In our daily life, we often compare things to make a right decision. However, most school children and college students feel puzzled when assigned to develop an essay. The stumbling block in an essay writing is a need to choose among compare and contrast essay topics. The more interesting topic you'll pick, the more chances you have to pass with flying colors. Writing a really good essay may be a piece of cake if you feel inspired.
In many spheres of human activity, there arises a need for an optimal choice. This compare and contrast essay method takes into account characteristics of the studied objects using the necessary criteria. The basic approach is quite simple: the definition and estimation of individual social, economic, political, or other phenomena with the aim of discovering distinctive features.
After that, a student is supposed to make a conclusion about a justified or supposed nature of the homogeneity of phenomena, the similarity of their content, the general orientation, etc. This makes it possible to use data from one object while studying the other. If, in the course of the research, some discrepancies were found, this allows one to point out the peculiarity, specificity, and uniqueness of one phenomenon or object in relation to another one.
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Compared to other types, this type of work is considered a difficult task as it is not just a narration. It usually takes much time since you cannot write a decent paper without any prior research. Moreover, put your thinking cap on when analyzing two objects from one category as sometimes distinctive aspects aren’t so obvious.
Recommendations to Follow when Choosing Compare and Contrast Essay Topics
- When choosing an essay topic, learn more about the target audience beforehand. Look through actual topics which have a chance to hook your readers’ attention. After brainstorming ideas, find things for the effective comparison.
- Remember to choose objects belonging to one sphere. Use all pieces of advice you can find when choosing compare and contrast essay topics: first of all, analyze objects that look the same, but have at least one difference. For example, a homemade face mask and a mask produced somewhere, or foods cooked by mom and semi-finished ones found in a supermarket.
- The methods of the comparative approach lead to the fact that already established views on certain phenomena and facts can be reconsidered. Your essay should help discover features that are specific to a particular object or phenomenon. Thus, it promotes a deeper study of objects and phenomena. Also, remember to search for distinctive features at different levels of research.
- The leading principle of picking a good topic is finding some characteristic feature similar to both objects.
Have no ideas what to compare wondering “What are some good compare and contrast essay topics?” Get inspired by checking out compare and contrast essay topics below for different levels of education.
Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for College Students
IT technologies and gadgets:
- iOS vs. Android.
- E-mail vs. usual post.
- Buying things online vs. shopping at malls.
- Skype vs. phone communication.
- Smart house vs. usual home.
- Samsung vs. Apple.
Easy as a Piece of Cake Topics:
- American vs. Chinese concepts of beauty.
- Rock vs. rap music.
- Flat vs. private house.
- School teacher and university professor: benefits/disadvantages.
Easy Compare and Contrast Essay Topics:
Topics for beginners:
- Fruit vs. vegetables.
- Linux vs. Windows.
- Tablet vs. paper textbooks.
- Classical vs. pop music.
- Movies vs. theatre.
Popular things to compare:
- Chemistry vs. physics.
- Oranges vs. tangerines.
- New Year vs. Christmas celebration.
- Summer vs. winter.
- Documentary vs. fiction.
Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for High School
Topics about Influential People:
- Hitler and Stalin
- Obama vs Donald Trump
- Ryan Reynolds vs Donald Glover.
- Volcano eruption and earthquakes: what causes more damage?
- Geology and mineralogy.
- Einstein theories.
- Civil World War I and II.
- Two famous historical leaders.
- Politics in America now and twenty years ago.
Fresh essay topic ideas:
- Sports or diets: what is more effective for weight loss?
- Audio books or paper books.
- Fashion today and twenty years before.
- Silver and gold.
- Chocolate and marmalade candies.
- Autumn vs spring.
- Love vs. friendship.
- Cars vs. bikes.
Compare and Contrast Topics for Middle School
- Playing computer games and reading: which is the pastime you give preference to and why?
Facebook vs Twitter:
- Instagram vs printed photographs.
- Messaging vs real communication.
Easy as ABC topics:
- Black vs. white: best color for formal meetings.
- Apple vs. pear.
- Getting vs. presenting gifts: what is more pleasant?
- Sunbathing at the seaside vs go sightseeing.
- Short vs. long hair.
- Your lifestyle and your favorite celebrity.
