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Diagnostic Essay: Writing Guide + Examples

Diagnostic Essay_ Writing Guide + Examples
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When students are asked to write a diagnostic essay, they are often intimidated because most do not know how this type of paper differs from others. A diagnostic report doesn't work like a typical one. Its purpose is to test or diagnose skill sets that college students should possess. Typically conducted by college professors at the start of an academic year, it helps faculty assess an existing knowledge of a particular student or class audience.

Do you still have any questions? Stay tuned and find out all nuances of writing and designing your diagnostic essay. Our team of professional writers will not only help you understand different rules and requirements, but provide some practical examples for you. Request ‘write my essay for me’ if you require personalized samples.

What Is a Diagnostic Essay: Main Definition

Most diagnostic essay assignments advance a specific question or topic that students need to answer in writing. Through the diagnostic essay, a professor can assess skills and determine the level of knowledge of each student in a specific course.

Please note that unlike some other types of writing, here, you do not need to tell readers what books you have read or lead examples by referring to sources. The purpose of this paper is to highlight your strengths, weaknesses, and creativity.

We invite you to learn more about some structural features of a diagnostic essay and some secrets of writing it. Read on for some helpful information from a college essay service.

How to Write a Diagnostic Essay: Step-by-Step Guide

After we have become familiar with the diagnostic paper definition, the question arises, "how to write a diagnostic essay?" In this blog post, we will look at the structure of a written document and tell you what paragraphs your text should consist of. Please read our step-by-step instructions below carefully.

Step 1. Create Good Thesis Statement for Your Diagnostic Essay

It would help if you started writing your text with the thesis statement for a diagnostic essay. The well-formed thesis should reflect your thoughts on the chosen topic. In other words, after reading the view, readers should understand an idea of written work and your attitude to an issue of your paper. Think in advance what arguments can be made in favor of your thesis statement. In the first part of the sentence, clearly describe your position. Start your second part with the words "because" and back up your thoughts with compelling arguments. Read about how to state arguments in the following paragraphs.

Step 2. Write a Good Outline for A Diagnostic Essay

To structure the flow of thoughts in your head, write a diagnostic essay outline. Writing an outline will help you keep an order and not get confused during the writing process. Besides, it will help you save time and avoid additional editing or rewriting problems. First, write down important thoughts and ideas on a piece of paper, and then arrange them in a logical or chronological order. Follow “one paragraph - one thought” rule. It will keep your text readable and correct.

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Step 3. Craft an Introduction for a Diagnostic Essay

How to start a diagnostic essay? It is not difficult! Start your paper with a loud statement or phrase that will interest your readers. According to generally accepted rules, the introductory part of an essay includes a thesis and several reasoned sentences. Explain your attitude to the subject of discussion. Use significant phrases, discuss how your topic is helpful to society. Please note that an introductory part of your paper should take up from 10 to 25% of an entire text.

Step 4. Creating Body Paragraphs for Diagnostic Essay

Standard text should include three body paragraphs for diagnostic essays. However, this criterion may differ due to some requirements of your class. Build one argument in each of these paragraphs. Use facts and quotes, and give examples. Do not break the structure of the central text part so as not to get lost in thought. 

Start each body paragraph with an argument and a topic sentence. It will help readers immediately understand what will be discussed. End your body paragraph of an essay with general phrases that will soften the transition between paragraphs and arguments.

Step 5. Write Conclusion Paragraph for Diagnostic Essay

In a diagnostic essay conclusion, you need to summarize all your thoughts. You need to repeat your thesis that you have stated in an introductory part. In conclusion essay, you need to speak without hesitation. Try not to use some words like "possibly," "most likely," "imagine." Repeat your most potent argument and tell readers that you have proven your point. Conclusion is one general summary of your writing. This part of your paper should not be more than 3-7 sentences.

Step 6. Proofreading and Editing Your Diagnostic Essay

Are you finished writing a diagnostic essay? It's time to start checking! Do not ignore this point because editing will help you avoid gross and minor mistakes in your text. Proofreading is always important since it will allow you to make an overview and ensure that there are not any:

  • Grammatical error, capitalization error, numbering error
  • Spelling error
  • Inconsistency in the format
  • Misplaced words, Sentence structure error
  • Punctuation mistakes.

Reread your paper out loud. It will help you to look at your text differently. First, ask the right questions about the topic. Finally, correct any punctuation or grammatical errors.

Diagnostic Essay Format: Which One to Use

How to identify diagnostic essay format? The three most popular styles for your paper are MLA format, APA, and Chicago. The text will differ depending on its purpose. For example, college students use APA citations more often, and Chicago style is widespread in the academic literature that focuses on a source of an origin.

Check out our comparison table below. It will help you distinguish between styles and understand some main requirements:





Times New Roman, 12 points

Times New Roman, 12 points

Times New Roman, 12 points






1-inch margins on top, bottom, left, and right

1 inch all round

Use 1-inch margins from the right side

Running Head

The last name and page number should be placed on each page of an essay

A shortened version of your title in upper-left corner and a page number in the upper right corner of each page

Last name, page number in title of each page at at the top right corner

Diagnostic Essay Example

With diagnostic essay examples, you can clearly understand different features of this type of writing work. The diagnostic essay is similar to others, but it is even easier to write. It is due to the purpose of the composition itself. Your goal is not critical analysis. Just show your knowledge level in some particular niche.

Our team of professional writers presents you with a sample diagnostic essay. Become familiar with structural features and key phrases that you can use in your document.

Diagnostic Essay Example
Paper type:
Essay (Any Type)
2.04 MB

Diagnostic Essay: Key Takeaways

An idea of ​​a diagnostic essay is to determine the knowledge level of a particular student or group of students. Most often, such a diagnosis is carried out at the beginning of the course. It helps the professor to identify students' strengths and weaknesses and their creativity.

Based on your results, a training plan will be built for a certain period. Thus, all the information that teachers submit will correspond to students' knowledge level. And also will be easily assimilated by them.

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Frequently Asked Questions About Diagnostic Essay

1. How long should a diagnostic essay be?

Diagnostic essay length may vary depending on your class requirements. If you don't know what your paper should be, then keep it between 300 and 325 words.

2. What is the purpose of a diagnostic essay?

The diagnostic essay purpose is to determine the knowledge level of each student. And it makes it more likely to find students who have higher skills. Diagnostic essays also help teachers identify students’ gaps and figure out what they should work on more.

3. What is a personal diagnostic essay?

A diagnostic essay is exactly what it means: this assignment is used to diagnose your writing skills or aptitude in a particular class or subject. Therefore, a diagnostic essay about yourself serves as an individual writing piece that assesses your mastery.

4. What is the main difference between a diagnostic essay and a descriptive essay?

Descriptive essay is a genre that asks students to describe something. It can be anything – an object, person, place, experience, emotion, situation, etc.  A diagnostic essay definition: this essay is used to diagnose your writing skills or aptitude in a specific class or subject. 

Article posted on:Nov 25, 2022
Article updated on:Apr 7, 2024


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