Academic Skills

Coming to a conclusion

A conclusion should sum up the main points that you have made. It is not simply repeating the points but expressing them in a way which shows that you have answered the question and given evidence to support your answer. A good essay will only need a short conclusion. Never introduce new material in a conclusion. If you find yourself doing this, decide if you need the point in the body of your essay. If you are stuck, do a backward plan. This means going through each paragraph and summing it up in one line. These lines should lead you towards a conclusion which corresponds to the question.

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If you want to look at a clear example of a good essay conclusion, go to:

Remember that without a clear conclusion any readers can be left wondering what your most important points are; it’s up to you to remind them. There should be no need to write ‘In conclusion...’ it should be obvious that you have come to: THE END.

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