WRITING AN ESSAY / ASSIGNMENT - HOW?
Should include a summary of your understanding and approach to answering the question. It is very helpful to cover both what you intend to do in the essay (your goals) and what your essay will not include, as well as give brief definitions of key terms, for example: "By gender relations / capitalism, I mean the following & hellip" However, try to reduce to a minimum number of definitions (say, three or four) with a brief summary of them (one sentence is enough).
If your essay explores and evaluates how (and why?) scientists use key terms to refer to concepts differently or give them different meanings (for example, decentralization), then you need to reflect these points in the introduction. Own judgments should be given in the main part of the essay (for example, give it under a separate subheading).
The content of the main part of the essay
This part involves developing your argumentation and analysis, as well as substantiating them, based on the available data, other arguments and positions on this issue. This is the main content of your essay and this is the main difficulty: it is for this purpose that subheadings are important, on the basis of which the structuring of your argument is carried out; this is where you must justify (logically, using data or rigorous reasoning) your proposed argument/analysis.
Filling the sections with your argument (corresponding to subheadings), limit yourself within the paragraph to consideration of one main idea. To write a draft of the work, it is also useful to apply the technique of sequential numbering of all paragraphs - this helps you to ensure that each paragraph (and its main idea) corresponds to its “place”, that is, that in a logical sequence, each paragraph follows the previous paragraph and precedes subsequent. In the final version (see below), you can remove the paragraph numbers.
Requirements for evidence and other sources
When writing an essay (or other type of written work), in order for it to be done at a good level, it is extremely important how empirical data and other sources are used (especially the quality of reading).
All (actual) data is related to a specific time and place, so make sure it matches the time and place needed for your research before using it. Even if you use, say, a table of data on social mobility in Britain, indicate the time of this study, etc.
Appropriate specification of data in time and place is one way that can prevent overgeneralization, which can lead to the assumption that all countries are the same in some important respects (if you think so, then this should be proven, and not be unsubstantiated assertion).
You can always avoid overgeneralization if you remember that within the framework of the essay, the data you use is illustrative material, and not the final act, i.e. they support your arguments and reasoning, and show that you know how to use the data properly.
Don't forget, too, that data about contentious issues is always questionable ("lies, damned lies, statistics, etc."). You are not expected to give a definite or definitive answer (no one will ever agree that this is the only correct answer!). But what you can do is understand the nature of the factual material associated with this question (relevant indicators? how reliable are the data for constructing such indicators? what conclusion can be drawn from the available data and indicators regarding causes and effects? etc. .), and demonstrate it in your essay.
When writing an essay, sometimes difficulties arise due to ignorance of how to properly use the literature available on a given topic. You can avoid these problems by remembering some rules (starting points): when quoting (using someone else's words), always quote the text and give the exact reference to the source (including the page number). If you don't do this, i.e. if you pass off other people's thoughts as your own, then this will be considered plagiarism (one of the forms of deception); even in the case when you convey the text in your own words (give a summary of its content or paraphrase), do not forget to give a reference to the source. For example: "In this paragraph/section, I mainly use Dreze and Sen (1991, Ch.1)...etc." (failure to do so may also be considered plagiarism).
When you prepare a summary / message about the views of a certain author or authors arguing with each other, a reference to the source is also necessary. For example; "According to Sen..." "Nolan's criticism of Sen shows that..."
Don't cite works you haven't read yourself; the only exception to this rule would be if you are referring to an author who is quoting another author, then you can say: 'As Sen writes (1983. p. 26, cited in Nolan. 1993. p. 104}... "
The final part of the essay may include a summary of your main arguments, but try to keep it very short.
The conclusion may contain such a very important element that complements the essay as an indication of the application (implication) of your research, not excluding the relationship with other problems. For example: "The essay is mainly concerned with gender relations in agricultural labor, but a fuller treatment (of this problem) would also require an examination of class relations", followed by a few sentences explaining why this would be useful and briefly illustrating how this might be done.