How To Write A 500-Word Essay

It can be nerve-wracking when you are assigned an essay-writing assignment or seeing it in the exam, especially if you have the last pick on the topic. Before we go into details on how you should write a 500-word essay, it is worth pointing out that essay-writing is a comparatively simple task. We want you to see that it is a means to express your opinion rather than academic or gradable work.

Generally, an essay is a short piece of writing in which an author can express their personal experiences and perspectives. There are several types of essays, and essay writing plays a significant role in contributing to academic success. Being able to write an essay is an important ability that can help you succeed in your future career. An essay reflects your thoughts and understanding of the topic as well as your writing ability.

A 500-word essay is often given to students as an assignment or in-class exam in high school and college. Although many of us have written many essays, only a few know the trick of writing an essay. It is more than just putting one word after another. It is a standard writing assignment that students always get throughout the years when they are studying at school. While the word count is low, that does not make this essay any easier. It can be trickier than you think. But fret not because after we go through the ins and outs of such an essay, it should no longer be a problem. Moreover, writing a 500-word essay is indeed helpful for students to improve their writing skills, the benefits of which always reveal themselves during an exam in class. Usually, you are expected to write this essay in 45 minutes. Therefore, it is imperative for you to know how to manage your time when tackling this task.

The 500-word essay can also be a major assignment. Some students often put off this writing task until the last minute. As a result, they end up making a lot of mistakes. Sometimes, they resort to plagiarism which never ends well for them. To avoid these problems, we have some tips that you can use to avoid plagiarism and get good grades for your assignments.

The essay that contains just 500 words is relatively short, but you still have to follow the usual essay format. It should also include an introduction with a hook and a thesis, a body, and a conclusion. Your teacher will assess your ability to write the task clearly and concisely while using a small number of words.

How to Format a 500-Word Essay?

Many students have no clear idea of how long should their essay be, what type of fonts they should use, or other formats they should follow. As the name suggests, the 500-word essay should be 500 words long. Your default writing software is, most probably, Microsoft Word which shows you the word count right away on the go, but any other software has the word count feature as well. Unless stated otherwise, this type of essay usually uses Time New Roman font, size 12pt, and double spacing. You also have to include page number and surname, but you can ask your instructor to find out exactly what essay format you should follow. If you have to write it on paper, a good rule of thumb is there are ten words for every line on an A4 paper. Of course, the format is no longer under consideration here. You merely need to write down your ideas in the space provided.

The essay’s length should not exceed one and a half page, and the idea of this writing exercise is to test your ability to proving your thesis statement in 500 words. Thus, it is vitally important not to exceed the word count drastically.

The Outline of the Essay

It is also necessary to have an essay outline before writing your essay because it lists all the points that you want to discuss in your writing. The outline serves as the skeleton for your essay to help you organize your ideas. That way, you can write your essay without going off topic. This essay is not different from other types of essays. It must include an introduction, a body, and a conclusion.


You need to introduce the topic by giving the background information, hook, and thesis statement. In this part, it is crucial to write a good introduction with a sharp hook to attract your reader's attention from the beginning of their reading, and make sure that they are still interested in reading till the end of the essay.


An essay is a combination of several small paragraphs, and each paragraph contains the topic sentence, supporting evidence and concluding the sentence. It is where you can go to write detail about your topic and express your opinion on the topic.


You can conclude your essay in several ways. An excellent conclusion will give an overview of the whole essay by summarizing the main points, restating the thesis statement or giving recommendations. In this section, it is necessary for you to write a winning conclusion. Otherwise, your readers will not have a sense of completeness after reading the essay.

Writing tips

Here, we will discuss some writing tips so you can write essays effortlessly:

  •  Grammatical mistakes: grammatical error can lower your writing score, and it is one of the most common mistakes that students make. Grammatical mistakes show how poorly-written the work is, which will hurt your grade. Therefore, you must check for grammar before submitting it to your teacher. You can use online tools to assist you in correcting grammatical errors.
  •  Ask for help from other people: it is also beneficial to let other people evaluate your writing work. You can ask your friends or relatives to read your essay and give recommendations. Don’t feel shy or discouraged when people are trying to correct your writing work. They might see some important points that you do not.
  •  Clarity of your writing: you may think that what you have written seems logical to you, but it might not so much so to other people and they might find it hard to understand. Therefore, you should check your sentence structure and make sure that your sentences are not too lengthy or wordy. You can use online sites to help you simplify your writing. There are many free sites available online that you can use to improve your writing.
  •  Proper topic selection: you have to choose the topic accurately. Usually, there is no topic restriction for the 500-word essay, so you should be spoiled for choices in most situations. If your teacher does not provide any topics to choose from, you can select any topics that are interesting and important for you. The accurate topic selection also prevents you from going into the tangents, which may bore your readers. Choose a topic and stick with it.
  •  Research the topic: when you have ideas about what you are going to discuss in your essay, you have to gain more insight into it by using credible online or library sources for your essay. Your teacher will feel surprised to read your essay. As always, do not forget to cite all the sources you used in your text.
  •  Create your own style: one of the most important things to make your essay writing stand out from the rest is by using your own original style of writing that fits your topics to share your ideas with a unique approach. Your teacher or lecturer has to go through many essays, - so a trivial one will not get you an A. Thus, it is essential to make your ideas stand out among others. Do not feel afraid of making something different and unique. Your teacher will appreciate the effort you put into your work.
  •  Invest your time in editing your essay: editing is just as crucial as writing the essay. Editing and proofreading will improve your essay. You can see your typographical errors and other sorts of mistakes during the editing process. We recommend you go through the text at least twice if you have time. Proofreading on your own may be tricky, but you could use an online tool to help you here.
  •  Avoid plagiarism: you might feel tempted to use someone else’s works, but avoid that like the plague. Using a simple plagiarism checker is enough to verify whether you took someone else’s work. Therefore, you have to be aware of plagiarism and make sure that you use your own words in your writing.
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