The key concept is usually the main idea in the essay question. A good technique for finding the key concept is to reword the question. Most essay questions will begin with an assertion or contention that you have to examine and either agree or disagree with based on your readings for the topic.
Here is an example. In this sample essay question there is one major key concept:
Critically examine the contention that the globalisation of the world economy is a significant factor causing third world debt and poverty.
The key concept expressed by this essay topic is that globalisation has some responsibility for the debts and poverty of third world countries.
The other common type of essay question is to have a quote, or description of a topic with the essay question following.
Here is an example.
"Although we are sometimes justified in withdrawing or withholding life sustaining treatment from someone who is terminally ill and suffering, we could never be justified in killing such a person (Smyth, 1996: 40)". Critically discuss Smyth's claim.
The key concept of this essay question can been reworded as "it is never appropriate to kill a patient despite the fact that it sometimes may appropriate to remove or deny treatment that would prolong the life of terminally ill patients who are in pain".
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If you want to quench your thirst for exploration, writing a concept essay is the type of essay for you. You can yourself as a real philosopher. The writer should try hard to make the essay interesting for him/her and for the readers as well.
Providing your personal experience and interesting examples is really necessary to write a successful concept essay. Moreover, you should prepare to think big and creatively, feel free and use your open mind at fullest. So, take a twig of grape, strike a pose of a Greek sophist and read some easy steps below.
- Stay away from objectivity.
If you a choosing a topic for your concept essay and think about what concept you will describe, try to avoid those that have a strict objective definition. Well, yes, terms of astrophysics and microbiology will not work!
The concept should be open to interpretation. Remember that your concept should have a definition that could be disputed. For instance, write about honesty, freedom, happiness, or success. These concepts are abstract, so one cannot give them the right and wrong definition, only a subjective one. That opens the gate for your fantasy!
Think about an interesting story or a funny anecdote to start your essay. That would be a so-called ‘hook’ for your audience. Remember, the main part of your essay is the introduction.
Some may argue that conclusion is a summary, so it is the most important part. But it’s not. Nearer to the end of the essay, the reader’s attention vanishes into thin air, that is why you should his/her attention like a vice from the very first line.
- I have been broke, I have been wealthy and I have been everywhere in between.
Your introduction should include a compelling thesis statement. It should be logical and personal. You should engage the reader, defying the concept on your own terms, basing on your experience as a prove that you are really wordly-wise.
Go step by step, providing arguments and reinforcing them with the real-life examples. You have to think hard to make your words sound confident and convincing. There is no place for doubts, because it is impossible to make a mistake.
It would be just perfect if you end your essay the way you started. A fresh joke or an apt quotation would work. The best way to finish your concept essay is to leave the reader with an interesting idea and a tasty piece of brain food.
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