each is associated with a distinct managerial goal and related practices: (1) Sensitizing the organization to the innovation potential of user knowledge, (2) identifying and gaining access to suitable user knowledge, and (3) analyzing and interpreting user knowledge and integrating it into product development. Our study contributes to the innovation management literature by analyzing the capabilities required to utilize user knowledge throughout the CoPS innovation process.
Information & Management
Diffusion of digital technologies into the manufacturing industry has created new opportunities for innovation that firms must address to remain competitive. We investigate the role of customer and user knowledge in the digital innovation processes of three global B2B manufacturing companies. We find that the B2B manufacturing industry's characteristics influence how users and customers may be leveraged. Customers making the purchasing decisions are considered for knowledge about short-term changes in market needs, while users working directly with the products provide long-term guidance for digital innovation. We identify practices for acquiring, distributing, and using customer and user knowledge for digital innovation.
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Given the rising role of users in innovation processes and the increasing amount of research in this field the aim of this paper is to explore the limits of our understanding of the user innovation (UI) concept. In doing so, the study addresses four basic questions: (1) Why do users create and share innovation? (2) Who is the user-innovator? (3) What type of innovation do users create? (4) How do users innovate? The results of a systematic literature review identified the main research streams on user innovation, together with weaknesses of past research and perspectives for future studies.
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Know the Differences & Comparisons
Difference Between Article and Essay
Last updated on October 31, 2019 by Surbhi S
An article is nothing but a piece of writing commonly found in newspapers or websites which contain fact-based information on a specific topic. It is published with the aim of making the reader aware of something and keeping them up to date.
An essay is a literary work, which often discusses ideas, experiences and concepts in a clear and coherent way. It reflects the author’s personal view, knowledge and research on a specific topic.
Content: Article Vs Essay
Comparison chart, definition of article.
An ‘article’ can be described as any form of written information which is produced either in a printed or electronic form, in newspaper, magazine, journal or website. It aims at spreading news, results of surveys, academic analysis or debates.
An article targets a large group of people, in order to fascinate the readers and engage them. Hence, it should be such that to retain the interest of the readers.
It discusses stories, reports and describes news, present balanced argument, express opinion, provides facts, offers advice, compares and contrast etc. in a formal or informal manner, depending upon the type of audience.
For writing an article one needs to perform a thorough research on the matter, so as to provide original and authentic information to the readers.
Components of Article
- Title : An article contains a noticeable title which should be intriguing and should not be very long and descriptive. However, it should be such that which suggests the theme or issue of the information provided.
- Introduction : The introduction part must clearly define the topic, by giving a brief overview of the situation or event.
- Body : An introduction is followed by the main body which presents the complete information or news, in an elaborative way, to let the reader know about the exact situation.
- Conclusion : The article ends with a conclusion, which sums up the entire topic with a recommendation or comment.
Definition of Essay
An essay is just a formal and comprehensive piece of literature, in which a particular topic is discussed thoroughly. It usually highlights the writer’s outlook, knowledge and experiences on that particular topic. It is a short literary work, which elucidates, argues and analyzes a specific topic.
The word essay is originated from the Latin term ‘exagium’ which means ‘presentation of a case’. Hence, writing an essay means to state the reasons or causes of something, or why something should be done or should be the case, which validates a particular viewpoint, analysis, experience, stories, facts or interpretation.
An essay is written with the intent to convince or inform the reader about something. Further, for writing an essay one needs to have good knowledge of the subject to explain the concept, thoroughly. If not so, the writer will end up repeating the same points again and again.
Components of the Essay
- Title : It should be a succinct statement of the proposition.
- Introduction : The introduction section of the essay, should be so interesting which instantly grabs the attention of the reader and makes them read the essay further. Hence, one can start with a quote to make it more thought-provoking.
- Body : In the main body of the essay, evidence or reasons in support of the writer’s ideas or arguments are provided. One should make sure that there is a sync in the paragraphs of the main body, as well as they, should maintain a logical flow.
- Conclusion : In this part, the writer wraps up all the points in a summarized and simplified manner.
