How to Write a Compare-and-Contrast Essay

Matt Ellis

A compare-and-contrast essay is a style of essay that points out the similarities and differences between two or more subjects. It’s ideal for showing what separates and unites related things or concepts, particularly if the subjects are often confused for each other or unjustly lumped together. 

Compare-and-contrast essays have a lot in common with other essay types, but differ in many ways, too—and that’s the heart of comparing and contrasting! By seeing the differences and similarities, the reader better understands each of the subjects by using the other subject as a frame of reference. 

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In this guide, we explain how to write a compare-and-contrast essay, including some advanced tips and examples. We discuss how to structure your essay and how to frame your thesis , but first, let’s take a broader look at why comparison essays are so useful. 

Purpose of a compare-and-contrast essay

Let’s say you want to write an essay about how great renewable resources are, but you spend a lot of your time explaining how fossil fuels work. To truly understand why renewable resources are so amazing, your reader needs a little background on their alternative, fossil fuels—but the essay’s attention is divided so equally that it’s like there are two topics. 

That’s when compare-and-contrast essays function at their best. If two topics relate to each other or define each other, you can better explain them both by showcasing their similarities and differences. That goes double for topics that are often conflated or confused for each other; it helps readers when someone points out exactly what’s the same about them and what’s different. 

Unlike argumentative essays or persuasive essays , compare-and-contrast essays deal with multiple topics instead of focusing on one. The downside is that they don’t describe the individual subjects as much as single-topic essays. They’re also a common assignment for college essays since they show the instructor how well you grasp both subjects. 

How to write a compare-and-contrast essay 

When writing a compare-and-contrast essay, it helps to figure out two things: what your thesis is (the subject matter) and how you plan to structure it. 

First things first: You need to choose which subjects you’re comparing. This isn’t always easy, especially if you have to pick the subjects on your own. 

For inspiration, here are some compare-and-contrast essay example topics:

  • fossil fuels and renewable resources
  • Coca-Cola and Pepsi 
  • Mona Lisa and The Girl with a Pearl Earring
  • ’80s punk rock music and ’90s grunge music
  • Dorothea Lange and Diane Arbus
  • London in the 1600s and London now
  • the LGBTQIA+ community before and after Stonewall
  • Roman Empire and Greek Empire
  • loop quantum gravity and string theory
  • evolution and creationism
  • liberalism and conservatism
  • fascism and despotism

Once you’ve settled on your subjects, you can begin generating ideas. It helps to first list all the similarities and differences between your subjects . When you see them all written down, you can start formulating connections and decide what structure to use for your compare-and-contrast essay. 

If you’re stuck, try making a Venn diagram . This is a visual aid that helps you understand which characteristics your subjects share, and which ones are exclusive. 

Looking at your lists, you can then decide on the thesis. To do so, ask yourself a few questions: What are you trying to show in your compare-and-contrast essay? What do you want your reader to take away? For example, do you want to emphasize that Dorothea Lange’s work influenced Diane Arbus, or that they are two very distinct artists? 


Compare-and-contrast essays follow our own recommended essay structure . While the linked guide goes into more detail, in a nutshell, your compare-and-contrast essay should follow a simple format of beginning, middle, and end: 

  • Introduction: where you explain your thesis or what your essay will discuss
  • Body: where you actually list the similarities and differences of your subjects; the largest section
  • Conclusion: where you wrap up and summarize your points

The introduction, usually one or two paragraphs, should include a thesis statement to show the reader what to expect for the rest of your essay. You can write your introduction following the same guidelines as other essay types, though be sure to mention all your subjects. Likewise, you can write an essay conclusion with the standard rules and best practices. 

It’s the body where compare-and-contrast essays get tricky. Do you write about both subjects at the same time, or switch back and forth? Let’s talk deeper on this below. 

How to structure a compare-and-contrast essay

The hardest part of structuring a compare-and-contrast essay is knowing when to talk about which subject. Essentially, you have three options: 

  • block method (subject by subject): You discuss one subject in full and then move on to the next subject.
  • alternating method (point by point): You discuss one subject’s take on a certain aspect and then another subject’s take immediately afterward, followed by a new aspect.
  • similarities and differences: You discuss all the similarities between your subjects and then all the differences, or vice versa (differences first and then similarities).

No matter which option you choose, you have to pay particular attention to topic sentences . Paragraphs in compare-and-contrast essays can get complicated, so it’s crucial to have a good topic or introduction sentence for each paragraph to make the flow of ideas clear. 

Block method (subject by subject)

The block method is usually divided into paragraphs: a paragraph about one subject and then a new paragraph about another subject. Take the compare-and-contrast essay example When Nothing Lies Beyond the Mask: Comparing Moby Dick and The Raven . In the first paragraph after the introduction, the author talks only about Ahab from Moby Dick , but in the next paragraph talks only about the narrator from The Raven . Each subject gets its own paragraph. 

Using the block method, you can go back and forth like this for pages, covering as many topics as you need. This approach is best for giving each subject its own attention but tends to slightly weaken the connection between the two. 

Alternating method (point by point)

As another option, you can break paragraphs up by a specific topic and issue, and in each paragraph discuss both or all subjects. Let’s look at another compare-and-contrast essay example, The Reality of Science Fiction: Comparing Clarke to Cruise . Here, both subjects are discussed in the same paragraph, one right after another. 

This approach works best when you want to emphasize the connection between your subjects, or lack thereof. In our example above, the author wishes to highlight just how different the aliens of Arthur Clarke are from those of other authors, particularly H. G. Wells. To emphasize this, the essay author juxtaposes the two points right next to each other in the same paragraph. 

Similarities and differences

The third option is quite similar to the alternating approach, with each subject being discussed side by side in the same paragraph. However, the paragraphs aren’t divided by different topics, but instead by what the subjects have in common and what they don’t. 

Take a look at the compare-and-contrast essay example Government by the People, for the People has Perished from the Earth , which compares the dystopias of George Orwell’s 1984 and Yevgeny Zamyatin’s We . The first paragraph after the introduction discusses what the governments in the two books have in common, but the next paragraph explains how they differ. 

This method works best if you want to focus on a particular similarity or difference between your subjects, or if you want to build up to a powerful conclusion or reveal at the end. 

The writing process for compare-and-contrast essays

Want to know how to write a compare-and-contrast essay step by step? The writing process is the same as all essay writing, although adapted specifically for drawing comparisons:

1   Brainstorming — As mentioned above, brainstorming should involve listing all the similarities and difficulties; creating a Venn diagram is a useful method. 

2   Preparation — Looking at your brainstorming lists, decide which structuring method would best get your point across: block, alternating, or similarities/differences. 

3   Drafting — Here you write your rough draft ; this is the longest and toughest phase. 

4   Revising — Does the structure you’ve chosen work? With the first draft finished, you can more easily identify any areas that need to be fixed, revised, or rewritten from scratch. 

5   Proofreading — Finally, you want to make sure you corrected all the spelling and grammatical mistakes in your draft. With a writing assistant like Grammarly, this phase is a breeze. 

If you want to learn more about this process, read our comprehensive guide on essay writing , which better explains the details. 

Tips for writing compare-and-contrast essays 

Beyond knowing the full process for crafting a compare-and-contrast essay, it helps to learn a few tips to ensure it shines.

Choose topics that are related 

In other words, choose topics that have plenty in common, otherwise, your essay will be all contrasting and no comparing. Typically, subjects in compare-and-contrast essays share a strong connection, such as two people in the same profession or two products in the same category. 

Without this unifying thread, the reader is left wondering, “What’s the point of comparing these two things?” Not only will it confound your audience, but you’ll also struggle more to come up with points when writing. Solve these problems before they start by smartly choosing your subjects at the beginning. 

Write for clarity

Essays with only one subject can be confusing enough—imagine how complicated it gets with two or more subjects. One of the biggest obstacles with compare-and-contrast essays is communicating clearly so your reader knows which points relate to which subject, and what conclusion the entire essay is building toward. 

But when you’re in the heat of a writing session, it can be difficult—and distracting—to stop and evaluate your work for clarity. Luckily, Grammarly offers suggestions to rewrite entire sentences in order to improve the clarity of your writing.

If the writing in your compare-and-contrast essay starts getting messy, Grammarly’s writing suggestions recommend alternative phrasings to clear things up. Just one click and your writing gets the professional editor treatment. Try Grammarly now and see how your writing improves. 

features of good topic for compare and contrast essay

features of good topic for compare and contrast essay

Compare and Contrast Essay: Full Writing Guide and 150+ Topics

features of good topic for compare and contrast essay

Compare and contrast essays are academic papers in which a student analyses two or more subjects with each other. To compare means to explore similarities between subjects, while to contrast means to look at their differences. Both subjects of the comparison are usually in the same category, although they have their differences. For example, it can be two movies, two universities, two cars etc.

Good compare and contrast papers from college essay writer focus on a central point, explaining the importance and implications of this analysis. A compare and contrast essay thesis must make a meaningful comparison. Find the central theme of your essay and do some brainstorming for your thesis.

This type of essay is very common among college and university students. Professors challenge their students to use their analytical and comparative skills and pay close attention to the subjects of their comparisons. This type of essay exercises observance and analysis, helps to establish a frame of reference, and makes meaningful arguments about a subject. Let's get deeper on how to write a compare and contrast essay with our research writing services .

How to Start a Compare and Contrast Essay: Brainstorm Similarities and Differences

Now that you know what is compare and contrast essay and are set with your topic, the first thing you should do is grab a piece of paper and make a list with two columns: similarities and differences. Jot down key things first, the most striking ones. Then try to look at the subjects from a different angle, incorporating your imagination.

If you are more of a visual learner, creating a Venn diagram might be a good idea. In order to create it, draw two circles that overlap. In the section where it overlaps, note similarities. Differences should be written in the part of the circle that does not overlap.

Let’s look at a simple example of compare and contrast essay. Let one of the subjects be oranges, and the other one be apples. Oranges have thick peel, originally from India, and are tropical fruit. These characteristics pertain only to oranges and should be in the part of the circle that does not overlap. For the same section on apples, we put thin peel, originated in Turkey or Kazakhstan, and moderate to subtropical. In the section that overlaps, let’s say that they are both fruit, can be juiced, and grow on trees. This simple, yet good example illustrates how the same concept can be applied to many other complicated topics with additional points of comparison and contrast.

Example of compare and contrast

This format of visual aid helps to organize similarities and differences and make them easier to perceive. Your diagram will give you a clear idea of the things you can write about.

Another good idea for brainstorming in preparation for your comparison contrast essay is to create a list with 2 columns, one for each subject, and compare the same characteristics for each of them simultaneously. This compare and contrast format will make writing your comparison contrast paper argument a breeze, as you will have your ideas ready and organized.

One mistake you should avoid is simply listing all of the differences or similarities for each subject. Sometimes students get too caught up in looking for similarities and differences that their compare and contrast essays end up sounding like grocery lists. Your essay should be based on analyzing the similarities and differences, analyzing your conclusions about the two subjects, and finding connections between them—while following a specific format.

Compare and Contrast Essay Structure and Outline

So, how do you structure this compare and contrast paper? Well, since compare and contrast essay examples rely heavily on factual analysis, there are two outline methods that can help you organize your facts. You can use the block method, or point-by-point method, to write a compare and contrast essay outline.

While using the block structure of a compare and contrast essay, all the information is presented for the first subject, and its characteristics and specific details are explained. This concludes one block. The second block takes the same approach as the first for the second subject.

The point-by-point structure lists each similarity and difference simultaneously—making notes of both subjects. For example, you can list a characteristic specific to one subject, followed by its similarity or difference to the other subject.

Both formats have their pros and cons. The block method is clearly easier for a compare and contrast essay writer, as you simply point out all of the information about the two subjects, and basically leave it to the reader to do the comparison. The point-by-point format requires you to analyze the points yourself while making similarities and differences more explicit to the reader for them to be easier to understand. Here is a detailed structure of each type presented below.

Point-by-Point Method

  • Introduce the topic;
  • Specify your theme;
  • Present your thesis - cover all areas of the essay in one sentence.
Example thesis: Cars and motorcycles make for excellent means of transportation, but a good choice depends on the person’s lifestyle, finances, and the city they live in.

Body Paragraph 1 - LIFESTYLE

  • Topic Sentence: Motorcycles impact the owner’s lifestyle less than cars.
  • Topic 1 - Motorcycles
  • ~ Argument: Motorcycles are smaller and more comfortable to store.
  • ~ Argument: Motorcycles are easy to learn and use.
  • Topic 2 - Cars
  • ~ Argument: Cars are a big deal - they are like a second home.
  • ~ Argument: It takes time to learn to become a good driver.

Body Paragraph 2 - FINANCES

  • Topic sentence: Cars are much more expensive than motorcycles
  • ~ Argument: You can buy a good motorcycle for under 300$.
  • ~ Argument: Fewer parts that are more accessible to fix.
  • ~ Argument: Parts and service are expensive if something breaks.
  • ~ Argument: Cars need more gas than motorcycles.

Body Paragraph 3 - CITY

  • Topic sentence: Cars are a better option for bigger cities with wider roads.
  • ~ Argument: Riding motorcycles in a big city is more dangerous than with cars.
  • ~ Argument: Motorcycles work great in a city like Rome, where all the streets are narrow.
  • ~ Argument: Big cities are easier and more comfortable to navigate by car.
  • ~ Argument: With a car, traveling outside of the city is much easier.
  • Sum up all you wrote in the article.

Block Method

  • Thesis — cover all areas of the essay in one sentence

Body Paragraph 1

  • Topic Sentence: Motorcycles are cheaper and easier to take care of than cars.
  • Aspect 1 - Lifestyle
  • Aspect 2 - Finances
  • ~ Argument: Fewer parts, easier to fix.
  • Aspect 3 - City
  • ~ Argument: Riding motorcycles in a big city is more dangerous than cars.

Body Paragraph 2

  • Topic sentence: Cars are more expensive but more comfortable for a big city and for travelling.
  • ~ Argument: Cars are a big deal—like a second home.
  • ~ Argument: With a car, traveling outside the city is much more comfortable.

Body Paragraph 3 ‍

Use the last paragraph to evaluate the comparisons and explain why they’re essential. Giving a lot of facts can be intense. To water it down, try to give the reader any real-life applications of these facts.

Depending on the structure selected, you can begin to create an outline for your essay. The typical comparison essay follows the format of having an introduction, three body paragraphs, and a conclusion — though, if you need to focus on each subject in more detailed ways, feel free to include an extra paragraph to cover all of the most important points.

To make your compare and contrast essay flow better, we recommend using special transition words and phrases. They will add variety and improve your paper overall.

For the section where you compare two subjects, you can include any of the following words: similarly, likewise, also, both, just like, similar to, the same as, alike, or to compare to. When contrasting two subjects, use: in contrast, in comparison, by comparison, on the other hand, while, whereas, but, to differ from, dissimilar to, or unlike.

Show Your Evidence

Arguments for any essay, including compare and contrast essays, need to be supported by sufficient evidence. Make good use of your personal experiences, books, scholarly articles, magazine and newspaper articles, movies, or anything that will make your argument sound credible. For example, in your essay, if you were to compare attending college on campus vs. distance-based learning, you could include your personal experiences of being a student, and how often students show up to class on a daily basis. You could also talk about your experience taking online classes, which makes your argument about online classes credible as well.

Helpful Final Tips

The biggest tip dissertation writing services can give you is to have the right attitude when writing a compare contrast essay, and actively engage the reader in the discussion. If you find it interesting, so will your reader! Here are some more compare and contrast essay tips that will help you to polish yours up:

types of writing

  • Compare and contrast essays need powerful transitions. Try learning more about writing transition sentences using the words we provided for you in the 'Compare and Contrast Structure and Outline' section.
  • Always clarify the concepts you introduce in your essay. Always explain lesser known information—don’t assume the reader must already know it.
  • Do not forget to proofread. Small mistakes, but in high quantities, can result in a low grade. Pay attention to your grammar and punctuation.
  • Have a friend or family member take a look at your essay; they may notice things you have missed.

Compare and Contrast Essay Examples

Now that you know everything there is to know about compare and contrast essays, let’s take a look at some compare and contrast examples to get you started on your paper or get a hand from our essay helper .

Different countries across the world have diverse cultural practices, and this has an effect on work relationships and development. Geert Hofstede came up with a structured way of comparing cultural dimensions of different countries. The theory explains the impacts of a community’s culture on the values of the community members, and the way these values relate to their behaviors. He gives scores as a way to help distinguish people from different nations using the following dimensions: long-term orientation, individualism, power distance, indulgence, necessity avoidance, and masculinity. Let us examine comparisons between two countries: the United Kingdom and China — based on Hofstede’s Six Dimensions of Culture.
Over the last two decades, the demand from consumers for organic foods has increased tremendously. In fact, the popularity of organic foods has exploded significantly with consumers, spending a considerably higher amount of money on them as compared to the amount spent on inorganic foods. The US market noted an increase in sales of more than 10% between 2014 and 2015 (Brown, n.p). The increase is in line with the views of many consumers that organic foods are safer, tastier, and healthier compared to the inorganic foods. Furthermore, considering the environmental effects of foods, organic foods present less risk of environmental pollution — compared to inorganic foods. By definition, organic foods are those that are grown without any artificial chemical treatment, or treatment by use of other substances that have been modified genetically, such as hormones and/or antibiotics (Brown, n.p).

Still feeling confused about the complexities of the compare and contrast essay? Feel free to contact our paper writing service to get a professional writing help.

Finding the Best Compare and Contrast Essay Topics For You

When choosing a topic for your comparison essay, remember that subjects cannot be drastically different, because there would be little to no points of comparison (similarities). The same goes for too many similarities, which will result in poor contrasts. For example, it is better to write about two composers, rather than a composer and a singer.

It is extremely important to choose a topic you are passionate about. You never want to come across something that seems dull and uninspiring for you. Here are some excellent ways to brainstorm for a topic from essay writer :

  • Find categories: Choose a type (like animals, films or economics), and compare subjects within that category – wild animals to farm animals, Star Wars to Star Trek, private companies to public companies, etc.
  • Random Surprising Fact: Dig for fun facts which could make great topics. Did you know that chickens can be traced back to dinosaurs?
  • Movie vs. Book: Most of the time, the book is better than the movie — unless it’s Blade Runner or Lord of the Rings. If you’re a pop culture lover, compare movies vs. books, video games, comics, etc.

Use our rewrite essay service when you need help from professionals.

How to Choose a Great Compare and Contrast Topic

College students should consider providing themselves with a chance to use all topic examples. With enough revision, an advantage is gained. As it will be possible to compare arguments and contrast their aspects. Also, discuss numerous situations to get closer to the conclusion.

For example:

  • Choose a topic from the field of your interests. Otherwise you risk failing your paper.
  • It is a good idea to choose a topic based upon the class subject or specialist subject. (Unless the requirements say otherwise.)
  • Analyze each argument carefully. Include every detail for each opposing idea. Without doing so, you can definitely lower grades.
  • Write a conclusion that summarizes both arguments. It should allow readers to find the answer they’re looking for.
  • It is up to you to determine which arguments are right and wrong in the final conclusion.
  • Before approaching the final conclusion, it’s important to discuss each argument equally. It is a bad idea to be biased, as it can also lower grades.

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150 Compare and Contrast Essay Topics to Consider

Choosing a topic can be a challenging task, but there are plenty of options to consider. In the following sections, we have compiled a list of 150 compare and contrast essay topics to help you get started. These topics cover a wide range of subjects, from education and technology to history and politics. Whether you are a high school student or a college student, you are sure to find a topic that interests you. So, read on to discover some great compare and contrast essay ideas.

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics For College Students

When attending a college, at any time your professor can assign you the task of writing this form of an essay. Consider these topics for college students from our team to get the grades you deserve.

  • Attending a College Course Vs. Distance-Based Learning.
  • Writing a Research Paper Vs. Writing a Creative Writing Paper. What are the differences and similarities?
  • The differences between a Bachelor’s Degree and a Master’s Degree.
  • The key aspects of the differences between the US and the UK education systems.
  • Completing assignments at a library compared with doing so at home. Which is the most efficient?
  • The similarities and differences in the behavior among married and unmarried couples.
  • The similarities and differences between the EU (European Union) and ASEAN (The Association of Southeast Asian Nations)?
  • The similarities and significant differences between American and Canadian English.
  • Writing an Internship Report Vs. Writing a Research Paper
  • The differences between US colleges and colleges in the EU?

Interesting Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

Some topics for the compare and contrast essay format can be boring. To keep up motivation, doing a research , have a look at these topics. Maybe they can serve you as research paper help .

  • Public Transport Vs. Driving A Car. Which is more efficient?
  • Mandarin Vs. Cantonese: What are the differences between these Chinese languages?
  • Sports Cars Vs. Luxurious Family Cars
  • Wireless Technology Vs. Wired Devices
  • Thai Food Vs. Filipino Cuisine
  • What is the difference and similarities between a register office marriage and a traditional marriage?
  • The 2000s Vs. The 2010s. What are the differences and what makes them similar?
  • Abu Dhabi Vs. Dubai. What are the main factors involved in the differences?
  • What are the differences between American and British culture?
  • What does the New York Metro do differently to the London Underground?

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for High School Students

When writing essays for high school, it is good to keep them informative. Have a look at these compare and contrast sample topics.

  • Highschool Life Vs. College Life
  • Paying College Fees Vs. Being Awarded a Scholarship
  • All Night Study Sessions Vs. Late Night Parties
  • Teenager Vs. Young Adult Relationships
  • Being in a Relationship Vs. Being Single
  • Male Vs. Female Behavior
  • The similarities and differences between a high school diploma and a college degree
  • The similarities and differences between Economics and Business Studies
  • The benefits of having a part-time job, instead of a freelance job, in college
  • High School Extra Curricular Activities Vs. Voluntarily Community Services

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for Science

At some point, every science student will be assigned this type of essay. To keep things at flow, have a look at best compare and contrast essay example topics on science:

  • Undiscovered Species on Earth Vs. Potential Life on Mars: What will we discover in the future?
  • The benefits of Gasoline Powered Cars Vs. Electric Powered Cars
  • The differences of the Milky Way Vs. Centaurus (Galaxies).
  • Earthquakes Vs. Hurricanes: What should be prepared for the most?
  • The differences between our moon and Mars’ moons.
  • SpaceX Vs. NASA. What is done differently within these organizations?
  • The differences and similarities between Stephen Hawking and Brian Cox’s theories on the cosmos. Do they agree or correspond with each other?
  • Pregnancy Vs. Motherhood
  • Jupiter Vs. Saturn
  • Greenhouse Farming Vs. Polytunnel Farming

Sports & Leisure Topics

Studying Physical Education? Or a gym fanatic? Have a look at our compare and contrast essay topics for sports and leisure.

