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Writing essays in history - How to Write Essays, Study guide, Department of History and Art History, University of Otago, New Zealand

Example This text produces the following footnotes On Mars in the 1850s, the beauty of nature was usually associated with wild, untouched landscapes. Every point of your answer must bear directly on the subject, and you must say in so many words how it helps to answer the question. Make sure the numbering is continuous and applies to the whole document. I had exactly the same problem as you when I did my history essay last week, I have history tomorrow and I m pretty sure I wont get a pass mark since I was completely confused as to what to write in the essay without being too descriptive Follow 2 followers 2 badges Thread Starter by Ndella I had exactly the same problem as you when I did my history essay last week, I have history tomorrow and I m pretty sure I wont get a pass mark since I was completely confused as to what to write in the essay without being too descriptive Don t worry! How to create a footnote or endnote using Microsoft Word Go to the Insert menu and select Footnote or in the 2003 version click Reference.

Encyclopaedia and dictionary entries Goot, Murray. Information from lectures- the lecturer s words, notes taken during the lecture, information from slides and overheads. Some classes, such as the History Seminar, have students critique each others research drafts, often several times.

When writing your introduction there are a few ideas you need to keep in mind Open with a broad statement Each sentence should get a little more specific and detailed, but not actually discussing the content of the essay.


You must at all costs avoid plagiarism, which is a crime and means automatic failure.


While it might seem like this step creates more work for you by having to do more writing, it in fact serves two critical purposes it helps you refine your working thesis by distilling exactly what your sources are saying, and it helps smooth your writing process. More important is that you demonstrate your understanding of the question set.


You must give a judicious selection of evidence i. Based on the reading and research you have done, how might you answer the question s in the prompt? Cambridge, Massachusetts The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2005. This need not be complicated, a few lines or dot points is ample.

, I found this information for you Writing a history essay. What kind of evidence supports the arguments and how is it used? If so, how can I recycle the information I ve already begun to collect? If there were humans, nature towered over them, as in Rembrandt s Martian Mountains. Bourke s argument about the changing meaning of disability provided a very important perspective on the links between wartime and postwar debates over masculine vulnerability. Abbreviation principles It is now common practice to use full stops only where the abbreviation of the word does not contain the last letter of the word. An essay is a piece of sustained writing in response to a question, topic or issue. A Medieval Author, in a translated text Footnote 12 Geoffrey of Monmouth, The History of the Kings of Britain, trans. Here s how to construct tenses properly for both types of paper. Punctuation of quotations Periods and commas are to be placed within the quotation marks colons and semicolons, outside the quotation marks. Keep the focus on what you have to say, not on the question of how you hope to develop and say it. You might reflect on what your interpretation implies for contemporary debates or discussions, write briefly about the broader implications of your position, or consider what your tells us about the role and nature of history itself. Competent, honest and reliable writers form the heart of our firm.

Contact Details Department of History, Lancaster University, Lancaster LA1 4YG, UNITED KINGDOM Email Tel 44-1524-592554 Fax Quick index to this page Page and Type Format Essays should be typed double-spaced use 12-point font with a serif e.

If you are referring to a secondary source, you can usually summarise in your own words rather than quoting directly. Internet sources Australians at War First World War 1914-1918. Visit the library s History Research Guide for tips on the research process and on using library resources. Diwali festival essay in english language xcom baz luhrmann romeo and juliet essay conclusion list literary essay about romeo and juliet. I was unsure as to whether or not I d be marked down for not being consistent with my argument being for against. No matter how well-written, well-argued, or well-evidenced your essay is, if you don t answer the answer the question you have been asked, you cannot expect to receive a top mark.


Try to explicitly answer the question in one sentence, and then expand on how you are going to argue your case. Finally make sure you always refer back to the question so you keep your essay cogent.

Ideally, you should be able to express your contention as a single sentence. Here s what it sounds like when you mix present and past tenses Almost every year of his reign Charlemagne is forced to go and vanquish the Saxons again and has to them on the spot. Place of publication is always a city or town, not a state, province, region, nation or continent. Notice if there are ideas that seem out of order or repetitive. Do this before you begin conducting your research to ensure that your reading is closely focussed to the question and you don t waste time. Also, for the point given in the question you should aim to write a third of your work on that Use strong land specialist language, instead of workers say proletariat Strong lead in sentences help too, eg the predominate reason. Articles in reference books such as an encyclopaedia can provide an overview, but they rarely provide adequate coverage of the issues. The footnote is a way of demonstrating the author s thesis against the evidence. Certainly, by the 1880s, most of the natural environment showed nature being tamed and civilised.

