Guidelines on how to write a conclusion for an essay

Ending your writing with a good conclusion will round off your essay in a way that leaves the reader with a sense of closure. But there’s more to writing a conclusion than just including an element of finality your essay. You have the opportunity to confirm your point in the mind of your reader and also leave them in a place where they would be happy to read further discussions of yours.

Closure

First things first—or should we say, last things last; your conclusion must sound like an ending. If you aren’t settling the point of your essay in the mind of your reader, it just won’t sound right. Close off your conclusion as you would end a long conversation. The discussion has reached its end and you have said all you want to say.

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If your essay is nonfiction, you should always leave the reader with some further study direction. Suggest areas that your own writing didn’t cover and be sure to encourage your reader to dig further. You can also refer them to reading material that supports your essay.

Wanting more

Even though you’re done, your reader should still wish that you weren’t. Take a few minutes to think of a way you can leave your reader wishing you had more to say. In narrative essays—especially third person ones—this can be best done by leaving something up to the imagination, but in factual essays, it takes a bit more creativity to achieve this.

Summary with a quote

In short, a conclusion should summarize a lot of what you’ve said and settle all that information in the mind of your reader. A great way to end off that summary is to use a one or two line quote that acts as a synopsis to everything you’ve discussed. This can also be done in narrative essays where a lesson is being taught to the reader. Simply emphasize that lesson by quoting a well known source right after your conclusion.

Use your conclusion to give your reader the benefit of seeing an expanded view of your discussion by broadening their research potential. By showing that you are not the final authority on the topic, you are perceived as humble and willing to learn.

Summarizing everything at the end by including a sense of expansive community within the field of study will also make your reader feel like they are part of something bigger than just being a reader of an essay.

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