How to choose an Essay Theme

In many examinations and admission procedures, the student is asked to write an essay on a given theme. However, there are also a few admission tests where the essay themes are not given in advance to the student. The applicant is himself asked to write an essay on a theme of his choice. Then, how does one choose the right essay theme to create a good impact and to write an effective essay? Let’s go through some tips.

  1. Determine the purpose of the essay: Analyze what the purpose of the essay is. Is it to educate, persuade or entertain? Do you have to write about something that influenced you in life and with that inspire your reader? Or, do you have to write a persuasion essay? Decide on your topic based on this purpose.
  2. Be comfortable with the topic: The next thing you need to bear in mind is that you have to be comfortable with the essay theme you choose. It may be a good idea to choose a topic that is current but if you are not well versed with it or do not have enough information to write about, it is highly unlikely that you will create an impact. So, choose a theme that you have enough knowledge about to write.
  3. Avoid personal and controversial topics: You may be comfortable discussing your personal wins or even your romantic life. However, this may not be of enough interest to the reader! Similarly, controversial topics or hot political issues are best avoided. Inadvertently, you may end up hurting the reader’s sentiments or sounding biased.
  4. Avoid very common topics: Very commonly discussed topics, such as ‘my favorite sport’ or ‘my biggest achievement in childhood’ may also end up being boring, monotonous and repetitive. Your evaluator or reader may have already read some hundreds of views on the same topics and will naturally lose interest.
  5. Think about what can create an impact: Select topics that show your writing skills and also reveal a bit of your personality. For instance, you can talk about nature and how it inspires a human, or how you were motivated by a person who had lost a great deal in life, but later, bounced back to life.

Once you’ve selected your essay theme, plan the strategy well. How should the flow of the essay be? Is it an analytical essay or an explanatory essay? Which style of essay should you follow? Will an APA style essay be appropriate? Try answering all these questions before you start writing.  Remember though that the essay theme probably holds more importance in this case because you’ve been asked to choose a theme yourself, and this can be a great way of proving to the reader that you know what you’re talking about.