Key Differences Between Article and Essay
Upcoming points will discuss the difference between article and essay:
- An article refers to a written work, published in newspapers, journals, website, magazines etc, containing news or information, in a specific format. On the other hand, an essay is a continuous piece of writing, written with the aim of convincing the reader with the argument or merely informing the reader about the fact.
- An article is objective in the sense that it is based on facts and evidence, and simply describes the topic or narrate the event. As against, an essay is subjective, because it is based on fact or research-based opinion or outlook of a person on a specific topic. It analyses, argues and criticizes the topic.
- The tone used in an article is conversational, so as to make the article easy to understand and also keeping the interest of the reader intact. On the contrary, an essay uses educational and analytical tone.
- An article may contain headings, which makes it attractive and readable. In contrast, an essay does not have any headings, sections or bullet points, however, it is a coherent and organized form of writing.
- An article is always written with a definite objective, which is to inform or make the readers aware of something. Further, it is written to cater to a specific niche of audience. Conversely, an essay is written in response to a particular assertion or question. Moreover, it is not written with a specific group of readers in mind.
- An article is often supported by photographs, charts, statistics, graphs and tables. As opposed, an essay is not supported by any photographs, charts, or graphs.
- Citations and references are a must in case of an essay, whereas there is no such requirement in case of an article.
By and large, an article is meant to inform the reader about something, through news, featured stories, product descriptions, reports, etc. On the flip side, an essay offers an analysis of a particular topic, while reflecting a detailed account of a person’s view on it.
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Anna H. Smith says
November 15, 2020 at 6:21 pm
Great! Thank you for explaining the difference between an article and an academic essay so eloquently. Your information is so detailed and very helpful. it’s very educative, Thanks for sharing.
Sunita Singh says
December 12, 2020 at 7:11 am
Thank you! That’s quite helpful.
Saba Zia says
March 8, 2021 at 12:33 am
Great job!! Thank u for sharing this explanation and detailed difference between essay and article. It is really helpful.
Khushi Chaudhary says
February 7, 2021 at 2:38 pm
Thank you so much! It is really very easy to understand & helpful for my test.
Dury Frizza says
July 25, 2022 at 8:18 pm
Thanks a lot for sharing such a clear and easily understood explanation!!!!.
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The September 2023 issue of IEEE Spectrum is here!
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Saving articles to read later requires an ieee spectrum account, the institute content is only available for members, downloading full pdf issues is exclusive for ieee members, access to spectrum 's digital edition is exclusive for ieee members, following topics is a feature exclusive for ieee members, adding your response to an article requires an ieee spectrum account, create an account to access more content and features on ieee spectrum , including the ability to save articles to read later, download spectrum collections, and participate in conversations with readers and editors. for more exclusive content and features, consider joining ieee ., join the world’s largest professional organization devoted to engineering and applied sciences and get access to all of spectrum’s articles, archives, pdf downloads, and other benefits. learn more →, access thousands of articles — completely free, create an account and get exclusive content and features: save articles, download collections, and talk to tech insiders — all free for full access and benefits, join ieee as a paying member., college admissions: should ai apply, universities are wrestling with the implications of applicants leaning on chatbots for essay help.
A new school year is dawning for the Northern Hemisphere, which means a new crop of high school seniors are staring down the dreaded college admissions process. To secure their place at the institution of higher learning of their choice, many of these students will need to write personal essays that reveal their perspective on the world and on themselves while showing how proficient they are at composing a cohesive, elegant narrative.
If the U.S. college admissions scandal of a few years ago revealed one thing, it’s that it’s difficult to fake being an A student or the starting left tackle on the football team and maintain that ruse for long. But the essay-writing portion of the competition for spots in colleges’ freshman classes is increasingly being infiltrated by AI, says Christopher Hathaway. He’s both a former member of the admissions committee at Yale University and now runs Advantage Ivy Tutoring , a service that coaches high school students to help them make the most of their academic abilities and extracurricular interests. In doing so, says Hathaway, “you inherently end up with good candidates” for schools like Yale that have ultralow acceptance rates. Hathaway operates near the front line of a growing controversy as schools attempt to adjust, articulate, and/or enforce their respective stances on how the use of AI for crafting college admission essays dovetail with their existing honor codes that spell out penalties for, say, cheating on exams and plagiarism.
