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How to write a conclusion for an essay: things to remember


The conclusion is generally one of the most challenging components to a paper because it acts as a frame to your thoughts and it is meant to bridge together your ideas in the body. The conclusion requires a bit more finesse.

The conclusion should offer the readers a bridge back to their daily lives and help them to see why your information should matter. The conclusion gives you an opportunity to have the last word. You can:

  • Summarize your thoughts
  • Show the reader a new view on your subject
  • Demonstrate why your ideas are important
  • Make a final impression and leave things on a positive note

The conclusion can stretch beyond your assignment by pushing boundaries and allowing you to make connections to the broader issue at hand and elaborate on the significance of your paper. Your conclusion should leave the reader happy that they reviewed your paper. It should also give them something to take away. This might be a new approach to something or a new appreciation of your topic. It might also suggest broader implications for your work in a way that enriches the lives of the readers.

In order to make your conclusion more effective consider these strategies below:


  • If you are stuck ask yourself “So what?”

  • Why should people care about your findings or your topic. Why should they care about the ideas you presented in your argument?

  • Return to the main theme of your introduction. This will bring the reader back. If you opened with a quote you can return to the quote and restate it with the evidence you presented in mind. Make parallels that are new.

  • You should avoid summarizing your main points and instead show the reader how these points were supported with examples. Overall the goal here is to synthesize. Offer a provocative piece of insight or quote to finish it off or propose a solution to the issue you covered in your paper.

  • When you are writing the conclusion you may need to summarize your argument if it is complex. If there is some significance to your findings that you have not yet explained be sure to use it to end the paper. Make sure you also move from a detailed level of writing to a general level by placing your topic in the context of the bigger picture and suggest areas where further research could take place.

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