comparison/contrast writing Assignment | Online Homework Help

I have five essay’s that are due Friday they have specific guidelines and requirements to are enclosed.The sample below provides an example of an essay in the proficient to advanced range. As you read
through the essay, notice how the writer employs techniques characteristic of comparison/contrast writing
in the informative mode.
Angel Martinez
English Composition I
January 15, 2018
The Tale of Two Cities
Many cities around the world have been built along a river. Some “twin” cities
have developed along both banks of a single river. The cities of Buda and Pest, divided
by the Danube River in Hungary, became the city of Budapest in 1873. Other twin cities,
such as Minneapolis and St. Paul in Minnesota, have retained a river, in this case, the
Mississippi, as a boundary between two separate cities. While the locations of
Budapest and Minneapolis are relatively even on a world latitude scale (Budapest is
somewhat north and east of Minneapolis, more closely aligned with Seattle), the cities
have distinct differences in weather, cost of living, and population demographics.
Comment [SL1]: Good choice of topic. It isn’t too big or
too small of a topic, and there are enough similarities or
differences between the two to explore within an essay.
Comment [SL2]: Nice job connecting the subjects in a
meaningful way. Though the details you’ve provided, we
can see the connection between the subjects and why they
work well for this type of essay.
Comment [SL3]: This is a detailed thesis statement clearly
showing that the two subjects will be contrasted as opposed
to compared. The thesis tells us what the two subjects being
contrasted are (the cities of Budapest and Minneapolis), as
well as the points of contrast that will be explored in the
essay (weather, cost of living, and population
Sophia Pathways – English Composition I
Spring begins in April in Budapest when sunshine is abundant and temperatures
rise quickly. Summers are long and warm, with an average temperature of 77 degrees
Fahrenheit. Humidity is low for the most part. Temperatures remain in the high 60s
through mid-November, but rain becomes more frequent in the fall. Finally, the winter
season in Budapest brings temperatures that, on average, remain in the 30-40 degree
Fahrenheit range. Snow falls, but in small amounts. The coldest month is January with
an average temperature of 30 degrees Fahrenheit. There is also frequent fog in the
winter months.
Minneapolis, on the other hand, is less temperate than Budapest. Spring in
Minneapolis arrives later on average and is shortened. It isn’t unusual to have snow in
April, nor is it unusual to have snow in October in Minneapolis. The three summer
months of June, July, and August are humid and see almost half of the year’s
precipitation in the form of sometimes violent thunderstorms. Tornadoes can also occur
in the spring and summer months in Minneapolis. Autumn is often brief and
characterized by blue skies and cooling temperatures. Winters can be brutal with snow,
sleet, freezing rain, ice, and blizzard conditions. The average temperature for the month
of January in Minneapolis is 4 degrees Fahrenheit.
The cost of living in Budapest is much lower than the cost of living in
Minneapolis. Of course, wages are lower too – the major industries are manufacturing
and tourism – but it is quite easy to live well on an average salary in the city. For
example, rent for a one-bedroom apartment near the City Center costs an average of
138,000 forints, or around $532 in U.S. dollars. Monthly access to the internet costs
Comment [SL4]: Good use of a contrast transitional phrase
Sophia Pathways – English Composition I
about $18, and a bottle of mid-range domestic wine costs only $5. Gasoline costs more
in Budapest, as do monthly utilities such as heat and water.
The cost of living in Minneapolis is about 5% higher than the U.S. national
average, but still much lower than in other U.S. major cities like Chicago or Los
Angeles. Unemployment is low and the economy is diverse, with no single industry
dominating the market. Monthly rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Minneapolis is
between $1400 and $1700, with utilities an average of an additional $150 a month. The
cost for access to the Internet varies by speed, but rounds out to about $45 per month.
A bottle of good domestic wine will cost you around $15 in Minneapolis. Gas prices
change almost daily but average around $2.50 per gallon. Drivers in Budapest pay
almost $5 per gallon.