At first blush, you might assume that applicants to the most competitive schools—think Yale, Harvard , and Princeton , which admit less than 5 percent of candidates—would have the most incentive to take advantage of AI for even the slightest edge. But, as it turns out, the opposite is true. The level of writing skill these schools’ admissions committees want to see is advanced enough that generative AI as it exists today is incapable of producing text with the requisite level of sophistication. The upshot, says Hathaway, is that “AI use for essay writing becomes more prevalent as you get to schools that are less selective—you know, those that are accepting maybe 50 percent of their applicants. The quality of writing obviously is a lower standard. It’s in that milieu that we have seen AI become a presence.”
“We asked one of the chatbots to use an extended metaphor in an essay, and eight of 16 times, it used some kind of an orchestra metaphor.” —Christopher Hathaway, Advantage Ivy Tutoring
The first challenge for these schools’ admissions officers is answering a basic question: What are some telltale signs of an AI-generated essay? “My team and I recently finished a pretty extensive study with the four mainstream chatbots— Chat GPT , Bard , Bing , and GPT-4 ,” says Hathaway. “We’re talking 65-plus hours of trials. And what we came up with, in terms of the signature signs of AI, is first, a lack of creativity. In one of the examples, a sample student was interested in art and had gotten really interested in it because of his interest in comic books featuring underwater creatures. In the first draft, the chatbots just said that, effectively. In the next draft, we asked the bots to provide additional detail. Two of these chatbots provided descriptions of the underwater creatures. And the interesting thing was that they came up with the exact same animals in the exact same order.” Chatbots’ “if-one-is-good, more-of-the-same-is-better” approach is an issue that students are going to run into in their real-world attempt to get a one-size-fits-all artificial intelligence to help them deliver a narrative that’s supposed to be deeply personal.
“These bots are just systematically looking for the next best word that fits into a sequence statistically,” says Hathaway. “Add to that the fact that they’re effectively pulling from the same material repeatedly, and so that really impacts authenticity and originality.”
Another issue commonly encountered with AI-generated essays is stilted language that’s corporate in tone and syntactically uninteresting. “We asked one of the bots to use an extended metaphor in an essay, and eight of 16 times, it used some kind of an orchestra metaphor,” Hathaway recalls. “And this was GPT-4 , which was, by far, the most competent of the bots.” Imagine being an admissions officer at a large state school who must review 4,000 of, say, 20,000 applications that came in before the deadline. If half of the essays present the same metaphor, reading them back-to-back would become stultifying, and hardly any of the candidates would stand out.
Just as problematic, Hathaway notes, is that when the bots were asked to switch things up, they defaulted to exaggerated, often sensationalist verbiage. “They definitely went overboard,” says, Hathaway, remembering that the chatbots found no middle ground between short, declarative sentences that did a lot of telling, not showing, and incredibly flowery language that became recognizable as one of the bots’ hackneyed hallmarks.
Still, a big challenge for admissions officers—besides boredom—is being certain about whether any particular essay has been cowritten or completely ghostwritten by AI. One bugaboo for universities has been false positives. The use of software-based detectors as a countermeasure has left U.S. schools open to accusations of bias against non-native English speakers. “Non-native speakers who are submitting applications are having a little bit more difficulty with their admissions essays being flagged,” says Hathaway.
“You’ve got places that are already restructuring their curricula in response. George Washington University and Rutgers University are phasing out take-home, open-book assignments because they just assume that people are going to cut these corners.” –Christopher Hathaway, Advantage Ivy Tutoring
But not every school is interested in turning out the next generation of great (or even above average) writers. The Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta is an, er, textbook example of a school whose academic departments place a much lower premium on writing skill and proudly hold more of a protechnology bias than do those at the aforementioned liberal arts colleges. It’s therefore no shock that Georgia Tech has given its applicants the green light to use AI to respond to the essay prompt on the school’s application.
