Short Essay Format 300 Words Or Less

A Quick Tutorial On How To Write 300 Word Essays


Three hundred word essays can be some of the most difficult papers to write because of the tight length constraint. These essays are often about a very specific topic and require a lot of thought. This essay is just over 600 words, so for reference, your essay would be half of this. Not very much space at all! Here is a basic tutorial on how to write a 300 word essay.

  1. If your topic is not given to you, brain storm and come up with something. A topic for a 300 word essay should be a very specific point that has a clear cut answer to your question. You really do not have space to use colorful language or go on tangents on things that are not necessary to proving your point. If you have your topic provided, write out your 3 or so main points and the “proof” for them so you can organize it into an outline. As annoying as making an outline can be it is really useful to keeping your essay concise.

  2. If time allows it is helpful to make a basic outline, or for new writers, try the detailed outline in section 4. A basic outline might look something like this for a 300 word essay.

    • Topic sentence
      • Supporting info A
        1. Back up support A
        2. Back up support A
      • Supporting info B
        1. Back up support B
        2. Back up support B
      • Supporting info C
        1. Back up support C
        2. Back up support C
    • Closing sentence

  3. Check your flow in your outline. Do the supporting ideas make sense in the order that they are in? Does the supporting information flow and make sense? If you think it needs to flow better, now is the time to fix it.

  4. Decide on your format. Your essay can be a traditional 3 paragraph essay or it could be 1 block of text. I generally suggest that you stick to the 3 paragraph essay format because it is nicely organized and easy to read, but since a 300 word essay is so short you actually can do it in one paragraph. If you aren’t sure what a 3 paragraph essay is I will outline it below. You can follow this more detailed outline if you like.

    • Opening Paragraph
      • Attention getter (An interesting idea that will draw the reader in)
      • Supporting sentence (connects attention getter to thesis/topic sentence)
      • Thesis (outlines what your essay is about and mentions your main points)
    • Body Paragraph
      • Topic sentence – outlines what the paragraph is about, more narrow than thesis. It serves as the transition from the opening paragraph to the body or “meat” of the essay.
      • Supporting info A
        1. Back up support A
        2. Back up support A
      • Supporting info B
        1. Back up support B
        2. Back up support B
      • Supporting info C
        1. Back up support C
        2. Back up support C
    • Closing Paragraph
      • Closing sentence, rewords your thesis sentence in a creative way to summarize your essay
      • Transition sentence between closing and final thoughts
      • Final thoughts on the subject. Do not add new information.

  5. Follow your outline. Fill in the details with the information you have and put your thoughts into sentences. A 300 word essay is usually 15-20 sentences, though it could be more or less than that depending on how wordy your sentences are.

It is not difficult to write 300 word essay as long as you keep it short and simple, keep on topic, and sound confident. These essays can be easy with practice and will serve as an important skill to have throughout your educational career as many teachers and professors will use them.

As a college student, I majored in journalism. That means I have a lot of experience in all types of writing. In order to major in a communications-related field, students must take a rigorous schedule of English courses, which means a whole lot of essay writing.

I quickly adapted a method of essay writing, which I believe simplifies and streamlines the process.

What’s the trick? Instead of sitting down and writing an essay, from start to finish, as many students do, it’s much easy (and way less time consuming) to do all of your research beforehand, placing each item into a basic outline.

From there, the outline contains all of the information you need to create your essay and, the essay essentially writes itself.

The only work left will be filler writing to explain your thought processes.

Here’s how you can format your essay outline (Note: the example below has three paragraphs, but additional paragraphs can be added as necessary.):

I. Introduction paragraph:

a. What you’d like to discuss within your introduction paragraph

b. Quotes or references, if any

II. Thesis statement: What’s the main point of your essay? Decide what you want to convey in your essay and put it into words. Your entire essay will revolve around this point, so make sure you’re clear and concise in your phrasing. (This is usually placed near the end of your introduction paragraph.)

III. First paragraph topic that supports your thesis

a. List supporting quotes/references: Find quotes from reputable sources that support what you’ve stated within your thesis and that relate to your first paragraph topic.

IV. Second paragraph topic that supports your thesis

a. List supporting quotes/references: Find quotes from reputable sources that support what you’ve stated within your thesis and that relate to your second paragraph topic.

V. Third paragraph topic that supports your thesis

a. List supporting quotes/references: Find quotes from reputable sources that support what you’ve stated within your thesis and that relate to your third paragraph topic.

VI. Conclusion paragraph: Note what you’d like to say within your conclusion paragraph. Your conclusion paragraph should detail how you are going to unite the topics from your aforementioned topics and weave them together into one solid point. Students commonly mistake a conclusion paragraph as a summary paragraph when, in fact, it’s really an opportunity to drive home your argument. Your conclusion should round out your essay and unite your paragraphs together, solidifying your thesis.

a. Additional quotes or references, if any

VII. List all citations: As you find each quote or reference to include within your essay, make sure to cite each reference, so you won’t have to scramble at the end to go back to your sources to see where you found each quotation. List each citation on your outline so it’s already finished before you even complete your essay. That way, it’s one less thing to worry about.

By following this outline format, the work of your essay is already clearly mapped out ahead of time. You already know what you want to say and how you’re going to say it and you have all of the support to back up each theory.

This method takes the stress out of essay writing because it eliminates guesswork; struggling for the right idea or argument and helps you ensure your thesis is strong. If you’re not able to easily fill out the outline, your thesis isn’t strong or clear enough and your essay topic will likely not be a winner as a result.

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