Home Blog Compare and Contrast Essay - A Complete Guide Compare And Contrast Essay Outline with Examples

Compare And Contrast Essay Outline with Examples

Compare And Contrast Essay Outline with Examples

A compare and contrast essay is a type of academic writing often assigned to high school and college students. In this essay type, a writer selects two objects or subjects to draw a comparison or contrast between them.

Like other essay types, drafting a compare and contrast essay is based on some prewriting and writing steps. The prewriting phase of a compare and contrast essay plans out the whole essay for the writer and the reader.

If the essay’s planning is correct and strong, the execution of the ideas and points will also be on point. This is the reason why the planning phase is given such importance.

Forming an outline of the essay falls under the planning section as well. Continue reading the article to know how a perfect compare and contrast essay outline is drafted. 

Drafting a Compare and Contrast Essay Outline

The function of an essay outline is to organize all the information in a readable manner. All the information and data you gather for your essay needs a structure to be presented to the readers. Without a proper structure, the data will make absolutely no sense.

Below are listed some significant reasons about why you should give a proper outline to your essay:

  • An essay outline shows proficiency in writing.
  • All the ideas are presented in a systematic order.
  • If writing an essay for academics, a clear outline will help you earn better grades.
  • It arranges your thoughts and saves your time while drafting an essay. 
  • An outline serves as a checklist for your essay.
  • It keeps the writer focused on the main argument. 

If you want your compare and contrast papers to be effective, make sure that an understandable outline is given. 

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How to Write a Compare and Contrast Essay Outline?

When a writer collects information for the compare and contrast essay, he uses either a Venn Diagram or a simple list to analyze the similarities and differences between the objects. This data needs an outline to take the form of formal writing.

A compare and contrast essay uses the traditional essay outline. According to the standard outline, there are three components of an essay outline:

  1. Introduction
  2. The main body
  3. Conclusion

All types of essays use this basic outline. All the brainstormed ideas and the gathered information is divided among these three parts to give a structure to the essay. No matter what the subject is or what field you are writing your essay for, the basic outline will work for every piece.

Similarly, a compare and contrast essay is based on an introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion. The only difference between the compare and contrast essay and the other essays is that a compare and contrast essay body can be written using two methods.

Depending on the writers’ choice, there are two ways in which a compare and contrast essay is drafted. Following is an outline for compare and contrast essay:

Compare and Contrast Essay Introduction

The first section of a compare and contrast essay outline is the introductory paragraphs. This section carries the following information:

  • Hook Statement - it is the first or the opening sentence of the introductory paragraph. Depending on the topic, choose a catchy statement for your introduction to make it interesting for the readers. 
  • Purpose - Every writing has a purpose, and stating it in the first place is important. This is to inform the readers about the writer’s reason for choosing a certain topic. The goal can be anything from just discussing differences to analyzing the similarities and differences correspondingly.
  • Significance - To make your essay introduction strong and engaging, state the significance of the topic.
  • Thesis Statement - A thesis statement is the writer’s main argument about the topic. A thesis statement comes at the end of the introduction section. It should be an arguable statement that vividly present’s the writer’s claim. 
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Compare and Contrast Essay Body Paragraphs

The body of an essay is a place where all the details on the topic are provided. All the paragraphs in this section attempt to prove the thesis statement made earlier in the introduction. A compare and contrast essay body section can be drafted using two methods. It is totally on the writer’s choice, which method he chooses to portray the comparison and contrast of the subjects or objects.

  • Point By Point Compare and Contrast Essay

A point by point method is an organizational pattern that attempts to analyze a certain feature of each object or subject one by one. If you are using a 5 paragraph format to write your compare and contrast essay, the following will be the format of your body paragraphs:


Body Paragraph 1 - Point 1

  • Object A
  • Object B

Body Paragraph 2 - Point 2

  • Object A
  • Object B

Body Paragraph 3 - Point 3

  • Object A
  • Object B


Rather than analyzing one subject at a time, point by point or chain method discusses subjects simultaneously. 

For example, if you are writing a compare and contrast essay on high school versus college, you can discuss each of them point by point in different paragraphs. The three issues you can discuss for the topic can be:

  • Cost
  • Workload
  • Social aspects

Each of the above-mentioned points can be in separate paragraphs. The major advantage of using a point by point method for your compare and contrast essay is that a reader clearly understands each point. discussed 

  • Point By Point Method Example (PDF) 
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    Block Method Compare and Contrast Essay

Another method to approach a compare and contrast essay is by using a block pattern. According to a block or subject by subject method, a writer first discusses one selected object individually and then the other object.

The following is a compare and contrast essay outline for the block method:


Paragraph 1 = Object A

  • Feature 1
  • Feature 2
  • Feature 3

Paragraph 2 = Object B

  • Feature 1
  • Feature 2
  • Feature 3


A block method provides all the points and ideas about one object and then all the points of the second object, giving an essay a structure of a list. 

For example, if writing a high school versus college essay using the block method, discuss all the points related to high school and college points.

  • Block Method Compare And Contrast Essay (PDF)

Either of the methods can be used in compare and contrast essay writing. Apart from differences in the two approaches, there are some similarities as well. For instance, both ways require a writer to start the paragraph by using a topic sentence. A topic sentence will create a clearer picture of the point being discussed in a particular section.

In addition to this, both methods need transition words to bind the essay. Specifically for compare and contrast essays, using transition words will give your essay strength and charm.

Compare and Contrast Essay Conclusion

After organizing the points according to the desired method, the conclusion of a compare and contrast essay is given. No matter which pattern you choose, the conclusion of the essay is similar for both the methods. 

To draft a conclusion, a writer summarizes and evaluates the main points and sums up the discussion. The thesis statement that you made in the introduction is restated and summarizes points that prove the thesis.

It is important to keep in mind that no new points are introduced in a concluding paragraph. Moreover, the length of the conclusion should not exceed the size of the essay introduction.

  • Compare And Contrast Essay Outline Template (PDF) 

If you are assigned a compare and contrast essay for your academics, it is suggested by the professionals at MyPerfectWords.com to first decide on the method and then start drafting your essay. 

For this purpose, you can get help from the compare and contrast essay examples to write your essay effectively. You can get free essay examples and samples at MyPerfectWords.com and also get assistance from the expert writers.

Whether you are looking for compare and contrast essay topics or complex term papers, MyPerfectWords.com is the right place for every student. Our essay writing company that prides itself on providing original content and legit writing guides.

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