Asked whether schools taking this pro-AI stance should be concerned about students feeling they have license to use the technology to complete assignments given by their professors during the academic year, Hathaway says, “Professors are going to need to adjust the way they’re presenting and assigning work. You’ve got places that are already restructuring their curricula in response. George Washington University and Rutgers University are phasing out take-home, open-book assignments because they just assume that people are going to cut these corners. And so, [Georgia Tech and other schools] are going to need to figure out different ways of assessing students’ skills—whether that’s via in-class assignments and handwritten papers and such, or oral exams.” And since AI doesn’t appear to be going anywhere anytime soon, these adjustments and many others might soon be endemic to academia across the board.
- Hallucinations Could Blunt ChatGPT’s Success ›
- How ChatGPT Could Revolutionize Academia ›
- ChatGPT can generate an essay. But could it generate an “A”? ›
- Need an AI essay writer? Here's how ChatGPT (and other chatbots ... ›
Willie Jones is an associate editor at IEEE Spectrum . In addition to editing and planning daily coverage, he manages several of Spectrum 's newsletters and contributes regularly to the monthly Big Picture section that appears in the print edition.
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Artikel yang sesuai:
- Panduan Dasar Menulis Esai Ilmiah Beserta Contohnya
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2 komentar untuk “Download Kumpulan Contoh Esai Ilmiah Terbaik PDF”
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Ban or Embrace? Colleges Wrestle With A.I.-Generated Admissions Essays.
A.I. chatbots could facilitate plagiarism on college applications or democratize student access to writing help. Or maybe both.
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By Natasha Singer
Natasha Singer reports on the ways that tech giants and their tools are reshaping education.
Rick Clark, the executive director of undergraduate admission at the Georgia Institute of Technology, and his staff spent weeks this summer pretending to be high school students using A.I. chatbots to fill out college applications.
The admissions officers each took on a different high school persona: swim team captain, Eagle Scout, musical theater performer. Then they fed personal details about the fictional students into ChatGPT, prompting the A.I. chatbot to produce the kind of extracurricular activity lists and personal essays commonly required on college applications.
Mr. Clark said he wanted to get a handle on how A.I. chatbots might reshape the admissions process this fall — the start of the first full academic year that the tools will be widely available to high school seniors — and come up with guidance for students applying to Georgia Tech.
“Students on some level are going to have access to and use A.I.,” Mr. Clark said. “The big question is: How do we want to direct them, knowing that it’s out there and available to them?”
The easy availability of A.I. chatbots like ChatGPT, which can manufacture humanlike text in response to short prompts, is poised to upend the traditional undergraduate application process at selective colleges — ushering in an era of automated plagiarism or of democratized student access to essay-writing help. Or maybe both.
The digital disruption comes at a turning point for institutions of higher education across the United States. After the Supreme Court ruled in June that race-based university admissions programs were illegal, some selective universities and colleges had hoped to rely more on essay questions — about applicants’ upbringing, identities and communities — to help foster diversity on campus.
The personal essay has long been a staple of the application process at elite colleges, not to mention a bane for generations of high school students. Admissions officers have often employed applicants’ essays as a lens into their unique character, pluck, potential and ability to handle adversity. As a result, some former students say they felt tremendous pressure to develop, or at least concoct, a singular personal writing voice.
But new A.I. tools threaten to recast the college application essay as a kind of generic cake mix, which high school students may simply lard or spice up to reflect their own tastes, interests and experiences — casting doubt on the legitimacy of applicants’ writing samples as authentic, individualized admissions yardsticks.
“It makes me sad,” Lee Coffin , the dean of admissions at Dartmouth College, said during a university podcast this year that touched on A.I.-generated application essays. “The idea that this central component of a story could be manufactured by someone other than the applicant is disheartening.”
Some teachers said they were troubled by the idea of students using A.I. tools to produce college essay themes and texts for deeper reasons: Outsourcing writing to bots could hinder students from developing important critical thinking and storytelling skills.
“Part of the process of the college essay is finding your writing voice through all of that drafting and revising,” said Susan Barber, an Advanced Placement English literature teacher at Midtown High School, a public school in Atlanta. “And I think that’s something that ChatGPT would be robbing them of.”