The population of Budapest is approximately 1.74 million people. When taking
into account the entire metropolitan and commuter area, this number climbs to 3.3
million. The city itself has experienced negative growth over the past 30 years, falling
from a population of 2.2 million in 1989. The vast majority of residents in Budapest are
Hungarian by nationality: 84%. Other nationalities include Romans, which make up
about 3% of the population, Germans who account for 1%, and Slovaks, Romanians,
and Croats, who make up the remainder.
Minneapolis and its surrounding communities have a similar population to
metropolitan Budapest – approximately 3.3 million inhabitants. However, population
continues to grow in Minneapolis and has increased every year since 1990. Minneapolis
is also much more diverse than Budapest. Whites (mainly of Scandinavian and German
descent) make up 64% of the population, African Americans are nearly 20%, Hispanics
Comment [SL5]: Add a transitional word or phrase here,
such as “However,” to more clearly indicate that this line is
a contrast between the cost of gasoline/utilities in Budapest
and the cost of gasoline/utilities in Minneapolis.
Comment [SL6]: I would recommend using a transitional
word or phrase, such as “In contrast,” here to more clearly
indicate that you’re contrasting the prices between the two
Comment [SL7]: Good use of a contrast word here to
indicate that Minneapolis’ population is growing, which
contrasts with the population decline in Budapest.
Sophia Pathways – English Composition I
stand at 10%, and Asians around 6%. Minneapolis is also known as a gay-friendly
community, while homosexuality is quite hidden in Budapest.
Both Minneapolis and Budapest are cities built along the banks of a major river.
Although Buda and Pest joined to form one city along the Danube, the cities of St. Paul
and Minneapolis have maintained separate governments and identities on either side of
the Mississippi. Budapest and Minneapolis are comparable in size, but differ in climate,
cost of living, and demographic makeup. Both cities offer much for the traveler, whether
it’s historical castles and ruin pubs in Budapest or peaceful lakes and greenery in
Minneapolis. Combined visits for both cities reached a high of 34 million last year, and
34 million people can’t be wrong!
(812 words)
Comment [SL8]: Nice job on the conclusion here. You
recap the essay’s thesis and main points, and expand on the
topic slightly by discussing tourism. This creates a sense of
circular motion and gives a satisfying end to this essay.
Sophia Pathways – English Composition I
Think About Your Writing
1. Did you use the point-by-point or block method to organize your body paragraphs?
What made you decide to organize your essay in this way? (3-4 sentences) Sophia
says: Consider the ways a comparison/contrast essay can be organized. Which
organization did you choose and why?
For my essay, I choose the point-by-point method of organization. I felt that either
method of organization would have worked well. However, the contrasts between
the two cities in regards to weather, cost of living, and population demographics
seemed like they were a little more obvious and easier to point out to the reader
when I used the point-by-point method. It helped me to emphasize the contrasts
between the two cities, one point at a time.
2. In what ways did writing a comparison/contrast essay differ from the narrative essay you
wrote in Touchstone 1? Give specific examples. (3-4 sentences) Sophia says: Consider
how the structure, point of view, and purpose of the two essays differ.
Writing a comparison/contrast essay felt very different from writing a narrative
essay. First of all, when writing a narrative, there was no real formalized structure
to follow and I didn’t have to create a thesis statement. The comparison/contrast
essay has a much more defined structure and does require a thesis statement. It
follows a more academic approach to writing as well, and maintains an objective
tone with the purpose of informing the audience of the differences between the
two subjects. In my narrative essay, it was just the opposite. I incorporated
dialogue, first person language, and my own ideas since my purpose was to tell a
3. Remember that the writing process is a recursive process, and your first draft of an
essay is rarely your last. What part of the draft did you struggle with? (3-4 sentences)
Sophia says: Think about how you could improve the draft if you continued the writing
process with revision and editing.
Overall I really enjoyed writing a comparison/contrast essay. However, there
were a few elements that I struggled with a little bit. It was sometimes difficult to
maintain an objective tone in the essay. Since I have lived in both cities, I have a
strong connection to them, and refraining from injecting my own opinions was
difficult. It was also difficult to determine which specific points of contrast I
wanted to focus on since there are so many similarities and differences between
the two cities that are very interesting.
