Point By Point Comparison Essay Examples

     Next, the sounds were different in Idaho from those in San Francisco.  In Idaho, the sounds were those typical of a farm:  the barking of dogs, the mooing of the cows, the whistling of wind in the trees.  The sounds of the night were always my favorite.  At sundown, the coyotes started to howl, and the sound echoed eerily from the surrounding forests and hills. The frogs answered with a cacophony of croaks from the creek at the bottom of the hill, and the crickets added to the noise.   The cattle and the dog joined in, too.   If I listened quietly, I could hear the wind whistle around the corner of the house.  Sometimes, the annoying buzz of a mosquito would add to the sound mix.  The air was alive with sound, but the sounds were those of nature.  I could listen or not listen because the sounds weren’t intrusive.  Even in town, the rare sound of a siren only meant that the deputy was on his way home to dinner and was signaling his wife to set the table.

     In San Francisco, my ears were assaulted by the sounds of the city:  the honking of cars, yelling of people, and wailing of sirens.  My first night in the city was a horror!  I couldn’t sleep all night.  My dorm room was across the street from St. Francis Memorial Hospital, right in the middle of the city.  The emergency room faced the dorm.  All night long, I could hear the ambulances and the sirens as they raced to the emergency entrance.   I could hear the ambulance attendants talking to the nurses.  I could hear the cars going by incessantly, braking and accelerating with the change of the traffic light on the corner.  I couldn’t hear myself think!  This was not pleasant background sounds of nature;  it was intrusive, loud, human-made noise that was inescapable.  I learned to fight noise with noise:  my stereo against the outside world.

     Last, the people seemed totally different in Idaho from those in San Francisco.  (This is not an exaggeration.  They were a different species altogether.)  In Idaho, people were pretty much the same—color-wise and everything-else-wise.  My father was a typical “blue collar” person (except his collar was usually green).  He was a farmer and drove a school bus to make ends meet. He wore blue overalls over black work pants and a dark green shirt—everyday.  He had one suit in his entire life.  He wore it to weddings and funerals.  He also had one tie and one white shirt.  My mother made her own clothes and mine, too, until I got old enough to make my own, so everything had a homemade, flowered-print sort of look.  People worked, went to church, cooked, ate, and lived very similar lives.  They didn’t beg on the streets, and they didn’t appear to be confused about their genders, at least not in public. 

     In San Francisco, on the other hand, the people were a revelation!  There were people in uniforms, in suits, in rags—all kinds of people.  On my first walk down Market street, I saw beggars in filthy clothes sitting on the sidewalks with signs, “Help me, I’m hungry.”  There was also a blind man playing an accordion, with a can for donations in front of him.  Then, there were the men with makeup . . .not that there’s anything wrong with that!.  However, I’d never seen a man wear makeup; I didn’t even know there were men who might want to wear makeup.   I was completely confused as to why both men and women, wearing hot pants, would be standing around on street corners in the cold San Francisco weather.  It seemed like a strange fashion statement to make.  Added to that, there were Asians, and African Americans, and East Indians, and Greeks, and Russians, and Mexicans, and everything else.  The people were confusing, fascinating,  amazing, and truly wonderful!  

How to Write an A+ Comparison Essay on any Topic

Published 3/10/2013

What is a Comparison Essay?

A comparison essay (or a Compare and Contrast essay) is a commonly used type of writing assignment in various classes of high school and college, from art to science. In a comparison essay you should critically analyze any two subjects, finding and pointing out their similarities and/or differences.

Depending on your assignment, such essays can be comparative only (looking only at similarities), contrasting only (pointing out the differences) or both comparative and contrasting.

Choosing a Topic for Comparison Essay

In order to write a good essay, first you need to have a good topic for it, i.e. a topic that lets you easily demonstrate your writing skills and get a high grade easily.

What does that mean specifically regarding the comparison essay? Very simple: the subjects must be easy comparable, so you don’t need to work too hard to point out their similarities or differences. For example:

A big college campus and a small college campus
World War I and World War II
Two perspectives on the same place: morning and night
William Shakespeare with William Wordsworth
Windows vs. Linux

Using the following links, you can find a lot of good comparison topics for your essay:

100 Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

50 Compare and Contrast Topics

List of Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

Comparison Essay Structure

Considering the right structure for your essay is one of the key points of success. Sticking to a recommended essay structure is the only way to properly outline and write it, paragraph by paragraph from the introduction to conclusion, without mistakes.

