Answered By: James Whitmer
Last Updated: Jun 19, 2020     Views: 6

Please Note: These are only common assumptions and suggestions about writing a compare and contrast essay. The requirements of such assignments often vary, so please follow your instructor's guidelines. 

A compare and contrast essay focuses on pointing out the similarities and differences between two or more things. However, when you choose your topics of comparison, make sure they are relatively similar and different because if they are nothing alike or exactly the same, everything to say is too obvious and not very interesting. Another reason to find subjects that are somewhat similar and somewhat different is it allows you to go beyond merely pointing to superficial comparisons -- you can also explain why the similarities and differences are significant and what can be learned from or done with them. Once you have chosen your topics of comparison, one way to help you brainstorm what to say about similarities and differences is to use a Venn diagram (two or more overlapping circles) and write whatever you can think of in each part, putting the similarities inside where the circles overlap and the differences inside where they do not. From there, you can choose what are the most interesting or significant common points of comparison to write about.

For more specific information on how to write a comparison and contrast essay, especially regarding how to organize it and use transitions, please see the following link: