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Many students struggle when it comes to writing the conclusion for an academic paper. They neglect to adequately present the topics they previously covered and instead rewrite their introduction or summarize quickly and ineffectively. When you sit down to write your conclusion it is important to remember these tips:

  • Your conclusion is not just a place to restate your thesis or summarize your points. If you want to summarize the paper or the findings, you want to do so using fresh language. Remind the reader of all evidence you presented in the body which contributed to or supported the thesis.
  • The conclusion requires the same critical thinking as the rest of your paper. You should take some time to reflect upon the overall impact of what you have written. Offer some closing thoughts in this section of the paper related to the larger implications of the thesis.
  • When you reach the conclusion, it is best to broaden your focus. A solid final sentence will leave your reader with something on which to reflect, preferably a concept that you illuminated in your body.
  • For many essays, a single paragraph that is well developed will suit the conclusion just fine. If you have a longer paper, then using a few paragraphs to cover your conclusion may be better suited. Remember that the length of the conclusion should reflect the overall length of your paper.

So how do you write an effective and interesting conclusion? You should follow the steps below to take your conclusion beyond just a summary of your essay’s main points:

  • If your essay focused on a modern issue or problem, use the conclusion to warn readers of the potential consequences of not rectifying the issue or problem
  • Use the conclusion to recommend a course of action
  • Insert an expert opinion or quote which lends authority to your conclusion
  • Offer a startling fact, statistic, or image to drive home the purpose of your paper
  • If the discipline or course for which you are writing this paper encourages personal reflection in the assignment, then you have the freedom to illustrate the conclusion with a narrative from your personal life which is relevant
  • Return to a quote or anecdote you placed in the introduction and add insight derived from the body of your paper.
  • If you are writing an essay for social science or science, mention some further research which could be conducted on your topic.

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