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The style of essay conclusions is as varied as the personalities of the writers and the topics they write about.
In shorter essays of 3 to 5 pages, summary conclusions are not only unnecessary, they are cliched (and often even begin with the cliche, "In conclusion"! Furthermore, because the point of this type of conclusion is strictly to summarize the main arguments of the essay, it should contain no reflexive references ("I feel," "in my opinion," etc.).
Example of a Summary Conclusion: Effective for essays with strong personal connection, persuasive appeal and controversial subject matter Depending on the subject matter, a writer may wish to conclude with a personal commentary on the essay's topic; this offers a provocative "outro-duction" where the writer can express a personal investment in the topic with an anecdote, or can reveal feelings, politics, personal positions, interpretations, concerns, etc.--all with the frank and open use of the writer's own language and identity, the same way an editorial in a newspaper would.
Because readers look for symmetry, they enjoy one or more paragraphs at the back end of the essay--the other "bookend" to give the essay's structure its harmonious balance.
Here's another analogy to help put this idea into perspective:filmmaking.
A topic, however, is selected from a range of topics that fall under the heading of a subject.
Another way to express balance and resolution in a conclusion is by demonstrating to the reader how your topic relates to others:to reveal the system of ideas in which your topic exists.
If the introduction invites readers to focus their view narrowly on a single issue or topic, then the conclusion invites them to broaden their view and take in the bigger picture again.
This could mean relating your essay's topic back to the subject, or it could mean connecting it to another topic that is related by subject.
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This article was co-authored by Megan Morgan, Ph D.