Quality Or Quantity? How To Shorten Up An Essay

A long essay doesn’t necessarily mean that it is a good one. You could have a short essay and still be able to communicate effectively.

Actually, a good essay writer is one who can communicate clearly and in a few words.

Therefore, the quality of an essay is not determined by how long or short it is even though the ability to communicate fully in few paragraphs is always a welcome idea. Here is how to shorten up an essay. 

1. Focus on the main points 

Stick to the main points that highlight the objectives of writing the essay.

Get rid of any unnecessary information that does not directly point to the topic of your essay.

Every word and sentence should be about what is in question. After covering the main points in a way that is comprehensible, you can get rid of any other information. 

2. Delete your worst sections 

From your initial writing, you will realise that there are sections that you included that didn’t make a lot of sentences as far as the essay topic is concerned.

For that reason, it is important to get started by deleting these sections. There are those parts you wrote when at your best and the others that contain fluffy content. You can know this by reading loudly. 

3. Shorten long sentences 

A good essay is one with brevity, well-written in short sentences. In an effort of passing on a certain point, you may at times find yourself with very long sentences.

These can be shortened to keep your essay short, clear and brief. Essays with short sentences are appealing to read. Most importantly, they will help you shorten your essay without compromising on content. 

4. Work by the marking criteria 

What is needed for an assessment?

Sometimes it is just enough to stick to the marking criteria.

When written according to the stipulated directives, your essay will just be as brief as required. You will not struggle with presenting a long essay that at times may affect the quality of your writing.

The main interest in marking is the quality of your essay and not the many words and long sentences you write. 

5. Summarise your paragraphs 

You may have tried to shorten your sentences by removing unnecessary words but still, your essay is long.

Some sentences may on point but at this point, you have to decide on which ones to keep and which ones to delete.

Even when the information in your paragraph is good, you can find a way of summarising it.

You can do this without affecting the meaning of your essay and at the same time succeed in keeping it short!   


In essay writing, quality overrides quantity. Therefore, it is important for writers to understand how important it is to keep their essays brief and clear.

You can still communicate with few words without compromising crucial content in your essay. There are a number of ways to shorten your essay and discussed here are a few of them to get you started.