How to Write a Conclusion

A conclusion is often the hardest part of a paper. You have already made all of your points; what more can you say? However, you don't want to just abruptly end the paper either. The instructions below will show you how to wrap things up succinctly and effectively.

Keep it brief. The key to a good conclusion is keeping it short and to the point. Think about what final impression you want to leave your reader with, and then deliver it in a concise manner.

Don't repeat yourself. The worst type of conclusion is the one that merely repeats what has already been said. Your conclusion should add something new to your paper.

Put your paper in context. If you are having trouble coming up with a good conclusion, it is a good to think about the larger issues you touch upon and tie your paper to those. For example, if your paper is about the lack of recycling programs on campus, your conclusion could talk about how recycling is only one of many things the campus should be doing to help the environment.

Explain the implications of your research and interpretation. Think about what difference your paper might make and what may change as a result of it. Using the previous example, explain what changes you hope to see brought about in the campus recycling program.

Tie things back to the introduction. You might want to revisit a key phrase or idea from your introduction and present them in a way that reveals their greater depth.

  • Not all of these steps will apply for all papers. Choose the ones that you think will work best for your particular paper.

David Boyles is a graduate student, teacher and professional writer. He has been teaching writing since 2005, while his own work has been featured in various publications and websites, including "Vegas Seven," "ArtsVegas," "AZ on the Scene Magazine" and the "Las Vegas Review of Books." Boyles holds a master's degree in English literature.