In August, Ms. Barber assigned her 12th-grade students to write college essays. This week, she held class discussions about ChatGPT, cautioning students that using A.I. chatbots to generate ideas or writing could make their college essays sound too generic. She advised them to focus more on their personal views and voices.
Other educators said they hoped the A.I. tools might have a democratizing effect. Wealthier high school students, these experts noted, often have access to resources — alumni parents, family friends, paid writing coaches — to help them brainstorm, draft and edit their college admissions essays. ChatGPT could play a similar role for students who lack such resources, they said, especially those at large high schools where overworked college counselors have little time for individualized essay coaching.
So far, however, very few U.S. universities have published admissions policies on the use of A.I. tools by applicants.
The University of Michigan Law School recently issued guidelines saying that “applicants ought not use ChatGPT or other artificial intelligence tools as part of their drafting process.” But the law school does allow applicants to ask mentors, friends or other humans “for basic proofreading assistance and general feedback and critiques.”
The Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at Arizona State University has taken the opposite stance. The law school’s website says applicants may use A.I. tools to prepare their application materials as long as they “ use this technology responsibly ” and certify that the information they submit is true.
After experimenting with ChatGPT this summer, the admissions team at Georgia Tech chose a third way. The university’s website recently posted guidelines encouraging high school applicants to use A.I. tools as collaborators to “brainstorm, refine and edit” their ideas. At the same time, the site warned applicants that they should “not copy and paste content you did not create directly into your application.”
Mr. Clark, the Georgia Tech admissions official, said ChatGPT could not compete with live writing coaches or savvy parents in providing feedback to high school students on their personal essays. But he hoped it could help many students get started.
“It’s free, it’s accessible and it’s helpful,” Mr. Clark said. “It’s progress toward equity.”
Several high school seniors said in interviews that they had chosen not to use A.I. tools to help draft their essays — partly because they wanted to tell their own personal stories themselves, and partly because many universities have not taken clear stances on applicants’ use of the chatbots.
“The vagueness and ambiguity is kind of hard for us,” said Kevin Jacob, a senior at the Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science and Technology in the Atlanta area. The public high school has a dedicated writing center where students may get feedback on their college essays.
The Common App, a nonprofit group that runs an online system enabling high school students to apply to many colleges and universities at once, has not taken a public stance on the use of A.I. chatbots. The group requires applicants to certify that their writing — and other material they submit as part of their college applications — is their own work . But the group has not updated the academic integrity policy on its website to include artificial intelligence tools.
“This is the first full application cycle where students have the ability to use ChatGPT, and this technology is constantly changing,” Jenny Rickard, the chief executive of the Common App, said in a statement.
“We’re all learning more about these tools, and it’s important for our member institutions and our K-12 partners and counselors to set reasonable parameters on how they can and can’t be used.”
The New York Times emailed more than a dozen universities and colleges — including large state schools, Ivy League schools and small private colleges — asking about their policies on high school applicants using A.I. tools to draft their admissions essays. The majority did not respond or declined to comment.
In a statement sent by email, the Office of Undergraduate Admissions at the University of Michigan said the school was “aware of the new technology” but had “not made any changes to our undergraduate application process, including our essay questions .”
Ritika Vakharia, a senior at the Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science and Technology, said she had tried asking ChatGPT to produce ideas for college admissions essays. But she found the responses too broad and impersonal, even after she gave it details about her extracurricular activities like teaching dance classes to younger students.
Now she said she was working to come up with a more personal college application essay theme.
“I feel a little more pressure to create, like, this super unique, interesting topic,” Ms. Vakharia said, “because a basic one these days could just be generated by ChatGPT.”
Natasha Singer writes about technology, business and society. She is currently reporting on the far-reaching ways that tech companies and their tools are reshaping public schools, higher education and job opportunities. More about Natasha Singer
Explore Our Coverage of Artificial Intelligence
The U.S. Air Force is starting to embrace artificial intelligence, but there are deep concerns about how much autonomy to grant a lethal weapon .
Nvidia has become the most visible winner of the artificial intelligence boom. The Silicon Valley company achieved its dominance by becoming a one-stop shop for A.I. development, from chips to software to other services.