- Coffee vs. tea.
- Cinnamon vs. sugar.
- Cats vs. dogs.
Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for 6th Grade
Topics for beginners:
- Active vs. passive rest.
- Playing inside vs. outside.
- Is your character similar to your parents’?
- Doctor vs. teacher.
- Swimming vs. flying.
- Tennis vs. badminton.
- Football vs. basketball.
- American soccer vs. basketball.
- Ballet vs. break dance.
- Two plays of Shakespeare.
- Quotes of the well-known personalities.
- Two books of the classical writers.
Ap World History Compare and Contrast Essay
- European History and US history.
- Paleolithic and Neolithic periods.
- Two public people.
- Economic development of America and China.
- Two personalities who contributed to the history of England.
Brilliant Compare and Contrast Essay Topics
- Watching horror films on TV vs. on the large cinema screen.
- New branded clothes vs. second-hand clothes.
- Diets vs. drugs for weight loss.
- Cooking video recipes vs. traditional cookery books.
- Money vs. gift for a birthday.
- Jeans or dresses for a party.
Great Compare and Contrast Essay Topics: Literature
- Two writers of prose.
- Prose vs. poetry.
- Russian vs English writers: choose two most famous in the same genre.
- Jane Austen vs. Charlotte Bronte.
- Two works of Oscar Wilde.
- Romeo and Juliet vs. Macbeth of Shakespeare.
- Tolkien vs Joan Rolling.
- Two characters from the Harry Potter books.
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Effective Tips How to Write a Compare and Contrast Essay
Are you stuck in front of an empty word document and have no idea how to write a compare and contrast essay? First, go through the basics. This piece of writing is a genre aimed at setting objects, people, places, events, etc. side by side and defining similarities and differences.
After you have sorted out things, hit books searching for relevant information. Most themes will require some specific knowledge, which means that the search for facts and statistics and additional details will take much time. Brainstorm ideas and make notes. Make up a list of common features, characteristics, qualities. Don’t miss details that can play a significant role.
You shouldn’t necessarily talk about all features if there are too many. Just choose things that really matter and start writing following a certain structure format.
Your work will be well-organized if it consists of an introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion. An effective structure should include five paragraphs. Each paragraph is written to perform its own function. A short introductory part familiarizes your reader with the topic and makes it clear what will be next.
Remember how important it is to use eye-catchy first sentences to attract the audience attention. Think that you are ready with the effective beginning? Then don’t waste time and proceed to the text body revealing major aspects with your findings concerning common things and different features. Finally, summarize and let your reader see the goal you wanted to achieve. Your audience shouldn’t doubt the usefulness of time spent on reading your paper.
Compare and Contrast Essay Example
Compare and contrast essay example: “Winter vs Summer”
Historic essay sample: Napoleon and Kutuzov
Interesting Things to Compare and Contrast
Check out fresh ideas about things to compare and contrast below.
- Virus vs. infection.
- Vitamins from foods vs. vitamins from complexes: which are better for health?
- People DNA vs. animals.
- Samsung vs. Apple computers.
- Hardware vs. software.
- iPhone 8 Plus vs. iPhone X.
- Women vs. men occupying managerial positions: who is more successful?
- Two most profitable goods and services markets.
- Cola and Pepsi: management techniques.
Advice from Expert
Don’t know how to write a compare and contrast essay? Consider successful samples first. If reading an example you have a wish to find out more about the objects’ comparison, then its author has done a proper job. To say that the theme must be interesting is like saying nothing. It should be inspiring. Moving forward think about the obvious similarities and differences. The crucial reason why many writers fail is that they don’t go further. However, it is a must to study objects thoroughly so that no hidden edges are left. Use critical thinking and look at the familiar thing at a completely new angle.
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Let's say your high school or college teacher haven't assigned the topic for your assignment. It means you can choose compare and contrast essay topics by conducting in-depth research, asking for advice, or hiring a professional academic writer to help. It is simpler than deciding on the most relevant argumentative or scientific subject. However, every high grade expects a quality content written on the interesting essay topic; it is critical to learn how to write a compare and contrast essay and choose appropriate ideas to discuss.
Do not be trivial! The article you see now will help you to avoid confusing and banal essay topics. In addition to the list of the top-rated themes, we will share different links to websites with great examples and online writing help.
