First class essays are the holy grail of the student experience: the pinnacle of academic achievement. Most students hope to achieve one or two in the course of their degree, but to write one requires extensive skill and academic knowledge. A recent boom has recently been reported in students looking outside university for essay writing support.
The Daily Telegraph reported that more and more students are turning to essay writing companies like Oxbridge Essays, who provide first class essays written by students and graduates of the UK’s top universities. Students are then able to use these essays as inspiration for their own work, learning sophisticated new techniques for structuring and formatting their writing. Such fantastic examples can also be invaluable for students who are trying to grasp complex and alien concepts such as referencing for the first time. Others arrive at university with little idea of what is expected from a written assignment at degree level and turn to Oxbridge Essays to find fantastic examples of the sort of standard they should be aiming for.
Much of the problem seems to stem from the fact that few UK universities offer formal training or advice in the art of essay writing, allowing those all-important techniques to remain an elusive mystery to many frustrated and struggling students. From writing an efficient and exhaustive introduction to proper paragraphing, and from tone and content to a concise conclusion, simple essay skills remain out of reach of thousands of university students. Using sample essays allows students to learn by example and be inspired by excellent work before attempting to employ similar methods to good effect in their own writing.
One of the largest demographics looking outside university for essay writing support is foreign students, eagerly accepted by UK universities for the elevated fee levels they are prepared to pay, but not always given the support they need to learn how to express their academic thoughts in essay form.
Critics fear that essay writing companies allow students to pass off bought essays as their own, but Stratos Malamatinas, founder of Oxbridge Essays, explained to the Telegraph; “it’s made explicit to our customers that they should use our material merely as inspiration”. The clear problem is that not enough support is being provided for UK university students in the technical skills of essay writing, forcing them to look elsewhere for help and guidance.