Sophia Pathways – English Composition I
SCORING for Sample Touchstone 2
The sample essay was evaluated according to the Touchstone 2 Rubric, which considers elements of a
comparison/contrast essay, the thesis statement, organization, style and tone, conventions, and
responses to the “Think About Your Writing” questions. Each rubric area is evaluated according to the
performance level.
Elements of a Comparison/Contrast Essay
Overall the author does a nice job making the connection between subjects very clear, and the
organization used is appropriate for a comparison/contrast essay. There are a few opportunities;
however, in which transitional words or phrases can be used to more effectively convey contrasts
between the two cities.
Area Score: Proficient 13/15
Thesis Statement
The thesis statement, “While the locations of Budapest and Minneapolis are relatively even on a world
latitude scale (Budapest is somewhat north and east of Minneapolis, more closely aligned with Seattle),
the cities have distinct differences in weather, cost of living, and population demographics,” is clear and
effectively communicates the two subjects being contrasted (Minneapolis and Budapest) as well as the
three points of contrast that will be explored in the essay (weather, cost of living, and population
Area Score: Advanced 10 /10
The essay is well organized, and contains all of the required elements of a comparison/contrast essay: an
introductory paragraph, a thesis statement, adequate body paragraphs organized in the point-by-point
method, and an effective concluding paragraph.
Area Score: Advanced 10 /10
Style and Tone
The writing maintains an objective tone throughout, appropriate for informative writing. A wide variety of
sentence structures and thoughtful word choices contribute to the overall style and tone of the essay.
Area Score: Advanced 5/5
Sophia Pathways – English Composition I
There are few/no errors in grammar, punctuation, spelling, capitalization, formatting, or usage.
Area Score: Advanced 5/5
Think About Your Writing
It is clear that the writer thoroughly and thoughtfully answered the questions. All questions meet or
exceed response length guidelines.
Area Score: Advanced 5/5

Are you ready to write Touchstone 5?
The essay below provides an example of an advanced level argumentative essay. As you read through
the essay, notice how the author effectively incorporates elements of argument, has a strong thesis
statement which takes a stand on one side of a debatable topic, and utilizes the classical model of
argumentation with effective incorporation and utilization of support.
Marcus Bishop
English Composition I
March 15, 2018
Teenage Sleep and School Start Times
John, an average teenager, tries to get to school on time in the mornings. He sets two
alarms on his phone and often skips a shower or breakfast, or both, so that he doesn’t miss the
school bus that stops at his corner at 7:00 AM. Once at school, John joins his sleep-deprived
peers in mad dashes to their first classes. School is on, whether students are prepared to learn
or not. According to numerous studies, the average U.S. teenager gets between 7 and 7.25
hours of sleep a night, while his body needs between 9 and 9.5 hours. With the average start
time for high school in the U.S. 8:03 AM (Croft, Ferro, and Wheaton, 2015), it’s not a great leap
to conclude many high school students are sleep-deprived. High schools should implement later
start times to maintain healthy biological functions and to maximize learning for teenagers.
Comment [SL1]: While the sentence structure is a bit
repetitive, this introduction does a good job of engaging the
reader with the average teenager and providing the
necessary background information for the reader to fully
understand the importance of the thesis.
Comment [SL2]: This is a well written thesis statement. It
takes a clear position on one side of a debatable topic. It is
concise, yet provides adequate detail so that the reader
knows what your key points within the essay will likely be.
Sophia Pathways for College Credit – English Composition
Sleep deprivation in teens affects their health, including issues like mood and behavior,
increased anxiety or depression, use of caffeine, tobacco, or alcohol, and even weight gain. Lack
of sleep increases the likelihood that teens across all socio-economic spectrums will be unable
to concentrate and will suffer poor grades in school as a result. In addition, teens, already in a
high risk category as new drivers, are more susceptible to “drowsy-driving incidents.” (Richter,
2015). These are all compelling reasons to consider changes in school start times for teenagers.