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Students will find some good points and ideas necessary for the development of a good school or college comparative essay. Online academic writing help is always available to lend a helping hand when it seems like the assignment is impossible to complete.
How to Write a Compare and Contrast Essay: Major Principles
The answer to the disturbing question like how to write a compare and contrast essay begins with the structure of this type of academic writing. It has the same structure as other types of academic papers with the few major differences. Introduction with the powerful hook and thesis statement remains the same. In your conclusion, reword the thesis and summarize the arguments used to defend the main idea of the paper. The body paragraphs are different. It depends on whether the author focuses more on differences, similarities, or tries to balance with both.
Take a look at a couple of images below to realize how to write a paper of this type based on our examples.
How to Choose Compare and Contrast Essay Topics Wisely?
The most effective, time-tested way to select essay topics in case your teacher did not give some is through researching different types of sources:
- Newspapers. A student can find an endless source of great ideas. They are related to the ongoing world’s events, latest innovations, expert opinions, political fluctuations, and other fields. Pay attention to both columns, interviews, and analysis composed by an authoritative person from politics, economy, and other aspects of human life;
- News channels. Turn on your favorite channel not to watch favorite TV show this time. Learn about the contemporary problems and try to think about an interesting topic idea spending something around half an hour of your precious time.
- Magazines/Journals. If you are not a great fan of politics, religion, or economics, try to find some good ideas in the recent magazines/journals. Check the rubrics dedicated to entertainment, technology, teen life, and sports.
- Internet. It should be the greatest source of all ideas collected in the previous types of primary sources altogether.
- Do not forget to attend various seminars, conferences, meetings to learn more about the things going on in the world and recently discussed by the society.
“Before starting the topic, organize the thoughts in a logical manner. Develop some kind of a chart/graph/table to have a visual picture of how the final draft should look like. In this type of academic writing, it is important to focus on the comparable qualities & characteristics of the subjects/events/people to impress the target audience. It means the author should pick original criteria to draw parallels or stressing the gap between the objects.”
Professor Beverly Thompson, online English tutor and golden writer at NerdyMates
Students will not understand how to write a compare and contrast essay without memorizing and using properly so-called signal words. Those are transition words. In other types of essays, it is important to join different sections like body paragraphs and conclusion in a whole piece with the help of special words/phrases. Find the list of signal words below.
Compare and Contrast Essay Topics on Famous People
It is time to answer the main question of our reader, “What are some good compare and contrast essay topics?”
World-known people like different celebrities and political figures have always attracted the attention of ordinary citizens. It's a great chance for every writer to catch an eye of the reader by describing and comparing the life of various American authorities.
You do not necessarily need to analyze the life of people from the same region or field of activity. Many students find it exciting to take a person from real life and a book or movie character. It leaves space for imagination. Have enough ideas to write your five-paragraph essay:
- Madonna and Celine Dion. While the first woman is a self-made American singer, the same can be said about her Canadian fellow singer. By comparing these two, you draw parallels between the American and Canadian pop stage.
- Adolph Hitler and Joseph Stalin. Even though these historical figures widely known to the public were from the opposing camps, there are more similarities between them than you can think.
- Peter Griffin vs. Homer Simpson. The two American television shows, "The Simpsons" and "Family Guy" are alike by showing the disadvantages of the nation and laughing at the public stereotypes. However, one of the shows is still more radical.
- Bugs Bunny and Charlie Chaplin. As the time passes by, these figures remain the symbol of their time and entire American culture. It would be interesting to write about the similarities and differences between their comic images.
- Online ads VS traditional ways to promote goods/services. How these methods affect lives of different popular people
- Hobbes or Locke. English philosophers’ roles regarding the contribution of each to the study of political science
- Batman VS Superman. The reasons why Batman won in the famous movie
- Start Wars modern episodes or episodes of 1970’s. Comparison of graphic, actors, plot, visual effects, music, sound effects, habits, etc
- Plato or Socrates. Decide which one contributed more to the philosophical research
- Putin & Obama. Differences in the political regime and economics offered by each president
Religion, Anthropology, and AP World History Compare & Contrast Essay Topics
Religion is often a taboo topic to discuss. Public schools and colleges have subjects dedicated to religion. Students are encouraged to write about it. Religion, history, and anthropology are closely related. You may choose AP world history compare and contrast essay that covers all three dimensions to enrich your essay.
