Nina Berler, College and Career Readiness Specialist
First of all, you should feel really good for winning the praise of a professor. It means your comments are insightful and are an asset to the class. So what’s going on with the essays? My guess - of course we’ve never worked together - is that you lose focus because you attempt to write prematurely. So I’m going to offer the same advice I give students who are writing college essays, research papers, or DBQs. Start with a thesis that you plan to support or disprove in the body of your written work. From there keep a chart (particularly a Google Doc) in which you list each source and evidence from that source that supports your thesis. Document important assumptions. If applicable, make a timeline.
Knowing that you’ve received a comment already about your train of thought, pay careful attention to the structure of your written work; it’s best decided before you engage in the writing. And once you write, be sure to focus on editing, eliminating redundancies, catching errors and, if necessary, moving examples around to support the emphasis of each paragraph. Don't neglect the importance of a killer introduction and conclusion that restates your main idea but offers some thought-provoking ideas. You can do it!