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This page contains some general advice on writing a successful history essay.An essay is a piece of sustained writing in response to a question, topic or issue.
Identify terms or concepts you do not know and find out what they mean.
As you locate information, ask yourself if it is relevant or useful for addressing the question.
Be creative with your research, looking in a variety of places.
If you have difficulty locating information, seek advice from your teacher or someone you trust.
Consult your teacher, a capable classmate or someone you trust.
Bear in mind too that once you start researching, your plan may change as you locate new information.It serves both as an answer to the question and the focal point of your writing.Ideally, you should be able to express your contention as a single sentence.An essay question will set some kind of task or challenge.It might ask you to explain the causes and/or effects of a particular event or situation.This will refresh or build your existing understanding of the topic and provide a basis for further questions or investigation.Your research should take shape from here, guided by the essay question and your own planning.For example, the following contention might form the basis of an essay question on the rise of the Nazis: Q.Why did the Nazi Party win 37 per cent of the vote in July 1932? The Nazi Party’s electoral success of 1932 was a result of economic suffering caused by the Great Depression, public dissatisfaction with the Weimar Republic’s democratic political system and mainstream parties, and Nazi propaganda that promised a return to traditional social, political and economic values.Or it might ask you to evaluate the relative significance of a person, group or event. What are your initial responses or thoughts about the question?You should begin by reading the essay question several times. What topics, events, people or issues are connected with the question?