Here we go with several good examples recommended by high school and college students:
- Discuss World War I and World War II. It is a traditional debate. Many people find the two wars similar, but historians point to a great number of differences such as main factors, actual causes, and consequences. Explain why World War II was much worse and terrifying.
- President Obama and President Kennedy. Mass media tends to draw parallels between both political figures very often. It is time to find out why.
- Ancient Greece Ancient Rome. All ideas related to the offered topic are good enough because these civilizations have a great impact on the modern world. Cover Greek and Roman mythology, describe their traditional public events, a way of living, differences and similarities in poetry, and influence on the modern American society.
- 18th Century Living VS Modern Life. Are American people freer now and how is a modern society divided into classes? What are the advantages of e-mail in contrast to the traditional mailing they used back in the 18th century?
- Frenemies. The way famous political competitors, John Adams and Thomas Jefferson acted often reminded of both friendship and rivalry – which one is correct?
- American Revolution VS French Revolution. Both held back in the VIII century, and both are having similarities & differences.
- The Salem Witch Trials & McCarthy Era in the US history. How they treated people accused of witchcraft in 2 different historical events.
- The idyllic period in the US history is the middle of XX century while the 1960s is known as a tumultuous decade.
- Ancient Greece VS Ancient Rome. Which civilization had a greater impact on the development of contemporary culture & art?
- 3 different branches of Christianity. Common issues, major differences, similarities, examples of traditions, etc.
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Political Essay Compare and Contrast Themes
These topics cover political science and cultural life of different countries. It is time to evaluate political regimes of different countries. Analyze the countries with the echo of communism and those where capitalism dominates; countries where women and men have equal rights versus countries where women are limited to their rights and freedoms.
- Classical Theory of Karl Marx against Modern Capitalistic Movement. Financial and political theories change with the flow of time. High school and college students have to understand the way economics work to get the ideas of different political regimes.
- The war in Syria/Military Situation in Ukraine. The countries could make a union based on the fact they are both regularly attacked by two other hostile countries. However, Ukraine is not officially involved in the war, they say. Research what media shares and analyze the given cases.
- The government of China VS The government of Korea. Both of these nations suffer from the consequences of communism. The second country, specifically North Korea, supports this political regime more than China. What is different and what's in common?
- Welfare Programs in the United States vs. Welfare Programs in the United Kingdom. Although high school and college students believe that these countries look alike in many senses, any related book or movie will show how wrong they are.
- Al Qaeda VS the Islamic State. Which of the terroristic organizations have a greater threat to the world’s peace?
- Legal systems in the United States & Canada: Are they too different in terms of laws, regulations, preventive measures, and other?
- Marriage VS civil union. Which of these types of a partnership between two people in love is less threatening to the image of political figure?
- Debit cards and credit cards: The role of government in establishing various payment methods and responsibility it has in case of any rule break
- Private & public companies. The obligations American government have concerning each of these types of organizations
- Political regime today and back in the 1950s: Things that changed for better and situations that got worse
Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for 6th Grade
Students who study in the sixth grade have to receive the simplest homework assignments and compare and contrast essay topics for 6th grade as they lack the experience to analyze something more complex than these:
- Winter or summer: More gorgeous season of year
- Christmas in another country/Christmas at home
- Juice VS water: While water may be healthier, juices are tastier and…
- Dogs and wolves: Similarities & differences
- Weeds and flowers: Why one cannot exist without another
- Eastern or Western USA: Living in both parts in different period of time
- Comic books or novels: The once which is more interesting to read
- Tennis VS ping pong: Your favorite game out of two
- Watching TV instead of reading a book: Difference/similarity in impressions
- Male friends or female friends: Based on such factors as loyalty, sincerity, bravery, and more
Compare and Contrast Topics for Middle School
Have a look at the list of compare and contrast topics for middle school!
- King Author VS Zeus. One of them is a way cooler than another one
- Comparison of the role models in 1950s with modern role models
- How does it feel to watch favorite movies in the cinema and watching films at home?
