Can an Essay Be One Paragraph? How To Write a One Paragraph Essay

You may have written a lot of essays in your academic journey. So you might have come across a descriptive, an expository, a narrative, or a persuasive essay.

Some people may not have written an essay their entire life and don’t know the writing procedures. So, whether you are an experienced essay writer or a newbie, you might be wondering; Can an essay be one paragraph?

Often, a standard essay is considered to have three or five paragraphs. However, the number of paragraphs in an essay would be influenced by the author’s objectives, instructions, word count, etc.

To answer the question above, kindly read through this article.

Can an Essay Be One Paragraph?

It is possible to have a one-paragraph essay, especially for question and answer essays. 

A one-paragraphed essay comprises all the three major components of an essay, an introduction, a body, and a conclusion.

Such an essay would have a topic sentence, a short introduction of 1-3 sentences, followed by some additional lines stating your main points and the conclusion.

The problem with such kind of an essay is it may lack sufficient quality content. The supporting sentences that substantiate the chief points in a one-paragraphed essay contain minimal information.

Also see: How to make a paper longer

Can a Short Essay Be One Paragraph?

A short essay can be one paragraph. 100-300 is the number of words a short essay would often consist of.

A one-paragraph short essay comprises three elements: a topic sentence to draft the chief concept, a body comprising of the supporting sentences, and a concluding statement.

You can find all the three components written in one paragraph if the writing is a short essay. Such essays cover easy topics, those which require few details to explain fully.

Can I Write One Paragraph for an Essay?

You could write one paragraph for an essay especially when the essay aims at giving a short answer. 

Many writers could argue that one-paragraph writing is a memo or simply a brief answer. However, this is not the case.

You can write a complete essay with an introduction, a body, and a conclusion that is only one paragraph long.

In a single paragraph essay, you exclude the comprehensive details and only write briefly on the main statements. Keep your main points as few as possible to avoid your essay being too long and wordy.

When writing a one-paragraph essay, make sure that your details are as concrete as they would be in a standard complete essay. Leave no room for a reader getting dissatisfied due to shallow content.

How Long is a One Paragraph Essay?

A single-paragraph essay is often comprised of 10-14 sentences. This length depends on the number of concrete details the author has included in the essay.

For example, a one-paragraph sentence would have one line for the topic sentence, nine sentences for three main points and their commentaries, and two sentences for the concluding statement.

The length of such an essay is twelve sentences and is very standard.

Also see: Can I survive college if I am bad at writing essays? 

Can a Paragraph Be 500 Words?

A standard paragraph cannot be 500 words. A 500 words paragraph is estimated to be a full page with too much content for a single paragraph.

A good paragraph represents a single thought and the thought’s eloquent progression, explained by closely associated sentences. The universally used paragraph form comprises a topic, a body, token sentences, and a wrap.

Even if a paragraph elaborates a complex point or thought, less than 300 words should be enough. A 500-word paragraph would be too wordy and may fail to observe the objectives of the paragraph.

A well-written paragraph is often considered less than 200 words long, depending on the intensity of the idea being explained. Such a paragraph is expected to be no more than 15 sentences.

How Long is a Short Paragraph?

A paragraph that is made up of a single word can be said to be a short paragraph. A paragraph that consists of a sentence, two, three, four, five, or six sentences may also be considered short.

There is no definite length for a paragraph to be considered short. The length depends on the objectives and the topic that the paragraph is covering.

Many writers, however, consider a paragraph that is less than 150 words to be short. Such a paragraph would contain up to eight sentences.

How Do You Write a One Paragraph Essay?

One-paragraph essays are rare to find but indeed not unavoidable. Writing such an essay is not a walk in the park. As a writer, one paragraph might seem inadequate to present a compelling essay.

Below are some valuable tips to help you write a one-paragraph essay;

  • Utilize your words

To maintain the structure of the essay, which is supposed to be short, use few words without additional illustrations. Explain the main thoughts and points with words that are direct to the point.

  • Use a one-paragraph paper design

A one-paragraph paper design ensures that the readers of your essay can conveniently follow your line of thoughts. A design paper also ensures that your essay is not too long or too short.

  • Select a suitable topic

One-paragraph essays should present topics that are simple to cover. Select a topic whose coverage can comfortably fit in a one-paragraph essay.

  • Conduct a necessity test

Apply this test when your essay is giving you trouble condensing to the correct length. Drop some sentences one by one to see if they affect the weight of your content.

Replace those that affect the strength of the essay.

  • Use the correct writing outline

A one-paragraph essay’s format consists of four main components. These components are a thesis sentence, concrete details, their commentaries, and the concluding sentence.

  • Write a fitting summary

Make sure your concluding statement is meaningful. Wrap up your essay by convincing your reader about the exactness of the explanations in your essay.

Also see: Will My Instructor Tell If I Hired An Online Essay Writer?

Wrapping up

It is pretty clear the length of your essay is a vital aspect to take note of. You want to leave the readers of your essay satisfied. You do so by composing an essay that is neither too short nor too long. So, can an essay be one paragraph?

Yes, it can but only for topics that do not need too much content and explanations eg. a question-answer essay


  1. Basic Essay and Paragraph Format
  2. Components of a Good Essay