Learn how to conclude your essay effectively with guidelines from University of Maryland University College’s Effective Writing Adelphi university essay topic. Learn about the elements of a successful essay conclusion. The conclusion is a very important part of your essay. Although it is sometimes treated as a roundup of all of the bits that didn’t fit into the paper earlier, it deserves better treatment than that!
It’s the last thing the reader will see, so it tends to stick in the reader’s memory. It’s also a great place to remind the reader exactly why your topic is important. A conclusion is more than just “the last paragraph”—it’s a working part of the paper. This is the place to push your reader to think about the consequences of your topic for the wider world or for the reader’s own life! You’ve already spent time and energy crafting a solid thesis statement for your introduction, and if you’ve done your job right, your whole paper focuses on that thesis statement. That’s why it’s so important to address the thesis in your conclusion! Many writers choose to begin the conclusion by restating the thesis, but you can put your thesis into the conclusion anywhere—the first sentence of the paragraph, the last sentence, or in between.
Remind the reader that you’ve proven this thesis over the course of your paper. For example, if you’re arguing that your readers should get their pets from animal shelters rather than pet stores, you might say, “If you were considering that puppy in the pet-shop window, remember that your purchase will support ‘puppy mills’ instead of rescuing a needy dog, and consider selecting your new friend at your local animal shelter. This example gives the reader not only the thesis of the paper, but a reminder of the most powerful point in the argument! Revise the thesis statement so that it reflects the relationship you’ve developed with the reader during the paper.
Don’t repeat your thesis word for word—make sure that your new statement is an independent, fresh sentence! This section of the conclusion might come before the thesis statement or after it. Your conclusion should remind the reader of what your paper actually says! The best conclusion will include a synthesis, not just a summary—instead of a mere list of your major points, the best conclusion will draw those points together and relate them to one another so that your reader can apply the information given in the essay.
Explain how these parts are connected. For example, in the animal-shelter essay, you might point out that adopting a shelter dog helps more animals because your adoption fee supports the shelter, which makes your choice more socially responsible. One of the most important functions of the conclusion is to provide context for your argument. Your reader may finish your essay without a problem and understand your argument without understanding why that argument is important. Your introduction might point out the reason your topic matters, but your conclusion should also tackle this questions. Tell the reader what you want him or her to do. Is your essay a call to action?
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