Essay Writing Checklist for High School Students

All students have to write a tremendous variety of essays. They all are different and their purposes differ. Many youngsters find it hard to handle all of them properly. Some of them even look for a professional essay writer that may help to overcome their issues by providing them with academic writing services online. Fortunately, they may apply various methods that help to avoid various obstacles and simplify the process of writing. One of such methods is the creation of essay writing checklists. This article provides useful prompts for high school students.

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What Is the Purpose of Writing Checklists?

Before we begin to review checklist prompts, it is vital to understand their importance. What tasks can be solved by using checklists? Can they improve some skills? A great writing checklist:

  • Provides guidance of students to develop their writing skills;
  • Organizes the process of writing;
  • Speeds up naturally slow writers;
  • Simplifies tasks;
  • Maintains attention;
  • Outlines everything you are supposed to do;
  • Helps not to miss vital facts;
  • Maintains a focus on every step;
  • Improves the process of editing;
  • Helps to define key elements in writing;
  • Makes people organized and disciplined;
  • Reminds of being focused and attentive;
  • Helps to avoid any potential mistakes;
  • May enhance student intellect.

As you can see, these benefits are of huge importance. Therefore, it makes sense in creating these checklists. They will surely help students to become a more successful writer.

Writing Traits Comments

Now it is necessary to define what things you are supposed to add to your checklists. There are many of them, and they strongly depend on the needs of a certain student. Besides, every student has definite preferences that he/she commonly checks when he/she writes essays. It may be hard to guess all of them correctly. Nevertheless, we’ll try to outline the most important writing traits comments. They may come in the form of statements and questions.

We’ll start with the essay ideas:

  • Are the facts I have found suitable for the topic?
  • The length of the summary;
  • Accuracy of the analysis;
  • Quality of comments;
  • Clearance of examples;
  • How do facts support the topic?
  • The clearance and precision of a thesis statement;
  • Is the development good enough?
  • Should citations be used? How good are they?
  • Are sub-theses clear enough?

Now we want to move to the organizational issues:

  • Check the formatting;
  • Is the opener grabbing?
  • Isn’t the introduction too long?
  • The smoothness of transitions;
  • The logical connection between various paragraphs;
  • Are the examples convincing?
  • Am I straight to the point?
  • How do my claims support the main argument?
  • What must be reorganized and improved?
  • Every paragraph should not cover two sub-theses at once.

You should likewise check the voice of your essay:

  • Are there too many passive constructions?
  • Did I use the active voice properly?
  • Should I use stronger verbs?
  • Check the repetitions;
  • Does the text sound human-like?
  • Does my essay appeal to the feelings?
  • Focus on the word choice;
  • Avoid slang and jargon;
  • Make explanations shorter;
  • Split long sentences into smaller chunks;
  • Sent my sentences too simple?
  • Use many sentence varieties.

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The last stage is to proofread and improve your essay. Here are the things you are supposed to check:

  • Grammar;
  • Spelling;
  • Punctuation;
  • Transitions;
  • Plagiarism;
  • Word choice;
  • Clearance;
  • Relevance;
  • Accuracy;
  • Logic, etc.

It’s necessary to take into account many things. Of course, you may try to memorize them. However, there is no guarantee you won’t miss something important. That’s why a writing checklist is very useful for essays, as well as any other writing project. It allows for keeping all the relevant facts in one place to check them quickly.

A Template of an Essay Checklist

The theory is good but a practical example is always better. Many students found it impossible to fulfill their tasks properly without adequate working samples. Therefore, we want to show a template of an essay writing checklist for beginners and what it should possibly include.

Section Control questions
Preliminary stage


Is the topic relevant and attractive?

Are information sources enough?

Is the outline optimal?



Is the introduction captivating?

How grabbing is the intro?

Could it be better?

Thesis statement


Is it clear enough?

What message does it deliver?

Does it reflect the topic?

Main body


Isn’t it messy?

Are the examples convincing?

Are you straight to the point?



Have I restated the thesis statement?

Is it clear for readers?

Is the conclusion adequate?

Post-writing stage


Have I checked grammar?

Are there any weak arguments?

Have I quoted and referenced correctly?

Of course, the questions we have added to the table are not complete. You are free to add as many as necessary to be sure your essay is perfect. We have simply outlined the main questions that must be obligatorily answered. In the meanwhile, you may add more of them. Take a look at the lists given in the previous section to check everything you need.

Perhaps some things never escape your memory and you may not add them to the list. However, it’s always better to create at least shortlists that contain vital facts related to your essay. After you have a great foundation to begin to write.

The last prompt we want to give is also vital. Don’t try to complete an essay after a single try. Even if your checklist includes all you need, you may miss something crucial. Therefore, we recommend writing at least two drafts to properly check them. Thus, you’ll have a chance to spot certain drawbacks.

Keep in memory the tips provided in our learning guide. They are really universal and can be adjusted to any other academic project. They may suit a research paper, dissertation, coursework, case study, and other pieces of writing.