Comparative Essay Draft
Write a 750-1000 word essay about a pair of items in which the similarities and differences of those items are compared
and contrasted in the style described within Unit III. Please note that the Comparative Essay Final will be due in Unit IV of
this course. However, you should complete the entire paper in this draft and do your best work, as you will have more
applicable feedback from which to make changes to your essay for the final draft.
Purpose: Throughout Unit III, we have discussed the conventions of the comparative essay. The purpose of this
assignment is to measure your mastery of those conventions by putting your knowledge into practice. In a larger context,
the purpose of writing a comparative essay is to gain the skills of detecting similarities and differences between at least
two items and then using those similarities and differences to create knowledge about either one or both of the items. In
this way, the comparative essay is both a tool of observation and analysis.
Process: For the comparative essay, you will complete the following steps:
1. Choose a pair of topics that complement one another: See the suggested list of topics in the “Comparative Essay
Topics Handout” below in the supplemental documents portion of these instructions.
2. Create a list of similarities and differences: See Unit III, Lesson 2, for more instruction about how to create a list.
3. Create a thesis statement based on similarities, differences, or both similarities and differences: See Unit III,
Lesson 3, for more information about how to create a thesis statement.
4. Choose whether to organize your essay by point or by subject: For an essay organized by point, see Unit III,
Lesson 4, and the “Comparative Essay Example: Essay Organized by Point” below. For an essay organized by
subject, see Unit III, Lesson 5, and the “Comparative Essay Example: Essay Organized by Subject” below.
5. Consult the “Comparative Essay: Final Self-Check List” below before submission.
No sources are required. However, if sources are used while writing the paper, then those sources must be cited.
- Cash vs. Credit
- Fracking vs. Solar Power
- Recycling vs. Landfill
- Electric Cars vs. Hybrid Cars
- Renting vs. Owning
- Online vs. Traditional Education
- Paper Bags vs. Plastic Bags
- Friends vs. Family
- Antique/used vs. New
- Offense vs. Defense
- Marriage vs. Civil Unions
- Baseball vs. Football (or a comparison of two other sports)
- Vacation vs. Staycation (staying at home)
- Childhood vs. Adulthood
- Infatuation vs. Love
- Talking vs. Texting
- Parental Influence vs. Peer Influence
- Toddlers vs. Teenagers
- Rural Living vs. Urban Living
- Eating Out vs. Eating at Home