Our internal body clocks – what scientists call circadian rhythm – regulate biological
processes according to light and dark. When our eyes tell us it’s dark, we begin to tire, and
when our eyes tell us it’s light, we begin to waken. Adults often refer to themselves as a
“morning person” or a “night person” because they’ve become accustomed to their internal
clocks and can anticipate the times they are most alert and active. Teenagers, however,
experience a shift in their circadian rhythm when puberty strikes and often feel alert later at
night, making it difficult for them to fall asleep. When they have to wake up early to go to
school, they are being deprived of the sleep their body needs.
Along with a shift in their sleep patterns, today’s teens are avid users of electronic
media. The lack of sleep is “exacerbated when teens are exposed late at night to lit screens,
which send a message via the retina to the portion of the brain that controls the body’s
circadian clock. The message: It’s not nighttime yet” (Richter, 2015, para. 22). While putting
away the electronic gadgets at bed time might help, the fact remains that, biologically, teens’
circadian rhythms are shifting to a later time, and they have trouble getting to sleep at night,
even when they’re tired.
Comment [SL3]: Nice job here with your first body
paragraph. It provides more background on how lack of
sleep negatively affects teens.
Comment [SL4]: In this second body paragraph, you
provide clear biological support for your thesis.
Comment [SL5]: This third body paragraph provides
more biological information to support your thesis.
Comment [SL6]: Here you have effectively incorporated
a direct quotation and appropriately cited it using APA
formatting. Well done!
Sophia Pathways for College Credit – English Composition
The result of this shift in sleep patterns – due to both puberty and the use of electronic
media – can be compared to jet lag. Travelers who cross time zones often need a day for their
bodies to adjust to the new light and dark signals they’re receiving. When teens wake up too
early day after day, they have difficulty thinking or performing well because their internal clocks
never have a chance to adjust. Imagine dragging yourself around in a jet-lag fog as you attempt
to process information and perform job-related duties on a daily basis. Now imagine our
teenage John, sleep-deprived and breakfast-less, striving to organize and write a short essay for
a history exam at 8:00 AM.
Beginning in 2014, major national health organizations, including the American
Academy of Pediatrics, the American Medical Association, and the Centers for Disease Control
and Prevention, have issued policy statements that recommend later start times for high school
students. (Jens-Olaf, 2016). These institutions recognize the negative impacts an early school
starting time can have on not only the health of teenagers, but on their academic preformances
as well. With later start times, studies find that attendance increases and tardiness decreases.
Test scores and grades improve, and there are fewer “drowsy-driving incidents” among teens. A
University of Minnesota study released in 2014 was “the first to conclusively link later morning
school starts to higher test scores, better grades and fewer teen car crashes” (Smith, 2014,
para. 2). The three-year study examined data gathered from over 9,000 students in eight high
schools across the Midwest. With a later start to the school day, high school attendance and
test scores improved. Fewer students were tardy, and there was a marked decrease in
Comment [SL7]: In this fourth body paragraph, you do
a nice job transitioning to problems with learning. The
transition is smooth and ties in nicely with the
paragraph above.
Comment [SL8]: Nice use of the rhetorical appeal pathos
here. You appeal to readers’ emotions by asking us to put
ourselves in the teenager’s shoes.
Comment [SL9]: This fifth body paragraph emphasizes
how school start times effect learning. You’ve provided
good support for the thesis here.
Comment [SL10]: Nice job summarizing the source
information here and then properly citing the source
using APA formatting.
Comment [SL11]: Check your spelling here.
Comment [SL12]: Since this is related to the main idea of
the paragraph’s topic sentence, it makes sense that you
would include this study in the same paragraph. However, a
transition word or phrase to start this sentence would be
beneficial to the flow of the essay.
Sophia Pathways for College Credit – English Composition
substance abuse and depression issues. Some schools even reported a noticeable decrease in
teens involved in auto accidents (Smith, 2014).