The use of A.I. to generate voice deepfakes has given scammers a potent weapon for trying to trick people into sending them money.
Technology disruption has typically affected blue-collar jobs. But white-collar workers may feel the brunt of the changes brought on by A.I. systems.
Initially, some school districts raced to block A.I. chatbots like ChatGPT. Now, as the new academic year starts, they are trying to embrace the technology .
In a milestone of neuroscience and A.I., the brain activity of a paralyzed woman is being translated into words spoken by an avatar on a computer screen .
8 Ways You Can Improve Your Communication Skills
Your guide to establishing better communication habits for success in the workplace.
Mary Sharp Emerson
A leader’s ability to communicate clearly and effectively with employees, within teams, and across the organization is one of the foundations of a successful business.
And in today’s complex and quickly evolving business environment, with hundreds of different communication tools, fully or partially remote teams, and even multicultural teams spanning multiple time zones, effective communication has never been more important—or more challenging.
Thus, the ability to communicate might be a manager’s most critical skill.
The good news is that these skills can be learned and even mastered.
These eight tips can help you maximize your communication skills for the success of your organization and your career.
1. Be clear and concise
Communication is primarily about word choice. And when it comes to word choice, less is more.
The key to powerful and persuasive communication—whether written or spoken—is clarity and, when possible, brevity.
Before engaging in any form of communication, define your goals and your audience.
Outlining carefully and explicitly what you want to convey and why will help ensure that you include all necessary information. It will also help you eliminate irrelevant details.
Avoid unnecessary words and overly flowery language, which can distract from your message.
And while repetition may be necessary in some cases, be sure to use it carefully and sparingly. Repeating your message can ensure that your audience receives it, but too much repetition can cause them to tune you out entirely.
2. Prepare ahead of time
Know what you are going to say and how you are going to say before you begin any type of communication.
However, being prepared means more than just practicing a presentation.
Preparation also involves thinking about the entirety of the communication, from start to finish. Research the information you may need to support your message. Consider how you will respond to questions and criticisms. Try to anticipate the unexpected.
Before a performance review, for instance, prepare a list of concrete examples of your employee’s behavior to support your evaluation.
Before engaging in a salary or promotion negotiation, know exactly what you want. Be ready to discuss ranges and potential compromises; know what you are willing to accept and what you aren’t. And have on hand specific details to support your case, such as relevant salaries for your position and your location (but be sure that your research is based on publicly available information, not company gossip or anecdotal evidence).
Before entering into any conversation, brainstorm potential questions, requests for additional information or clarification, and disagreements so you are ready to address them calmly and clearly.
3. Be mindful of nonverbal communication
Our facial expressions, gestures, and body language can, and often do, say more than our words.
Nonverbal cues can have between 65 and 93 percent more impact than the spoken word. And we are more likely to believe the nonverbal signals over spoken words if the two are in disagreement.
Leaders must be especially adept at reading nonverbal cues.
Employees who may be unwilling to voice disagreements or concerns, for instance, may show their discomfort through crossed arms or an unwillingness to make eye contact. If you are aware of others’ body language, you may be able to adjust your communication tactics appropriately.
At the same time, leaders must also be able to control their own nonverbal communications.
Your nonverbal cues must, at all times, support your message. At best, conflicting verbal and nonverbal communication can cause confusion. At worst, it can undermine your message and your team’s confidence in you, your organization, and even in themselves.
4. Watch your tone
How you say something can be just as important as what you say. As with other nonverbal cues, your tone can add power and emphasis to your message, or it can undermine it entirely.
Tone can be an especially important factor in workplace disagreements and conflict. A well-chosen word with a positive connotation creates good will and trust. A poorly chosen word with unclear or negative connotations can quickly lead to misunderstanding.
When speaking, tone includes volume, projection, and intonation as well as word choice. In real time, it can be challenging to control tone to ensure that it matches your intent. But being mindful of your tone will enable you to alter it appropriately if a communication seems to be going in the wrong direction.
Tone can be easier to control when writing. Be sure to read your communication once, even twice, while thinking about tone as well as message. You may even want to read it out loud or ask a trusted colleague to read it over, if doing so does not breach confidentiality.
