Essay Writing Tips: Using Quotes

In your essay it may be necessary to use quotes. In such a case it is imperative that the understanding of how to properly use quotes within an essay be known. Continue writing to learn more about using quote in your essay writing.

Adding Value to your Essay

Quotes can really add substance and value to your essay when they are used properly. But, you must understand if a quote is a good or a bad addition to what you are writing. Not all quotes are helpful, so keep this in mind. Also keep in mind these quotes should be used sparingly.

When selecting a quote to use in your essay, ensure that it is able to do one of the following things:

  • Impacts the reader during an opening statement
  • Builds credibility to your essay
  • Makes someone think, laugh or otherwise ponder something
  • Makes the essay more interesting

The more qualifications that your quote meets the better value it adds to your essay.

Do not Allow the Quote to do this

Keep in mind that the quote should add value to the essay but it should not be overpowering and take all of the focus away from what you are saying and the points that you want to get across to the reader. Make sure that the chosen quotations do not hit harder than your words!

It is reasonable to use only one or two quotations per essay, but this can vary based upon the word count of the paper. Do remember to keep them at a minimal and focus more on what you are writing than what others have said.

Make sure that the quote is something that your readers will understand, and of course you want it to be in relation to the material that you have written in the paper. Confusing quotes leave the reader wondering what it is they are missing.

How to Use your Quotes

In most cases you will begin a quotation with asterisk marks “ and end it the same way. Many students choose to also place the quote in Italic lettering but this is not acceptable for each case.

The most important thing to remember when using the quotes is that the reader know that you did not say it and that someone else is. Otherwise you could be accused of plagiarism, or stealing someone else’s work, and this is not something that you want to happen.