The results of these studies are strong evidence that teens benefit from a later start for
school. Better attendance, better scores on tests, fewer problems with substance abuse and
depression, and a decrease in car accidents are all clear indicators that allowing students to
sleep an extra couple of hours in the mornings makes a significant difference. Teenagers need a
solid educational foundation on which to build their futures, and if they’re sleeping through
math class because it’s offered at 8:00 AM, they’re being cheated out of learning opportunities
they need. Why then, are many schools reluctant to make these changes?
Body paragraph 7 – Counterarguments and refutations
Some school districts claim, that a later start time for high school students would disrupt
bus schedules. While bus schedules at many schools are designed by time – transport high
school kids first, then middle and elementary school children – as a cost saver, one solution is to
simply flip the times. Younger children tend to wake up earlier than teens, so why not make
their school start-time earlier and teenagers later? (2016, Jens-Olaf) Another common
objection is that a change in school start time for teens would interfere with athletics and other
extracurricular activities. However, districts that have adopted a later start time for teens
report few problems in this regard. Practice and game times are merely rescheduled. Some
schools even report an increase in athletic participation and improved performance of their
teams. It just makes sense that a better rested athlete would perform better.
Comment [SL13]: In this sixth body paragraph, you
provide a nice summary of previous points, which
serves as further support for your thesis statement
Comment [SL14]: Another good use of pathos as an appeal
Comment [SL15]: Remove the unnecessary comma here.
Comment [SL16]: In this body paragraph, you discuss
an important part of argumentation, which is the
counterargument and refutations. Doing so shows your
reader that you’ve thoughtfully considered both sides of
the issue and makes you more credible as a writer.
Comment [SL17]: This seems like a good source, but
remember that APA format says that the authors name
should come first, followed by date. So the correct
citation here would be (Jens-Olaf, 2016).
Comment [SL18]: What source should be cited here?
Remember to include where you got this information.
Sophia Pathways for College Credit – English Composition
Teenagers shouldn’t have to forgo breakfast or risk doing poorly on an exam because
they are summoned to school at an hour at which they should still be sleeping. High schools
should institute a later start time so teenagers can get the sleep they need and arrive at school
with their brains fully engaged and ready to learn. This relatively simple fix addresses teens’
biological and educational needs and paves the way for them to mature into productive and
healthy adults. It’s time that all high schools in the U.S. recognize the impact of sleep
deprivation on their students’ physical and mental health and make adjustments to school start
Comment [SL19]: Nice job with your conclusion here.
You’ve provided a summary of your key points and
restated the thesis for the reader.
Sophia Pathways for College Credit – English Composition
Croft, J.B., Ferro, G.A., & Wheaton, A.G. (2015). School start times for middle school and high
school students. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Retrieved from
Jens-Olaf, W. (2016, December 20). Why teen brains need a later school start time. Retrieved
Richter, R. (2015, October 8). Among teens, sleep deprivation an epidemic. Stanford Medicine
News Center. Retrieved from
Smith, K. (2014, March 13). Research links later start times to benefits for teens. Star Tribune.
Retrieved from
Comment [SL20]: Government websites are valid and
credible sources, so this was a good choice.
Comment [SL21]: Using an independent news source like
this one lowers the risk of bias.
Comment [SL22]: This is another good choice, as .edu
websites are also credible source.
Comment [SL23]: Use of this online newspaper gives you a
nice amount of source variety.
Sophia Pathways for College Credit – English Composition
Think About Your Writing
1. What have you learned about how to present a strong argument? How could/will you
apply this knowledge in your professional or everyday life? (3-4 sentences) Sophia says:
Think about the specific skills and techniques that you used while developing and writing your
essay. What tools will you take with you from this experience?
I learned that in order to present a strong argument, it’s important to research all of the facts carefully.
