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English 191 - WRITING WORKSHOP II - Zimbler

compare contrast instructions

On May 10th you will turn in your first in class essay which will be a compare contrast essay. Make sure to reference Foundation First’s section on doing a compare contrast essay. You will choose two related things or people to compare and contrast. They may be anything from sport stars, actors, actresses, careers, teaching styles, schools, types of fish, stores, etc.


 If you were for example doing  pets, you may choose dogs and cats. You would then decide on three points to compare them on. You may perhaps choose maintenance, expense, and companionship. Your thesis statement may then look like – “Dogs and cats are two popular types of pets which both provide good companionship but differ in terms of the amount of money spent on them and maintenance they take to keep healthy.” This thesis clearly shows that I will be comparing pets in terms of the types of companions they are but contrasting them in terms of how much time and money they require.


Each body paragraph will be about one of the points mentioned in the thesis. The first body paragraph for the essay on dogs and cats would be about companionship since that was the first one listed in the thesis. A topic sentence for this essay may look like this – “dogs and cats are similar in terms of the companionship they provide. The following sentences of the paragraph will give details about how dogs and cats are both good companions.

As always, your introducition will start with an attention grabbing "hook". Use either a question, quote, anecdote, general statement , or startling statement. Tehr rest of your intro. will orient the reader and the last sentence will be your thesis.

The conclusion will restate the thesis and do at least two of the following:  summarize the essays main point, evoke a vivid image, compare the subject to something else, ask a provocative question, make a suggestion or warning.

compare contrat essay example

First & Last Name First & Last Name

English 101/Section # 


Essay #2

The Committer vs. the Non-Committer

       There are many types of men in the world, and each type displays a variety of distinguishable characteristics.  Women should become aware of these characteristics before considering a prospective mate. The smallest of personal details, from where and how they met (including the first date), the way he walks and talks, the clothes he wears, the career choice he's made, the vacation spots he frequents, or the automobile he drives can offer valuable, meaningful, insightful clues to whether or not a man will ever settle down with anyone.  There are two main types of men in the world: the committer and the non-committer.

The committer is serious about finding the right woman. He asks friends and relatives for introductions. He is usually open to blind dates and avoids the bar scene when looking for a quality woman. On the first date, he is polite and will not bring up the subject of money at the restaurant. He takes her to places where they can talk one-on-one. The non-committer is just looking for a woman. There is no room in his life for the woman. He, on the other hand, loves the bar scene. He usually finds a million excuses why he can't find the right woman and uses such excuses to explain why he is still unattached. On a date, he orders trendy food such as sushi to impress his date, and he monopolizes the conversation. He may even take her to places where there is no chance for good conversation such as a club or a party. 

      The committer likes to share in conversation. He asks questions and actually listens to the answers. He is generally open about his past and is willing to share more personal details as time goes on. He is willing to meet her family and introduces her to his. The committer also formalizes his plans. He'll say, "Let's have dinner on Wednesday," or "I'll call you tomorrow afternoon." The non-committer, however, is usually supporting too many other extracurricular activities to be available. He does the talking while she does the listening. He usually has to work late which means he won't be able to make it for her mom's pot roast dinner invitation. When they speak to each other, he leaves her feeling like things are up in the air. While walking away, he yells things over his shoulder like, "Talk to you soon" or "I'll call." 

      The committer maintains a very basic wardrobe. He tends to be neat, casual and conservative. He often has a closet full of khaki pants and Polo-style shirts. He wears boxers and tube socks, and his boat shoes are a must. The non-committer dresses to impress. He wears a jacket and tie more often than the committer, has fitted dress shirts, at least one silk robe, and tank tops in a rainbow of colors. He likes bikini underwear and loves his running shoes because they enable him to make a quicker getaway. 

      The committer drives a family car. He likes Jeeps, Explorers, and Japanese-made cars because of their proven resale value and uncompromising dependability. The non-committer is all too obvious when it comes to his automobile. He drives a flashy vehicle such as a Porsche, Corvette, BMW, or Ferrari. Each type is reflected in the vehicle chosen. 

      The committer has a career that enables him to help others. He will likely be a teacher, attorney, stock analyst, computer programmer, banker, construction worker, minister, or police officer. He will claim he's too busy for vacations, but probably just doesn't want to go alone. He enjoys trips to see family, fishing trips with friends, or even a weekend at Disney World. Unlike the committer, the non-committer is likely to be a surgeon, photographer, writer, pilot, salesperson, or politician, and he always makes time for getaways. He likes Club Med, the wine-tasting country, Okotberfests, Rio, and anywhere a Windjammer cruise will take him. 

      The committer likes good entertainment. He enjoys old movies with good plots, loves reading all kinds of books, and participates in team sports such as basketball, baseball, and football. The non-committer just likes entertainment, good or bad. He'll watch any movie with Clint, Sly, or Arnold in the credit lineup. He has many books in places they can be seen, but likely hasn't read one in its entirety. This man sticks to magazines and USA Today because they're brief, to the point, require little time, and will likely not lead to introspection. The non-committer rarely participates in team sports. He prefers solo activities such as hang-gliding, hiking, jogging, or a good workout at the gym where he can be seen wearing his newest designer labels. 

      The bad news is that, initially, the non-committer and the committer may even mirror each other, on the surface, that is. The good news is that with a little insight, respect for one's own intuition and values, willingness to observe without the proverbial blinders on, and a basic understanding of the silent messages behind the words and actions of a prospective mate, it is possible for a woman to find that legendary dream-come-true soul mate.

Questions on Technique

  1. Which sentence is the thesis (main idea) of this essay? Are there any words in the thesis to indicate that the author is going to compare or contrast anything? 
  2. Is this essay organized in a block pattern or a point-by-point pattern? 
  3. Does the author use good examples to point out the differences between the two types of men? What do you think of the examples? Explain. 
  4. Does the author use any contrast transitions (however, but, on the other hand, or in contrast) in this essay to help the reader move back and forth between the discussions of the two types of men? 
  5. Tone is an author's attitude toward the subject. It can be lighthearted, disgusted, playful, angry, and so forth. Describe the author's tone in this essay. 

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