How to Write a Classification Essay in Shakespeare Studies: Witty Recommendations for College Students

Writing guide
Posted on September 30, 2020

William Shakespeare is one of the most famous literature persons on the globe. It is really hard to name any other author that we know more information about – be it about English or world literature. It is because Shakespeare is without a doubt the best educated man among the authors that ever lived on earth. For that reason, when you are assigned a classification essay in Shakespeare studies, you don’t have to worry because the task is not that difficult. But even if you are not sure about your abilities to write this kind of university assignment, we have this simple guide for you. The steps described in it will help you to produce a high quality paper and feel less stress as you do it.

First of all, it is worth noting that a classification essay differs from a typical college essay because it requires you to do a more in-depth research. Before you begin to write your work, you have to find as many details about the topic in Shakespeare studies as you can, and then organize the materials that you research into categories.

Find Ideas

Before you do anything, it is important to look for ideas to include into your paper about William Shakespeare. If, for instance, your professor wants you to write a classification essay but he or she does not give you any topic, many students may feel confused in such case.

In order to help you with your classification essay in Shakespeare studies, we have listed some topics that will help you deal with this college project:

  • The Prophecies of the Three Witches in the Play “Macbeth”;
  • The Types of Women in Shakespeare’s Works;
  • The Literary Aspects of the Classic Play Hamlet;
  • People’s Attitudes towards Love in Shakespeare’s Works;
  • The Types of Behaviors of Men and Women in the Plays Written by Willian Shakespeare;
  • The Themes Tackled in King Lear;
  • The Styles of Parenting of Romeo and Juliet’s Family;
  • The Characteristics of the Three Witches in the Play “Macbeth”;
  • Female Characters Portrayed in the Play “The Merchant of Venice”.

As you can see from the topics given above, you have an opportunity to take any idea that looks interesting and use it as a topic for your classification essay. It is not necessary to take the topic as it is – you can use it like a hint and come up with your own topic based on the ones that you can see in our list. Regardless of your choice, do your best to look at the topic from a different angle in order to categorize it in a more uncommon way.

In this case, you have to do a preliminary research. Having selected the topic that you like the most about Shakespeare, you have to find out what information is available about. Can you get any ideas on the internet? Are there enough materials to classify and support your categories? The best topic is the one that enables you to find enough information to work with, as well as eases the process of writing.

Decide on Your Thesis Statement

The thesis statement is the ‘heart’ of your classification essay in Shakespeare studies. If you make it strong, the whole of your essay will be successful. In case your thesis statement is unclear, your essay will become the same. For that reason, you will have to write the thesis statement that will help your readers understand what the classification essay is about.

In case with the classification essay in Shakespeare studies, you have to ensure that your thesis statement identifies all the approaches that you will study. Besides, your thesis statement should set the tone of your essay that your readers will hope to see throughout the text.

Prepare a Plan of Work

Once you know what exactly your classification essay will be about and your thesis statement is written and checked, it is time to start the next part – the planning. At first, it is important that you keep in mind your deadlines. How much time do you need to conduct a complete research on your topic? How much time do you need to read all of your sources and outline the essay? How much time does it take for you to write a typical college essay and then edit it? You know how much time you have for the assignment, so make sure to organize it appropriately. That is possible only if you begin your work as soon as your professor gives you the task. It is easier to work on a smaller chunk of work than to get stuck with having to do everything at once. For example, when you work on the essay about the writing techniques of William Shakespeare, you can work with the following plan:

  1. Searching for information on the internet (day 1).
  2. Checking the materials found online and compiling them into a well-structured essay plan (day 2).
  3. Writing a rough draft for the classification essay that will consist of introduction (William Shakespeare in general), the Anglo-Saxon and Latin elements of William Shakespeare’s English, the Monosyllabic Vocabulary, and the conclusion (day 3).
  4. Editing & proofreading (day 4).

Of course, this plans works only if you do not postpone the project and start working as soon as possible.
In general, the process of outlining a classification essay in Shakespeare studies is almost the same as the one in the other academic essays that you write for university. If you look at the plan that we have just created, you will see that basically this work includes three main segments:

  • Introduction
  • Body
  • Conclusion

When you make an outline for a classification essay, make sure to provide simple examples that make sense and supporting ideas that add trustworthiness to your work. Do not forget that your introduction should also have a thesis statement at the end of the opening paragraph.

