31 tips for your essays


  1. Always start with a hook.
  2. Do not forget the accents on words.
  3. Avoid personal pronouns in the 1st person, even if it is acceptable for most professors. Example: as just outlined above → as outlined above
  4. Avoid the pronoun “we”. Example: one may wonder, it is possible to wonder
  5. World War I → World War I (better with capitalization).
  6. If you have two terms in the topic, always study the relationship between them. Do not cut them out! Example: relations between the United States and France during the Cold War. Do not do Big I: the United States, and Big II: France. They must be studied together each time.
  7. Beware of small spelling mistakes that may not seem like much, but which ultimately weigh on the grade. Proofread, for example.
  8. Original knowledge is highly valued. Original knowledge is knowledge that is a little out of the ordinary, that is not found in every textbook.
  9. When you have a topic, keep coming back to it in each paragraph. That way, you are sure not to go off-topic.
  10. History essay: Ideally, call on authors, theorists, historians. But that is the top level, we cannot ask too much of you.
  11. Avoid value judgments. Example: The term “Alas” implies a value judgment. Be careful, we are not here to judge history, some people may think it was good.
  12. Never repeat what you have already said: an example or a figure that you have already presented. The corrector will get the impression that you are repeating yourself.
  13. Within a section, be careful not to spread yourself too thinly chronologically. Start with the earliest events and go to the most recent ones. Order the elements well chronologically.


  1. In English, when asked for a definition, it is good to give the general definition and then more specifically the one that applies to the article from which the term is taken.
  2. Avoid contractions in English writing: We will → We will
  3. In English, announce the outline in the introduction
  4. By the way: avoid
  5. It is always a good idea to make a comparison with a foreign country, you show that you are open and cultured. (Avoid France, you know it too well, I prefer other countries of the world.)
  6. Never cut a subject in two. The graders do not like this at all. If there is a double question in the question, do not answer one question and then the other, but deal with them together.
  7. If it was true → If it were true (special form of the verb to be after “if”)
  8. Always indicate the question chosen.
  9. No colloquial vocabulary, even in English. Example: glitch.
  10. Be careful not to use arguments that are too extreme, which would seem disproportionate.
  11. Do not reuse a quote that has already been highlighted: you will give the impression of repeating yourself.

General Knowledge – Contemporary Issues:

  1. Avoid using 1st person pronouns, even if some professors accept it. Avoid including the corrector. We will see → It will be studied how to
  2. expand your introductions! (One page long) Very important the introduction.
  3. Avoid saying that an author has good/rigorous/exemplary reasoning. They are studied by the whole of France or even the world, it is good that they are extremely good/rigorous/exemplary. We already know that.
  4. Do not forget the negations. We have not → We have not.
  5. No familiarity in homework. Instead, use cordial language, with sustained word spikes, it shows the extent of your vocabulary without being pedantic.
  6. A word of advice: it is always better to show how an author is great than to try to find the author’s limitations. Proofreaders prefer this.
  7. Do not use the verb go for the future tense: will offer → offer

Feel free to share your own tips in the comments.