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Find Out How Long Is An Essay

how long is an essay

Students have to prepare lots of assignments during their study at an educational establishment. An essay is the most common project that you should be ready to write on any subject. It has its own peculiarities and requirements, but the first question that you may be wondering about is “how long is an essay?”. 

Actually, the length of such a document is less than a research paper or a dissertation. It depends on numerous details such as subject, course, department, educational level, and teacher’s requirements. Before starting to craft this piece of content, you are recommended to examine the assignment sheet carefully.  

There you can find length requirements that usually state how many paragraphs, words, pages you should write. Still, if you have some doubts, it is better to approach your tutor to clarify the situation. 

Moreover, if you need some help with crafting a perfect essay, then keep reading and study this detailed guide attentively. It will present all factors you should consider in terms of essay length. Mind a quick answer for the question “How long is an essay?”. It is a five-paragraph paper that usually contains 400-700 words.

Efficient Tips on Essay Length

Young people who want to get the highest grade for their assignment should care not only about the content itself but about lengths as well. Here are key points that are considered during essay admission:

  • A basic structure of a college essay is made up of at least three paragraphs;
  • The commonly accepted number of paragraphs is five;
  • Introduction and summary are traditionally shorter in length;
  • Every paragraph in a body must introduce only one idea that is a topic sentence;
  • 275 words are the usual number of words that a double-spaced page in Times New Roman contains in 12pt;
  • A single-spaced sheet is about 550 words.

The Length of Every Essay Part

Every paragraph of an essay must contain 100-200 words if it is a short essay (500-1000 symbols). Pay attention that the introduction and summary altogether should be shorter in comparison to the main body section.  The scientists state that the first and the last parts of a 1000-word assignment must include 4-5 sentences. Hence, if a total word number of a project is bigger, then these sections will contain more sentences.

You should be careful with so widely-spread conversion tables that indicate a number of paragraphs for definite essay word amounts. Yes, if the essay is no longer than 800 words, such tables may work out. But if you are required to write more than 1000- word projects, then the situation varies. The number of paragraphs will not grow correspondingly to the essay size. For example, a paper for 2000 words will not include fifteen paragraphs. 

How Long Must a College Essay Be?

Essays that you get as a home assignment are different from admissions essays. The latter aims to reveal your personality and prove that you are the best applicant for a college scholarship. All information that you provide may become available on a college website in a corresponding section. Still, you need to know the length of such a document not to make common mistakes. A quick answer would be 500 words.

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Length Tips on Admissions Essay

Here are a few tips that will do the writing process less stressful:

  • Open a college website and look for the information related to supplemental essays, essay questions, or application instructions.
  • Usually, these essays are short, only up to 600 words, because the board officers must like through plenty of them every day.
  • It is not recommended to craft an essay larger than is required. For example, if you are to write a 500-550- word document, your maximum is 600.
  • In case of exceeding the length, you risk not letting the board officers read your essay till the end, so it will be senseless.

What to Do if There Are No Length Guidelines?

It happens that the educational establishment doesn’t provide you with any information on essay length. It is quite a rare case, but you should know how to deal with it.

Send a writing sample

Applicants may have a few options to choose from. For instance, Amherst College states that you can submit a graded assignment that may demonstrate your skills best of all. Or, you can come up with a response to one of the listed quotations. The first option means that you should have a lot of work to choose from, but at the same time, you are limited with their word count.  Still, in most cases, there is a page that includes guidelines for project samples.

Study the description carefully

Some colleges do not give you a definite word count for an admissions essay. But you can understand what the board expects to get after reading the description. For example, Wellesley College comes up with such an explanation as “two well-developed paragraphs.” In other words, the paragraphs may be long enough, but of course, you should mind a reasonable limit that is about 500 words. It is when you need to evaluate or even try to guess. 

Look for length requirements

Sometimes, the page doesn’t include both prompts and the essay length guidelines. That’s why you need to be ready to search for the requirements on your own. Use Google to find social networks/forums that contain some information on this issue. Do not forget about a college website also. You can use keywords to find information that you need to write a brilliant piece of paper.

Call the admissions office

If you can find no information, then calling the admissions office may clarify this issue.  Even if there is no exact word count, the officers may name you the amount based on previous works that they have received earlier.

Crucial Don’ts for Essay Length

While there are a lot of useful hints that aim to help you come up with a stunning document, there are a few important “don’ts” that you must mind as well. Here they are:

  • Don’t use filler. You can easily make content weaker and less clear in case you decide to add some complicated sentences or unnecessary words;
  • Don’t cut information that destroys the logic of the entire paper. If you remove something, make sure that a transition is smooth, and all points are revealed well;
  • Don’t sacrifice either conclusion or introduction. These two parts are crucial for the entire essay. Ensure you have enough space to present the topic and then make conclusions. Mind proportionality of sentences, otherwise you risk not revealing all your thoughts well;
  • Don’t focus on a word count only.  Yes, essay length is crucial, and knowing the requirements on it will make your paper better and more appealing to the teacher or board officers. But you shouldn’t focus only on it. Remember about general readability and content quality.

Final Remarks

Young people who appreciate their reputation and time consider applying for professional writing assistance. Experts will help present all valuable information in the best possible way and impress the teacher or board officers.

Now, when you know the answer to the “How long is an essay?” question, you can start creating the document or entrusting it to professional writers. Anyway, remember that each word and sentence must be relevant and sensible. You have only one chance to set the right impression, so do not waste it.

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Frequent Questions About the Essay Length

In case you still have some uncertainties, look at a short FAQ section and find the answer to the question, “How long is an essay?”.

Q: What is the number of sentences in an essay?

A: A number of sentences will depend on the type of paper that you are working on. For instance, a narrative essay where you need to tell a story will have quite long sentences (about 50 words). Still, you need to mind a general recommendation and do not write sentences longer than 25 words. According to this rule, a 500-word paper will contain 20-45 sentences.

Q: Why consider length requirements?

A: Some students would not come with a definite word count if there are no requirements. Sometimes they start to use verbose phrases to reach a necessary amount.  Still, some board officers are very strict with the following issue, so you’d better not risk and present the document in a given range.

Q: How many sentences must a paragraph include?

A: The opening and final parts of every essay must be shorter than body paragraphs. In simpler words, they will include fewer sentences. For instance, a paper for 300 words will have 3-5 sentences in introduction and conclusion, while the main paragraph will contain 5-7 sentences.

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