How to Write a DBQ Essay

Updated: May 3, 2023

How to Write a Good DBQ Essay

When entering a university, business school, or other educational institution, it is more and more often required to write the so-called introductory DBQ essay. Also, this type of written student work may be required while studying at the university.

A DBQ essay is a relatively small scholarly paper in which the applicant must demonstrate himself in the best possible way, his abilities, the ability to competently express his thoughts and information. How do you write an introductory essay so that it will be liked by the commission or the teacher? Find out below in this article!

What is a DBQ Essay

DBQ is a type of essay question, which means you’ll have to write multiple paragraphs in response. Each essay usually contains five to seven documents for analysis. Documents can be primary or secondary, including maps, newspapers, letters, etc.

The most essential thing in a written work like DBQ Essay is familiarity with the terms and conditions. Foremost, carefully study the rules for essays. Often, educational institutions describe in detail the topics of the essay, the questions that the applicant must open, and provide requirements for the structure and design of the essay.

If there is no such information, read what a DBQ essay is, the criteria for evaluating it, familiarize yourself with the typical structure of an essay, etc. Do not forget that all documents must be of high quality and that they are freely open to each member of the commission or teacher.

During the next step, try to collect enough information about the educational institution itself, firstly, by studying its website. Find out what is the ideology of the educational institution, what it focuses on (sports activities, building relationships with other organizations, social work, participation in competitive activities, etc.).

DBQ Essay Outline

After you are given the task to write DBQ Essay, you will have to fully familiarize yourself with the information.

We recommend that you always make an outline before each essay in order to navigate the information and correctly distribute, text, time, strength. Organize your essay to avoid trivial writing mistakes and to make it easier for you to work with the information.

List in the outline what you will include in the introduction, what your main statement will be, and what arguments you will present to prove your statement. How do you do it effectively? There is no need to describe the details in the plan, but it is enough to make the necessary notes. With a good plan, you can write a high-quality essay, gradually writing out point by point of this plan.

DBQ Essay Introduction

As you begin your introduction, come up with something that will immediately interest your readers. Your task is not to let go of the reader’s attention so that he does not start to get bored and turn over the pages. In the introductory part, you will need to write a compelling thesis statement in which you can prove that you are making a serious argument or answering the question posed.

DBQ Essay Body

Your originality in writing a DBQ essay body should manifest itself not only in your own formulation of phrases and evidence but also in how to correctly link them with historical facts from sources. We also recommend not to forget about the main tasks of the essay. Discuss the broader historical context to give the argument more weight. What is the supporting evidence that was not included in the sources? Link the argument to a different historical event, a different discipline, a different topic or approach.

In no case, when writing your introductory essay, do not use materials from last year’s essays or works downloaded from the Internet.

Today is not the time when a student can easily pass off someone else’s work as his own and go unpunished. The teacher can easily detect the fact of cheating using special programs.

Moreover, you should not use individual techniques, ideas, phrases of other authors. By checking a huge number of works annually, the members of the commission easily recognize the borrowing. They are important not so much literacy or the ability to express thoughts beautifully, as your responsibility, the ability to cope with a difficult task and show originality.

DBQ Essay Conclusion

In the end, you have to take stock and competently finish writing a DBQ Essay. To make their work easier, applicants or students often take cliché phrases and literally over saturate their work with them. We do not advise you to do this, especially when writing an introductory essay. The fewer formulaic phrases in your work, the higher the chance of being noticed.

How to Start a DBQ Essay

The first challenge is getting started and finding a sample. If your department has manuals for writing student papers, then you can certainly find examples of title pages in them. If they are absent, you can always rely on standard requirements when preparing the title page.

You may also experience difficulties if you do not know the exact name of your university, department, surname, degree, and title of the teacher. This information must be collected in advance, otherwise, you simply will not be able to draw up the title page at the right time. Finally, typing the title page on a computer itself requires specific skills. If they are absent, ask your friends for help.

How to Structure a DBQ Essay

The most important factor is your ability to analyze sources and draw conclusions. Of course, you need to correctly structure all the information received. The following elements can cause particular difficulty in the design of an essay:

  1. Cover page;
  2. Introduction;
  3. Essay main body;
  4. Conclusion;
  5. Bibliography;
  6. Links for further reading.

To correctly format the text of the essay, you need to maintain a three-part structure. Write an introduction, body, and conclusion. The parts themselves in the letter are not highlighted as it is done in the abstract or term paper, but must be logically consistent. At the same time, the introduction should present the main thesis, the central part provides arguments in support of the thesis, and in conclusion, conclusions are drawn.

The list of references should be present in the essay if references to sources are used in the text. These can be magazines, newspapers, articles, etc. Usually, teachers emphasize that the presence of references and bibliography in an essay is mandatory. The list of references is drawn up on a separate page after the essay’s text and includes all the sources mentioned in the text.

The design of citations and links in an essay requires an understanding of the types and rules of citation, as well as the rules for formatting links. Remember to review the basic design rules before writing your essay. As you can see, when writing a DBQ  essay, there are many subtleties that you need to know. However, if you have previously written essays or term papers, then you may notice a significant similarity in the design of all student papers.

How to End a DBQ Essay

Then you should effectively complete the essay with any of the types of conclusions. Be responsible and considerate as you graduate from DBQ Essay. The trouble with many future or current students is that they do not pay enough attention to a finished essay.

At the same time, do not forget that all other things being equal, an essay can solve the issue of your enrollment, so treat it with full responsibility.

This means that DBQ Essay must be carefully re-read several times, insignificant phrases for this work must be removed, weak fragments must be strengthened and carefully checked for errors.

It will not hurt to show the work to knowledgeable people, for example, a familiar teacher or someone from your older acquaintances. We recommend that you follow the guidelines above and get a fair amount of experience writing a DBQ Essay. The more essays you write on various topics before starting your introductory essay, the better you will get this type of work.


When writing a DBQ Essay, focus on the right qualities for admission. Try to imagine what is expected of a person applying for your specialty. What qualities, moral values, abilities should he have? This does not mean that you will attribute to yourself the qualities that you do not have, but understanding the expectations of the institution will help you focus on the desired properties.

For example, if you are going to study journalism, the commission will be interested in your communication skills, victories in literary competitions, the presence of published works will be a great advantage. Do not forget that when writing a DBQ Essay, you need to learn how to present the information correctly. If you find it difficult to write an essay independently, our service specialists can help you.

We are also always happy to help you with your university admission. On our service, you can meet writers of various specialties who will quickly, efficiently, and competently complete essays for a reasonable price. Hurry up to make an order right now and save 15% off your DBQ essay written by experienced, smart essay writers!

George Lynch
George Lynch
Literature, Psychology, Religion
Experience: 3+ years
I’ve been enjoying academic writing since day one in college. Today, having a full-time job, I’m still looking forward to writing essays and research papers online for others.
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