Before you begin to study writing, you must first know the criteria of the assessment team. In the case of the university, the essay is corrected considering 5 main characteristics (which they call 5 “competencies”); let’s calmly see each one of them for you to learn how to make a good essay for university and take advantage of your competitors. So the 1st tip is:
Know the 5 competencies
Competence 1: demonstrate mastery of the cultured norm of written language.
This competence evaluates the basic aspects of the Portuguese language, such as the correct way of writing the words, the correct use of expressions, etc. In this correction, the candidate receives an evaluation that indicates the knowledge of the basic rules of Portuguese. It is essential that the candidate knows the differences between oral and written language to do well in this assessment.
Competence 2: understand the proposal of the essay and apply concepts from the various areas of knowledge to develop the theme, within the structural limits of the argumentative-essay text.
The description of competence 2 is great, so let’s separate it into two main parts. First, it evaluates the understanding of the proposal of the writing of the university, that is, it verifies if the candidate was able to be faithful to the subject. Being faithful to the theme means writing about the proposed subject without losing focus. For example, if the text is about disarmament, the core of its writing can be nothing but disarmament. It is common for many candidates to flee from the subject and end up talking more about other aspects related to the theme than about the theme itself. The ability to stay true to the topic is very important for a good writing, and that is why there is such competence.
The other aspect addressed by this competence is the argument used. An argumentative essay text uses argumentation as the basis for defending an idea, so you need to convince the reader through comparisons, concepts, examples, etc., showing that you have the knowledge to talk about the topic and present a coherent and grounded conclusion.
Competence 3: select, relate, organize and interpret information, facts, opinions and arguments in defense of a point of view.
This competence evaluates in a general way the organization of its text and the correct use of the conjunctions (but, therefore, because, etc.), which are the terms responsible for connecting the sentences and uniting them coherently. The way you organize and concatenate ideas is also fundamental to the correct interpretation of the text, so this competence is so important to be verified in the candidates. All writing must accurately reflect what we think, translating our thoughts so that the reader can easily understand our point of view.
Competence 4: demonstrate knowledge of the linguistic mechanisms necessary for the construction of the argumentation.
Competence 4 is somewhat related to competence 3, but in this case the central point evaluated is the sequencing of ideas: the relationship between sentences and paragraphs. When writing a essay, you need to know the right time to finish one paragraph and start another, as well as the right time to finish one sentence and start another. In addition, each sentence must be inserted correctly in the context of its respective paragraph, so as not to undermine the logic of the text and the line of thought.
Competence 5: elaborate a proposal for a solution to the problem addressed, showing respect for human values and considering socio-cultural diversity.
This competence, first of all, already makes clear the importance of considering and valuing cultural and social differences. This means that you should not restrict yourself to a culture or society by manifesting partiality that induces prejudice, segregation, or disparagement. Do not think about writing for university without considering cultural and social diversity.
Based on this criterion, what university brokers expect from their wording in competence 5 is that the conclusion will provide a solution to the problem that was raised in the proposal of the topic. To do so, one must be consistent with what has already been mentioned throughout the text. You need, throughout the essay, to direct the reader to a line of reasoning that culminates in the solution and conclusion of the subject, making clear his position on the subject.