- The correlation between famous dictators & school bullies
- The consequences of tsunami might be worse than the consequences of hurricane
- Prom Night, Halloween Night, & Christmas Night: Which holiday is more fun?
- Car driving or bicycle driving: Which experience is more difficult?
- 3-star hotels or 5-star hotels: Reasons to choose each of them
- Things the early spacemen had in common with Christopher Columbus
- People who influence teenagers most of all: Parents and celebrities
Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for High School Students
If you don't need specific ideas for academic papers, look at the list of general essay topics shared by successful college students. Now, we continue with compare and contrast essay topics for high school.
- Fiction or Non-Fiction Literature: Write about which type of literary works is more helpful for college students and why.
- Assess High School Examinations & College Tests. What is more important? Which styles are recommended to be used in academic writing when studying in different educational institutions? When is it easier to cheat?
- Traditional Learning or Online Learning: Do you find it helpful to be able to take college courses online? Is a traditional way of teaching still better and more effective?
- Atlanta Falcons or New England Patriots: Which of the professional sports clubs is more authoritative and loved by high school students?
- Determine the effectiveness of online advertising and TV ads. What type of advertising channel is more influential on children?
- Printed books/e-Books: Which type of material might be more useful for the modern high school students?
- Wooden houses or story buildings. The significance of each type of construction
- Major differences and similarities between Portugal & Spain: Where is it better to have a vacation nowadays?
- American vision of beauty compared to Japanese vision of beauty: Discuss the standards based on the most recent beauty queens plus handsome men
- How rock music has changed: Rock music of early XX century and nowadays
Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for College Students
Finally, there are many ways you can analyze the life with family and on a college campus; important things to consider while studying at school and in university; passing SAT and taking TOEFL; etc. Enjoy the list of 10 compare and contrast essay topics for college students!
- Comparing Life with Parents to Living on Campus: In your essay, write the details about two ways of student's life. Share ideas on why you prefer one of the options (pros and cons of both).
- Where is academic rigor the greatest when it comes to comparing high school education and college learning.
- While Fall is the season of college arrivals, Spring is the time for student departures. Features of different educational seasons.
- Having a look at the meals students get at high school/college and the food they obtain at home from their family members. Which is tastier?
- The remote learning courses slowly replace conventional classes in college. Pros & cons of going technological.
- Living at home with parents compared to living on the college campus on the example of laundry service, cooking, and other everyday household activities.
- Manufacturing jobs against service sector jobs. A right choice of the college student
- Part-time jobs VS seasonal jobs: Pros & cons of each option
- Private colleges or public education: Reasons to make all educational institutions public in the United States
- Advanced placement classes: Better or worse than honors classes?
Easy Compare and Contrast Essay Topics
If you do not want to go deep into the details breaking the head against the wall, choose one of the easy compare and contrast essay topics!
- Twilight & Buffy, the Vampire Slayer. Analyze both shows’ characters
- It by Stephen King: Review book with the film
- Julius Caesar & Macbeth: Do these people have anything in common?
- Realism & modernism. Simple similarities & differences
- Poetry VS prose: List literary elements that make these genres different
- Life in a big city compared to village life: Discuss where people are healthier, kinder, more honest, etc.
- Donald Trump against Hilary Clinton: The one who should have won the latest presidential elections in the United States
- Real Madrid & Barcelona: Advantages + disadvantages of both Spanish football clubs
- iPhone VS Android mobile devices: Benefits Android users obtain against benefits iPhone users get
- Tablets or textbooks in school: Advantages each of these devices have when it comes to the process of learning
Things to Compare and Contrast
The last category contains the names of subjects only. Those are some great things to compare and contrast!
- Jails & Asylums
- Renaissance and Baroque Art
- Star Wars & Star Trek
- American Dad VS Family Guy
- Apple or Pineapple
- Moon and Sun
- Greek VS Scandinavian Mythology
- Communism against Capitalism
- New England Colonies or Southern Colonies (it is possible to add Middle Colonies)
- Fiction VS Non-Fiction
Compare and Contrast Essay Example from Writing Guru
Students write better papers when they have some good examples in front of them. Looking for the compare and contrast essay example? Find many free samples on the professional academic writing websites or view these powerful papers shared by the top college writers with us.
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