Essays as a part of university graduation

Many universities in Europe do not follow the traditional ways of valuating students’ knowledge like requiring them to do tests, answer questions, etc., but prefer to check their knowledge on certain matter by making them write an essay.

Although at first it may seem as an easier job, in fact it requires much a broader view on the problem.
One of the advantages of essay writing is that it shows not only the students’ knowledge on the given matter, but also their ability to analyze and draw conclusions, or in other words, to think.

Everyone can learn mere facts, statistics, history, etc., but not everyone can but their knowledge into practice, making the gathered information actually valuable. Thus writing an essay which is good and get a high level requires much more than simply reading your student books.

Another advantage of the essay writing is that it gives the students the opportunity to wing it. In other words even if you do not know all the details or cannot understand it all, if you have good writing skills then you can still make your way through it. If you have a good common sense on the matter then you can still leave the reader with the impression that you know the problem in detail.

Furthermore, if you have learned how to write good essays then it will be much easier for you to graduate since you can always put these skills into practice, regardless of the subject that you have to take.

Essay writing has its down sides, too. Definitely the biggest of them all is the fact that the evaluation is quite subjective and entirely depends on the reader. For one evaluator it may be an excellent essay, for another it may not have any academic value whatsoever. The problem with all that is that the student cannot pretend for a higher score, since he cannot prove that his vision is the right one. Another disadvantage of writing essay is that you need to know some basics about writing, which in other situation would not be required (for example if you have to take a test and answer closed questions). Not everyone is good at writing and that would put these students in a hard situation, even though they may be smart and know a lot on the subject.

Nevertheless, essay writing has started to become more and more popular not only in Europe, but in the USA as well. It is considered to be a much more accurate way to evaluate the students’ knowledge, taking in mind each of their personalities and views.

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