  • The English Premier League Compared With The Bundesliga
  • Real Madrid Vs. Barcelona
  • Football Vs. Basketball
  • Walking Vs. Eating Outside with Your Partner
  • Jamaica Team Vs. United States Team: Main Factors and Differences
  • Formula One Vs. Off-Road Racing
  • Germany Team Vs. Brazil Team
  • Morning Exercise Vs. Evening Exercise.
  • Manning Team Vs. Brazil Team
  • Swimming Vs. Cycling

Topics About Culture

Culture can have several meanings. If you’re a Religious Studies or Culture student, take a look at these good compare and contrast essay topics about culture.

  • The fundamental similarities and differences between Pope Francis and Tawadros II of Alexandria
  • Canadian Vs. Australian Religion
  • The differences between Islamic and Christian Holidays
  • The cultural similarities and differences between the Native Aboriginals and Caucasian Australians
  • Native American Culture Vs. New England Culture
  • The cultural differences and similarities between Italians and Sicilians
  • In-depth: The origins of Buddhism and Hinduism
  • In-depth: The origins of Christianity and Islam
  • Greek Gods Vs. Hindu Gods
  • The Bible: Old Testament Vs. New Testament

Unique Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

What about writing an essay which is out of the ordinary? Consider following these topics to write a compare and contrast essay on, that are unique.

  • The reasons why some wealthy people pay extortionate amounts of money for gold-plated cell phones, rather than buying the normal phone.
  • The differences between Lipton Tea and Ahmad Tea
  • American Football Vs. British Football: What are their differences?
  • The differences and similarities between France and Britain
  • Fanta Vs. 7Up
  • Traditional Helicopters Vs. Lifesize Drones
  • The differences and similarities between Boston Dynamics and the fictional equivalent Skynet (From Terminator Movies).
  • Socialism Vs. Capitalism: Which is better?
  • Curved Screen TVs’ Vs. Regular Flat Screen TVs’: Are they really worth big bucks?
  • Is it better to wear black or white at funerals?

Good Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

Sometimes, it may be a requirement to take it back a notch. Especially if you’re new to these style of writing. Consider having a look at these good compare and contrast essay topics that are pretty easy to start off.

  • Is it a good idea to work on weekdays or weekends?
  • Black of White Coffee
  • Becoming a teacher or a doctor? Which career choice has more of an impact on society?
  • Air Travel Vs. Sea Travel: Which is better?
  • Rail Travel Vs. Road Travel: Which is more convenient?
  • What makes Europe far greater than Africa? In terms of financial growth, regulations, public funds, policies etc…
  • Eating fruit for breakfast Vs. cereals
  • Staying Home to Read Vs. Traveling the World During Holidays. Which is more beneficial for personal growth?
  • Japanese Vs. Brazilian Cuisine
  • What makes ASEAN Nations more efficient than African Nations?

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics About TV Shows, Music and Movies

We all enjoy at least one of these things. If not, all of them. Why not have a go at writing a compare and contrast essay about what you have been recently watching or listening to?

  • Breaking Bad Vs. Better Call Saul: Which is more commonly binge watched?
  • The differences between Dance Music and Heavy Metal
  • James Bond Vs. Johnny English
  • Iron Man Vs. The Incredible Hulk: Who would win?
  • What is done differently in modern movies, compared to old black and white movies?
  • Dumber and Dumber 2 Vs. Ted: Which movie is funnier?
  • Are Horror movies or Action Movies best suited to you?
  • The differences and similarities between Mozart and Beethoven compositions.
  • Hip Hop Vs. Traditional Music
  • Classical Music Vs. Pop Music. Which genre helps people concentrate?

Topics About Art

Sometimes, art students are required to write this style of essay. Have a look at these compare and contrast essay topics about the arts of the centuries.

  • The fundamental differences and similarities between paintings and sculptures
  • The different styles of Vincent Van Gogh and Leonardo Da Vinci.
  • Viewing Original Art Compared With Digital Copies. How are these experiences different?
  • 18th Century Paintings Vs. 21st Century Digitally Illustrated Images
  • German Art Vs. American Art
  • Modern Painting Vs. Modern Photography
  • How can we compare modern graphic designers to 18th-century painters?
  • Ancient Greek Art Vs. Ancient Egyptian Art
  • Ancient Japanese Art Vs. Ancient Persian Art
  • What 16th Century Painting Materials were used compared with the modern day?

Best Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

Almost every student at any stage of academics is assigned this style of writing. If you’re lacking inspiration, consider looking at some of the best compare and contrast essay topics to get you on track with your writing.

  • The United States and North Korea Governmental Conflict: What is the reason behind this phenomenon?
  • In the Early Hours, Drinking Water is far healthier than consuming soda.
  • The United States Vs. The People’s Republic of China: Which economy is the most efficient?
  • Studying in Foreign Countries Vs. Studying In Your Hometown: Which is more of an advantage?
  • Toast Vs. Cereal: Which is the most consumed in the morning?
  • Sleeping Vs. Daydreaming: Which is the most commonly prefered? And amongst who?
  • Learning French Vs. Chinese: Which is the most straightforward?
  • Android Phones Vs. iPhones
  • The Liberation of Slaves Vs. The Liberation of Women: Which is more remembered?
  • The differences between the US Dollar and British Pound. What are their advantages? And How do they correspond with each other?

Easy Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

In all types of academics, these essays occur. If you’re new to this style of writing, check our easy compare and contrast essay topics.

  • The Third Reich Vs. North Korea
  • Tea Vs. Coffee
  • iPhone Vs. Samsung
  • KFC Vs. Wendy’s
  • Laurel or Yanny?
  • Healthy Lifestyle Vs. Obese Lifestyle
  • Forkes Vs. Sporks
  • Rice Vs. Porridge
  • Roast Dinner Vs. Chicken & Mushroom Pie
  • What’s the difference between apples and oranges?

Psychology Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

Deciding upon good compare and contrast essay topics for psychology assignments can be difficult. Consider referring to our list of 10 psychology compare and contrast essay topics to help get the deserved grades.

  • What is a more severe eating order? Bulimia or Anorexia
  • Modern Medicine Vs. Traditional Medicine for Treating Depression?
  • Soft Drugs Vs. Hard Drugs. Which is more dangerous for people’s psychological well-being?
  • How do the differences between Lust and Love have an effect on people’s mindsets?
  • Ego Vs. Superego
  • Parents Advice Vs. Peers Advice amongst children and teens.
  • Strict Parenting Vs. Relaxed Parenting
  • Mental Institutions Vs. Stress Clinics
  • Bipolar Disorder Vs. Epilepsy
  • How does child abuse affect victims in later life?

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for Sixth Graders

From time to time, your teacher will assign the task of writing a compare and contrast essay. It can be hard to choose a topic, especially for beginners. Check out our easy compare and contrast essay topics for sixth graders.

  • Exam Preparation Vs. Homework Assignments
  • Homeschooling Vs. Public Education
  • High School Vs. Elementary School
  • 5th Grade Vs. 6th Grade: What makes them different or the same?
  • Are Moms’ or Dads’ more strict among children?
  • Is it better to have strict parents or more open parents?
  • Sandy Beaches Vs. Pebble Beaches: Which beaches are more popular?
  • Is it a good idea to learn guitar or piano?
  • Is it better to eat vegetable salads or pieces of fruit for lunch?
  • 1st Grade Vs. 6th Grade

Funny Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

Sometimes, it is good to have a laugh. As they always say : 'laughter is the best medicine'. Check out these funny compare and contrast essay topics for a little giggle when writing.

  • What is the best way to waste your time? Watching Funny Animal Videos or Mr. Bean Clips?
  • Are Pug Dogs or Maltese Dogs crazier?
  • Pot Noodles Vs. McDonalds Meals.
  • What is the difference between Peter Griffin and Homer Simpson?
  • Mrs. Doubtfire Vs. Mrs. Brown. How are they similar?
  • Which game is more addictive? Flappy Bird or Angry Birds?
  • Big Shaq Vs. PSY
  • Stewie Griffin Vs. Maggie Simpson
  • Quarter Pounders Vs. Big Macs
  • Mr. Bean Vs. Alan Harper

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Comparing and Contrasting in an Essay | Tips & Examples

Published on August 6, 2020 by Jack Caulfield . Revised on July 23, 2023.

Comparing and contrasting is an important skill in academic writing . It involves taking two or more subjects and analyzing the differences and similarities between them.

Table of contents

When should i compare and contrast, making effective comparisons, comparing and contrasting as a brainstorming tool, structuring your comparisons, other interesting articles, frequently asked questions about comparing and contrasting.

Many assignments will invite you to make comparisons quite explicitly, as in these prompts.

  • Compare the treatment of the theme of beauty in the poetry of William Wordsworth and John Keats.
  • Compare and contrast in-class and distance learning. What are the advantages and disadvantages of each approach?

Some other prompts may not directly ask you to compare and contrast, but present you with a topic where comparing and contrasting could be a good approach.

One way to approach this essay might be to contrast the situation before the Great Depression with the situation during it, to highlight how large a difference it made.

Comparing and contrasting is also used in all kinds of academic contexts where it’s not explicitly prompted. For example, a literature review involves comparing and contrasting different studies on your topic, and an argumentative essay may involve weighing up the pros and cons of different arguments.

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As the name suggests, comparing and contrasting is about identifying both similarities and differences. You might focus on contrasting quite different subjects or comparing subjects with a lot in common—but there must be some grounds for comparison in the first place.

For example, you might contrast French society before and after the French Revolution; you’d likely find many differences, but there would be a valid basis for comparison. However, if you contrasted pre-revolutionary France with Han-dynasty China, your reader might wonder why you chose to compare these two societies.

This is why it’s important to clarify the point of your comparisons by writing a focused thesis statement . Every element of an essay should serve your central argument in some way. Consider what you’re trying to accomplish with any comparisons you make, and be sure to make this clear to the reader.

Comparing and contrasting can be a useful tool to help organize your thoughts before you begin writing any type of academic text. You might use it to compare different theories and approaches you’ve encountered in your preliminary research, for example.

Let’s say your research involves the competing psychological approaches of behaviorism and cognitive psychology. You might make a table to summarize the key differences between them.

Or say you’re writing about the major global conflicts of the twentieth century. You might visualize the key similarities and differences in a Venn diagram.

A Venn diagram showing the similarities and differences between World War I, World War II, and the Cold War.

These visualizations wouldn’t make it into your actual writing, so they don’t have to be very formal in terms of phrasing or presentation. The point of comparing and contrasting at this stage is to help you organize and shape your ideas to aid you in structuring your arguments.

When comparing and contrasting in an essay, there are two main ways to structure your comparisons: the alternating method and the block method.

The alternating method

In the alternating method, you structure your text according to what aspect you’re comparing. You cover both your subjects side by side in terms of a specific point of comparison. Your text is structured like this:

Mouse over the example paragraph below to see how this approach works.

One challenge teachers face is identifying and assisting students who are struggling without disrupting the rest of the class. In a traditional classroom environment, the teacher can easily identify when a student is struggling based on their demeanor in class or simply by regularly checking on students during exercises. They can then offer assistance quietly during the exercise or discuss it further after class. Meanwhile, in a Zoom-based class, the lack of physical presence makes it more difficult to pay attention to individual students’ responses and notice frustrations, and there is less flexibility to speak with students privately to offer assistance. In this case, therefore, the traditional classroom environment holds the advantage, although it appears likely that aiding students in a virtual classroom environment will become easier as the technology, and teachers’ familiarity with it, improves.

The block method

In the block method, you cover each of the overall subjects you’re comparing in a block. You say everything you have to say about your first subject, then discuss your second subject, making comparisons and contrasts back to the things you’ve already said about the first. Your text is structured like this:

  • Point of comparison A
  • Point of comparison B

The most commonly cited advantage of distance learning is the flexibility and accessibility it offers. Rather than being required to travel to a specific location every week (and to live near enough to feasibly do so), students can participate from anywhere with an internet connection. This allows not only for a wider geographical spread of students but for the possibility of studying while travelling. However, distance learning presents its own accessibility challenges; not all students have a stable internet connection and a computer or other device with which to participate in online classes, and less technologically literate students and teachers may struggle with the technical aspects of class participation. Furthermore, discomfort and distractions can hinder an individual student’s ability to engage with the class from home, creating divergent learning experiences for different students. Distance learning, then, seems to improve accessibility in some ways while representing a step backwards in others.

Note that these two methods can be combined; these two example paragraphs could both be part of the same essay, but it’s wise to use an essay outline to plan out which approach you’re taking in each paragraph.

If you want to know more about AI tools , college essays , or fallacies make sure to check out some of our other articles with explanations and examples or go directly to our tools!

  • Ad hominem fallacy
  • Post hoc fallacy
  • Appeal to authority fallacy
  • False cause fallacy
  • Sunk cost fallacy

College essays

  • Choosing Essay Topic
  • Write a College Essay
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  • College Essay Format & Structure
  • Comparing and Contrasting in an Essay

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Some essay prompts include the keywords “compare” and/or “contrast.” In these cases, an essay structured around comparing and contrasting is the appropriate response.

Comparing and contrasting is also a useful approach in all kinds of academic writing : You might compare different studies in a literature review , weigh up different arguments in an argumentative essay , or consider different theoretical approaches in a theoretical framework .

Your subjects might be very different or quite similar, but it’s important that there be meaningful grounds for comparison . You can probably describe many differences between a cat and a bicycle, but there isn’t really any connection between them to justify the comparison.

You’ll have to write a thesis statement explaining the central point you want to make in your essay , so be sure to know in advance what connects your subjects and makes them worth comparing.

Comparisons in essays are generally structured in one of two ways:

  • The alternating method, where you compare your subjects side by side according to one specific aspect at a time.
  • The block method, where you cover each subject separately in its entirety.

It’s also possible to combine both methods, for example by writing a full paragraph on each of your topics and then a final paragraph contrasting the two according to a specific metric.

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127 Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

13 December, 2020

13 minutes read

Author:  Elizabeth Brown

Crafting a compare and contrast essay is typically much more interesting and fun than working on a dissertation. With this piece of writing, a student gets his chance to be creative. Besides, one doesn’t have to re-invent the bicycle: these essays already have a purpose and a topic. All you have to do is find similarities or differences between specific notions. And yes, there is one more problem to it.

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

Half of the success of a compare and contrast essay lies in a properly-chosen topic. Now, this can be tricky.

Just think about it: would want to read a piece on a beaten topic like “Books vs. Television”? Or would you rather give a read to an unusual compare and contrast Korean and Vietnam war essay? While you know everything about the first one, the second topic actually sounds interesting.

Choosing compare and contrast essay topics can be time-consuming and daunting. However, with the guide our  essay writer prepared, you will find a great title with no problem.

By the way, if you need a reminder of what such writing looks like and what components it consists of, don’t hesitate to read our guide on  how to write a compare and contrast essay . It will help you structure and organize your knowledge in this regard.

And here is a short introduction to what this type of academic writing should really look like.

How to write a compare and contrast essay

Depending on the task you received from your tutor, in this particular academic paper you are either to compare several things or notions or contrast them.

Here is what a structure of this type of writing looks like:

  • An engaging opening with a “hook.”
  • A thesis statement that explains what is the focus of your writing and whether you’ll be comparing or contrasting the notions.
  • If you don’t know  how to write a thesis statement , here is a guide that will explain you all the details step by step.
  • An argument #1 that supports the thesis statement.
  • Evidence proving the author’s position.
  • A short conclusion.
  • A short reminder of a problem described in the essay.
  • A brief overview of the similarities or differences (aka supporting arguments).
  • A call to action or a interesting question to the audience.

Any A-grade essay would follow this structure. Thus, if you aim to receive better grades, consider taking this structure into account.

Meanwhile, as a student you get tons of other writing assignments. If you’re currently struggling with choosing good  argumentative essay topics , don’t hesitate to take a look at our recent guide!

Finally, let’s dive into the search. After all, this is a key to crafting an excellent piece.

What makes good compare and contrast essay topics

Several factors make some topics your best option compared to the rest.

No matter how great the topic of your choice is, the target audience can sense when you genuinely care about what you are writing, and when you’re simply following the structure with no personal interest in the subject. If you write yawning and find it hard to find any evidence to support your position, chances are you’ve chosen a wrong topic. A compare and contrast dog and cat essay might be a good topic for a person deeply loving these furry little creatures. But someone not that much into domestic animals won’t be able to write a single line of an essay comparing dogs and cats. So, choose your topic wisely.

Availability of trusted sources.

In some cases, you have to use trusted sources to prove your point. Otherwise, your position might seem biased and subjective. That is why we strongly recommend you to check whether the compare and contrast essay titles you opted can be supported by evidence found at the trusted sources.

Recommendation of a tutor.

Last but not least, ask for recommendations. With years of experience under his belt, your tutor might have an eye for great topics. So, why not using his experience for your own good? Besides, apart from good topics suggestions, he can also provide you with great sources to explore. So, don’t lose an opportunity to make your life easier with his assistance!

Proper formatting style.

Proper formatting is hard to overestimate when it comes to A-grade essay writing. A great deal of your grade depends on it. That is why we recommend you to check out our  essay format guide to figure out what your piece should look like.

These are the criteria that help you pick a good theme for your paper. But where should you look for theme to choose from in the first place? We know the answer.

If you aren’t sure you have the time and energy to craft a piece yourself, we’re here to help.  Handmade Writing is a reliable place to order your academic papers from.

Sources of interesting topics

Basically, there are six sources students can go to these days:

  • Social media.
  • Scientific journals.

Each one of them is filled with personalities, facts, events, and locations to contrast and compare. Therefore, don’t hesitate to explore these right sources.

By the way, if you are looking for ideas or inspiration on  how to write a scholarship essay , we’ve got something for you. We’ve gathered a guide that will walk you step by step through the process of composing a good essay that’ll get you college scholarship!

compare contrast essay topics

Easy compare and contrast essay topics for college students

  • High school vs college.
  • McDonalds and Burger King: Explain how these two fast food chains similar or different from each other.
  • Public schools and homeschooling: Which do you prefer?
  • Basketball and football: Popularity, speed of play, dependency on athleticism, personal preference, etc.
  • Lamborgini vs. Bugatti.
  • Virtual vs. Augmented reality: Which technology is the future?
  • Star Wars vs. Star Trek: Which is better?
  • Communism vs. Socialism: The good, the bad, and the ugly.
  • American English vs British English.
  • Conventional or E-learning: What would you choose?
  • Computer and video games: Which is more fun?
  • Inner beauty and outer beauty.
  • Snapchat and Instagram: What makes them similar (different)?
  • Stalin or Hitler: Which is a bigger evil? Or what in their management style was similar?
  • Living in the big city or living in the country: What would you choose?
  • Italian vs. Spanish cuisines.
  • Active vacation in the mountains vs. passive rest by the sea.
  • Facebook vs. Twitter.
  • Windows vs. Linux.
  • Android or iOS: Which is the future?

Funny compare and contrast essay topics

  • Chandler, Joey and Ross: Which one of them is cooler?
  • Pizza or pasta: If you had to eat one food for the rest of your life, which of these would you choose?
  • Batman vs. SuperMan;  Avengers vs. Justice League.
  • Soccer vs football: How are they different apart from their name?
  • Iron Man or Hulk: Which one is the best superhero of his time?
  • Michael Jackson vs. Elvis Presley.
  • George and Lennie.
  • Harry Potter vs. Ronald Weasley: One is way cooler than the other.
  • Simpsons or the South Park?
  • Eternal summer or eternal winter: Which is the least of all evil?

Historical topics

  • WW1 and WW2: Reasons, participants, number of dead and wounded, etc.
  • Renaissance and Barocco.
  • Roman and Greek mythology.
  • Crusaders vs. Saracens.
  • The European economics before and after WW2.
  • Abolition of slavery in the USA and Europe.
  • Japanese and European feudalism essay.
  • Gender roles in the Roman Empire vs Ottoman Empire.
  • British colonization and Spanish colonization.
  • Lincoln and Kennedy.
  • Reconstruction in America against the Industrial Age.
  • Mongolian Empire and Persian Empire.
  • Monaco vs Luxembourg: Countries’ history comparison.
  • Worker unions history in the USA vs. Great Britain.
  • Julius Caesar or Alexander the Great.

Compare and contrast essay between two jobs

  • Marketer vs. Digital Marketer.
  • Anthropologist vs. Philosopher vs. Psychologist
  • Software Engineer vs. Software Architect.
  • Film producer and a Film Director.
  • Working from home and working at an office.
  • Linguist and a Grammarian.
  • Developer or a Coder?
  • QA Specialist or a Test Engineer.
  • Dean or a Principal.
  • Accountant vs. Economist.
  • Journalist vs. Reporter.
  • Recruiter vs. HR Generalist.
  • Copywriter vs. Content Marketer.

Compare and contrast essay between two cultures

  • Egypt and Mesopotamia compare and contrast essay
  • Modern European and American culture.
  • Urbanism and ruralism.
  • Vegetarianism vs. pescetarianism.
  • Compare and contrast Mexico and United States essay.
  • Emo culture and gothic.
  • Compare and contrast Sparta and Athens essay.
  • Bookworms vs. Film Buffs.
  • Culture and ethnicity.
  • Christianity, Islam and Judaism essay.

Interesting topics about literature

  • Bible vs. Quran.
  • 1984 vs. Fahrenheit 451.
  • Chronicles of Narnia: Film or the book series?
  • The Great Gatsby vs. The Catcher in the Rye.
  • Fiction against non-fiction.
  • Divine Comedy vs. Paradise Lost.
  • Lord of the Rings: The book against the latest film production?
  • Expository and Persuasive writing.
  • Harry Potter vs. Lord of the Rings.
  • Anne Frank’s Diary vs. I am Malala.
  • Classic poetry against the modern one.
  • Paper books against the e-books: The never-ending battle.
  • Anne of Green Gables vs. Pollyanna.
  • Pride and Prejudice vs. Bridget Jones’ Diary.
  • Bronte sisters vs. Jane Austen.
  • Drama and Comedy.
  • To Kill a Mockingbird or The Help.
  • Little Women vs. Little Men.
  • Poetry and prose: What makes them different?