And when engaging in a heated dialogue over email or other written medium, don’t be too hasty in your replies.
If at all possible, write out your response but then wait for a day or two to send it. In many cases, re-reading your message after your emotions have cooled allows you to moderate your tone in a way that is less likely to escalate the conflict.
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5. Practice active listening
Communication nearly always involves two or more individuals.
Therefore, listening is just as important as speaking when it comes to communicating successfully. But listening can be more challenging than we realize.
In her blog post Mastering the Basics of Communication , communication expert Marjorie North notes that we only hear about half of what the other person says during any given conversation.
The goal of active listening is to ensure that you hear not just the words the person is saying, but the entire message. Some tips for active listening include:
- Giving the speaker your full and undivided attention
- Clearing your mind of distractions, judgements, and counter-arguments.
- Avoiding the temptation to interrupt with your own thoughts.
- Showing open, positive body language to keep your mind focused and to show the speaker that you are really listening
- Rephrase or paraphrase what you’ve heard when making your reply
- Ask open ended questions designed to elicit additional information
6. Build your emotional intelligence
Communication is built upon a foundation of emotional intelligence. Simply put, you cannot communicate effectively with others until you can assess and understand your own feelings.
“If you’re aware of your own emotions and the behaviors they trigger, you can begin to manage these emotions and behaviors,” says Margaret Andrews in her post, How to Improve Your Emotional Intelligence .
Leaders with a high level of emotional intelligence will naturally find it easier to engage in active listening, maintain appropriate tone, and use positive body language, for example.
Understanding and managing your own emotions is only part of emotional intelligence. The other part—equally important for effective communication—is empathy for others.
Empathizing with an employee can, for example, make a difficult conversation easier.
You may still have to deliver bad news, but (actively) listening to their perspective and showing that you understand their feelings can go a long way toward smoothing hurt feelings or avoiding misunderstandings.
7. Develop a workplace communication strategy
Today’s workplace is a constant flow of information across a wide variety of formats. Every single communication must be understood in the context of that larger flow of information.
Even the most effective communicator may find it difficult to get their message across without a workplace communication strategy.
A communication strategy is the framework within which your business conveys and receives information. It can—and should—outline how and what you communicate to customers and clients, stakeholders, and managers and employees.
Starting most broadly, your strategy should incorporate who gets what message and when. This ensures that everyone receives the correct information at the right time.
It can be as detailed as how you communicate, including defining the type of tools you use for which information. For example, you may define when it’s appropriate to use a group chat for the entire team or organization or when a meeting should have been summarized in an email instead.
Creating basic guidelines like this can streamline the flow of information. It will help ensure that everyone gets the details they need and that important knowledge isn’t overwhelmed by extraneous minutia.
8. Create a positive organizational culture
The corporate culture in which you are communicating also plays a vital role in effective communication.
In a positive work environment—one founded on transparency, trust, empathy, and open dialogue—communication in general will be easier and more effective.
Employees will be more receptive to hearing their manager’s message if they trust that manager. And managers will find it easier to create buy-in and even offer constructive criticism if they encourage their employees to speak up, offer suggestions, and even offer constructive criticisms of their own.
“The most dangerous organization is a silent one,” says Lorne Rubis in a blog post, Six Tips for Building a Better Workplace Culture . Communication, in both directions, can only be effective in a culture that is built on trust and a foundation of psychological safety.
Authoritative managers who refuse to share information, aren’t open to suggestions, and refuse to admit mistakes and accept criticism are likely to find their suggestions and criticisms met with defensiveness or even ignored altogether.
Without that foundation of trust and transparency, even the smallest communication can be misconstrued and lead to misunderstandings and unnecessary conflict.
Communicating with co-workers and employees is always going to present challenges. There will always be misunderstandings and miscommunications that must be resolved and unfortunately, corporate messages aren’t always what we want to hear, especially during difficult times.
But building and mastering effective communication skills will make your job easier as a leader, even during difficult conversations. Taking the time to build these skills will certainly be time well-spent.
Want to build your skills? Find the program that’s right for you.