Credible sources make all of the difference when learning about the topic and they really help me to make
sure that I’m backing up my argument effectively. I also learned how important it is to address the
counterarguments so that I can see why the other side might feel differently about an issue. This is such
an important skill for everyday life, because we often meet people who have different viewpoints and it’s
important to present our own viewpoints in an unbiased manner. It’s also important that we acknowledge
and respect the other side so that we can have a rational discussion instead of an argument!
2. Consider the English Composition I course as a whole. What have you learned about
yourself as writer? (5-6 sentences) Sophia says: Sophia says: What did you learn that
surprised you? Is there anything that you have struggled with in the past that you now feel
more confident about?
I learned that I sometimes have trouble organizing my thoughts or staying on topic, but that
proofreading/revising my work or using an outline can be very effective tools at keeping my writing more
coherent. I also learned that writing well is really hard. It’s not difficult for me to write good sentences, but
sometimes it can be really difficult to keep an eye on the wider structure of my work. I found that really
thinking about using effective topic and concluding sentences helped me stay on track. I think this was
the most surprising thing – you can be good at writing, but it takes a lot of hard work to be a good writer.
Sophia Pathways for College Credit – English Composition
SCORING for Sample Touchstone 5
The sample essay was evaluated according to the Touchstone 6 Rubric, which evaluates an
argumentative essay. The rubric evaluates the argumentative topic and thesis statement, argument
development and support, organization, flow, research, style, conventions, formatting, and responses to
the “Think About Your Writing” questions. Each rubric area is evaluated according to the performance
Argumentative Topic and Thesis Statement (5 possible points)
The thesis statement is well written and clearly articulates the position that the writer is taking on the
topic. The topic is clearly debatable and has two or more sides. This is a great example of an
argumentative thesis statement.
Area Score: 5/5 Advanced
Argument Development and Support (20 possible points)
The writer does a nice job including relevant details which support the argument of the essay. The
argument is well developed using the classical model of argumentation and support is provided in the
form of rhetorical appeals and source material. However, there may be a few more opportunities to use
sources and appeals to further strengthen the argument.
Area Score: 18/20 Proficient
Organization (20 possible points)
The essay includes all of the required components of an argumentative essay according to the classical
model. Additionally all elements are effectively utilized.
Area Score: 20/20 Advanced
Flow (10 possible points)
The writer does a nice job sequencing the paragraphs and providing transitions between paragraphs so
that the essay has good flow and the reader can easily follow the progression of ideas.
Sophia Pathways for College Credit – English Composition
Area Score: 9/10 Advanced
Research (10 possible points)
The author primarily cites outside sources appropriately, incorporates sources effectively through direct
quotation, paraphrase, or summary and has referenced 2-4 credible primary or secondary sources.
However, there are a few instances in which the formatting of the citation was incorrect, or an in-text
citation was missing from the essay.
Area Score: 8/10
Style (10 possible points)
The essay demonstrates effective word choices, primarily avoids redundancy and imprecise language,
and uses a variety of sentence structures.
Area Score: 8/10
Conventions (10 possible points)
There are occasional spelling or grammar errors within the writing, but they do not impede the overall flow
or reader’s understanding of the material.
Area Score: 9/10
Formatting (10 possible points)
The writing primarily adheres to APA formatting requirements for in-text citations and the References
page, such that formatting errors are minimal.
Area Score: 9/10
“Think About Your Writing” Questions (5 possible points)
The answers to the questions are thoughtful and insightful. The answers effectively address the question
and either adhere to or exceed the length guidelines.
Area Score: 5/5
Sophia Pathways for College Credit – English Composition
TOTAL SCORE: 91/100 Advanced
This essay demonstrates that the writer has a thorough understanding of the elements of an
argumentative essay as well as how to effectively incorporate those elements. The topic selected is
appropriate, the thesis statement takes a clear side on the issue, and the thesis is effectively supported
by quality sources and rhetorical appeals. It is clear that the writer has thoughtfully crafted this essay and
selected sources that meaningfully support the main claim. Well done!


My Homework Nest
Calculate your paper price
Pages (550 words)
Approximate price: -