Topics related to movies and cinematography

  • Wolf of Wall Street vs. Great Gatsby.
  • Main differences between European and American films.
  • Horror films and thrillers.
  • House M.D. against Grey’s Anatomy.
  • Sherlock Holmes: The old series or the new episodes?
  • Polyanna: Which is better – a film or the book?
  • Japanese horror films vs. American.
  • Home Alone 1 vs. Home Alone 4.
  • The Wizard of Oz against Gone With the Wind.
  • The Sound of Music vs. Mary Poppins.
  • Beverly Hills, 90210 or Melrose Place.
  • Friends vs. The Office.
  • Charlie Chaplin and Mr. Bean.
  • The Pianist or Schindler’s List.
  • Romeo and Juliet: 1968, 1996, and 2013 productions.
  • Forrest Gump or The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.
  • 300 or Gladiator.
  • Lord of the Rings: extended edition vs. director’s cut.
  • Ben-Hur (1959) vs. Ben-Hur (2016).
  • Exodus: Gods and Kings (2014) and Prince of Egypt.
  • Dunkirk vs. Saving Private Ryan.
  • The Green Mile vs. The Shawshank Redemption.
  • Les Miserables (2012) vs. The Greatest Showman.

Music and arts-related topics

  • Beyonce vs. Rihanna.
  • Whitney Houston against Adele.
  • Britney Spears against Madonna.
  • Mona Lisa vs. Girl with a Pearl Earring.
  • Van Gogh against Picasso.
  • Impressionism against Expressionism.
  • Opera and ballet.
  • Spotify or Deezer.
  • Records or Live concerts.
  • Jazz or classical music.
  • Musical theatre vs. Play with music.
  • Renaissance and Enlightenment epochs in arts.
  • African vs. Asian art.
  • Rock music of the XX century vs. today.
  • Religious hymns and secular songs about Christmas.
  • Music people listened to in their twenties in the XX century and now.
  • Protagonist of the modern pop music culture and that of the 1960s.

We guarantee that you can easily find a good title among the ones we suggested. If you find it hard to compose a good compare and contrast essay even after choosing one of our topics, don’t hesitate to us a line asking for help.

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50 College-Level Compare and Contrast Topics for an Essay

Compare and contrast essays are common college assignments that test your critical thinking skills as well as your essay writing. The task may seem daunting, but don’t panic – I am here to help with any possible hurdles:

  • Getting started: what does compare and contrast actually mean?
  • Good compare and contrast essay topics: what should I write about?
  • Making your case: how should I write in the essay introduction and body paragraphs?

Follow this simple guide to write a successful compare and contrast essay!

What Does Compare and Contrast Mean?

Very simply, to compare and contrast is to consider two (or more) things and observe what is similar about those things and what is different about them. Think of it this way: to compare is to find the qualities, attributes, etc, that are the same and to contrast is to find the ways in which they differ. In a compare and contrast essay, you write about and analyze the observations you have made.

For example, let’s compare and contrast a penguin and a pigeon. When we compare the two, we can observe that both are birds, both have feathers, both have beaks, and both lay eggs. They are different in that pigeons can fly and penguins cannot, penguins are excellent swimmers and pigeons are not, and they both live in very different climates. Those are the contrasts. In an essay, we’d then go on to discuss those observations in detail.

Compare and Contrast Essay Ideas

Writing a good essay largely depends on what you choose to write about, as you need to find two comparable subjects – people, books, traditions, phenomena, etc. Here are some ideas, grouped by subject, to help get you started!

Ideas for a Compare and Contrast Essay

Sociological Change 

1. Family life now and 100 years ago (consider the age people enter the marriage, attitude to sex life before marriage, attitude to and prevalence of divorce, the prevalence of married women in labor, child-rearing practices, etc.) 

2. Environmental impact of humanity now and 100 years ago

3. Awareness of personal footprint and striving for sustainability in society over the last two decades (go beyond sorting of the waste; consider the impact of the rising awareness on the fur industry, the reluctance of the young generation to work in oil companies, refusing from meat due having overpopulation reasons in mind, etc.)

4. Portrayal of women in advertisements of mid-20s century vs now

5. Common jobs in the 18th century and today

6. Funerals in the past and today

7. Important holidays in the past and today

8. Voting rights in the past and today

9. Immigration to the U.S. in the past and today (compare and contrast the reasons for immigration, its prevalence, requirements of the state, etc.) 

10. Communism versus libertarianism

11. The role of religion in creating legislation in different countries/cultures 

12. Socializing in the past and now

13. Offline vs online business in 2021   

14. The use of robotics now vs 10 years ago

15. The 2020s in the fantastic movies and prediction of the past vs “the future” as it is now

16. NASA vs SpaceX

Related : Sociology Research Topics

Things to Compare and Contrast


1. Public vs private education  

2. Traditional school vs homeschooling

3. Online vs offline education

4. Old vs new methods of teaching

5. Accessibility of higher education in the last two decades (consider what barriers have been tackled; have the rising student debt and Covid become the new barriers to consider?) 

6. School curriculum change over the last two decades (what has changed, what is no longer taught, what new classes and teaching methods appeared; note the increased focus on STEM, sustainability, disappearing cursive classes, sex education, etc.)    

Related : Argumentative Essay Topics on Education  

1. Healthcare systems in America and elsewhere in the world (this is a helpful article to start with)

2. Cloning vs gene modification

3. Healthy living over the last decade/ in different socio-economic groups (compare the attitudes to healthy food, Macdonalds, smoking, binge drinking, exercising, etc. now and twenty years ago; alternatively, compare and contrast the statistics for the affluent and poor citizens)

4. Abortion laws in the U.S. and other countries (this is a useful article to start with)

5. Traditional doctor appointments vs telemedicine

6. How is depression diagnosed and treated now compared to the past decades (you may also consider the change in the treatment of other illnesses and conditions that are believed to be medicalized, such as obesity, alcoholism, menopause, etc.)  

7. Traditional medicine vs. homeopathy

8. Covid-19 vs Spanish flu epidemics  

9. The response to Covid-19 in two different states (see this post for more Covid-related essay topics and facts)   

10. Aguments for and against mandadory vacination   

11. Nursing home care vs assisted living  

Related : Controversial Medical Topics for an Essay

Philosophy and Ethics

1. Compare and compare two Abrahamic religions. 

2. Plato versus Aristotle.

3. Utilitarian ethics versus deontological ethics. 

4. The influence of philosophy historically compared to today.

5. Interpretations of philosophical texts in different cultures/countries.

6. Pro-life vs pro-choice arguments in the abortion debate (if you struggle to find similarities other than relating to one topic, consider what these arguments fail to account for; for example, both have men out of the equation, see more ideas for an abortion essay here ). 

7. Work ethics vs personal ethics. 

8. Compare and contrast two leadership theories. 

9. Compare and contrast liberal and radical feminism (the other two types of feminism that can be compared are equality feminism and difference feminism). 

10. Patriotism versus nationalism/ cosmopolitanism (see this guide on writing a patriotism essay )

Related : Philosophy and Ethics Essay Topics

features of good topic for compare and contrast essay

Art and Literature 

1. art by the same artist at different points in their career (for example, Picasso’s The Old Fisherman and Le Matador ).

2. art depicting the same subject in very different styles (for example, a park by in Pointillist style and another in Cubist style).

3. the work of two artists working in the same time/place (for example, Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni).

4. the reception of an artists’ work during their lifetime compared to today; attitudes towards art and artists in different cultures.

5. Two pieces of work by the same writer at different times in their life (for example, A Streetcar Named Desire and Sweet Bird of Youth by Tenessee Williams).

6. Novels written at the same time portraying the same place (for example, Great Expectations by Charles Dickens and Jane Austen’s Emma )

7. Work by poets regarded as part of the same movement (for example, Keats and Coleridge of the Romantics)

8. Exploration of the same theme (for example, the portrayal of ‘good versus evil’ in Lord of the Rings and Alice in Wonderland )

How to Write a Compare and Contrast Essay 

Chosen your topic? Okay, good! Let’s think about actually writing the essay. 


An introduction is an opportunity to set expectations for the rest of the work – so let’s set them high! It’s important to begin the essay with a hook that will draw in your reader. Then, introduce the two (or more) things you will be discussing. Briefly outline the similarities and differences you will discuss. Lastly, clearly state your thesis . 

Here’s an example of an introduction to an essay comparing and contrasting traditional television and online streaming services:

Almost half of Americans born after the year 1978 do not own a television ( hook ). Young people seem to have fallen out of love with television in just a few short decades; in the year 2000, most Americans watched their television set for at least two hours a day . But why have we abandoned this once-loved pastime? The answer is simple: online streaming services (both things have been introduced ). In its heyday, television was extremely popular among young people, as streaming services are now. Both provide entertainment, show a wide range of media of different genres, inform us about what’s going on in the world around us and connect us as a society ( outline of similarities). However, there are several differences between the two. Television lacks the diversity of modern streaming services, viewers are forced to watch programs curated by the channel, and there is far less freedom of choice. That said, less time in front of the television means less time watching the news and less community spirit. Streaming services can also be expensive ( outline of differences). It would, however, seem that modern streaming services are overall superior to good, old-fashioned TV ( thesis statement ).

For more help on writing introductions, check out Essay Introduction Paragraph: Essential Elements and Examples .

Thesis Statement

Here are top rules for creating a strong thesis statement for a compare and contrast essay:

  • Relevant to the type of essay you’re writing. In an essay where we’re going to compare two things, the thesis statement should compare two things!
  • Debatable. Show that you’ve come to your own conclusion about something and are sharing your findings. “Cake is delicious” would not, for example, be a successful thesis statement.
  • Narrow. Make sure you haven’t bitten off more than you can chew with a thesis statement covering an enormous topic. 
  • Well-structured. A parallel structure will make a long thesis statement easier to read and understand.

For more help on thesis statements, take a look at A Strong Thesis Statement: Tips and Examples .

features of good topic for compare and contrast essay

In the first paragraph after your introduction, provide some context for your essay. Why are you writing about this? Why now? For the example given above, you can further back up the introductory statement with some statistics , showing that you have done your research about the subject. For example, compare the number of TV sets bought in 2000 compared to 2020, or show the fall in live viewing ratings for popular programs. For streaming services, you might mention how many people subscribe to Netflix or Hulu, or how much money streaming sites are making. Make sure you cite any sources you use properly, for maximum marks!

Next, discuss the similarities between the two things you are discussing. How long this section will depend on how similar your subjects are! For some topics, you can have a fairly long section on similarities. However, if you were writing about radically different political systems, points of view, or works of art, then your comparison section may be shorter.

Discuss the differences in the order you’ve outlined them in the introduction. Make sure the similar and different points are contributing to your thesis. For example, if I were to argue that there are too many cartoons on Netflix and too many soaps on mainstream TV, that wouldn’t contribute to my argument. However, if you were to argue that television can offer live updates on current affairs, in a way that Hulu does not, that would contribute to an argument about which one is, overall, superior.

Other Writing Tips

Choose the right topic: Before you get started, you might find it helpful to make a list of all the similarities and differences between the things you are comparing. Make sure there are enough similarities to make your argument seem sensible. For example, pop music and classical music are both music genres but, beyond that, there’s no real reason to compare them. However, if you compare something like family life in the past and now, there are lots of things you can discuss in your essay and this leads to larger inferences about the social change that has taken place. 

Do your research: Research the topic you will discuss as much as possible and be prepared to discuss the positive aspects of both things you are comparing. In the long run, this will actually make your argument stronger.

What would you compare and contrast if you could write about anything? Share your idea in the comments!

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Compare and contrast essays are taught in school for many reasons. For one thing, they are relatively easy to teach, understand, and format. Students can typically understand the structure with just a short amount of instruction. In addition, these essays allow students develop critical thinking skills to approach a variety of topics.

Brainstorming Tip

One fun way to get students started brainstorming their compare and contrast essays is to create a Venn diagram , where the overlapping sections of the circle contain similarities and the non-overlapping areas contain the differing traits.

Following is a list of 101 topics for compare and contrast essays that you are welcome to use in your classroom. As you look through the list you will see that some items are academic in nature while others are included for interest-building and fun writing activities.

  • Apple vs. Microsoft
  • Coke vs. Pepsi
  • Renaissance Art vs. Baroque Art
  • Antebellum Era vs. Reconstruction Era in American History
  • Childhood vs. Adulthood
  • Star Wars vs. Star Trek
  • Biology vs. Chemistry
  • Astrology vs. Astronomy
  • American Government vs. British Government (or any world government)
  • Fruits vs. Vegetables
  • Dogs vs. Cats
  • Ego vs. Superego
  • Christianity vs. Judaism (or any world religion )
  • Republican vs. Democrat
  • Monarchy vs. Presidency
  • US President vs. UK Prime Minister
  • Jazz vs. Classical Music
  • Red vs. White (or any two colors)
  • Soccer vs. Football
  • North vs. South Before the Civil War
  • New England Colonies vs. Middle Colonies OR vs. Southern Colonies
  • Cash vs. Credit Cards
  • Sam vs. Frodo Baggins
  • Gandalf vs. Dumbledore
  • Fred vs. Shaggy
  • Rap vs. Pop
  • Articles of Confederation vs. U.S. Constitution
  • Henry VIII vs. King Louis XIV
  • Stocks vs. Bonds
  • Monopolies vs. Oligopolies
  • Communism vs. Capitalism
  • Socialism vs. Capitalism
  • Diesel vs. Petroleum
  • Nuclear Power vs. Solar Power
  • Saltwater Fish vs. Freshwater Fish
  • Squids vs. Octopus
  • Mammals vs. Reptiles
  • Baleen vs. Toothed Whales
  • Seals vs. Sea Lions
  • Crocodiles vs. Alligators
  • Bats vs. Birds
  • Oven vs. Microwave
  • Greek vs. Roman Mythology
  • Chinese vs. Japanese
  • Comedy vs. Drama
  • Renting vs. Owning
  • Mozart vs. Beethoven
  • Online vs. Traditional Education
  • North vs. South Pole
  • Watercolor vs. Oil
  • 1984 vs. Fahrenheit 451
  • Emily Dickinson vs. Samuel Taylor Coleridge
  • W.E.B. DuBois vs. Booker T. Washington
  • Strawberries vs. Apples
  • Airplanes vs. Helicopters
  • Hitler vs. Napoleon
  • Roman Empire vs. British Empire
  • Paper vs. Plastic
  • Italy vs. Spain
  • Baseball vs. Cricket
  • Jefferson vs. Adams
  • Thoroughbreds vs. Clydesdales
  • Spiders vs. Scorpions
  • Northern Hemisphere vs. Southern Hemisphere
  • Hobbes vs. Locke
  • Friends vs. Family
  • Dried Fruit vs. Fresh
  • Porcelain vs. Glass
  • Modern Dance vs. Ballroom Dancing
  • American Idol vs. The Voice
  • Reality TV vs. Sitcoms
  • Picard vs. Kirk
  • Books vs. Movies
  • Magazines vs. Comic Books
  • Antique vs. New
  • Public vs. Private Transportation
  • Email vs. Letters
  • Facebook vs. Twitter
  • Coffee vs. an Energy Drink
  • Toads vs. Frogs
  • Profit vs. Non-Profit
  • Boys vs. Girls
  • Birds vs. Dinosaurs
  • High School vs. College
  • Chamberlain vs. Churchill
  • Offense vs. Defense
  • Jordan vs. Bryant
  • Harry vs. Draco
  • Roses vs. Carnations
  • Poetry vs. Prose
  • Fiction vs. Nonfiction
  • Lions vs. Tigers
  • Vampires vs. Werewolves
  • Lollipops vs. popsicles
  • Summer vs. Winter
  • Recycling vs. Landfill
  • Motorcycle vs. Bicycle
  • Halogen vs. Incandescent
  • Newton vs. Einstein
  • . Go on vacation vs. Staycation
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The Writing Center • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Comparing and Contrasting

What this handout is about.

This handout will help you first to determine whether a particular assignment is asking for comparison/contrast and then to generate a list of similarities and differences, decide which similarities and differences to focus on, and organize your paper so that it will be clear and effective. It will also explain how you can (and why you should) develop a thesis that goes beyond “Thing A and Thing B are similar in many ways but different in others.”


In your career as a student, you’ll encounter many different kinds of writing assignments, each with its own requirements. One of the most common is the comparison/contrast essay, in which you focus on the ways in which certain things or ideas—usually two of them—are similar to (this is the comparison) and/or different from (this is the contrast) one another. By assigning such essays, your instructors are encouraging you to make connections between texts or ideas, engage in critical thinking, and go beyond mere description or summary to generate interesting analysis: when you reflect on similarities and differences, you gain a deeper understanding of the items you are comparing, their relationship to each other, and what is most important about them.

Recognizing comparison/contrast in assignments

Some assignments use words—like compare, contrast, similarities, and differences—that make it easy for you to see that they are asking you to compare and/or contrast. Here are a few hypothetical examples:

  • Compare and contrast Frye’s and Bartky’s accounts of oppression.
  • Compare WWI to WWII, identifying similarities in the causes, development, and outcomes of the wars.
  • Contrast Wordsworth and Coleridge; what are the major differences in their poetry?

Notice that some topics ask only for comparison, others only for contrast, and others for both.

But it’s not always so easy to tell whether an assignment is asking you to include comparison/contrast. And in some cases, comparison/contrast is only part of the essay—you begin by comparing and/or contrasting two or more things and then use what you’ve learned to construct an argument or evaluation. Consider these examples, noticing the language that is used to ask for the comparison/contrast and whether the comparison/contrast is only one part of a larger assignment:

  • Choose a particular idea or theme, such as romantic love, death, or nature, and consider how it is treated in two Romantic poems.
  • How do the different authors we have studied so far define and describe oppression?
  • Compare Frye’s and Bartky’s accounts of oppression. What does each imply about women’s collusion in their own oppression? Which is more accurate?
  • In the texts we’ve studied, soldiers who served in different wars offer differing accounts of their experiences and feelings both during and after the fighting. What commonalities are there in these accounts? What factors do you think are responsible for their differences?

You may want to check out our handout on understanding assignments for additional tips.

Using comparison/contrast for all kinds of writing projects

Sometimes you may want to use comparison/contrast techniques in your own pre-writing work to get ideas that you can later use for an argument, even if comparison/contrast isn’t an official requirement for the paper you’re writing. For example, if you wanted to argue that Frye’s account of oppression is better than both de Beauvoir’s and Bartky’s, comparing and contrasting the main arguments of those three authors might help you construct your evaluation—even though the topic may not have asked for comparison/contrast and the lists of similarities and differences you generate may not appear anywhere in the final draft of your paper.

Discovering similarities and differences

Making a Venn diagram or a chart can help you quickly and efficiently compare and contrast two or more things or ideas. To make a Venn diagram, simply draw some overlapping circles, one circle for each item you’re considering. In the central area where they overlap, list the traits the two items have in common. Assign each one of the areas that doesn’t overlap; in those areas, you can list the traits that make the things different. Here’s a very simple example, using two pizza places:

Venn diagram indicating that both Pepper's and Amante serve pizza with unusual ingredients at moderate prices, despite differences in location, wait times, and delivery options

To make a chart, figure out what criteria you want to focus on in comparing the items. Along the left side of the page, list each of the criteria. Across the top, list the names of the items. You should then have a box per item for each criterion; you can fill the boxes in and then survey what you’ve discovered.

As you generate points of comparison, consider the purpose and content of the assignment and the focus of the class. What do you think the professor wants you to learn by doing this comparison/contrast? How does it fit with what you have been studying so far and with the other assignments in the course? Are there any clues about what to focus on in the assignment itself?

Here are some general questions about different types of things you might have to compare. These are by no means complete or definitive lists; they’re just here to give you some ideas—you can generate your own questions for these and other types of comparison. You may want to begin by using the questions reporters traditionally ask: Who? What? Where? When? Why? How? If you’re talking about objects, you might also consider general properties like size, shape, color, sound, weight, taste, texture, smell, number, duration, and location.

Two historical periods or events

  • When did they occur—do you know the date(s) and duration? What happened or changed during each? Why are they significant?
  • What kinds of work did people do? What kinds of relationships did they have? What did they value?
  • What kinds of governments were there? Who were important people involved?
  • What caused events in these periods, and what consequences did they have later on?

Two ideas or theories

  • What are they about?
  • Did they originate at some particular time?
  • Who created them? Who uses or defends them?
  • What is the central focus, claim, or goal of each? What conclusions do they offer?
  • How are they applied to situations/people/things/etc.?
  • Which seems more plausible to you, and why? How broad is their scope?
  • What kind of evidence is usually offered for them?

Two pieces of writing or art

  • What are their titles? What do they describe or depict?
  • What is their tone or mood? What is their form?
  • Who created them? When were they created? Why do you think they were created as they were? What themes do they address?
  • Do you think one is of higher quality or greater merit than the other(s)—and if so, why?
  • For writing: what plot, characterization, setting, theme, tone, and type of narration are used?
  • Where are they from? How old are they? What is the gender, race, class, etc. of each?
  • What, if anything, are they known for? Do they have any relationship to each other?
  • What are they like? What did/do they do? What do they believe? Why are they interesting?
  • What stands out most about each of them?

Deciding what to focus on

By now you have probably generated a huge list of similarities and differences—congratulations! Next you must decide which of them are interesting, important, and relevant enough to be included in your paper. Ask yourself these questions:

  • What’s relevant to the assignment?
  • What’s relevant to the course?
  • What’s interesting and informative?
  • What matters to the argument you are going to make?
  • What’s basic or central (and needs to be mentioned even if obvious)?
  • Overall, what’s more important—the similarities or the differences?

Suppose that you are writing a paper comparing two novels. For most literature classes, the fact that they both use Caslon type (a kind of typeface, like the fonts you may use in your writing) is not going to be relevant, nor is the fact that one of them has a few illustrations and the other has none; literature classes are more likely to focus on subjects like characterization, plot, setting, the writer’s style and intentions, language, central themes, and so forth. However, if you were writing a paper for a class on typesetting or on how illustrations are used to enhance novels, the typeface and presence or absence of illustrations might be absolutely critical to include in your final paper.