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About the Author
Digital Content Producer
Emerson is a Digital Content Producer at Harvard DCE. She is a graduate of Brandeis University and Yale University and started her career as an international affairs analyst. She is an avid triathlete and has completed three Ironman triathlons, as well as the Boston Marathon.
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I've studied more than 5,000 near death experiences. My research has convinced me without a doubt that there's life after death.
- Jeffrey Long is a radiation oncologist in Kentucky.
- He's also the founder of the Near-Death Experience Research Foundation.
- He says studying near-death experiences has made him a better cancer doctor.
This as-told-to essay is based on a conversation with Jeffrey Long . It has been edited for length and clarity.
Thirty-seven years ago I was an oncologist resident, learning about how best to treat cancer using radiation . These were the pre-internet days, so I did my research in the library. One day, I was flipping through a large volume of the Journal of the American Medical Association when I came across an article describing near-death experiences .
It stopped me in my tracks. All my medical training told me you were either alive or dead. There was no in-between. But suddenly, I was reading from a cardiologist describing patients who had died and then came back to life, reporting very distinct, almost unbelievable experiences.
From that moment, I was fascinated with near-death experiences or NDEs. I define a near-death experience as someone who is either comatose or clinically dead, without a heartbeat, having a lucid experience where they see, hear, feel emotions, and interact with other beings. Learning more about these experiences has fundamentally changed my view of the universe.
Near-death experiences have common threads
When I finished my residency, I started the Near-Death Experience Research Foundation . I started collecting stories from people who had NDEs and evaluating them with the mind of a scientist and doctor. I made opinions based on evidence and came into this as a skeptic. But in the face of overwhelming evidence, I've come to believe there's certainly an afterlife.
No two NDEs are the same. But as I studied thousands of them, I saw a consistent pattern of events emerging in a predictable order. About 45% of people who have an NDE report an out-of-body experience. When this happens, their consciousness separates from their physical body, usually hovering above the body. The person can see and hear what's happening around them, which usually includes frantic attempts to revive them. One woman even reported a doctor throwing a tool on the floor when he picked up the wrong one—something the doctor later confirmed.
After the out-of-body experience, people say they're transported into another realm. Many pass through a tunnel and experience a bright light. Then, they're greeted by deceased loved ones, including pets, who are in the prime of their lives. Most people report an overwhelming sense of love and peace. They feel like this other realm is their real home.
I haven't found any scientific explanation for these experiences
These experiences may sound cliché: the bright light, the tunnel, the loved ones. But over twenty-five years of studying NDEs, I've come to believe that these descriptions have become cultural tropes because they're true. I even worked with a group of children under five who had NDEs. They reported the same experiences that adults did—and at that age, you're unlikely to have heard about bright lights or tunnels after you die.
Other people report seemingly unbelievable events, which we can later confirm. One woman lost consciousness while riding her horse on a trail. Her body stayed on the trail while her consciousness traveled with her horse as he galloped back to the barn. Later, she was able to describe exactly what happened at the barn because she had seen it despite her body not being there. Others who hadn't spoken to her confirmed her account.
I'm a medical doctor. I've read brain research and considered every possible explanation for NDEs. The bottom line is that none of them hold water. There isn't even a remotely plausible physical explanation for this phenomenon.
I've also studied fear-death experiences, like near-miss car accidents
I take a particular definition for NDEs. The person must be unconscious. But there's another type of phenomenon that fascinates me too: what I call "fear-death experiences."
These are situations when you feel your life is in imminent danger. It might be a near-miss car accident or a sudden fall. These people generally don't experience the tunnel and light, but they often report their life "flashing before their eyes."
While some people with NDEs report these life reviews, they're more common with fear-death experiences. People even recall events from toddlerhood that they can't consciously remember but that we can later confirm by talking with family members and others.
Studying NDEs has made me a better cancer doctor
While I'm passionate about NDEs, my day job still revolves around helping patients fight cancer. I don't tell my patients about my NDE research. And yet, my work with NDEs has made me a more compassionate and loving doctor.
I'm able to help my patients face life-threatening diseases with increased courage and passion. My goal is to help them have more healthy days here on Earth. But I firmly believe that if and when they pass, they will be at peace.