Write the Introduction

Your introduction is the first part of the classification essay. Begin it with the purpose of your work and its value. This is where your thesis statement will appear. Clearly mention the method that you used in order to classify your issues, events or people and list the categories that you’re going to discuss in the body.

Body Paragraphs

As a rule, the author of the classification essay chooses the number of paragraphs to include into the body. For the avoidance of any problems, we recommend you use a typical five-paragraph essay pattern for your classification essay about Shakespeare.

Check again – how many categories does your essay include? 3, 4, 5 or maybe even more? That is how many paragraphs you will have to include into your body. While you will have to format your classification essay according to the requirements of your professor, the body of your essay should be formatted according to the number of categories that it includes. In case with Shakespeare studies, you may be tempted to include many categories, but we don’t recommend you to do that because thus, your classification will look blurred. In case with the classification essay, the author has to always be on-point and precise.

At the beginning of every paragraph, you will have to write down the topic sentence that will set the tone of the paragraph and identify your category. After your topic sentence, make sure to provide more information about the category and its details.

Make sure that your paragraphs are logically connected. Ensure that they flow in the way that your readers see how one category leads to the other. For instance, some authors prefer to begin with the broadest issues and go on with less common things. Or they start with the most problematic categories and proceed to the ones that are less challenging. Of course, you can choose any order that you like. The most important thing is to make sure that your paragraphs flow logically.

Writing a Conclusion

In the final part of your classification essay, you will have to summarize the results of your work in Shakespeare studies. We recommend you to provide a short summary of every classification category that you described in your body section. Let your readers know if any of your categories or your classification in general contribute to the field of Shakespeare study or English literature in general. Keep in mind that it is forbidden to repeat any part of your classification essay word by word. In case you want to repeat something that you have already said, you can do that by through paraphrasing only. What is more, your conclusion should include your thesis statement. However, you have to paraphrase it as well.

Revise Your Text

Even though the work was really difficult, but you made it. Now it is time to read your paper in order to remove all mistakes and find out if you met the challenge successfully. At this point, your essay is done. However, if you skip the revision, you risk that your professor will see a classification essay full of mistakes and inconsistence. In order to avoid this kind of situations, we recommend you to do something like this:

  • Begin with a general view. Take your classification essay and read it from the beginning to the end. Does it sound logical or perhaps you see some gaps that should be filled with relevant information? In this case, do more research to find proper information to add to your paper.
  • Is your message clear? If your essay includes complex terms or unnecessary information that has nothing to do with William Shakespeare or literature in general, you will have to get rid of these elements.
  • It is important to make sure that your classification categories do not overlap in your paper. If you see that it is possible to incorporate this or that category into another one, ensure to change it. For example, separating Petruchio and Katherine (‘The Taming of the Shrew’), Benedick and Beatrice (‘Much Ado About Nothing’), Antony and Cleopatra (‘Antony and Cleopatra’), Romeo and Juliet (‘Romeo and Juliet’), Orsino and Viola (‘Twelfth Night’) and Shakespeare’s literature couples is wrong for the reason that the first five categories can be easily incorporated into the sixth one. If you realize that some aspects belong to more than one category, you will have to recheck your classification essay again.
  • To end with it, proofread your classification essay. Check your text to find out any grammar, style or punctuations errors.
  • Ask your friends or family members for help if they are good at writing. Or, perhaps, you know some competent person who knows a lot about William Shakespeare or his woks? That’s wonderful!

Approach this person and ask him or her to have a look at your writing. They will read and evaluate your paper, as well as highlight the mistakes and facts that you have missed.

A lot of students tend to experience problems with a classification essay in Shakespeare studies. Fortunately, this guide will help you to not only understand what kind of assignment it is, but also produce the paper that will meet requirements of your university professor.

We really hope that you have enjoyed reading our writing guide and have found information that will help you to create a high quality essay about the most prominent representative of English literature – William Shakespeare. After all, classics is eternal!

Upgrade your essays with these FREE writing tools!
Get started now