Compare and Contrast Essay - A Complete Guide with Examples

compare and contrast essay

Compare and contrast essays are one of the most common academic essay types. Professors assign these essays to let students learn about the analytical writing process.

Whether you are a middle school student or a college-level student, you will get a chance to write a compare and contrast essay.

Are you struggling to earn an “A” in your academic assignment of writing a comparison essay? Are you unable to structure your compare and contrast essay?

This blog is for you!

Read this complete guide to learn about the definition, organization, structure, steps, and compare and contrast essay examples.

Let’s get started!

Definition - What is a Compare and Contrast Essay?

A compare and contrast essay is a type of essay that gives its readers the points of comparison between two subjects. Also known as comparison essays, these essays show how the two subjects are similar in particular aspects and different in others.

This kind of essay is ideal for showing what unites and separates related concepts or things, especially when the subjects are confused for each other.

Although compare and contrast essays have a lot of similarities with other essay types, they differ in many ways. When the reader reads the differences and similarities, he can easily understand the subjects individually.

Unlike other essays, compare and contrast essays analyze multiple topics instead of focusing on one. You need to have apt essay writing skills to nail writing such an essay.

Purpose of a Compare and Contrast Essay

The purpose of a compare and contrast essay is to juxtapose two subjects in a single paper. Therefore, the topic sentences, thesis statements, and descriptive details should cover both subjects.

In addition, a good compare and contrast essay provides information related to products, current events, travel destinations, etc.

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Compare and Contrast Essay - Structure

How to structure a compare and contrast essay?

One of the hardest parts of structuring a compare and contrast essay is identifying when to discuss which subject. Usually, you have 3 options to structure a good compare and contrast essay:

  1. Block Method (subject by subject): You can discuss one subject completely and then move forward to discussing another subject. The block method is divided into paragraphs.

    Each paragraph discusses a new subject. This method is best to give attention to each subject completely. However, this approach can weaken the connection between the two methods.

    • Introduction
    • Subject 1 - Point 1

    • Subject 1 - Point 2

    • Subject 1 - Point 3

    • Transition Sentence/paragraph
    • Subject 2 - Point 1

    • Subject 2 - Point 2

    • Subject 2 - Point 3

    • Conclusion
  2. Alternating Method (point by point): In this method, you discuss a subject concerning a certain aspect and then immediately discuss another subject’s take on that aspect. This goes on and on.

    The paragraphs are divided by a specific issue or a topic. Each paragraph discusses 2 or more subjects. This method helps develop and strong connection between the subjects.

    The author compares and contrasts more than two points in the same paragraph.

    • Introduction
    • Point 1

      Subject 1 & Subject 2

    • Point 2

      Subject 1 & Subject 2

    • Point 3

      Subject 1 & Subject 2

    • Conclusion
  3. Similarities and Differences: In this method, you will discuss all the differences first and then all the similarities between the subjects, or vice versa. The paragraphs are divided by the similarities and differences between the subjects.

You can choose any of the above-described methods to write a comparison and contrast essay.

However, whatever option you choose, you have to make sure that you construct good topic sentences and the ideas of your essay have a good flow

Ensure you know what is a topic sentence before starting your essay.

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Compare and Contrast Essay - Writing Process

How to write a compare and contrast essay?

If you want to learn how to start an essay and write an amazing compare and contrast essay, then follow the below-given steps:

  1. Brainstorming: The first and the most important step to start an essay is to brainstorm the ideas to write an essay. You will list all the similarities and differences of the compare and contrast essay. You can create a Venn diagram to make your task easier or create a list of traits for both Subjects.

    You can make a Venn diagram by drawing two overlapping circles. Each circle represents a subject. The area where the two circles overlap can be used to list the similarities between the two subjects.

    Venn Diagram
    Traits of Subject A Traits of Subject B
    Point 1 Point 1
    Point 2 Point 2
    Point 3 Point 3
    Point n Point n
  2. Preparation: Once you have jotted down a list of ideas, you will choose the structuring method to write your essay:

    • Block Method
    • Alternating Method or,
    • Similarities and Differences Method
  3. Outlining the Essay: The organizational or outline structure of a compare and contrast essay is the same as that of any other essay’s structure. Creating an essay outline helps organize your compare and contrast essay.

    The compare and contrast essay’s format/outline includes:

    • Introduction: Explain the thesis and the main idea of your essay. A thesis statement in the introduction will let the readers know about the upcoming content of the essay. It will serve as a road map for your essay. Mention all your subjects in your essay introduction.
    • Body Paragraphs: Here you list down the similarities and differences between your subjects. This contributes to the largest section of your essay.
    • Conclusion: Many students are unsure about how to write a conclusion of their essay. In this section, you will summarize the main points. Do not make the mistake of adding new information.
  4. Drafting: After choosing the structuring method, create an essay format and write a rough draft. This is one of the longest phases of planning and writing an essay.
  5. Revising: Next comes revision. First, check whether the structure you have chosen is working fine. Then identify the areas that need to be fixed or rewritten to create a perfect version of your essay.
  6. Proofreading: Next, you will look for grammatical and spelling mistakes in your draft. Remove any sloppy or vague sentences.

Essay writing can become easy when you follow the proper guidelines or the writing process. Follow the steps mentioned above to write an amazing compare and contrast essay.

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Compare and Contrast Essay Examples

Read the free compare and contrast essay examples given below and write a perfect essay:

Compare and Contrast Essay Outline Template Sample (PDF)

Compare and Contrast Essay Outline Template Sample

Compare and Contrast Essay Examples for College (PDF)

Compare and Contrast Essay Examples for College

Compare and Contrast Essay on Summer and Winter (PDF)

Compare and Contrast Essay on Summer and Winter

Compare and Contrast Essay Example (PDF)

Compare and Contrast Essay Example

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics and Ideas

Following are some of the great compare and contrast essay topics to help you choose a great essay topic:

  • Mobile Phones vs. Tablets
  • Investing Money or Not
  • Natural Remedies vs. Medicines
  • Instagram vs. Facebook
  • Popularity vs. Wealth
  • Netflix vs. Youtube
  • American vs. British School
  • Smoking and Vaping
  • Drinking Soda or Water
  • Female vs. Male Doctors.

All of these topics are good and make great essay topics. Luther than these, you can come up with a number of other topics and ideas.

Hopefully, this blog must have helped you write a good compare and contrast essay. However, if you still face any issue linked with compare and contrast essays, you can contact WriteMyEssayFast.net and get help from our professionals. Our “write my essay ” professionals will help you write an excellent compare and contrast essay.


What is a good hook for a compare and contrast essay?

To create a good hook for a compare and contrast essay, find one or more best traits of the two or more subjects you are comparing. This will spark interest among the readers. Moreover, you also pose a question to trigger your reader’s curiosity. You can also use quotation marks or create a scene to intrigue the readers.