There are two recommended patterns for a comparison essay: point-by-point (or "alternating") pattern and subject-by-subject (or "block") pattern.

Alternating pattern

Alternating pattern is also known as "point-by-point comparison". This mode of comparison will result in your essay having 5 paragraphs. Alternating pattern is also known as "point-by-point comparison". This mode of comparison will result in your essay having 5 paragraphs.

In it, you will need to consecutively compare and contrast each of the similarities and differences in the given subjects:

  • In the introduction you state your thesis.
  • Then you discuss both of your subjects together for each point of comparison and contrast.
  • In the conclusion you restate the thesis and shortly summarize your essay.

Block pattern

Block pattern is also known as "subject-by-subject comparison". According to this pattern, you will be required to separate the body of your compare and contrast essay in two parts.

The first part of the body will be dedicated to the first subject, while the other half will be centered around the second subject:

  • In the introduction you state your thesis.
  • First you discuss the first subject.
  • Then you discuss the second subject.
  • In the conclusion you restate the thesis and shortly summarize your essay.

Writing an A+ Comparison Essay

Introduction

The introduction of an essay is very important. It gives the reader his/her first impression of the comparison essay’s text. Remember: first impression counts!

Grab the reader’s attention

There are a lot of tips and techniques to help you in capturing a reader’s interest. You can find some pretty good information in the following articles:

How to Grab the Reader's Attention

A Proper Introduction

Essay Introductions

The most common five methods to grab your reader's attention, commonly used by professionals, are the following:

  • Give a brief historical review of your topic for help reader to better understand it
  • Start from a little story or an anecdote, which leads the reader into your topic
  • Try to use a surprising statement – something disgusting, joyful or even shocking
  • "Dropping" the name of a well-known person (celebrity) usually gets the reader's attention
  • State straight out what your essay is going to be about, simply and clearly

Start from a short background

High school students often find it difficult to view their teachers as anything but "the enemy." However, after the first few months of a school year, students learn to appreciate their teachers as individuals with different approaches. Some teachers are "cool," while others are "tough."

State the thesis

Although Sally Strict & Larry Lax are both respected teachers at our school, their teaching styles and expectations for students differ significantly. While Ms. Strict maintains a highly structured classroom atmosphere to keep her pupils disciplined and motivated, Mr. Lax downplays structure in order to allow his students to push themselves.

Point paragraph

State the point

Finally, Ms. Strict enforces high standards for her students' written work.

Provide supporting details

She collects homework every day at the beginning of class; to turn it in five minutes late is to turn it in a whole day late. Every piece of writing, whether it is a journal entry or a formal essay, must be typed and stapled. Last but not least, all homework must display a sophisticated level of thinking and writing.

Use appropriate transitions

Transitions are important in comparison / contrast writing to avoid confusion. Without transitions, the points you are comparing / contrasting may blur into one another. Also, a variety of transitions prevent monotony.

For comparison:

Like, compared to, similar to, similarly, by analogy, likewise, in the same way, as well, both, too

For contrast:

Unlike, conversely, on the other hand, however, nevertheless, still, although, while, but, even though, although, despite, yet, regardless, on the one hand … one the other hand

Conclusion

The conclusion of a comparison essay is just as important as the introduction. The conclusion seals the comparison essay and tries to close the issue. Conclusion is the last part of the essay that your reader will experience.

Summarize the similarities and / or difference of the subjects

Thus, Ms. Strict and Mr. Lax both accomplish their goals of motivating their students to do excellent work, though they do so in very different ways: while Ms. Strict emphasizes the high standards she expects everyone can meet, Mr. Lax uses a more personal approach.

Emphasize the thesis and say why this topic is important

Their success demonstrates the importance of diversity in a school community: different students respond to different teaching styles. So rather than viewing their instructors as a monolithic "enemy" intent on making them suffer, students should recognize how they benefit from the variety of ways their teachers inspire them.

Finalizing your Work

Pay attention that even though your essay is fully written, it still isn’t ready to submission.

There are some common and annoying mistakes which may significantly harm your grade. However, you can avoid those grade lowering mistakes by completing the following checklist:

  • Check spelling and grammar
  • Ensure that your essay is fully compliant with the required formatting standard
  • Properly organize all the citations and the References / Works Cited page
  • Ensure that your title page is done as required
  • Take a final look at your paper to be certain that everything is indeed fine

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