Sometimes a particular point of comparison or contrast might be relevant but not terribly revealing or interesting. For example, if you are writing a paper about Wordsworth’s “Tintern Abbey” and Coleridge’s “Frost at Midnight,” pointing out that they both have nature as a central theme is relevant (comparisons of poetry often talk about themes) but not terribly interesting; your class has probably already had many discussions about the Romantic poets’ fondness for nature. Talking about the different ways nature is depicted or the different aspects of nature that are emphasized might be more interesting and show a more sophisticated understanding of the poems.

Your thesis

The thesis of your comparison/contrast paper is very important: it can help you create a focused argument and give your reader a road map so she/he doesn’t get lost in the sea of points you are about to make. As in any paper, you will want to replace vague reports of your general topic (for example, “This paper will compare and contrast two pizza places,” or “Pepper’s and Amante are similar in some ways and different in others,” or “Pepper’s and Amante are similar in many ways, but they have one major difference”) with something more detailed and specific. For example, you might say, “Pepper’s and Amante have similar prices and ingredients, but their atmospheres and willingness to deliver set them apart.”

Be careful, though—although this thesis is fairly specific and does propose a simple argument (that atmosphere and delivery make the two pizza places different), your instructor will often be looking for a bit more analysis. In this case, the obvious question is “So what? Why should anyone care that Pepper’s and Amante are different in this way?” One might also wonder why the writer chose those two particular pizza places to compare—why not Papa John’s, Dominos, or Pizza Hut? Again, thinking about the context the class provides may help you answer such questions and make a stronger argument. Here’s a revision of the thesis mentioned earlier:

Pepper’s and Amante both offer a greater variety of ingredients than other Chapel Hill/Carrboro pizza places (and than any of the national chains), but the funky, lively atmosphere at Pepper’s makes it a better place to give visiting friends and family a taste of local culture.

You may find our handout on constructing thesis statements useful at this stage.

Organizing your paper

There are many different ways to organize a comparison/contrast essay. Here are two:


Begin by saying everything you have to say about the first subject you are discussing, then move on and make all the points you want to make about the second subject (and after that, the third, and so on, if you’re comparing/contrasting more than two things). If the paper is short, you might be able to fit all of your points about each item into a single paragraph, but it’s more likely that you’d have several paragraphs per item. Using our pizza place comparison/contrast as an example, after the introduction, you might have a paragraph about the ingredients available at Pepper’s, a paragraph about its location, and a paragraph about its ambience. Then you’d have three similar paragraphs about Amante, followed by your conclusion.

The danger of this subject-by-subject organization is that your paper will simply be a list of points: a certain number of points (in my example, three) about one subject, then a certain number of points about another. This is usually not what college instructors are looking for in a paper—generally they want you to compare or contrast two or more things very directly, rather than just listing the traits the things have and leaving it up to the reader to reflect on how those traits are similar or different and why those similarities or differences matter. Thus, if you use the subject-by-subject form, you will probably want to have a very strong, analytical thesis and at least one body paragraph that ties all of your different points together.

A subject-by-subject structure can be a logical choice if you are writing what is sometimes called a “lens” comparison, in which you use one subject or item (which isn’t really your main topic) to better understand another item (which is). For example, you might be asked to compare a poem you’ve already covered thoroughly in class with one you are reading on your own. It might make sense to give a brief summary of your main ideas about the first poem (this would be your first subject, the “lens”), and then spend most of your paper discussing how those points are similar to or different from your ideas about the second.


Rather than addressing things one subject at a time, you may wish to talk about one point of comparison at a time. There are two main ways this might play out, depending on how much you have to say about each of the things you are comparing. If you have just a little, you might, in a single paragraph, discuss how a certain point of comparison/contrast relates to all the items you are discussing. For example, I might describe, in one paragraph, what the prices are like at both Pepper’s and Amante; in the next paragraph, I might compare the ingredients available; in a third, I might contrast the atmospheres of the two restaurants.

If I had a bit more to say about the items I was comparing/contrasting, I might devote a whole paragraph to how each point relates to each item. For example, I might have a whole paragraph about the clientele at Pepper’s, followed by a whole paragraph about the clientele at Amante; then I would move on and do two more paragraphs discussing my next point of comparison/contrast—like the ingredients available at each restaurant.

There are no hard and fast rules about organizing a comparison/contrast paper, of course. Just be sure that your reader can easily tell what’s going on! Be aware, too, of the placement of your different points. If you are writing a comparison/contrast in service of an argument, keep in mind that the last point you make is the one you are leaving your reader with. For example, if I am trying to argue that Amante is better than Pepper’s, I should end with a contrast that leaves Amante sounding good, rather than with a point of comparison that I have to admit makes Pepper’s look better. If you’ve decided that the differences between the items you’re comparing/contrasting are most important, you’ll want to end with the differences—and vice versa, if the similarities seem most important to you.

Our handout on organization can help you write good topic sentences and transitions and make sure that you have a good overall structure in place for your paper.

Cue words and other tips

To help your reader keep track of where you are in the comparison/contrast, you’ll want to be sure that your transitions and topic sentences are especially strong. Your thesis should already have given the reader an idea of the points you’ll be making and the organization you’ll be using, but you can help her/him out with some extra cues. The following words may be helpful to you in signaling your intentions:

  • like, similar to, also, unlike, similarly, in the same way, likewise, again, compared to, in contrast, in like manner, contrasted with, on the contrary, however, although, yet, even though, still, but, nevertheless, conversely, at the same time, regardless, despite, while, on the one hand … on the other hand.

For example, you might have a topic sentence like one of these:

  • Compared to Pepper’s, Amante is quiet.
  • Like Amante, Pepper’s offers fresh garlic as a topping.
  • Despite their different locations (downtown Chapel Hill and downtown Carrboro), Pepper’s and Amante are both fairly easy to get to.

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Comparing and Contrasting: A Guide to Improve Your Essays

Walter Akolo

Walter Akolo

Comparing and contrasting in essays

Essays that require you to compare and contrast two or more subjects, ideas, places, or items are common.

They call for you to highlight the key similarities (compare) and differences (contrast) between them.

This guide contains all the information you need to become better at writing comparing and contrasting essays.

This includes: how to structure your essay, how to decide on the content, and some examples of essay questions.

Let’s dive in.

Compare and contrast definition

What Is Comparing and Contrasting?

Is compare and contrast the same as similarities and differences, what is the purpose of comparing and contrasting, can you compare and contrast any two items, how do you compare and contrast in writing, what are some comparing and contrasting techniques, how do you compare and contrast in college level writing, the four essentials of compare and contrast essays, what can you learn from a compare and contrast essay.

At their most basic, both comparing and contrasting base their evaluation on two or more subjects that share a connection.

The subjects could have similar characteristics, features, or foundations.

But while a comparison discusses the similarities of the two subjects, e.g. a banana and a watermelon are both fruit, contrasting highlights how the subjects or items differ from each other, e.g. a watermelon is around 10 times larger than a banana.

Any question that you are asked in education will have a variety of interesting comparisons and deductions that you can make.

Compare is the same as similarities.

Contrast is the same as differences.

This is because comparing identifies the likeness between two subjects, items, or categories, while contrasting recognizes disparities between them.

When you compare things, you represent them regarding their similarity, but when you contrast things, you define them in reference to their differences.

As a result, if you are asked to discuss the similarities and differences between two subjects, you can take an identical approach to if you are writing a compare and contrast essay.

In writing, the purpose of comparing and contrasting is to highlight subtle but important differences or similarities that might not be immediately obvious.

The purpose of comparing and contrasting

By illustrating the differences between elements in a similar category, you help heighten readers’ understanding of the subject or topic of discussion.

For instance, you might choose to compare and contrast red wine and white wine by pointing out the subtle differences. One of these differences is that red wine is best served at room temperature while white is best served chilled.

Also, comparing and contrasting helps to make abstract ideas more definite and minimizes the confusion that might exist between two related concepts.

Can Comparing and Contrasting Be Useful Outside of Academia?

Comparing enables you to see the pros and cons, allowing you to have a better understanding of the things under discussion. In an essay, this helps you demonstrate that you understand the nuances of your topic enough to draw meaningful conclusions from them.

Let's use a real-word example to see the benefits. Imagine you're contrasting two dresses you could buy. You might think:

  • Dress A is purple, my favorite color, but it has a difficult zip and is practically impossible to match a jacket to.
  • Dress B is more expensive but I already have a suitable pair of shoes and jacket and it is easier to move in.

You're linking the qualities of each dress to the context of the decision you're making. This is the same for your essay. Your comparison and contrast points will be in relation to the question you need to answer.

Comparing and contrasting is only a useful technique when applied to two related concepts.

To effectively compare two or more things, they must feature characteristics similar enough to warrant comparison.

In addition to this they must also feature a similarity that generates an interesting discussion. But what do I mean by “interesting” here?

Let’s look at two concepts, the Magna Carta and my third grade poetry competition entry.

They are both text, written on paper by a person so they fulfil the first requirement, they have a similarity. But this comparison clearly would not fulfil the second requirement, you would not be able to draw any interesting conclusions.

However, if we compare the Magna Carta to the Bill of Rights, you would be able to come to some very interesting conclusions concerning the history of world politics.

To write a good compare and contrast essay, it’s best to pick two or more topics that share a meaningful connection .

The aim of the essay would be to show the subtle differences or unforeseen similarities.

By highlighting the distinctions between elements in a similar category you can increase your readers’ understanding.

Alternatively, you could choose to focus on a comparison between two subjects that initially appear unrelated.

The more dissimilar they seem, the more interesting the comparison essay will turn out.

For instance, you could compare and contrast professional rugby players with marathon runners.

Can You Compare and Contrast in an Essay That Does Not Specifically Require It?

As a writer, you can employ comparing and contrasting techniques in your writing, particularly when looking for ideas you can later apply in your argument.

You can do this even when the comparison or contrast is not a requirement for the topic or argument you are presenting. Doing so could enable you to build your evaluation and develop a stronger argument.

Note that the similarities and differences you come up with might not even show up in the final draft.

While the use of compare and contrast can be neutral, you can also use it to highlight one option under discussion. When used this way, you can influence the perceived advantages of your preferred option.

As a writing style, comparing and contrasting can encompass an entire essay. However, it could also appear in some select paragraphs within the essay, where making some comparisons serves to better illustrate a point.

What Should You Do First?

Before you compare two things, always start by deciding on the reason for your comparison, then outline the criteria you will use to compare them.

Words and phrases commonly used for comparison include:

Comparison words and phrases

In writing, these words and phrases are called transitions . They help readers to understand or make the connection between sentences, paragraphs, and ideas.

Without transition words writing can feel clumsy and disjointed making it difficult to read. ProWritingAid’s transition report highlights all of a documents transitions and suggests that 25% of any sentences in a piece include a transition.

ProWritingAid's Transition Report

Sign up for a free ProWritingAid account to use the Transitions Report.

So, how do you form all of this into a coherent essay? It's a good idea to plan first, then decide what your paragraph layout will look like.

Venn diagrams are useful tool to start generating ideas. The, for your essay, you need to choose between going idea by idea and going point by point.

Using a Venn Diagram

A Venn diagram helps you to clearly see the similarities and differences between multiple objects, things, or subjects.

The writing tool comprises two, or more, simple, overlapping circles in which you list down the things that are alike (within the overlapping area) and those that differ (outside the overlapping area).

It’s great for brainstorming ideas and for creating your essay’s outline. You could even use it in an exam setting because it is quick and simple.

Going Subject by Subject

Going subject by subject is a structural choice for your essay.

Start by saying all you have to say on the first subject, then proceed to do the same about the second subject.

Depending on the length of your essay, you can fit the points about each subject into one paragraph or have several sections per each subject, ending with a conclusion.

This method is best for short essays on simple topics. Most university-level essays will go point by point instead.

Going Point by Point

Going point by point, or alternating, is the opposite essay structure from going subject by subject. This is ideal when you want to do more direct comparing and contrasting. It entails discussing one comparison point at a time. It allows you to use a paragraph to talk about how a certain comparing/contrasting point relates to the subjects or items you are discussing.

Alternatively, if you have lots of details about the subject, you might decide to use a paragraph for each point.

Different ways to compare and contrast

An academic compare and contrast essay looks at two or more subjects, ideas, people, or objects, compares their likeness, and contrasts their differences.

It’s an informative essay that provides insights on what is similar and different between the two items.

Depending on the essay’s instructions, you can focus solely on comparing or contrasting, or a combination of the two.

Examples of College Level Compare and Contrast Essay Questions

Here are eleven examples of compare and contrast essay questions that you might encounter at university:

Compare and contrast examples

  • Archaeology: Compare and contrast the skulls of homo habilis, homo erectus, and homo sapiens.
  • Art: Compare and contrast the working styles of any two Neoclassic artists.
  • Astrophysics: Compare and contrast the chemical composition of Venus and Neptune.
  • Biology: Compare and contrast the theories of Lamarck and Darwin.
  • Business: Compare and contrast 2 or more business models within the agricultural industry.
  • Creative writing: Compare and contrast free indirect discourse with epistolary styles.
  • English Literature: Compare and contrast William Wordsworth with Robert Browning.
  • Geography: Compare and contrast the benefit of solar panels with the benefit of wind turbines.
  • History: Compare and contrast WWI to WWII with specific reference to the causes and outcomes.
  • Medicine: Compare and contrast England’s health service with America’s health service.
  • Psychology: Compare and contrast the behaviorist theory with the psychodynamic theory.

So, the key takeaways to keep in mind are:

Have a basis for comparison. The two things need to have enough in common to justify a discussion about their similarities and disparities.

Don’t go back and forth when using the block method. The best way to write your essay is to begin with a paragraph discussing all the facets of the first topic. Then, move on to another paragraph and talk through all the aspects of the second subject.

You can use both alternating and blocking techniques. Combining the two approaches is also an option. You can apply the alternating method in some paragraphs, then switch and use the block method. This method will help you offer a much deeper analysis of the subjects.

Have a reason for comparing the two things. Only select the points of comparison that resonate with your purpose.

Compare and contrast, key takeaways

Comparing and contrasting are essential analytical skills in academic writing. When your professor issues you with such an essay, their primary goal is to teach you how to:

  • Engage in critical thinking
  • See and make connections between words or ideas
  • Move beyond mere descriptions or summaries to developing interesting analysis
  • Get a deeper understanding of the subjects or items under comparison, their key features, and their interrelationships with each other.

The benefits of comparing and contrasting

Ultimately, your essay should enlighten readers by providing useful information.

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Compare and Contrast Essay Topics: Ideas to Help You Write a Great Essay!

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

What is a Good Compare and Contrast Essay?

All themes have something in common and something different. Such fact allows students to write good academic papers no matter the topic. Professors in college and university also prefer to give such tasks because they can easily estimate the authors’ skills of analyzing and critical thinking.

The task is called contrast or compare essay. The writer needs 2 subjects to describe in the paper. It could be similarities, differences, and both of them at the same time. But usually the essay is concerned on the one theme, so an author describes subjects by common particularity or explains their different sides.

You cannot twist up contrast essay with another type of academic paper, because it always has the contradistinction in the text. If you write in compare style, there will be a detailed description of standard features. If your task is to make contrast text, you will find out opposite sides of your subjects. Exactly this fact makes this type of academic writing very recognizable.

Notice, that choosing topic doesn’t really belong to the writing process, but it means a lot for your compare essay destiny.

What are the Best Compare And Contrast Essay Topics?

There are more suitable and less suitable topics for contrast essay, so students should make the right choice at the very beginning of making their task. Remember, choosing the exact topic depends not only on your tastes but also on your specialization, study field, the current scientific situation in your discipline, etc. Your essay should be informative, relevant, and interesting, and its success really depends on the topic. Sometimes professors propose several options, but usually, it is a student’s task so you may choose any topic from this list.

Good Compare And Contrast Topics

  • The main sides of Lincoln and Franklin political portraits
  • Similarities in World War I and World War II
  • Differences in American and Mexican national dishes
  • The particularities of red and white wine
  • What is better: to be a child or an adult
  • The comparison of TV shows and radio programs
  • Common sides in Roman and Greek cultures
  • The benefits of cloud space and hard drives
  • What are the differences in jazz and blues music genres
  • Particularities of Greek and Roman mythology
  • What is tastier: meat or sweets

Compare And Contrast Essay Topics For College

  • The main differences between essay and research paper
  • The comparison of home studying and traditional school education
  • Fundamental differences between oral and written literature
  • The role of theory and practice in students’ experience
  • The main particularities of British and American English
  • The main differences between bachelor and master studying program
  • Why American and Canadian English languages are different
  • The experience of writing a dissertation and scholarship essay
  • The advantages and disadvantages of visiting libraries and studying at home
  • The American and European studying systems: the main differences
  • The differences in any college degrees

Funny Compare And Contrast Essay Topics

  • Who is the bad teacher and who is the good one?
  • To lie or to say the truth: what is better?
  • What will you choose: the book or movie about Harry Potter
  • Pros and cons of female friendship
  • The benefits of walking and jogging
  • Are you a Facebook or Instagram user?
  • Are video games harmful or useful?
  • Why you can’t avoid school exams?
  • Would you like to be a DC or Marvel hero?
  • Why are cats better than dogs?
  • How to choose a job position: to be president or prime-minister?

Compare And Contrast Essay Topics For High School  

  • The life of college students and school students: benefits and disadvantages
  • To study with scholarship or to pay for education
  • The differences between high school and college relationships
  • The psychological comfort in school and college
  • How boys and girls feel after school graduation
  • What to choose: to be single or have a boyfriend/girlfriend in high school
  • The advantages and disadvantages of part-time jobs for students
  • To work part-time or be a freelancer during education
  • The choice between business and IT classes
  • The benefits of group projects and personal tasks

Easy Compare And Contrast Essay Topics

  • Parental control: pros and cons
  • The differences between private and public schools
  • Reasons to choose healthy food against junk food
  • How to shop on Amazon and eBay
  • The difference between civil marriage and church wedding
  • How do electronic and gas cars work?
  • The differences between electronic and acoustic guitars
  • Why are college exams more complicated than school tests?
  • Computer science or arts: what is more popular and why?
  • Vegetarian lifestyle and eating meat

Interesting Compare And Contrast Topics

  • The advantages of tea and coffee
  • The best material to build the house: brick or wood
  • National differences among Eastern and Western people
  • The mail similarities in European and American culture
  • How Africans differ from Americans
  • To fly or drive: the safest travel option
  • Would you choose movies or cartoons?
  • Similarities in chess and checks
  • Would you choose a vocation in winter or summer?
  • The good and bad in McDonald’s food

Compare And Contrast Topics For Elementary

  • The arguments for tomatoes as fruit and vegetable
  • To play football or basketball: how to choose?
  • The advantages of Samsung and Apple tablets
  • Do aliens exist? TOP arguments pros and cons
  • Is melon a fruit or a vegetable?
  • What is the best season?
  • To eat breakfast or to eat lunch?
  • The benefits of computers for students
  • To play games or learn lessons during your leisure
  • What is better: books or movies

Ideas For Compare And Contrast Essay  

  • The differences and similarities between North and South Korea
  • The water or coffee for breakfast
  • The comparison between iOS and Android applications
  • Do you prefer a Windows computer or MacBook?
  • The benefits and disadvantages of day sleep
  • Studying at home or abroad: what will you choose?
  • The negative and positive sides of slavery in America
  • To eat bread or prefer a gluten-free meal
  • The similarities between Chinese and Japanese languages
  • To live in Europe or Asia: what is your choice

What are the Steps in Writing a Compare And Contrast Essay?

As you understand, choosing a topic is only the beginning of your job with a contrast essay. The process of writing includes several stages:

  • to make a structure and outlines;
  • to collect interesting information;
  • to make a catchy introduction;
  • to write the main part with facts;
  • to make a summary of the topic according to thesis statements;
  • to proofread the paper.

It is very important to divide your paper into 3 parts: introduction, main part, and conclusion. Such structure will help you to keep one of the main requirements in creating a contrast essay. Your introduction and conclusion will take 1-2 paragraphs, and the body will include all the main arguments.  

But if you need help creating an essay, just ask us about it. Experienced and professional writers at can write papers for you . Just click the button below and we will start writing your compare and contrast essay right now!

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Prof. John has a Ph.D. in English Literature. Whatever type of academic piece of writing you need, he can handle it. Prof. John has worked as an English Teacher for more than 10 years, so he can assist you if you need.

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75 Dynamic Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

Scale of Compare and Contrast Concept

  • DESCRIPTION Scale of Compare and Contrast Concept
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Whether you’re in middle school , high school, or college, these compare and contrast essay ideas will help you get inspired to write some great work . With 75 compare and contrast essay topics on this list, you’re guaranteed to find an idea that interests you!