Argue take a clear position on a debate and justify it. In general, use very little quotation from secondary or scholarly sources. Generalisation occurs when you form general conclusions from one or more specific examples.

Internet Author of the document if known, name of the document if relevant, date of the document if known, at full WWW address, date on which you accessed the page. Sometimes because of lack of space at the bottom of a page, Word will move footnotes over to the next page. Your questions will be the beginning of your own thesis., since this helps to show that you have understood what was being said- providing that you have indeed grasped what was being said!

Every essay should be proofed, edited and, if necessary, re-drafted before being submitted for assessment. Pay attention to point 1 changing the wording of a passage is still plagiarism if you don t credit the author for the ideas you are borrowing. So it s perfectly okay to contradict the first point I make. Some historians have compared the historian s craft to assembling and presenting a case before a jury. Originality is this ability to communicate fresh perspectives and new insights. Do not relegate the real point or points of the paper to the conclusion.

It s better to write down more in your notes than you think you will need than not have enough and find yourself frantically looking back through a book. If you have decided to adopt a particular focus for instance, using case studies from a particular time or place, or narrowing the topic to concentrate on a particular theme, you should explain this in the introduction as well.

ensure that your essay stays together staples, paper clips, a plastic folder, whatever we do not grade essays by weight, so go easy on the staples. Writing the First Draft Having revised you argument and plan, it s time to write your essay. A good paragraph will begin with an effective opening sentence, sometimes called a topic sentence or signposting sentence. Times New Roman, Verdana, Georgia, Trebuchet MS, Liberation Serif have 1 inch margins at the top and bottom of the page have 1 inch margins on the left and right have pages numbered Your professor may have specific requirements.

BBC- Higher Bitesize History- Essay writing Revision Introduction to 20 mark essay writing Essay writing in Higher History is very important. Nor do you need to encourage me to see the past vividly. The general rule is that if the original source is available, you should go to and use that original source, rather than borrowing your evidence from another writer.

Book reviews 11 Colin Seymour-Ure, review of World War II in Cartoons, by Mark Bryant, History Today, 55, no. Key for the top marks it s pretty key to include meta game in your conclusion aswell Follow 2 followers 2 badges Thread Starter Okay thank you! In the first reference to a person, organization, or whatever, give the complete name not only initials. This alternative version became popular again in the 1890s. You re a History student- this is massively encouraged! They are for people with very short attention spans which partly explains why journalists use them. By now you should have noticed that you are reading an essay, one in which I have tried to follow the same rules I have presented. A thesis is indeed a point of view, or perspective, but of a particular sort it is based not only on belief, but on a logical and systematic argument supported by evidence. Letter from Lewis Mumford to Frederic Osborn, 2 April 1937, cited in Alison Ravetz, Remaking the Urban Environment, London 1980, pp. Have you followed all of the stated formatting guidelines such as font-size and margins? 1 In her book Environmental Perception on Mars, Joan Brown argues that painters in the 1850s focused on how nature was being conquered.


Number your pages, and write your name and course number on every page in case the pages are separated.

For example, to use an example I used last year for my essay paper on Lutheranism, Luther s ideas and the emerging German nationalism although this phrase is anachronistic are not separate entities which independently led to the thriving of Lutheranism but were mutually dependent the Lutheran movement could not have occurred without the people s support, but still required Luther to propose those ideas to begin with. In other words, Homer composed poetry long ago, but we today interpret it along certain lines.

You have to think and think hard and then you should think again, trying to find loopholes in your reasoning.

Does it provide critical historical background that you need in order to make a point?


They will probably breathe a sign of relief that here is one student at least who is avoiding the two common pitfalls. Writing a good history essay should be rigorous and challenging, even for stronger students. They will not state their theses quite as baldly as I have recommended, but they did not write their essays to be read in a stack of twenty-five, and once you have learned the rules you can break them.

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