How to Write an Essay

Learning how to write an essay is a skill; it is not necessarily something that you can just sit down and do, although many believe that you can. It is okay to find writing and especially writing assignments difficult.

Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Is knowing where to start your essay assignment difficult?
  • Do you know what you want to write but you don’t know how to structure it?
  • Is planning an essay hard for you?
  • Would you like to explore different elements of writing?

If you answered yes to any of those questions, the Skills Centre session on How to Write an Essay is for you.

You will find a step-by-step exploration of everything you need to know about essay writing, including the three main parts of the essay structure: introduction, main body, and conclusion. This session will give you the confidence and clarity you need to improve your essay writing skills. 

The Boole Library Website has some excellent resources for you to help you manage your assignments. Make sure that you look at their information on planning your essay, help in identifying the resources that you need to research effectively, and it will even help you search the databases effectively. For those who are writing in the sciences, the Royal Chemistry Association offers guidelines around reading in the area. Additional advice regarding assignment preparation can be found on the Harvard Writing Centre Pages.

Building your academic vocabulary can be challenging but being able to express yourself clearly using the appropriate language is a skill that takes time to develop and improves with practice. This fantastic Academic Phrase bank has been developed by Manchester University, we hope you find it useful.

Is this session not on the skills sessions timetable? Would you or a group be interested in attending this session, but the Skills Centre is currently not offering it? Let us know! We would be happy to know what session students look forward to the most, so the Skills Centre can cater to all of your academic needs, simply email us about the sessions you or a group would like to attend.

Check out our downloadable handouts on how to write an essay!

These downloadable handouts cover important guidelines for both undergraduate and postgraduate students. These resources are based on common questions about academic writing, general skills and research, exam preparation and specific assignments within your course. When availing of these resources, they will help you unlock YOUR Potential!

Check out the full suite of resources here.

Listen to our Write Here, Write Now Podcast episode on Planning your Essay!


Watch our Essay related Gimme Two Minutes Videos!

The Skills Centre 'Gimme Two Minutes' video series, available for viewing on YouTube, focuses on very basic concepts related to the academic writing and preparation skills, delivered by the University College Cork Skills Centre in a short and visual format. These videos can be used as self-learning tools and give you a taste of what sessions and workshops the Skills Centre offers to UCC students.