Social Studies Compare and Contrast Essay Ideas

If you need a history, geography, or other social studies topic for a compare and contrast essay, one of these may be ideal:

  • 1920s vs. 1960s American culture
  • Childhood in the 1980s vs. childhood today
  • Great Depression vs. coronavirus pandemic
  • Pioneers vs. first people in outer space
  • Abraham Lincoln vs. Barack Obama
  • World War I vs World War II
  • Baby Boomers vs. Millennials
  • Rural life vs. urban life
  • Barack Obama vs. Donald Trump
  • American Civil Rights vs. Women’s Lib
  • Concepts of beauty today vs. concepts of beauty in the Victorian era
  • American politics today vs. American politics during the Civil War

Language Arts Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

You can easily write an essay for language arts comparing and contrasting different aspects of writing and reading. Try one of these ideas:

  • Reality vs. fiction in tall tales and legends
  • Women in 1800s literature vs. women in literature today
  • Autobiography vs. memoir
  • Mightiness of the pen vs. mightiness of the sword
  • Email communication vs. hand-written letters
  • Speaking vs. writing
  • British English vs. American English
  • Formal writing vs. colloquial language
  • Book vs. the movie version
  • Reading assigned books vs. choosing your own
  • Poetry vs. prose
  • Science fiction vs. historical fiction

Science and Technology Compare and Contrast Essay Ideas

From new technological advances to medicine and outer space, there are lots of great ideas for compare and contrast essays involving science and technology. Try one of these:

  • Earth vs. Mars
  • Alternative medicine vs. traditional medicine
  • Photos posted online vs. photos kept private
  • Meeting people online vs meeting in real life
  • Video chat etiquette vs. in-person meeting etiquette
  • Genetic testing for diseases vs. traditional diagnostic methods
  • Nuclear power vs. coal-fired power plants
  • Planting more trees vs. cleaning up water systems
  • Alternative energy vs. traditional power plants
  • Hurricanes vs. tornadoes
  • Driver-operated trucks vs. self-driving trucks
  • E-readers vs. traditional paper books

Compare and Contrast Essay Ideas About Daily Life

Many topics involved in daily life, from school and work to the kind of foods we eat, offer great ideas for compare and contrast essays. Try one of these:

  • Homeschool vs. attending public school
  • Spring vs. fall nature walks
  • Fast food vs. home cooking
  • Working at home vs. working in an office
  • Buying food vs. growing your own food
  • Video games vs. movies
  • Movies in the theater vs. movies at home
  • Standardized testing vs. grades
  • Cat people vs. dog people
  • Going away to college vs. staying local
  • Getting married vs staying single
  • Flying for travel vs. road trip
  • Family vacation vs. summer camp
  • Vegan vs. gluten free
  • Popularity vs. independence
  • Getting gifts vs. giving gifts
  • Having siblings vs. being an only child
  • Buying apples vs. planting an apple tree
  • Camping vs. staying in hotel
  • Reality vs. your childhood dream
  • Fast food hamburgers vs. grilled at home
  • Movie with subtitles vs. movie in your language
  • Beach vacation vs. adventure trek
  • In-person job interview vs. phone interview
  • Hotel vs. vacation rental house
  • Cars vs. public transportation
  • Dying your hair vs. natural color

Pick Two to Compare and Contrast

You can also pick two of anything in a category and write a compare and contrast essay about these items. Since they are similar in many ways, juxtaposing the two will make the differences stand out. Here are a few ideas for inspiration:

  • Two types of soda
  • Two schools or colleges
  • Two books in a series, such as Harry Potter
  • Two villains in books or movies
  • Two ways to get to school
  • Two ways to spend the weekend
  • Two people in your family
  • Two Shakespearean plays
  • Two Victorian novels
  • Two superhero movies
  • Two world leaders
  • Two US states

Get Excited About Your Topic

No matter what topic you choose, it’s a good idea to brush up on how to write a compare and contrast essay . You’ll find that having a great topic makes it easy to get excited about your work, and with some basic skills to help you get started, you’ll be on your way to a great grade.

440 Good Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

Should you buy a green or a red apple?

Our specialists will write a custom essay on any topic for 13.00 10.40/page

Before making a decision, people often compare their options. In a compare and contrast essay, you analyze the similarities and differences between certain things. In this article, you’ll find interesting and easy compare and contrast essay topics for college, high school students, middle-schoolers, and even elementary kids.

Keep reading to choose a topic and write a great comparison essay. But first, bookmark our custom-writing services in case you need help with any paper!

  • 🔝 Top 10 Comparison Topics

✍️ Comparison Essay Writing Guide

  • 📝 How to Organize an Essay

🆚 Top 10 Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

🎨 cultural comparison topics.

  • 📜 History topics
  • 🖼️ Topics in Art
  • 📚 Topics in Literature
  • 🍎 Everyday Things
  • 🏰 Locations
  • 👬🏼 People and Characters
  • 🖥️ Technology
  • 🎓 Topics for College
  • 🏫 High School
  • ✏️ Middle School
  • 🧸 Elementary Topics

🔍 References

🔝 top 10 comparison topics 2023.

  • NFT vs. cryptocurrency
  • Recycling vs. landfills
  • How is COVID-19 different from flu?
  • The difference between VR and AR
  • Data science vs. artificial intelligence
  • Machine learning vs. deep learning
  • Plastic cards vs. eco-friendly bank cards
  • Olympic games vs. world championship
  • Difference between immunization and vaccination
  • Is traditional teaching more effective than online teaching?

The best way to start a comparison essay is to choose a topic. Once you know what you will be writing about, it is essential to follow the correct structure for this assignment type. Outlining will ensure that you stick to the proper format from the start.

A typical comparison essay includes the following components:

  • Hook: grab the attention of the audience. It can be a quote, a story, a fact, or even a definition.
  • Background information: in here, you give general knowledge about the topic.
  • Thesis statement: this is the most important sentence since it presents your claim.
  • Supporting evidence: information that proves your claim.
  • Restated thesis.
  • Summary of body paragraphs.
  • So-what statement: explain why your reader should care about your topic.

In colleges and universities, students often write comparative analysis essays. Unlike a simple comparison essay, an analysis requires a more in-depth research. A topic for an analysis paper usually involves two very different or very similar subjects. Comparing them may be challenging, but the end result is always worth it.

How to Write a Compare and Contrast Essay: Mometrix Academy

Make sure that you include background information for both subjects that you compare.

In the thesis statement, you should mention the characteristics that you are going to analyze. For example, when talking about apples, it can be price, taste, and benefits. You can include as many points of comparison as you want.

📝 How to Organize a Comparison Essay

There are two ways to organize the body paragraphs in a comparison essay: subject by subject and point by point . Take a look at some tips on how to properly follow either structure.

✅ Subject-by-subject Pattern

This type of organizing an essay is also called a block pattern . It means that you will discuss each subject separately. In other words, each subject will have its own body paragraph . Describe them according to the details or characteristics that you’ve listed in the thesis statement.

Receive a plagiarism-free paper tailored to your instructions.

Here is how subject-by-subject body paragraphs should look like:

Subject-by-subject body paragraphs.

☑️ Point-by-point Pattern

Points are the characteristics that you compare. You enumerate them in the thesis statement. Point-by-point means that each point will have a separate paragraph . In other words, each paragraph will discuss how a point relates to both items.

Check out how point-by-point body paragraphs look:

Point-by-point body paragraphs.

When it comes to academic purposes, choosing a topic for a comparison paper can be challenging. Fortunately, our experts prepared a list of comparison essay topics for you.

  • Credit cards vs. debit cards
  • Living on-campus vs. off-campus
  • E-learning vs. traditional classes
  • Public vs. private healthcare
  • Traditional vs. modern medicine
  • Online shopping vs. traditional shopping
  • Is it better to drive a car or use the subway?
  • Difference between American and Asian cultures
  • The difference between nuclear and solar power
  • Is it more effective to make calls or send emails?

Cross-cultural topics are very common for comparative essays. Simply put, these topics require you to compare and contrast two cultures. You may talk about the traditions, food, religions, and family values of different countries. Keep in mind that it is crucial not to be biased or discriminatory when analyzing perspectives.

Just 13.00 10.40/page , and you can get an custom-written academic paper according to your instructions

  • Latin American culture vs. European culture.
  • Compare Christmas traditions in Australia and in Canada.
  • Points of difference between Ancient Egyptians and Sumerians.
  • Similarities between Brazilian food and Portuguese food.
  • Compare the concepts of Eastern vs. Western teachings.
  • Differences between American and South African family values.
  • Resemblances between Central American Mayans and Mexican Mayans.
  • Compare traditional clothing in Ukraine and Argentina.
  • Distinctions between American and South Korean business culture .
  • Finnish vs. Spanish educational culture.
  • Asia: cultural differences between China and Japan.
  • Compare Afghan and Russian hospitality.
  • Marital traditions in Latin America and Eastern Europe.
  • Driving culture in Germany vs. Britain .
  • Religious practices: India vs. France.
  • Compare working conditions in Bangladesh with those in the U.S.
  • Latin American vs. Australian music .
  • Contrast Italian and Swedish customer service quality.
  • Similarities and differences between Incas and Aztecs .
  • Compare Babylonian gods with Roman ones .
  • Australian and British ways of raising children .
  • Contrast Roman and Greek rulers.
  • Norway and Spain intercultural differences.
  • Women in China vs. in the U.S .
  • Compare Argentinian and Brazilian dances .
  • Ways in which Canadian and American Thanksgivings are different.
  • Contrast gender roles in Spain and South Korea.
  • Female body expectations in Mexico vs. Greece.
  • Discrimination towards foreigners in America vs. Japan.
  • Differences between friendships in France and America .

📜 History Comparison Topics

Take a look at historical comparison essay topics and choose two subjects to compare. It can be two events or famous historical figures.

The following topics are excellent when an in-depth analysis is required. Keep in mind that they can be controversial since some of them are concerned with sensitive issues.

  • Compare the French Revolutionary War with the American Revolutionary War .
  • Contrast the explorations of Columbus and Hernán Cortés .
  • Differences between the industrial revolution in Europe and America.
  • Ancient leaders: Czar Nicholas II and Julius Caesar .
  • Compare the Spanish colonization of the Americas with British Imperialism.
  • WWII dictatorships: Franco and Mussolini.
  • Compare and contrast the consequences of WWI and WWII .
  • Differences between the inventions of Thomas Edison and Nikola Tesla .
  • U.S. presidents: Barack Obama vs. Ronald Reagan .
  • Industrial Revolution : Andrew Carnegie versus John Rockefeller.
  • Similarities between slavery in the American South and North .
  • Compare and contrast the Confederate states with the Union states.
  • Fascism vs. communism during WWII.
  • Chernobyl nuclear disaster vs. Fukushima.
  • Non-violent activists: Martin Luther King and Gandhi .
  • Differences and similarities between Trojans and Spartans .
  • Presidential assassinations: J.F. Kennedy and Abraham Lincoln.
  • Arms race in America and the Soviet Union .
  • Empires: the Ottoman Turks vs. Persians .
  • Consequences of the Korean War and the Vietnam War .
  • Conquistadors: Portuguese vs. Spanish .
  • Theological approaches: Thomas of Aquinas and Saint Augustine.
  • Points of difference between the Axis and the Allied Powers .
  • Symbols of wealth in Ancient Greece and Rome .
  • Similarities and differences between NATO and the Warsaw Pact.
  • Ancient Greek Philosophers: Socrates vs. Aristotle .
  • Compare and contrast East and West Germany .
  • Distinctions between the Bamboo Curtain and the Iron Curtain .
  • Famous rivalry: Alexander Hamilton vs. Aaron Burr.
  • Enlightenment philosophers: John Locke and Jean-Jacques Rousseau .

Before you start writing.

🖼️ Comparison Essay Topics in Art

Comparative paper topics in art can explain real-life events and evoke emotions. In other words, comparing and contrasting artworks will help you understand their actual purposes. For topics in art, you can choose to compare movements, artworks, and artists.

  • Distinctions and resemblances between the art of Michelangelo and Leonardo Da Vinci .
  • Compare Picasso’s Rose and Blue Periods.
  • Differences between the Baroque art style and Neoclassicism .
  • Compare painting from real life and painting from a photo.
  • Similarities between Goya’s and Rembrandt’s paintings.
  • Colombian artists: Fernando Botero and Luis Alberto Acuña Tapado.
  • Compare and contrast Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera .
  • Differences and similarities between Surrealism and Expressionism.
  • Points of similarity between Egyptian and Aztec pottery.
  • Ways in which Ancient Greek and Mayan jewelry are different.
  • Italian Renaissance sculptors: Donatello vs. Michelangelo .
  • Contrast the representation of life in Surrealism and Realism.
  • Cubism: Salvador Dalí and Pablo Picasso .
  • Painting outdoors vs. painting in a studio.
  • Symbolism movement in France and Russia.
  • Op Art Movement vs. Abstract Art Movement.
  • Pointillism: Georges Seurat and Paul Signac.
  • Similarities and differences between photography and filmmaking.
  • Beethoven vs. Mozart: life and music.
  • Compare and contrast Edvard Munch with Wassily Kandinsky .
  • Goya’s The Second of May 1808 vs. Goya’s The Third of May 1808.
  • The theme of religion in Raphael’s and Velázquez’s paintings.
  • Compare and contrast oil paint and acrylics.
  • Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa versus Botero’s Mona Lisa, Age Twelve.
  • Joaquín Sorolla: Impressionism and Luminism periods.
  • Van Gogh vs. Salvador Dali.
  • Compare and contrast Renaissance and Neoclassical painters.
  • Romanticism : Caspar David Friedrich and Eugène Delacroix.
  • Differences and similarities between Dada and Cubism movements .
  • Ways in which traditional and digital painting are similar.

📚 Literature Comparison Topics

Literature is a gateway to another world. Whether it’s poetry or prose, their mesmerizing effect has captivated people for centuries. Do you love losing yourself between the pages of a novel or the lines of a poem? Then compare and contrast topics on literature are the right thing for you.

  • The theme of love in A Midsummer Night’s Dream vs. Romeo and Juliet .
  • Female representation in The House Bernarda Alba vs. A Doll’s House .
  • Concept of reality: Life’s a Dream and Waiting for Godot .
  • Supernatural themes: The Tempest and Hamlet .
  • Gothic genre: Frankenstein and Dracula.
  • The idea of honesty in Tartuffe versus The Importance of Being Earnest .
  • Contrast plays in the Romantic period with plays in the Realistic period.
  • Orange Is the New Black: TV series vs. book.
  • Detective genre: Edgar Allan Poe and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle .
  • Death in A Rose for Emily vs. A Good Man is Hard to Find .
  • Compare An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge with The Lottery.
  • Ancient Greek plays: Oedipus Rex and Medea.
  • American writers: Ernest Hemingway vs. William Faulkner.
  • The theme of racism in works of Richard Wright and Langston Hughes.
  • Compare the theme of knowledge in Fahrenheit 451 and 1984.
  • Revenge: The Count of Monte Cristo and Great Expectations .
  • From the Earth to the Moon vs. Journey to the Center of the Earth.
  • War and children: The Kite Runner and A Long Way Gone.
  • The theme of competition in Battle Royale vs. The Hunger Games .
  • Representation of society and class: Matched and The Selection.
  • Fantasy fiction: The Lord of the Rings and the Harry Potter series.
  • The theme of bravery in The Hobbit vs. Beowulf .
  • Compare and contrast Lord of the Flies with Animal Farm.
  • Human relationships: Their Eyes Were Watching God vs. Brave New World .
  • WW2 novels: Boy in the Striped Pajamas and The Book Thief.
  • American 20th-century poets: Maya Angelou and Langston Hughes .
  • Walt Whitman and Emily Dickinson: literary style comparison.
  • Epic poems: Epic of Gilgamesh and Odyssey .
  • Latin American writers: Isabel Allende and Gabriel García Márquez .
  • Literary movements: Naturalism vs. Modernism .

Thesis statement.

🍎 Comparison Topics: Everyday Things

By now, you should have some ideas in mind. However, what if you are taking the IELTS and the prompt is to compare everyday things? Comparison essay topics on this subject often focus on differences and similarities between daily choices such as drinking tea or juice.

  • Owning a house vs. paying rent .
  • Distinctions between working remotely and traditional jobs.
  • Transportation: riding a bicycle vs. taking a bus.
  • Contrast online and traditional classes.
  • Buying food vs. bringing lunch from home.
  • Compare the effects of a daily workout with weekly training.
  • Taking class notes on paper versus on the computer.
  • Resemblances and distinctions between TV shows and movies .
  • Hanging out with friends vs. staying at home.
  • Contrast studying with working while studying .
  • Homework : working ahead vs. leaving it for the last minute.
  • Taking a shower every day vs. in intervals.
  • Compare following a daily routine with having no schedule .
  • The difference between owning a company and working for someone.
  • Contrast playing soccer with playing basketball .
  • Taking drawing lessons vs. learning to draw by yourself.
  • Compare playing in an orchestra with playing alone.
  • Similarities and differences between ballet and jazz lessons.
  • Compare waking up early with sleeping in.
  • Following a vegan diet vs. eating meat every day.
  • Contrast the effects of praying daily with not praying at all.
  • Compare wearing makeup and wearing no makeup.
  • Similarities and differences between cats and dogs.
  • Interacting with family members online vs. face-to-face .
  • Social media : limited usage and unlimited usage.
  • Compare and contrast daily meditation with daily yoga .
  • Cleaning the room every day versus weekly.
  • Daily activities while dating vs. while being single.
  • Intermittent fasting vs. eating whenever you are hungry.
  • Free time: reading a book vs. volunteering .

🏰 Comparison Essay Topics about Locations

Now, what if you want to compare popular and interesting places?

When it comes to locations, you usually have two similar things to compare. For instance, your essay can be about two churches or national parks. Additionally, you can mention how cultural differences influence architecture.

  • Waterfalls: Angel Falls and Iguazu Falls.
  • Contrast the Denali National Park with Banff National Park .
  • Archipelagos: Fernando de Noronha and The Azores.
  • Compare the Atacama Desert with the Sahara Desert.
  • Similarities and differences between Boracay and the Faroe Islands.
  • Points of difference between Aurlandsfjord with Milford Sound.
  • Ways that Halong Bay and Disko Bay are different.
  • Resemblances and distinctions between Lake Baikal and Lake Tekapo.
  • Compare and contrast Medina Azahara and Aljaferia Palace.
  • Similarities and differences between Mount Kilimanjaro and Mount Fuji.
  • Ways in which Kalaupapa and Cliffs of Moher are different.
  • Contrast Yellowstone National Park with Torres del Paine National Park.
  • Ways in which America and Germany are similar .
  • Compare Raja Ampat Islands with the Galápagos Islands .
  • Points of similarity between Antelope Canyon and Grand Canyon .
  • Ways in which the Pantheon and the Acropolis of Athens are different.
  • Similarities and differences between the Hagia Sophia and the Taj Mahal.
  • Contrast Burj Khalifa and the Leaning Tower of Pisa.
  • Guggenheim Museum versus Niterói Contemporary Art Museum.
  • Compare and contrast the Eiffel Tower with the Space Needle.
  • Ways in which the Guggenheim and the Dancing House are similar.
  • St. Basil’s Cathedral vs. Metropolitan Cathedral of Brasília.
  • Points of difference between La Sagrada Familia and Dome of the Rock .
  • Distinctions and resemblances between American national parks.
  • Compare the Sultan Ahmed Mosque with the Mosque of Córdoba.
  • Points of difference between Musée d’Orsay and Musée du Louvre .
  • Contrast Sydney Opera House and The Lotus Temple.
  • New York : Chrysler Building and One World Trade Center.
  • Ways in which Le Mont-Saint Michel and Bran Castle are different.
  • Compare the Forbidden City and Angkor Wat.

Alfred Nobel quote.

👬🏼 Comparison Paper Topics: People and Characters

When it comes to people and characters, you can compare and contrast them in many aspects. For instance, analyze their personalities or their influence on the world. You can draw a comparison between people you admire or even between your favorite fictional characters!

  • Fathers of experimental psychology: William James versus Wilhelm Wundt .
  • Musicians: Elvis Presley vs. Michael Jackson.
  • Compare the ideas of David Hume with Adam Smith’s .
  • Similarities and differences between Steve Jobs and Bill Gates .
  • Vladimir Lenin vs. Joseph Stalin.
  • Compare the biographies of Angelina Jolie and Jennifer Aniston.
  • Emperors: Charlemagne and Napoleon I.
  • Queen Victoria vs. Queen Elizabeth I.
  • American Founding Fathers: Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson.
  • Famous scientists: Albert Einstein and Marie Curie.
  • Contrast the ideas of Karl Marx with those of Friedrich Engels.
  • Differences and similarities between Prince Harry and Prince William.
  • Famous humanitarians: Mother Teresa and Princess Diana .
  • Resemblances and distinctions between Thomas Hobbes and John Locke.
  • Popes: St. Gregory the Great and Innocent III.
  • Similarities and differences between Katniss Everdeen and Beatrice Prior.
  • Compare and contrast Boo Radley with Atticus Finch.
  • Dumbledore vs. Odin .
  • Similarities and differences between Guy Montag and Winston Smith.
  • Bilbo Baggins vs. Frodo Baggins.
  • Shakespeare’s Falstaff vs. Milton’s Satan.
  • Classic detectives: Sherlock Holmes and C. Auguste Dupin.
  • Differences and similarities between Cher Horowitz and Emma Woodhouse .
  • Contrast Sam Spade with The Continental Op.
  • Nancy Drew vs. Tintin.
  • Compare Jay Gatsby and Nick Carraway in The Great Gatsby .
  • Similarities and differences between Catherine Earnshaw and Elizabeth Bennet.
  • Contrast Bernard Marx with John the Savage in Brave New World .
  • Points of difference between Captain Ahab and Moby Dick.
  • Tom Sawyer vs. Huckleberry Finn .

🖥️ Technology Comparison Topics

Nowadays, technology helps us in many ways. For instance, it provides various means of communication. In an essay on this matter, you can compare devices, uses, and technological changes over time.

These comparison paper topics can turn out to be controversial, exciting, or even funny. It all depends on the issues that you choose to research and write about.

  • Compare owning a landline phone and a mobile phone .
  • Similarities and differences between MacBook Pro and MacBook Air.
  • Microsoft Word vs. Google Docs.
  • Ways in which the Android system and the IOS system differ.
  • Similarities and differences between online books and printed books.
  • Compare technology usage in medicine with technology usage in business .
  • Similarities and differences between mobile games and outdoor games .
  • Points of difference between traditional mail and electronic mail .
  • Watching movies at home versus going to a public theater .
  • Compare writing on a physical keyboard and a touchscreen keyboard.
  • Exams : online and paper-based exams for college students.
  • Internet censorship in China versus the United States.
  • Compare and contrast physical and digital pictures .
  • Similarities and differences between gasoline vehicles and electric cars.
  • Contrast the efficiency of an Amazon Echo Dot and Google Home.
  • Apple devices: owning an iPod vs. having an iPad .
  • Using robots in factories vs. hiring people.
  • Compare the usage of solar and wind energy .
  • Bluetooth vs. wired-connected devices.
  • Contrast Huawei phones with Apple phones.
  • Similarities and differences between Windows and OS X.
  • Owning a computer vs. having a tablet.
  • Compare texting your friends with talking on the phone .
  • Using a house security system versus having no security system.
  • Similarities and differences between an air conditioner and a fan.
  • Compare baking in the oven with reheating food in a microwave.
  • Barcodes vs. Radio Frequency Identification Tags.
  • Ways in which a Dell laptop and an HP laptop are different.
  • Similarities and differences between Ethernet and WiFi .
  • Compare using a smartphone camera and a DSLR.

