The Writer’s Toolkit:
Essential Elements of Outstanding Essays

See also: Planning an Essay

Written communication is an important part of our lives. Any time we read something; we are technically communicating with the author of that piece. Essays are one of the most important forms of written communication because they are thought-provoking and invite civilized discourse over a topic.

But what makes an essay outstanding? Well, all good essays have a few key components which, if you can master them, will enable you to write strong essays. Let’s take a look at some of them.

Writing an essay in an exam.

5 Elements of Strong Essays

1. Impeccable Thesis Statement

All good essays start with an impeccable thesis statement. A thesis statement gives the readers an overview of what will be discussed in the essay. It not only highlights the author's views on the topics, but also how those views will be discussed, and what evidence will be given.

In a nutshell, that's the blueprint for the rest of the essay. It is easier for some authors and writers to write an essay if they already have a thesis statement in place. And some writers may find it easier to come up with a thesis statement according to the essay they have written.

In any case, a statement that sets the reader's expectations and controls their first impression should be made. The better words of the introduction, the better the first impression. Here's an example of a thesis statement to get you started.

This article explores five essential elements that elevate essays: a strong thesis statement, clear structure, engaging introductions, robust evidence, and effective conclusions. By mastering these elements, writers enhance their ability to create impactful and compelling essays that resonate with readers.

This is a thesis statement that would fit very well in this article, but since this is an article and not an essay, we didn’t add it.

2. Clear Writing and Structure

The next component of a strong essay is its writing and structure. A good essay is one which effectively communicates its arguments to its readers. That is only possible if:

  • The essay is easy to read.
  • The structure and format of the essay is simple and straightforward.

That is why clear writing and structure are important. Now, structuring an essay is usually quite easy. You just have to follow the logical progression of ideas where you discuss the most basic ideas first, and then discuss the advanced ideas that build upon them later. And to make sure that the readers can spot this logical progression you have to use formatting tools such as headings, bullets, and lists.

Now we come to the other part of this tip, clear writing. Formatting and structuring are useless if the actual content is badly written. To ensure that your writing is clear try to take care of the following things:

  • Use short sentences. Avoid complex sentences if you can.

  • Use common words. Unless absolutely necessary, do not use technical jargon or unorthodox terms.

  • Avoid using passive voice and stick with active voice.

3. Strong Hook in the Introduction

Do you still remember what we said about first impressions when talking about the thesis statement? Well, we are coming back to that. All good essays are successful at making great first impressions. And that is why we need a strong introduction with an attractive hook.

To write a good introduction, you need to add the following things:

  • Of course there is a good hook. We will discuss how to write a good hook in just a minute.

  • Some background of the topic you will discuss in the essay to give context.

  • The thesis statement obviously.

Here is how you can write a strong hook. A good hook can be created by using any of the following things.

  • A surprising statistic.
  • A stimulating question.
  • A well-thought-out joke or humorous statement.
  • A shocking statement (that should also be true).

What exactly can you use in your essay depends on your personality, writing style, and even the topic of the essay. Try and experiment with a few different things and get feedback from your peers to settle on a good hook.

4. Proper Evidence for Supporting Arguments

An essay is only as good as the evidence provided for supporting its arguments. Paper-thin evidence means that the essay is just as shallow and won’t hold anyone’s attention for long. Soon it will be lost to the annals of time and the dark recesses of the internet where no one will find it.

To ensure that your essay does not meet such a fate, it should have proper evidence to support its arguments. To provide evidence in an essay you need to cite the source and provide its reference. Evidence can take the form of:

To find solid and valid evidence, you will need to conduct some thorough research. Using some AI search engines can really help here. Take notes of important things you find as you don’t know when they will come in useful. Keeping notes will help you to find and cite the evidence when you need it. This evidence will make your essay outstanding in all aspects.

5. A Well-Rounded Conclusion

The finishing is just as important for writing an outstanding essay as any other part. If you cannot write a good conclusion for the essay, it will not give your audience closure. Unfortunately, wanting closure is a fundamental human desire. When this desire is not met, it prompts us to reach biased, premature conclusions that may be wrong.

This can harm the reception of your essay as your arguments may be misconstrued to your detriment. Hence, writing a conclusion that sums up your arguments and provides closure is necessary. Here are a few things that you need to do to ensure that your essay concludes effectively.

  • Summarize your main points.

  • Restate your thesis statement.

  • Do not introduce new information.

  • Explain the larger implications of your essay in the context of the real world.

  • If possible, circle back to your introduction to complete the proverbial circle.

Be concise when writing your conclusion, do not provide any disclaimers or acknowledge shortcomings in it. You want to leave a positive impression not a negative one. There are other places where you can put these things. And that should cover it.


So, to write an outstanding essay, you need to add the five essential elements that we have discussed in this article. Those elements are a good thesis statement, a strong hook, a clear writing style and structure, strong evidence for supporting arguments, and finally, a good conclusion. So long as you can take care of these things and add the finishing touches, your essay will turn out to be outstanding. With some dedication, perseverance, and patience you will be able to churn out great essays in no time.

About the Author

I'm Sarah Emily. I'm an experienced content writer and believe I can provide valuable content for your audience.