How To Structure Your History Essay?

A history essay has a very particular expected format, and thus it is essential that you follow the proper style and structure if you would like to earn a decent grade. The components of the typical history essay are as follows: the introduction, the development, the argument, and the conclusion. Here is a guide for how to write these components.

The Introduction

The introduction to a history essay should begin very broadly, and slowly get more and more specific as you delve into your topic of discussion and consideration. It should feature background information on the historical context or the issue being described, and should use concrete, specific examples, quotes, or historical anecdotes by means of illustration.

As you move farther into the introduction, you should demonstrate what the most relevant factors or questions are for the topic you’re interested in. It should also be clear to the reader, as you develop your introduction, what your position or argument is. Make sure to explain any relevant terms which the reader may be unfamiliar with, and provide a great deal of information about the individuals and places that are involved, as well as the point in time and the events in the recent past that led up to that moment in history.


After the introduction, the paper should move into the development. This section fleshes out the concepts first described in the introduction, and should focus more on the historical time point of key interest. You should state your central thesis or the argument you will be defending explicitly in this section. The development section should progress in a narrative style, but with a clear perspective.


Once you have stated your main historical question or central thesis, you should advocate it in this section. In the argument section, you should focus on your question and bring up the relevant data that answers it. Explain how the information your are citing answers the question, and do so in a very explicit manner. Make sure to acknowledge alternate accounts of the information that do not support your thesis, if there are such viewpoints. However, build a case for your position that is balanced, reasoned, and strong.


The final section of the essay should sum up the findings that were described in the argument. Restate the overall question or thesis and state, in new terms, why the evidence you have marshaled supports your interpretation of events. Begin in a very specific fashion, then become more broad. Demonstrate how your view relates to the greater context, whether that is the historical scope of the events or the social and cultural implications of what you have learned. End with a strong, general statement that is relevant but not too idiosyncratic.