🎓 Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for College Students

If your main criterion for your topic is that it’s suitable for college students, this section is for you. In higher education, you might be expected to put a more analytical spin on your comparison. The following ideas will make it easy for you to dive deep into similarities and differences:

  • Which views do Donald Trump and Joe Biden share?
  • Compare and contrast anarchism and socialism .
  • Language acquisition theories: Noam Chomsky vs. B.F. Skinner .
  • Describe fish species from the deep sea vs. the surface.
  • What’s the difference between the U.S. Constitution and Articles of Confederation?
  • Discuss the differences between waterproof and water-resistant materials.
  • How does the structure of acrylic and cotton textiles differ?
  • The economic and cultural influence of Coca Cola vs. PepsiCo.
  • Similarities between Otto von Bismarck and Winston Churchill .
  • How did the cultural turn influence the humanities compared to the linguistic turn?
  • Explore the differences between structuralism and post-structuralism.
  • The role of syntax in Hindi vs. English.
  • Compare and contrast frontend vs. backend development.
  • Which ideas did Simone de Beauvoir and Jean-Paul Sartre share?
  • What were the focus points of first-wave vs. second-wave feminism ?
  • Similarities and differences between evolutionary vs. developmental psychology .
  • How do large-scale and high-throughput DNA sequencing processes differ?
  • Business strategies: Apple vs. Samsung.
  • Discuss the legacy of jazz vs. blues music .
  • Contrast a natural birth vs. getting an epidural .
  • Chemical components of red wine compared to vermouth.
  • What characteristics do black tea and coffee share?
  • Describe the differences between impressionism and expressionism .
  • IELTS and TOEFL: what do the two systems have in common?
  • Experimental psychology in 19th century France vs. Germany.
  • Film studies: watching movies now and in the past .

John Steinbeck quote.

  • How does the administrative work in Russia compared to Georgia?
  • Compare and contrast Judith Butler’s and Camille Paglia’s position on gender.
  • Cooking cultures in Italy vs. France : how are they different?
  • What do cosmologists study as opposed to astronomers?

🏫 Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for High School Students

Your teacher has assigned you a comparison essay, but now you have to develop a topic by yourself? Don’t be overwhelmed—browse this list and be sure to find topics suitable for your level. With these creative ideas, writing your paper will undoubtedly be fun:

  • What happens to nature in spring vs. fall?
  • For literature lovers: analyze the differences between plays and novels.
  • Compare the origins of near-sightedness and farsightedness.
  • Philosophical positions: rationalism vs. empiricism.
  • Advantages of sleeping in vs. getting up early.
  • What are the health benefits of HIIT vs. cardio?
  • Differences and similarities between acoustic vs. electric guitars .
  • Contrast wearing glasses and wearing contacts.
  • Night vision: owls vs. cats .
  • How does living in the city differ from living in the countryside?
  • Compare the anatomy of chickens and velociraptors.
  • Outline the differences between American football and rugby.
  • Space movies: what do Steven Soderbergh’s and Andrei Tarkovsky’s versions of Solaris have in common?
  • How do Fanta and Mirinda differ?
  • Similarities and differences between Christmas and Easter.
  • Compare and contrast having a big family and being an only child.
  • Challenges of growing up queer vs. straight.
  • Baking bread with yeast vs. sourdough.
  • Outline the features of kohl pencils vs. gel eyeliners.
  • Advantages of using paper bags vs. plastic bags .
  • Contrast activities during winter and summer vacations .
  • Games and graphics: PS4 vs. Xbox One.
  • What are the differences between being homeschooled and going to a public school?
  • Subcultures: Emo vs. Goth.
  • Describe the environmental impact of hybrid vs. electric cars .
  • Compare the features and prospects of arts vs. science education.
  • How do manga and comics differ?
  • Differences and similarities between Halloween and the Mexican Día de Muertos.
  • Contrast the new Tomb Raider trilogy with the old games.
  • High school students vs. elementary school students.

✏️ Compare and Contrast Topics for Middle School

Maybe you’re already an essay writing veteran. Or perhaps this is your first compare and contrast paper. Whatever your experience is, this section has what you need. Now, the most important thing is that you write about something you like. The following list includes manageable examples for every middle school student:

  • Go to studycorgi.comThe taste of soda from plastic bottles vs. cans.
  • What’s more interesting: physics or chemistry ?
  • Advantages of having long hair vs. short hair.
  • Compare in-ear headphones with over-ear ones.
  • Differences between Snapchat and Instagram .
  • What’s better: a big birthday party with your friends or celebrating with your family?
  • Compare Ancient Egyptians and Ancient Greeks.
  • Contrast working in the medical field with working as an engineer .
  • What can you do at night as opposed to during the day?
  • How do Pokémon and Digimon differ?
  • Volcanoes : compare Italy’s Mount Etna and Tanzania’s Mount Kilimanjaro.
  • Similarities and differences between 2D and 3D movies.
  • How does it affect your life if you’re shy as opposed to outgoing ?
  • Compare going to school and being in kindergarten .
  • Baseball and basketball : what do they have in common?
  • Cars: the difference between a Mercedes and a Chevrolet.
  • Compare and contrast a book of your choice and its movie adaptation .
  • Reading the newspaper vs. a magazine .
  • What’s it like to live in an apartment compared to living in a house?
  • The pleasure of giving presents vs. getting them.
  • Describe Mars in comparison to Earth.
  • Japanese vs. American cartoons : what are the differences?
  • What’s different if you’re left-handed vs. right-handed?
  • Sugar and salt: how do they differ?
  • Find similarities between hail and rain.
  • What are the features of sand vs. ice deserts ?
  • Compare science fiction and fantasy.
  • Contrast natural sciences and humanities.
  • Dressing up for events vs. going in jeans and a shirt.
  • What differs a hot air balloon from a zeppelin?

🧸 Compare and Contrast Topics for Elementary

Do you want to practice your writing skills with a fantastic essay? Under this rubric, you’ll find friendly and funny compare and contrast essay topics. Pick any and just focus on your creativity. Who says school assignments always have to be boring? Here are some engaging writing prompts to boost your ideas:

  • Fortnite vs. Minecraft.
  • Dog breeds: compare Chihuahuas and Pitbulls .
  • What are the differences between flowers and mushrooms?
  • What’s more fun: writing a poem or painting a picture?
  • Describe the similarities between crabs and lobsters.
  • Contrast doctors and teachers.
  • Differences between elementary school students and kindergarteners .

Use these transitions in your essay.

  • Compare and contrast a dish you like and a dish you don’t like.
  • What’s the difference between being excited and being happy ?
  • How do you feel when you’re lonely vs. when you’re sad?
  • Camping in a tent vs. in a van.
  • What’s it like if you’re tall as opposed to short?
  • Insects: what are the differences between bees and wasps?
  • Compare and contrast juice and soft drinks.
  • Contrast magic vs. science.
  • What distinguishes a buddy from a best friend ?
  • Find similarities between nectarines and peaches.
  • Which personality traits do your mother and father share?
  • Skateboarding vs. inline skating.
  • Differences and similarities between buying groceries and shopping .
  • What distinguishes dolphins from whales ?
  • Compare and contrast tornadoes and hurricanes.
  • Speaking only one language vs. knowing two or more languages .
  • Compare and contrast natural light and candlelight.
  • What’s it like to have your own computer compared to sharing it?
  • Countries with a cold vs. warm climate .
  • Contrast eating with a fork and using chopsticks.
  • How does wearing a skirt differ from wearing pants ?
  • Hot vs. cold drinks.
  • What’s distinct about writing with a pen compared to using a pencil?

👶 Fun Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for Kids

Sometimes, decisions can be challenging. Bears or dolphins? Sandcastles or snowball fights? It might be easier to write everything you know about both options down. Once you do this, you’re automatically comparing and contrasting. Without even noticing, you’re probably using this skill all the time. Test your knowledge with these fun and exciting topics:

  • Compare drawing with crayons vs. using fingerpaint.
  • What’s cooler: the police or the fire department?
  • Would you prefer being on a boat trip or taking a train ride?
  • What’s better: Friday or Saturday?
  • Compare peanut butter and Nutella.
  • What ranks higher for you: cake or cookies?
  • Would you rather be at home or on vacation ?
  • Ice cream vs. popsicles.
  • What’s more comfortable: sitting or lying down?
  • Do you prefer sleeping in a blanket or a sleeping bag?
  • Stuffed animals vs. toys : what’s more fun to play with?
  • Lollipops vs. jawbreakers.
  • Compare being with your parents with staying at your grandparents’.
  • Which is the better pet: a bunny or a snake ?
  • What would you prefer: playing in the snow or at the beach ?
  • Pizza or hot dogs: what’s tastier?
  • Batman vs. Spiderman: who is the coolest superhero?
  • Would it be nicer to be a mermaid or a fairy?
  • Going to the zoo vs. the circus.
  • Would you rather play at home or outside?
  • Is it more interesting to watch a cartoon or a T.V. show ?
  • Breakfast food competition: pancakes vs. eggs and bacon.
  • Talking to friends online vs. face-to-face.
  • What’s the better superpower: being invisible or flying?
  • Do you prefer scary or funny stories?
  • Time travel : would it be more exciting to go to the past or the future?
  • Compare the advantages of reading by yourself and being read to by someone.
  • Which presents are better: birthday or Christmas ?
  • Wearing pajamas vs. a nightgown.
  • Contrast tree houses and pillow forts.

💬 Compare and Contrast Speech Topics

A compare and contrast speech is an excellent method to convince your audience that one thing is better than another. For example, you can talk about why using local and organic produce for school lunches is a good idea. Try making a speech on one of these topics:

  • Learning an instrument in school vs. skipping music classes.
  • Letting students choose what to read in class compared to having the teacher decide.
  • Should school lunch be organized by the state or by private companies?
  • Battle of the mac and cheeses: Kraft vs. Annie’s.
  • Contrast Roman Catholicism and Protestant Christianity.
  • Compare and contrast the advantages of PowerPoint vs. Prezi.
  • Why would it be better to use tablets in class than textbooks ?
  • Which ideas do Liberals and Conservatives share?
  • Advantages of buying everything online vs. locally.
  • Who had a more significant impact on music: 2pac or Rage Against the Machine?
  • Our work performance is closely related to our mental health . Analyze how it would benefit companies to pay for their employees’ therapy instead of the workers having to pay themselves.
  • Movie rentals: Netflix vs. Blockbuster.
  • Advocate for learning to cook instead of dining out every day .
  • What’s the better gift: spending time with someone or giving them money ?
  • The more people receive a quality education , the better for the economy. Compare countries with high vs. low education costs. Make a case why your country should lower/raise the price of education.
  • Analyze the recovery of drug addicts in rehabilitation programs vs. prisons .
  • Bill Clinton and Barack Obama : who was the better president?
  • Theory of value: Adam Smith vs. David Ricardo.
  • Which method is more sensible to combat climate change: carbon capture or renewable energies ?
  • Wearing real vs. artificial leather: ethical issues and solutions.
  • Describe the rich vs. the poor in the U.S.
  • Compare the harmful effects of alcohol and marijuana.
  • Should employers reduce or increase the number of robots they use?
  • Helicopter parents vs. parental absenteeism: what’s worse?
  • What’s more helpful for someone with anger issues: playing shooters or meditating ?
  • Compare and contrast fatuous and compassionate love.
  • Emma Goldman vs. Alan Moore : who was the more influential anarchist?
  • The benefits of Zoom compared to Google Meet.
  • In terms of news, what’s more informative: television or the internet ?
  • Which sport is better for weight loss : swimming or running?

We hope that our tips and topics will help you write your best comparison essay!

  • The Comparative Essay: University of Toronto
  • Writing a Paper: Comparing and Contrasting: Walden University
  • Compare and Contrast: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Compare and Contrast Essay: Excelsior Online Writing Lab
  • How to Write Comparative Essays in Literature: Seattle P-I
  • Art Movements and Styles: Artland
  • Ancient Egypt:
  • The 10 Oldest Ancient Civilizations That Have Ever Existed: Ancient History Lists
  • People Known For: History and Society: Encyclopedia Britannica
  • Comparison and Contrast Essay Examples College:
  • Paper Topics and Opposing Viewpoints: California State University, Long Beach: Libguides
  • Comparative Speech Topics: Synonym
  • The Greatest Books: The Best Books of All Time
  • The 50 Most Influential Gadgets of All Time: Time
  • Art:
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Compare and Contrast Essay Topics For Students

03 Jun 2021

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❓What are Compare and Contrast Essays?

📑Tips on Choosing a Topic

Compare and Contrast Essays Topics:

  • 📚Literature
  • ✒️Controversial

Compare and contrast essay is a particular type of analytical article written to give readers a perfect understanding of two compared and contrasted subjects.

Simple compare-contrast tasks and compare and contrast essays have one significant difference. Simple tasks typically have minimal metrics to define what areas of the report the writer is considering, while compare and contrast essays have a specific algorithm of features analysis and determine the similarities and differences between the two subjects of interest.

There is a belief that compare and contrast essays suit only college students. Still, writers of any field can use this essay writing type to present essential information to their readers.

Research is generally needed to write good compare and contrast essay topics; in the end, readers should have an excellent understanding of the two topics. You can find more information about compare-and-contrast essay topics below.

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What are Compare and Contrast Essays?

A good compare and contrast essay is an essay that covers two subjects of interest or more and determines their similarity and difference by comparing and contrasting them due to particular points. A compare and contrast essay can handle five distinct issues, analyzing them with specific metrics.

Strong analytical and research skills are needed in examining three topics and more in your compare-and-contrast essay. These essays are usually required in dissertations and projects in College and Postgraduate programs. A thesis statement for compare and contrast essays is an excellent example of these complicated essays. Compare-and-contrast essays often examine topics of high interest.

Moreover, this type of article is mainly preferred by readers because of the high readability index and informativeness of such essays.  The subjects may be intricate or could be straightforward, fascinating things to compare and contrast. For example, it could be animated and inanimated subjects, such as physical objects, people, or general ideas. For instance, a compare and contrast essay may exclusively compare subjects of interest, contrast them, or do both, depending on what the essay writer wants. It is just as easy to see interesting compare-and-contrast essay topics in different fields as much as you will find compare-and-contrast essay topics for college students.

Tips on Choosing a Compare and Contrast Essays Topic

Having clarified the primary purpose of writing compare and contrast essays, we need to understand the key factors to keep in mind when writing an article to make it complete and efficient. We offer these compare-and-contrast tips to help you write qualified and smooth compare-and-contrast essay topics. All of them are reflected below.

  • Select the Topic to Be Compared/Contrast It is crucial to select topics comparison of which are obvious after reading. It would be best if you choose interesting topics for your raiders. Hence, you will reach a wider auditory. For example, if you use a topic on which your reader can start contrasting subjects after reading the heading, you will engage more people to read your essay. That means if readers start thinking of differences and similarities related to your topic, they will be interested in seeing the whole paper to compare their beliefs with yours. For example, you could contrast types of colleagues instead of water- and air-based animals. Having the former comparison and differences relatable, it would become challenging to select the metrics that make it manageable for you to compare and contrast.
  • List The Characteristics of the Topics An influential stage when writing your essay is to itemize the markers of the subjects of interest you aim to compare and contrast. A convenient way to do it is to list the individual characteristics of your topics. After that, arrange them according to the subjects. All in all, you will have a strict ranking where the same features of different subjects coincide in the order of the paragraphs in your essay. Then, compare and contrast the topics based on these metrics.
  • Use Transitions Properly Transition words for compare and contrast essays are a fundamental feature for composing a qualified article. They both increase readability and ease switching from one characteristic to another. Or, you can smoothly move from a comparison between subjects to their contrast by using these words. For instance, use the transition “On the Other Hand” or “On the Contrary” if you want to start contrasting the subjects of your essay. All in all, such words or phrases help you to move from one part of the text to another smoothly and efficiently.  Writing a personal statement requires a similar approach.

With the tips above, you can write an excellent essay. In addition, there is a possibility to find felicitous topic ideas or buy comparison essay topics written by professionals. You can purchase non-plagiarized pieces of complex, easy, or ridiculous essay topics.

Find some typical Education Essay Topics for 2022 below.

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Education Compare and Contrast Essays Topics

Education is a vital part of topics for articles both for students and non-studying writers. In addition, it’s an interesting sphere to analyze due to the wide variety of themes and high interest from the audience all over the globe. For example, if you need to write a compare-and-contrast essay regarding the education sphere, we can offer you these topics to choose from:

  • Home Education vs. Daycare: What will Suit your Child? – comparison and contrast between the two for kids.
  • Spice-Cake vs. Cane: What Works Better with Kids? – compare and contrast the effects of punishments and rewards for keeping kids in check in school.
  • Part-Time Job vs. Deep Focus on Studies – compare and contrast of the benefits of the two for college students.
  • E-learning vs. Conventional Learning – compare and Contrast remote learning to conventional learning.
  • Kids Exposure to High-end gadgets vs. conventional Books – Compare and Contrast both for kids.
  • Learning System in Asia vs. the West – compare and contrast education levels in the West and Asia.
  • College Dream vs. Skills Acquisition – compare and contrast College dreams to Skill acquisition.
  • Textbooks vs. E-books - compare and contrast traditionally printed and electronic books.
  • Private vs. Public College: Which will Suit You? - compare and contrast colleges to choose the best for your child
  • Parents’ Involvement in Children’s Career Choice vs. Self Discovery

Sports Compare and Contrast Essays Topics

Since we have dozens of sports these days, more and more people are getting involved in a healthy lifestyle. Newcomers, experienced athletes, and fans are interested in deep and precise comparisons of different sports and how to include them in their routines. So here is the list of engaging topics to choose from for your next essay:

  • Football or basketball: three-pointer in the soccer goal – two of the most popular sports in the world, with both boasting a billion fans combined. Fans from both ends believe one is better, and as such, they will make a great compare and contrast essay topic.
  • Marathons and walkathons – similar in terms of endurance, will, and fitness. However, they are also different.
  • Indoor vs. In Open Air Sports – students can write about the similarities and differences of both sports by taking an analytic approach.
  • Sport-Study Balance vs. High Focus studying – you can write a research compare/contrast essay on which of the two methods will yield more results as a student.
  • Early morning Exercise vs. Late night Exercise – A compare/contrast essay on which type of the two exercises is most effective considering certain metrics can make an excellent topic.
  • Running vs. gymming: Which one is for you? – this subject will make a great topic and help fitness experts know when to adopt any of them.
  • Home Exercise VS Gym Workout – These two discussions have supporters and respective critics, making it an excellent compare/contrast essay.
  • Tennis or Badminton: Which is Harder? – Tennis and Badminton are closely related sports, and a compare/contrast essay about the duo will not be out of place.
  • Soccer vs. NFL – the heated argument on the better between soccer and ruby makes the subject excellent for compare/essay writing.
  • Indigenous sports vs. modern sports – there are many metrics to compare and contrast to know the best out of the two sports.

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Politics Compare and Contrast Essays Topics

Politics plays a crucial role in the modern world. Therefore, we need to learn about the special features of different official systems and their peculiarities. We offer you the following topics:

  • Democracy, Monarchy, or Autocracy
  • Capitalism and communism: Are They so Distinctive?
  • Socialism and Communism: Is It the Same?
  • Merits of free trade vs. the demerits of Free Trade
  • Centralized Government Vs. Decentralized Government
  • The US Political System vs. The French Political System
  • Legislature and executive - Branches of Power to analyze
  • Fundamental rights Vs. State Policy's directive principles
  • Equal opportunities versus affirmative action
  • Freedom of Expression Vs. restraints on Expression

Economy Compare and Contrast Essays Topics

We live in a world where the economy plays a pivotal role in our everyday lives. It affects our state, the level of living, and even the ecology. That’s why we need to be conscious of the economy and understand how it works and which impact has. Here are examples of compare and contrast topics regarding the economy:

  • Economics as Mandatory Discipline or as an Optional Pick
  • Peace vs. political unrest – Compare and Contrast how both affect the world Economy.
  • Is Economic Knowledge required in 2022 or not? – compare and contrast the effects of economic knowledge against the effects of non-economic knowledge.
  • Capitalism vs. Communism in World Economy – compare and contrast the effect of both on the world economy.
  • Economy and Politics
  • Economics vs. business studies: What’s More Efficient?
  • Regulated Prices vs. Free Market
  • America Tax System vs. China Tax System
  • New Laws vs Old Laws: Which is More Important
  • Macro-Economics vs. Micro-Economics – compare and contrast the difference between the two Economics.

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Social Studies Compare and Contrast Essays Topics

Nowadays, social studies are developing at a mindblowing speed. Since the pandemic started, we have become even more aware of social-based orientations. Moreover, interest in social studies is still at the top rates, and it seems not to lose engagement. That’s why you can write about this sphere, and we provide you with such topics:

  • Childhood in the 90s vs. Modern Day Childhood
  • Coronavirus vs. The Great Depression
  • COVID-19 vs. The Plague
  • Adolf Hitler vs. Napoleon
  • Common-Law Vs. Civil Law
  • Rural Life to Urban Life
  • America in the 60s Vs. America Now
  • Are Social Orientations Necessary or Not?
  • Family-based Orientations vs. School Orientations
  • Do war Achieve Peace or Not?

History Compare and Contrast Essays Topics

History is often illustrated as a spiral because the main events are constantly repeated but with other circumstances. If you want to understand the whole situation in the world, you should be good at history. And which way is better than comparing historically significant events and postures? Choose a topic from the list to write an exciting compare-and-contrast essay about history:

  • Lincoln's Ideas vs. Washington's ideas
  • Baroque epoch vs. Renaissance
  • Religious studies vs. Anthropology: Are They So Different?
  • Napoleon Fall vs. Hitler Fall
  • Democracy and monarchy
  • The US and the UK Election System
  • American Independence vs. China Independence
  • Henry VIII and King Louis XIV
  • Nazism vs. Fascism: Is It the Same?
  • World War I vs. World War II

Literature Compare and Contrast Essays Topics

Literature is a vital part of modern culture. So, we must read and understand every book, author, or country's specific features. Each period has unique peculiarities that give a complete comprehension of a piece of literature. Look at the offered list of topics to choose your favorite one:

  • Reality vs. Fiction Literature
  • Depiction of Women in Literature in the 80s and Now
  • Memoir vs. Autobiography
  • Writing vs. Speaking
  • Pen Letters to Modern-Day Email Communication systems
  • Prose versus Poetry
  • Historical Fiction to Science Fiction
  • Shakespeare Piece: Othello vs. Hamlet
  • English novels vs. French novels – compare and Contrast English novels to that of France. You could consider their relationship as well.
  • Roman and Greek mythology – compare and Contrast Roman and Greek Mythology.

