Five-Paragraph Essay Writing for Standardized Tests


Almost all standardized tests in schools and colleges include writing assignments. Although there’s nothing extra difficult about writing, it may cause genuine feelings of fear and anxiety among those who aren’t strong with these types of assignments. If you learn how to write five-paragraph essays properly, you will be ready to tackle writing assignments without fear. Why five-paragraph essays? Because they are usually a part of college standardized tests that you will need to face. For these tests, students are required to write five-paragraph essay from 500 to 800 words. Structure of the essay includes an introductory paragraph, three paragraphs in the body of paper and one paragraph for conclusion – that’s why it’s called a five-paragraph essay.

Introductory Paragraph

In the first paragraph, you give the direction to your essay and you also have a chance to engage your readers and get them interested in reading your work. Here are some tips to write a great introduction paragraph:
  • Describe the main idea of your essay in one sentence.
  • Develop a thesis statement. In case your writing prompt was the question then the thesis statement could be the answer to this question.
  • Mention three points that will give evidential support to your thesis statement. List them in order of importance.
Introductory paragraph is ready!

Supporting Paragraphs

The following three paragraphs should support your thesis statement with solid evidence including facts, quotes, details, expert’s opinions, statistics and other relevant data. Now use each paragraph to prove and explain arguments that you have mentioned in the introductory part. Here’s how exactly you should do it:
  • Compose a topic sentence summarizing your point – this would be the first sentence of your paragraph.
  • Write your argument, which proves that topic sentence is true.
  • Give evidence (quotes, facts, examples etc.) to reinforce your argument.
This would be your first body paragraph. Repeat the same procedure for remaining two paragraphs and your supporting paragraphs are ready.

Conclusion Paragraph

The fifth paragraph of your essay should be dedicated to summarizing your work. You should prove your thesis statement once again using the evidence that you have provided in supporting paragraphs. You shouldn’t just copy-paste phrases from your essay, but make a new, bold restatement of your thesis which would give your readers a final impression about your work. When writing a five-paragraph essay for a standardized test it would be very useful to review it before time is up. Reread it carefully one or two times to see if there are any grammatical, spelling or punctuation errors. Apply corrections if you find errors and also make sure that your essay isn’t weak in terms of logic and structure. Now you know how to write five-paragraph essays and writing for standardized tests shouldn’t cause you any more anxiety.
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