formal and informal essays

Differences between formal and informal essays

Most types of essays written always fall into two categories i.e. formal essays and informal essays. The question is we need to know what these essays are and the differences between them. Formal essays may include admission essays, scholarship essays and could be of various types like cause and effect essay, persuasive or even argumentative. Informal essays on the other hand tend to be more personal, they have a sense of humor and features common interest. Let us simply define each of these terms:

What is a formal essay? A formal essay is defined as one that is written in a formal style. This means that a formal essay makes use of strong vocabulary with all punctuation and grammar observed. These essays are specific, focused on facts and have a standard template language.

What is an informal essay? An informal essay is one written for enjoyment with the use of vivid expressions. It doesn’t involve much grammar and punctuation and is more personally based. The writer focuses more on personal experiences in the write up.

Both formal and informal essays have differences in terms of their context and writing style. Formal essays may be research based, factual and usually written in a third person point of view (he, she, her, and himself). Informal essays on the other hand are also known as personal essays and are mostly subjective with the writer giving his/her opinion. It is usually written in a first person voice.

How to write an informal essay: When you want to write an informal essay, there are things you must put into consideration. The tone of your essay should be in a casual and relaxed tone. Informal essays also reflect the writers sound and voice.
The use of first person pronouns such as “I” and “me” helps in giving the readers a personal view of what the writer is discussing. Although it is not common in the academic world, personal letters, editorials, and newspapers contain informal essays.

How to write a formal essay: The organization of a formal essay is strict meaning it is well patterned and structured. A formal essay has a clear introduction, body and conclusion supporting its thesis. It is written in a third person voice and this is the type of essay that is expected in most academic settings. It is common to buy essays that are formal because they are associated with academic writing and are usually graded. Students who do not have the time to write their essays or feel they are not good at essay writing often resort to to buy essay papers from online paper writing services.

A typical formal essay will have an introduction which contains a thesis statement, body paragraph stating the main ideas and a conclusion that summarizes everything. They may be descriptive, narrative, persuasive, critical analysis etc.

Difference between formal and informal essays: The major differences between formal and informal essays would be stated under the following subheadings:

1. Tone:
Informal essay: It is frequently subjective and more personal. This means it may be amusing, thoughtful or conversational and casual.
Formal essay: The tone of a formal essay tends to be objective. Emotions are held in check and rather expressed through arguments.

2. Vocabulary:
Informal essay: In an informal essay, the vocabulary is short, precise and there is no much use of phrasal verbs. The words are simple and direct.

Formal essay: Formal essays make use of larger words and do not include the use of slangs and contractions. The use of “I” is permitted in the
introduction and conclusion but must be avoided in the body in order to maintain its academic tone.

3. Structure:
Informal essay: Informal essays are not strictly structures. They do not necessarily follow the standard logical sequence.
Formal essays: Formal essays follow a logic sequence and structure from clearly stating one argument to another in paragraphs.

4. Characteristic:
Informal essay: It is usually written in the first person pronoun.
Formal essay: It is written in the third person pronoun.

5. Purpose:
Informal essay: The purpose of informal essays could be reflections, interaction and entertainment.
Formal essay: Formal essays are for critical evaluation, presentation of ideas, facts and detailed analysis.

6. Subject/content:
Informal essay: It is drawn from everyday events and personal experiences.
Formal essay: Most times it involves other forms of knowledge, literature, historical events.

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