Controversial Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

We believe that controversial compare and contrast essays are the most interesting ones. They include two opposite beliefs on the same question or situation and analyze their similarity or different points. It’s the most  exciting essay type to write and overwhelming to read, so look at the list of top-rated topics for such articles:

  • Intervention or Invasion: What is the Difference? - Comparison and contrast between Intervention and Invasion of a sovereign country.
  • Religion versus Atheism – comparing and contrasting the effects of Religion and Atheism on a country's growth, humanity, and other metrics.
  • LGBT++ Rights vs. Sexual Orientation Restriction – compare and contrast Freedom of sexual orientation to restriction in sexual orientation.
  • Freedom of Expression vs. Restriction in Thoughts – Compare and contrast Society with Freedom of Expression and those with restricted speech.
  • Death Penalty vs. Life Sentence: What is Worse? – you can compare and contrast the death penalty to a life sentence and how it affects psychology.
  • Weapons of Mass destruction for sovereign countries: yes or no – compare and contrast countries with weapons of Mass destruction and those without them. Consider how they affect global peace.
  • Sex work vs. Drugs abuse? – compare and contrast both based on their effects on teenagers and adults.
  • Abortion vs. Mandatory Delivery: What says Ethics? – compare and contrast why abortion laws and mandatory conceiving should be an option.
  • Climate Change vs. War: There Is Connection? – Compare and contrast the two's effects on jeopardizing life and the world economy.
  • Violent video games and Non-shooting games – Compare and contrast the two games and determine their effect on kids' health.

In our article, Papersowl team has highlighted eight popular categories for getting excellent compare-and-contrast essay ideas. They can be used as compare and contrast essay topics for college students or non-study writers. Each class had 10 Topics listed to give readers perfect comparison and contrast essay options to consider. Some of the topics in this list can be compared and contrasted for entertainment, while others are highly analytical and could easily pass for academic projects and a Thesis.

The aim of writing compare and contrast topics is to ensure that, in the end, you are passing factual information. It means that you provide a clear and accurate analysis of selected subjects due to the metrics chosen. That gives your target audience a good understanding of both topics, where they complement each other and differ. For PowerPoint presentation writers , this type of analysis is crucial for making a powerful presentation. It helps them to better visualize the topics and make an informed decision about their comparison. Moreover, it helps them to better explain the differences and similarities between two topics in a concise manner.

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Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

Compare and contrast essays are some of the most interesting assignments and students (well, some) enjoy writing them. This is because unlike most kinds of essays, it is hardly possible to get writer's block when you are handling these. You are given the freedom to not only pick compare and contrast topics on your own, but you have the freedom to choose the side of your support as well as how to contrast it.

However, the fact that you are given all this freedom does not mean that this is the simplest essay to write. The biggest challenge is usually in picking the best topic for you and this can be quite a huge issue if you are not careful in what you are doing. Let's see compare and contrast essay topics ideas as well as brief strategies you can use in your writing.

Tips On How To Write Superb Compare And Contrast Essays

The first thing that you need to do before you start writing is to choose an appropriate topic to write about. This should essentially be a topic of interest to you or something that you can discuss in length without any problem whatsoever. Lucky for you, there are so many topics you could focus on when writing and it is all up to you to determine the exact topic that you want to build on.

In most cases, the topics you choose should be closely related. For example if you chose to go with sports, choose two contrasting topics that are in the same category such as soccer vs basketball. You should steer clear of choosing topics that do not have any kind of relationship whatsoever such as pasta vs winter. This will be difficult to compare as they do not have any similarities and are basically worlds apart.

However, there is an exception of really good art students who can pull off contrasting two things that are completely different or discussing certain topics from an artistic point of view. For example one may choose a topic such as, life in the shoes of a werewolf. You see that it is an unusual topic that may be quite difficult to imagine or explain, but some students may just turn that topic into a masterpiece.

Students are encouraged that when choosing a topic, you think outside the box as this will most likely earn you better grades. Students who excel in writing about such complex topic may have a chance to be enrolled into some of the best Art universities to develop their skills and talent.

How To Choose Your Sources

Just because you are given total freedom about what you are going to write, does not mean that you should write casually without giving any proof. Remember that a compare and contrast essay is an academic essay so the language and formatting should all be formal.

Referencing and giving citations in your work is one of the best ways of proving your points, hence explaining why you chose a particular stand. The sources that you choose should be up to date and not more than 5 years old unless you are discussing a historical topic. Always check for the credibility of your sources before using them in your essay so as not to give false information. Some of the best sources of information include:

  • Official textbooks and encyclopedias.
  • Published journals.
  • Official magazines.
  • Academic and research reports.
  • Documentaries.

Steps To Writing A Compare And Contrast Essay

As you may know, a compare and contrast essay is not really written like other common kinds of essays . There are certain aspects about it that make it so different from all these other essays and you need to be aware of that before you start writing.

The first thing you need to do is identify the type of compare and contrast essay that you are handling. There are basically four types:

  • Events . These essays focus on the comparison of different historical events in life or in books.
  • Different situations . They examine the differences of certain cases that you may have found yourself in or even others. If you know how to write a newspaper editorial you are familiar with this stylistics
  • Characters . Focused on people or characters in books, what they did and the impact.
  • Locations or travelling essays . Discusses different places and locations in the world.

As much as compare and contrast essays are written a bit differently from other types of essays , there are certain aspects about them that are similar to the writing format of other essays.

  • Introduction . Just like in any other essay, a good compare and contrast essay has to have an introduction that is catchy and functional. Here, you need to explain what your topic is all about and what you hope to achieve at the end of the discussion. It should also have a thesis statement that will give a little more information about the subject matter and why you have chosen to discuss it.
  • Your argument . The next step is to start writing about your stand point, while giving proof of why you think that the way you are looking at it is the best. Use references, quotations and citations to develop your argument into something readable and easy to understand.
  • Opposing arguments . You need to do thorough research about the opposing arguments that your rival would use to counter your points. You should discuss at least two points here and refute these points standing with your own.
  • Concluding statement . Here, you can choose to rephrase your thesis statement and supporting that your point of view is the best. Conclude with a powerful statement that will impact on the reader. Use some cause and effect essay outline to emphasise the connection between the paragraphs.

Writing Tips To Make Your Essay Stand Out

Any good essay has to stand out and encourage the reader to continue reading from the beginning to the end, no matter the type of essay it is. This is why you need to ensure that you make your compare and contrast essay as interesting and accurate as possible using these tips.

  • Check other essays for inspiration. Starting your own essay from scratch can be a bit confusing for most students. This is why you need to take some time and check out other written essays in the same category as the one you are writing for the best ways to start, develop your argument and finally conclude. See how to incorporate quotes, sayings and humor into your compare and contrast essay. Also check on creative ways to use our references to add some backbone to your argument.
  • Think critically. This is necessary when you are trying to find a suitable topic to write about since there are so many to choose from. Brainstorm and write down a list of your best topics listing down the differences and similarities to see which work well together and have a lot of points that you can discuss.
  • Seek professional assistance. Identifying great education services can help you get your hands on really useful sources on your chosen topics. This will help you build a strong argument and to be able to back what you are discussing. You can write literature review where you reveal your sources and how they helped in your discussion. It is a really great way of increasing your word count without unnecessary fluff.
  • Proper formatting and in text citations. As earlier mentioned, a compare and contrast essay is an academic paper so the correct formatting needs to be used according to what you were instructed to do. In text citations give evidence of your discussion and why you chose the argument that you did.

So now you know how to choose the best compare and contrast topics and the different segments that you need to address when writing. You also understand how to find sources and the best kind to use in your paper to make it relevant and interesting. however, you may still have a problem identifying the best topics for you to discuss, which is why we have highlighted different topics that you can use in your compare and contrast essay.

Best Compare And Contrast Topics For University Students

  • Sciences vs Arts: which are the most viable in the job market?
  • Essays vs research papers: what is the difference:
  • Home schooling: what are the benefits and disadvantages?
  • College education: should it be free? What is to be gained if that step was taken?
  • College degrees: how relevant are they in today’s job market?
  • Education: is it necessary to become successful in life?
  • Exams: are they a true reflection of a student’s ability?
  • Boarding schools vs day schools: what are the major differences?
  • Hostels vs renting: what are the advantages and disadvantages?

Political And Historical Topics

  • Karl Marx vs Friedrich Hegel: who made the most impact?
  • The bible vs the Quran: what are the differences in teachings
  • The 60s vs the 90s music: which was better?
  • Capitalism vs communism: which is superior?
  • Dictatorship and democratic: how are they different?
  • Al Qaeda vs Boko Haram: are they the same?
  • African government vs western governments: what are the differences in governance?
  • Greek gods: real or not?
  • Us president vs Monarch of England: what are the differences in power?

Compare And Contrast Topics For Starters

  • Tomatoes: are they fruits or vegetables?
  • Netball vs basketball: are the rules different or the same?
  • Samsung vs apple: which is the better brand?
  • Being miserable in a mansion or happy in a shanty: which is better?
  • Differences between the American and the British.
  • Aliens: real or not?
  • Marijuana: is it dangerous or a blessing in disguise?
  • Winter vs summer: which is better?
  • Dinner date vs movie and drinks.

Battle Of The Opposites Essay Topics

  • White vs black.
  • Alibaba vs amazon.
  • Religious marriage vs civil marriage.
  • Dogs vs cats.
  • Happiness vs sadness.
  • Pizza vs pasta.
  • WW1 vs WW2.
  • Good girl vs bad boy.
  • Electric vs gas cars.

Teenage Compare And Contrast Essays

  • Watching at home vs going out to a movie.
  • When should one be allowed to date?
  • Reading vs watching? Which is easier
  • Arts vs Science
  • Hip hop vs RnB
  • White collar vs blue collar
  • Android vs IOS
  • Casual vs casual official? What is more appropriate?
  • Snapchat vs Instagram: which is better?

IT And Social Media Essay Topics

  • Does paper mailing have a space in future?
  • Desktop computers vs tablets
  • Facebook vs Twitter: which is better?
  • Online jobs vs traditional jobs?
  • SEO vs traditional marketing? Which yield more results?
  • Blogs vs websites.
  • Traditional learning vs E-learning: what does the future hold?
  • Windows vs IOS.
  • Radio vs newspapers.

Movie and Music Comparison Ideas

  • Rock vs country.
  • Batman vs superman: who is the true hero of the world?
  • DC vs Marvel?
  • Comedy vs Horror
  • Dumbledore vs Voldemort
  • Vampires vs werewolves: who are stronger?
  • 3D vs normal screening? Differences and similarities?
  • Avengers vs fantastic four
  • Michael Jackson vs Prince: who is the true kind of pop music?

Compare And Contrast Literature Topics

  • Fiction vs nonfiction: which has a larger readership?
  • Romance vs horror.
  • Past vs present works of literature: which is better?
  • Hardcopy vs E- books
  • Romeo and Juliet: takeaway lessons
  • Is Shakespeare the greatest poet who ever lived?
  • Poetry vs hip hop: are there any similarities?
  • Greek vs Egyptian mythology
  • Is harry potter the best magical fantasy book ever written?

Scientific Topic Ideas

  • Uranus vs Saturn: are there any similarities?
  • The sun vs the moon
  • Chemistry vs biology
  • Nuclear vs fossil energy
  • Disputable scientific statements
  • Science and technology: are they interdependent?
  • Is there life on other planets
  • Can theories in physics be used to explain all aspects of life?
  • Hurricanes vs tornados

Everyday Compare And Contrast Topics

  • Coffee vs tea
  • Wood vs bricks: which is better to build with
  • The west vs the east: similarities
  • Catholics vs protestants
  • African countries vs European countries
  • Flying vs driving: which one is better?
  • McDonalds vs KFC
  • Cartoon network vs Nickelodeon
  • American English vs British English

Philosophy Topic Ideas

  • Music vs poetry: do they have the same effect on people
  • Philosophers vs historians: are they similar?
  • Which is more important food or health care?
  • Are humans wilder than wild animals?
  • Should there be justification for evil deeds?
  • Friends vs enemies: who should you be weary of?
  • Good vs evil: where is the line drawn?
  • Simplest explanation vs complex explanation: which is best?
  • Similarities between philosophy and religion.
  • The pen is mightier than the sword: how true is this?

Final Thoughts

The above mentioned compare and contrast essay topics are just a few of the many topics you can choose to discuss in your essay. If you are still having problems making a decision, then you can always ask for assistance from our professional essay writers who will help you find the best topic. You can also order a fully written compare and contrast essay and ease the amount of work you have to do.

compare and contrast essay topics

It’s no wonder that students like to write contrast and compare essays because they leave a lot of space for creativity and own opinion. Such an essay allows the student to put in his own thoughts on the subjects compared and it can be quite fun to compare two entities rather just analyzing one and composing an essay on that. Of course, this doesn’t make it a very easy job and there are some rules and tips you should be aware of before starting to write a comparative essay.

Main Parts of Writing a Compare Essay

Before you even start writing it is very important to choose the topic that will put you in advantage. In most of the situations, you should look for items to compare that have some differences but similarities as well. For example, you can’t go on writing a comparative essay between a stone and rock and roll. So focus on comparison items that will give you the chance to talk about things they have in common but as well on how one is better than the other at certain aspects.

After you establish the comparison items you needs to do some proper research so that you have enough information on both to be able to perform a proper comparison. There are several sources from where you can gather information on your subjects but make sure that you always go with facts. Your text will need some proper back-up and sources to be cited. You can use sources like:

  • Documentaries
  • Scientific magazines
  • Academic journals
  • Official Reports

How to Write a Comparative and Contrast Essay

If you think that you can simply use the basic essay tips you learned in class or for other types of essays, you’re wrong. The thing with comparative and contrast essays is that you’re not just focusing on one item and anything you write has to be constructed in such a way that it can be used to compare it with the other one.

You can start with the type of topic you choose for your compare and contrast essay. Usually, the topics are divided into 4 categories:

  • People and Fiction

No matter what category you choose to go with, you will have to always follow the structure of any academic paper. If you’re not sure how that goes, let us refresh your memory a bit.


Here is the place where you have to try and get your readers to listen and hook them with your story. You need to present your topic, of course, and also your thesis statement which has the role of indicating to your readers what is the probable course of the entire work. The thesis statement usually goes in the first paragraph, somewhere around the last sentence of it.

Emphasizing on your arguments

After you’ve done the research, it’s time to develop the arguments that you make when comparing one thing to another. Makes sure to include reliable sources and don’t overdo it, just make it enough for your comparison to look well-researched.

Refuting arguments

In this section things will go the other way around. You need to research the selected topic and find facts to contradict your initial thesis. Again, choose at least one example and expand it into a paragraph at least that contains the counter-argument and as well as sources you used to reach that conclusion.

Obviously, this is the part where you draw your conclusions. You can restate your thesis statement and point out some of the arguments used over the entire essay that backs it up.

More Tips on Writing a Comparative and Contrast Essay

Always check for possible examples of essays when working on your hook sentence. This sentence has a great influence on a first-time reader of your work decision to keep reading or simply pass. There’s a wide variety of hooks you can use such as:

  • Literary queotes
  • Anecdotes or jokes
  • Quotes of important persons
  • Setting scenes
  • Quotes from poetry
  • Scientific arguments
  • Rhetorical questions

Never stop brainstorming since it’s the best way to make a decision regarding the two items you’re going to write about. Make sure to write them down so you can go over them later and finally decide what you’re going to focus on. You can even start to sketch a few similarities and differences between the topic you brainstormed so that you have an idea on how complicated it will be to write the essay.

If needed, you can always turn to professionals to give you a nudge or help you with your topics or sources. You can appeal to books, movies or articles that are discussing the same topic you’re going to approach in your essay.

Make sure you don’t forget about in-text citations and formatting since you’re writing an academic paper. You have to use all the correct citations, including indirect and direct quotes to make your text even more believable.

We are trying to keep the part on how to write a comparative and contrast essay as brief as possible as we already approached this subject, in full, in another article. This article puts more focus on subjects and topic for these types of essays since without a good topic, you might end up getting stuck and have to start over and over again. So here are the best 150 topics you can elaborate a compare and contrast essay on.

Topics for Compare and Contrast Essays That Can be Used by College Students

As you can see, the topics are divided into multiple categories so that it would be easier for you to select one. We chose to start this list of categorized topics with what’s most relevant for college students and that’s obviously college itself and how to handle it. So, here we go:

  • College vs Schools – what’s changed?
  • Unemployed students compared to students that work. Who’s having the right approach.
  • Essays vs research papers – what’s the best choice?
  • British English or American English – what are the major differences?
  • Are there any similarities between employment and education?
  • TOEFL and SAT – what are the similarities and differences?
  • Ph. D and Master Degree – main differences
  • Argumentative papers vs persuasive paper – same or different
  • Traditional Education or remote education – what works best?

6th Grade Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Summer or Winter – what’s the best season?
  • Christmas at home vs Christmas traveling
  • Wolves and dogs – differences and similarities
  • Flowers and Weeds – why do we need both?
  • Novels or comic books – what’s more interesting to read?
  • Ping-pong vs tennis – what’s your favorite game?
  • Reading a book vs watching TV
  • Female friend or male friends – which ones are best?
  • Western USA vs Eastern USA

Middle School Essay Topics

  • Zeus vs King Arthur – which one is cooler?
  • Role models of 1950s compared to modern role models
  • Watching a move at home compared with going to the cinema
  • Is there a link between school bullies and dictators?
  • Is a hurricane worse than a tsunami or the other way around?
  • Christmas, Halloween or Prom night – which one is the most fun?
  • Bicycle or car driving – which one is more difficult?
  • 5-star hotels vs 3-star ones – why should you choose each of them?
  • Parents or celebrities – who influences a teenager most of all?

High School Compare and Contrast Essay Themes

  • Historic literature or fiction – which one appeals most to college students?
  • College Tests vs High School examinations – what is the most important of the two?
  • E-learning versus traditional learning – is science and technology really helping with the learning process?
  • New England Patriots vs Atlanta Falcons – who has more fans?
  • Printed books vs e-books – what is the most appealing form of reading for colleague students?
  • Story buildings or wooden houses – what type of construction is best?
  • Portugal and Spain – what are the main similarities and differences?
  • Japanese concept of beauty compared with the American one – what are the standards?
  • Modern rock music compared with rock from the early 20th century – what are the differences and how did this genre evolve?

Day-to-day Compare and Contrast Essay Themes

  • Buffy or Twilight – similarities and differences in characters
  • Macbeth vs Julius Caesar – what do they have in common?
  • Modernism vs realism – main differences and similarities
  • Prose vs poetry – what are the literary elements that differentiate these genres
  • Rural vs urban living – what are the similarities and differences
  • Hillary Clinton vs Donald Trump – who should have won and what do they have in common?
  • Barcelona vs Real Madrid – differences and things the two clubs have in common
  • Android vs iOS – benefits of both operating systems
  • Textbooks or tablets in schools – what are the advantages and disadvantages of each in the process of learning?
  • Asylums vs Jails
  • Star Trek vs Star Wards
  • Family Guy vs American Dad
  • Pineapple vs Apple
  • Scandinavian Mythology vs Greek Mythology

Politics and History Compare Essay Topics

  • Washington’s Ideas compared with Lincoln’s way of action
  • Baroque vs Renaissance epochs
  • Religious Studies vs Anthropology
  • Soviet Government opposed to the American Government
  • UK Prime Minister vs US President
  • South and North Before the events of the Civil War in the United States
  • King Louis XIV compared with Henry VIII
  • Nazism and fascism: are there any differences?
  • Difference in the events of World War II and World War I

Easy to Approach Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Comparing an orange to an apple
  • Day Time vs Night Time – what are the advantages of each time frame?
  • What are the main differences between animals and people
  • Being rich opposed to living in poverty
  • Tea or Coffee – What are the similarities and contrasts?
  • Living in a small village opposed to living in a big city
  • The differences between feeling sad or lonely
  • Main differences and similarities between British and American traditional dishes
  • Camping sites – seashore or in the woods?

Opposite Compare Essay Topics

  • Males vs Females
  • Pepsi or Coke?
  • White vs Red
  • Peace vs War
  • Riding the bus or driving a car?
  • Hatred and love
  • Positive and negative aspects of working a lot
  • Sun and the Moon
  • Soft toys or dolls – what are the most appropriate toys?

Compare and Contrast Topics for Teenagers

  • Adulthood vs Childhood
  • Living on Campus opposed to living at home
  • Watching a movie or reading the book that the movie was made after?
  • Freelancing or working in an office?
  • Scientific writing vs academic writing
  • Radio shows or TV show?
  • Professional career or education – what should you focus on?
  • Roman and Greek culture – what are the main similarities and differences
  • Science Classes compared with Art Classes

Social Media and IT Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Traditional Mailing vs email
  • Traditional Commerce vs e-commerce
  • Real-life dating vs online dating sites and apps
  • Video Computer games vs smartphone games
  • Forbes or New York Times?
  • MySpace or Facebook? What’s the best social network?
  • Online job application vs traditional methods
  • Traditional writing services compared with online writing services
  • Online advertising compared with traditional advertising

Music and Movie Compare and Contrast Essay Themes

  • Charmed or Buffy?
  • Movies against books: Reading is the best way to explore a novel?
  • Rock vs Jazz
  • Frodo vs Sam – Which Lord of the Rings character is more important?
  • Dumbledore vs Gandalf
  • Soviet cinematography vs American films
  • Loki and Thor – Brothers or Enemies?
  • Thriller or horror films – what do they have in common
  • Draco Malfoy vs Harry Potter

Literature-Inspired Compare and Contrast Essay Ideas

  • Drama vs Comedy
  • Roman vs Greek Mythology
  • Lessons learned from Beauty and the Best
  • Lyrics of Prose – what students prefer?
  • Nowadays Lyrics compared with poetry of the 13th century
  • Non-fiction vs fiction literature
  • Harry Potter vs Lord of the Rings
  • Literature of the past compared with the one of the future

Scientific Topics for Compare and Contrast Essays

  • Microwave vs Oven
  • Chemistry vs Physics
  • Andromeda and Milky Way
  • What are the differences between Mars and Earth
  • Differences and similarities of the two moon missions
  • DaVinci vs Thomas Jefferson
  • Tsunami vs Earthquakes – what’s the worse natural phenomenon
  • Two different chemical reactions formulas
  • Limited control software vs full access navigation

Popular Compare Essay Themes

  • Football vs Soccer
  • Korean vs Chinese
  • Personal point of view vs public opinion
  • Water or juice
  • Dark beer vs light beer
  • Obesity and Anorexia – what is the most dangerous
  • Divorce and marriage
  • Linux or Windows – Paid vs free OS
  • Capitalism vs Marxism

Philosophical Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Is Miami Beach a better place to live rather than home?
  • Life and Death
  • Anchored in reality or dreamy – what are the pros and cons?
  • Friends or more – where’s the limit?
  • Mental and physical needs of humans
  • Fantasy world or reality?
  • Macbeth and Hamlet – a philosophical approach
  • Humans and dogs – similarities
  • Free access compared with reserved rights – how intellectual property should be treated?
  • Roman philosophers vs Greek ones

Best Dissertation Methodology for Writing a Chapter

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features of good topic for compare and contrast essay

Compare And Contrast Essay

Compare And Contrast Essay Topics

Nova A.

