The judges who are grading your essay are in no mood to “get to know you as a person.” The reality is they want to spend as little time as possible with your essay, so they can get on to the next one. Don’t be insulted by this – it’s just the nature of the grading. The truth is that it doesn’t take long to evaluate an essay and know what number from 1-6 an argument deserves.
The average grader spends about 2-4 minutes reading an essay. Think about it: this means that they read anywhere between 15-30 essays in an hour! And every single one of those essays is on the same exact topic. This means that your little essay – that product of 30 minutes worth of stress, panic, and love – hardly gets much attention.
Make no mistake: it is very, very easy to have your ACT essay blend in with the rest of the “average” essays.
So how do you get a high score on your ACT essay? This blog is dedicated to giving you the very best ideas on how to do that. But here’s one of the most important concepts you have to understand: a strong introduction to your essay will make you stand out immediately. You have the chance to get your judge thinking right away, “Hey, this one is different from those other, average essays.” This should be your goal.
Just imagine meeting someone for the first time. Do they look like and talk like everyone else you know? Then there’s very little chance that you’ll remember them, or think that there’s anything special about them. But think about those people who stand out. What makes them different? Is it the way that they dress, the way they communicate, their posture and presence, their questions? Something made them stand out to you in that brief moment of introduction you shared with them. Your introduction to your ACT essay needs to do the same job and give a good impression.
Fortunately, there are lots of easy ways to do this. In fact, some of the best writers know in advance what their introduction is going to be like. Here are three ways to make a good impression with your introduction:
1) Use sophisticated, adult-sounding language
2) Incorporate an easy-to-follow structure to your introduction, including an attention getter and clear thesis.
3) Make sure you have interesting content. You can’t just sound good, you need to have something worthwhile being said in this introduction, too.
So, make sure that you are aware of the fact that you need to make a good impression. Just like you’d want to find ways to impress that cute girl or guy you’re meeting for the first time, find ways to use your writing to make a good first impression on that judge who might otherwise label your paper as “average” within your first few sentences.