Interesting Compare and Contrast Essay Topics & Ideas

13 min read

Published on: Mar 15, 2018

Last updated on: Nov 29, 2023

compare and contrast essay topics

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Drawing comparisons to make the right decisions is part of our day-to-day life. However, students feel confused and puzzled when asked to draft a compare and contrast essay.

The first difficulty that a writer witnesses while drafting a compare and contrast essay is choosing the right essay topic. The more interesting topic you will choose for your essay, the better grades you will achieve in the assignment. 

To make the selection process easier, we have gathered some great compare and contrast essay topics. 

Read on to find out how to find good and easy compare and contrast essay ideas that you can pick from our extensive list of prompts. 

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Compare and Contrast Essay - Overview

A compare and contrast essay is a type of essay that explains how two or more subjects are different or similar.

The purpose of this essay is to examine two things and find out how they are similar and different. When writing a compare and contrast essay, it's important to consider the relevance of each characteristic being compared. This will help you decide which characteristics are most worth exploring.

Here’s a video that explains compare and contrast essay in more depth:

If you have not decided on the topic as yet, get inspired by the topic ideas given below:

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for University Students

  • Compare the education systems of the United States and the United Kingdom.
  • Compare and contrast the themes and characters in two classic novels of your choice.
  • Compare the democratic systems of the United States and European countries.
  • Compare the impact of Eastern and Western philosophies on modern society.
  • Compare and contrast the theories of Sigmund Freud and Carl Jung.
  • Compare the economic systems of capitalism and socialism.
  • Compare the theories of evolution and creationism in the context of biology.
  • Compare the impact of World War I and World War II on global politics and society.
  • Compare the role of women in society in the 19th and 21st centuries.
  • Compare and contrast classical music and contemporary pop music.

College Level Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

Check out these compare and contrast essay topics for college students.

  • School vs. College - Which is more difficult?
  • Employed vs. unemployed students
  • Research papers vs. Essays
  • American Culture vs. British 
  • Education vs. employment
  • Graduate vs. Postgraduate student
  • Argumentative vs. Persuasive essays
  • Android vs. iOS
  • Online writing vs. traditional writing

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for High School Students

  • John Locke against Thomas Hobbes
  • George Bush vs. Donald Trump
  • Bill Gates and Steve Jobs
  • Prince and Michael Jackson
  • Nelson Mandela and Mahatma Gandhi
  • Abraham Lincoln and Winston Churchill
  • Adolf Hitler and Mussolini
  • Margaret Thatcher and Theresa May
  • Jon Bon Jovi and Elvis Presley.
  • Socrates and Plato

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for Middle School

  • Playing video games vs. reading a book
  • Real communication vs. texting
  • Apple vs. Pear
  • Giving vs. Getting presents - Which is more pleasant?
  • Long hair or short hair
  • Cats vs. Dogs
  • King Arthur vs. Zeus
  • Watching a film at home vs. in cinema
  • Dictators vs. School bullies
  • Hurricane vs. Tsunami

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics 9th Grade 

  • Comparing the Dangers of On-Screen Screen Time vs Outdoor Activities
  • Contrasting Ancient Rome and Modern America
  • Online Classes vs On-campus Classes
  • School Uniforms vs Casual Dress Code
  • Homeschooling vs. Public Schooling
  • Video Games vs. Movies
  • Reading Books vs Watching Movies
  • Examining the Impact of Social Media on Teenage Lives
  • Comparing Private Schools to Public Schools
  • Exploring the Advantages and Disadvantages of City Life vs Country Life.

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics For 7th Grade 

  • Nighttime vs. Daytime
  • Sleeping vs. Being active
  • Running & Walking
  • Summer & Winter
  • Comic books and TV shows
  • Halloween or prom night? - Which one is more fun?
  • Riding or driving - Which is more difficult?
  • Swimming vs. cycling 
  • Brazil team vs. Manning team
  • Evening exercise vs. morning exercise 

Easy Compare And Contrast Essay Topics for 6th Grade

  • Compare quotes from known celebrities
  • Books of famous writers
  • Rap songs and Pop Songs
  • Reptiles vs. Mammals
  • Shaggy vs. Fred
  • Renting and owning things
  • Italy vs. Spain
  • Is living in a house better than a flat?
  • Compare and contrast between adulthood and childhood.
  • Superman vs. Spiderman

Best Compare and Contrast Essay Topics For Elementary Students 

  • Facebook or Instagram
  • Fast food vs. healthy meal
  • Public school vs. Private school
  • Parental control or full freedom
  • Good teacher vs. a bad teacher
  • Online vs. Traditional shopping
  • Chinese vs. American beauty concepts
  • Rock vs. Classical music
  • Apartment vs. House
  • University professors vs. School teachers

History Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Renaissance and Baroque Art
  • US President vs. British Prime Minister
  • Fascism and Totalitarianism
  • Religious Studies vs. Anthropology
  • America vs. Soviet Government
  • Gandhi and Jinnah’s political approaches
  • Communism vs. Liberalism
  • Make a comparison between Russian emperors
  • Iran pre and post monarchy
  • Karl Marx and Friedrich Hegel

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Science Compare and Contrast Essay Topics 

  • Astronomy vs. Astrology
  • Chemistry vs. Physics
  • Nature vs. Nurture in Psychology
  • Renewable Energy vs. Fossil Fuels
  • Biotechnology vs. Genetic Engineering
  • Climate Change vs. Natural Climate Variability
  • Quantum Mechanics vs. Classical Physics
  • Space Exploration vs. Ocean Exploration
  • Animal Behavior vs. Human Behavior
  • Artificial Intelligence vs. Human Intelligence

Sports Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Sports vs. Exercise - Which is better for health?
  • Table tennis vs. Lawn tennis
  • Football vs. Soccer
  • Basketball vs. Baseball
  • Breakdance vs. ballet
  • Steroids vs. Energy drinks - More harmful to athletes?
  • Women’s vs. men’s basketball
  • Australian vs. Indian cricket team
  • The Bundesliga vs. The English Premier League
  • Barcelona vs. Real Madrid

Psychology Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Psychology and Psychiatry
  • Nature vs. Nurture
  • Therapy vs. Medication
  • Rehabilitation Advantages and Disadvantages
  • Autism vs. Down Syndrome
  • Suicide and Homicide
  • Smoking and Vaping
  • Impact of social media on people and depression
  • Stress and Depression
  • Compare Theories of J. Watson and B. Skinner.

Literature & Language Compare and Contrast Essay Topics 

  • Shakespearean Tragedies vs. Comedies
  • Poetry vs. Prose
  • Classic Literature vs. Contemporary Literature
  • Fiction vs. Non-Fiction
  • First-Person vs. Third-Person Narration
  • Modern English vs. Old English
  • The Use of Symbolism in Poetry vs. Prose
  • Gothic Literature vs. Romantic Literature
  • Literary Realism vs. Magical Realism
  • Literary Criticism vs. Reader Response Theory

Education Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • SAT vs. IELTS
  • Scientific Paper vs. Academic Writing
  • Science and Art
  • Professional vs. Skill Degree
  • Essay Writing and Research Paper
  • What is the difference between Public and Private School students?
  • Casual Clothing vs. Uniforms
  • University and College
  • Gender studies and Women's Studies
  • Sociology and Anthropology

Social Sciences Compare and Contrast Essay Topics 

  • Democracy vs. Authoritarianism
  • Capitalism vs. Socialism
  • Traditional Education vs. Online Learning
  • Urban Living vs. Rural Living
  • Gender Roles in Modern Society vs. Traditional Societies
  • Individualism vs. Collectivism
  • Globalization vs. Cultural Diversity
  • Social Media vs. Face-to-Face Communication
  • Environmental Conservation vs. Economic Development
  • Cybersecurity vs. Privacy Rights

Arts and Culture Compare and Contrast Essay Topics 

  • Classical Art vs. Contemporary Art
  • Film vs. Theater
  • Traditional Dance vs. Modern Dance
  • Literature vs. Film Adaptations
  • High Culture vs. Popular Culture
  • Museum Exhibitions vs. Art Galleries
  • Classical Music vs. Contemporary Music
  • Traditional Architecture vs. Modern Architecture
  • Fashion Trends vs. Historical Costume
  • Cultural Festivals vs. Music Festivals

Funny Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

Here are some fun compare and contrast essay topics for light-hearted essays

  • Moonwalk vs. Gangnam Style
  • Xbox vs. PlayStation
  • Growing a tree vs. raising a child
  • Being single vs. in a relationship
  • Drugs or Coffee - Which is better to improve performance?
  • Morse code vs. Beethoven’s fifth symphony
  • Love or friendship
  • Apple vs. Samsung
  • Live-in relationship vs. marriage
  • Barbie vs. Bratz

Controversial Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Gun Control vs. Second Amendment Rights
  • Pro-choice vs. Pro-life
  • Capital Punishment vs. Life Imprisonment
  • Censorship vs. Freedom of Expression
  • Climate Change Denial vs. Environmental Activism
  • Globalization vs. Protectionism
  • Legalization vs. Criminalization of Drugs
  • AI Advancements vs. Job Displacement
  • Universal Healthcare vs. Private Healthcare
  • The Role of Government vs. Individual Liberty

Movie Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Comedy vs. horror movies
  • Vampires of Twilight vs. Vampire diaries
  • Avengers vs. Fantastic Four
  • DC or Marvel
  • Normal vs. 3D screening
  • Dumbledore vs. Voldemort
  • Michael Jackson vs. Prince
  • Netflix or Youtube
  • Bollywood vs. Hollywood
  • Mystery vs. Crime movies

Good Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Football in 20th vs. 21st Century
  • Sociology vs. psychology
  • Bipolar Disorder vs. Epilepsy
  • Strict Parenting vs. Relaxed Parenting
  • Ego vs. Superego
  • Soft Drugs vs. Hard Drugs
  • Traditional vs. online education
  • Homeschooling vs. traditional education
  • Testing or stress-free education
  • Studying languages vs. sciences

Fun Compare and Contrast Essay Topics  

  • Wizards vs. Witches: Magical Showdown
  • Summer Festivals vs. Winter Carnivals: Seasonal Celebrations
  • Metropolis Madness vs. Country Calm: Where to Live?
  • Adventures in Middle-earth vs. Galaxy Far, Far Away: Epic Journeys
  • Social Butterflies vs. Snap-happy Explorers: Social Media Stars
  • Pizza Palooza vs. Burger Bonanza: Foodie Face-off
  • High School Hijinks vs. College Capers: Student Life
  • Road Trippin' vs. Jet Settin': Travel Adventures
  • Campfire Chronicles vs. Hotel Hideaways: Outdoor Escapes
  • Mozart vs. Morrison: Musical Masterminds

Unique Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Renaissance vs. Baroque Art
  • Self-Publishing vs. Traditional Publishing in the Digital Age.
  • Exploration of Dreams in Psychology vs. Literature.
  • The Impact of Video Games vs. Literature on Storytelling.
  • Natural Medicine vs. Conventional Medicine
  • Shakespearean Sonnets vs. Modern Song Lyrics
  • Eastern and Western Approaches to Meditation and Mindfulness.
  • Ancient Greek Democracy vs. Modern Democratic Systems.
  • The Internet's Effect on Traditional Journalism vs. Citizen Journalism.
  • Family members vs. Friends in tough life decisions  

Deep Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Paintings vs. photos
  • Superman vs. Batman
  • Harry Potter Books vs. Movies
  • Pride and Prejudice vs. The Great Gatsby
  • Mission Impossible 1 vs. 6
  • Game of Thrones vs. The Witcher
  • Apple or Google Pixel
  • Free college education.
  • Silver vs. gold.
  • Old vs. new: analyzing the similarities

Medical Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Vaccination or medications
  • Female vs. male doctors
  • All-natural cures vs. chemical cures
  • Alternative medicine vs. traditional medicine
  • Soft Drugs s. Hard Drugs
  • Should medical marijuana be approved on the federal level?
  • Traditional vs. modern medicine
  • Old-fashioned or unique ways of treatment
  • Doctor vs. nurse
  • Medicine vs. herbal

Healthcare Compare and Contrast Essay Topics 

  • Traditional Medicine vs. Modern Medicine
  • Telemedicine vs. In-Person Doctor Visits
  • Mental Health vs. Physical Health Care
  • Vaccination vs. Natural Immunity
  • Traditional Chinese Medicine vs. Western Medicine
  • Healthcare in Developed vs. Developing Countries
  • Public Health vs. Personal Health
  • Hospital Care vs. Home Healthcare
  • Healthcare Before and After the COVID-19 Pandemic

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics on Technology

  • Traditional vs. Online Commerce
  • Mobile phones vs. tablets
  • E-readers vs. traditional paper books
  • iPhone or Smartphone
  • Artificial intelligence vs. cloud computing
  • Online photos vs. camera photos
  • Traditional TV or streaming platforms
  • Laptops or tablets
  • Cloud computing vs. traditional computing
  • Robots vs. humans

Entertainment Compare and Contrast Essay Topics 

  • Live Concerts vs. Music Streaming Services
  • Hollywood Films vs. Independent Movies
  • Video Games vs. Board Games
  • Fiction Books vs. Non-Fiction Books
  • Stand-Up Comedy vs. Improv Comedy
  • Theater Plays vs. Movie Adaptations
  • Cable TV vs. Streaming Services
  • Action Movies vs. Romantic Comedies
  • Pop Music vs. Hip-Hop Music
  • Classical Art vs. Street Art

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics on Economy

  • Keynesian Economics vs. Supply-Side Economics
  • Market Economy vs. Planned Economy
  • Microeconomics vs. Macroeconomics
  • Economic Development vs. Economic Growth
  • Fiscal Policy vs. Monetary Policy
  • Developed Countries vs. Developing Countries' Economies
  • Income Inequality in Capitalist vs. Socialist Economies
  • The Great Depression vs. the 2008 Financial Crisis
  • Trade Protectionism vs. Free Trade
  • Economic Impact of COVID-19 vs. Other Major Crises

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics on Politics

  • Different models of democracy
  • Republicans vs. Democrats
  • Democracy and communism
  • The political system of US vs. UK
  • Margaret Thatcher vs. Barack Obama;
  • Good vs. bad politics
  • American politics vs. British politics
  • Parliamentary vs. presidential
  • World war I vs. World War II
  • Rural politics vs. urban politics

How to Choose a Topic for a Compare and Contrast Essay? 

Usually, elementary school and college students are assigned topics for their essays. But if not, then it is time to show your creativity by choosing an interesting topic. 

Choosing the right topic for your essay is both important and daunting. Choosing an exciting topic is mandatory to make your compare and contrast essay engaging for the readers.

If you want to select an impressive topic for your essay, follow the tips provided below:

  • Identify Your Interests: Identify the topics you find interesting and are passionate about discussing. Your enthusiasm will enhance the quality of your writing.
  • Create a List of Ideas: List down all the ideas and choose subjects that can be described in detail with various aspects.
  • Ensure Coherence: Make sure that the subjects you choose for your essay belong to the same group or category. This ensures a logical and coherent flow of ideas.
  • Consider Your Audience: Keep in mind the target audience. Structure your writing based on the readers' interests to increase your essay’s readership. Choose a topic that aligns with your audience's preferences.
  • Explore Current Trends: Choose topics from current trends and controversies. People are more interested in subjects that are new or controversial. This ensures your essay remains engaging and relevant to your audience.

Researching before choosing your compare and contrast essay topic is essential. In this way, you will know if your chosen topic is suitable or not. 

To sum up , these are some helpful and fun writing ideas you can use in your compare and contrast essay.

However, sometimes students need more than a list of compare and contrast essay topics to guide them. You should also read some compare and contrast essay examples to get a better understanding.

Whether writing an essay or an academic paper on compare and contrast, it is essential first to pick a good topic. You can easily get help from essay writing companies online, such as .

We provide reliable  writing services  that provides quality and custom academic assistance. 

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Nova Allison is a Digital Content Strategist with over eight years of experience. Nova has also worked as a technical and scientific writer. She is majorly involved in developing and reviewing online content plans that engage and resonate with audiences. Nova has a passion for writing that engages and informs her readers.

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50 Great Compare and Contrast Essay Examples

compare and contrast examples and definition, explained below

Compare and contrast refers to the process of demonstrating the differences between two concepts. It’s an essential higher-order skill required for getting higher grades in your essays!

The compare and contrast method is a way to demonstrate your depth of understanding about two or more topics.

It is considered a type of analysis , which is often a target verb in your assessment outlines. So, if you are told to “analyze” something, comparing and contrasting is a strategy to achieve this!

How to Compare and Contrast

One simplified way to compare and contrast is to consider ‘compare’ as identifying similarities and ‘contrast’ as identifying differences :

More complex strategies include the Venn Diagram method, criterion analysis, and rank ordering, as displayed below.

See Also: Best Transition Words for Essay Paragraphs

1. Venn Diagram Method

A Venn Diagram is a concept map that asks you to demonstrate similarities and differences between concepts. It involves two overlapping circles. In the overlapping part (red, below), write the similarities. In the side sections, write the unique aspects of each item:

venn diagram

In my seminars, I ask my students to complete Venn Diagrams of the topics they are comparing and contrasting in their essays. This simple procedure helps you to clarify what you want to say is unique about each item, as well as how you want to demonstrate differences between them.

Have a go at creating your own venn diagram for your compare and contrast topic before writing your essay – it will surely help you focus and get the information down on the essay in a clear and ordered way!

2. Criteria Analysis

Criteria analysis involves comparing and contrasting two or more items based upon a pre-determined criteria. For example, if comparing cats and dogs, you criteria might be ‘domestication history’, ‘social structure’, ‘grooming’, ‘training and obedience’, and exercise needs. We can then compare them as below:

I find that criteria analysis can help us to create a well-ordered and more objective structure for your essay.

Once you’ve selected your criteria and created a table like the one above, you can write one paragraph for each criterion, so the above table would be turned into five compare and contrast paragraphs in your essay .

3. Rank Ordering

Rank ordering involves comparing items or ideas by placing them on a scale or hierarchy. This goes a step beyond criteria analysis by comparing and contrasting based upon scales and analyses.

Take, for example, rank ordering London versus New York versus Paris on a range of rankable criteria:

Compare and Contrast Essay Examples

The following are 5-paragraph essay outlines that use my compare and contrast method, which is broken down into the following five paragraphs:

  • The definition paragraph ( description level)
  • The similarities paragraph ( analysis level)
  • The differences paragraph ( analysis level)
  • The evaluation paragraph ( evaluation level)
  • The implications paragraph ( evaluation level)

City Living vs. Country Living

  • Definitions of Terms: City living refers to residing in an urban area, while country living pertains to life in rural environments.
  • Similarity 1: Both city-living and country-living provide opportunities for community engagement.
  • Similarity 2: Both environments necessitate some form of transportation for commuting and access to essential services.
  • Difference 1: City living often implies faster-paced life with more stressors, whereas country living is typically slower paced and quieter.
  • Difference 2: Urban areas offer more amenities such as shopping centers, restaurants, and cultural venues, whereas rural areas have abundant natural spaces.
  • Evaluation: Both lifestyles have their advantages and drawbacks, dependent largely upon individual preference .
  • Implications: The choice between city and country living can significantly affect one’s quality of life, stress levels, and access to services.

Public Schools vs. Private Schools

  • Definitions of Terms: Public schools are government-funded institutions open to all students, while private schools are funded by tuition fees and private donations and may have selective admissions.
  • Similarity 1: Both public and private schools are committed to educating students and developing their skills and talents.
  • Similarity 2: Both types of schools must adhere to general educational standards and employ qualified teachers.
  • Difference 1: Public schools offer a diverse environment due to their open admission, whereas private schools often have a more homogeneous student body.
  • Difference 2: Private schools often have more resources and smaller class sizes than public schools.
  • Evaluation: Both school types strive to provide high-quality education but may do so via different methods and resources.
  • Implications: The choice between public and private schooling can have implications for a student’s educational experience, social diversity exposure, and family finances.

Traditional Books vs. E-books

  • Definitions of Terms: Traditional books refer to physical, bound print media, while e-books are electronic versions of printed books read on digital devices.
  • Similarity 1: Both traditional books and e-books convey written information or literature to the reader.
  • Similarity 2: Both formats allow the reader to enjoy a multitude of genres and titles.
  • Difference 1: Traditional books provide a tactile reading experience, whereas e-books are read on a device.
  • Difference 2: E-books are more portable and storage-friendly than traditional books.
  • Evaluation: Choosing between traditional books and e-books largely falls to personal preference and convenience.
  • Implications: The decision may influence the reading experience, accessibility, cost, and even eye health.

Movies vs. Theater Plays

  • Definitions of Terms: Movies are recorded visual content typically played in cinemas or on TV, while theater plays are live performances staged in theatres.
  • Similarity 1: Both movies and theater plays offer formatted storytelling mediums to entertain audiences.
  • Similarity 2: Both mediums provide a broad spectrum of genres, from drama to comedy, romance to action.
  • Difference 1: Movies leverage advanced technology to enhance storytelling, whereas theater plays rely more on human performances and minimal props.
  • Difference 2: Theater plays introduce the unique element of live performance, while movies provide perfectly timed and edited scenes for a flawless viewing experience.
  • Evaluation: Preference between movies and theater plays tends to hinge on one’s taste for technological enhancements or live performances.
  • Implications: The choice affects one’s engagement in the storyline and can influence the level of immersion in the presented piece.

Working Part-time vs. Volunteering

  • Definitions of Terms: Part-time work refers to paid employment with fewer hours per week compared to full-time jobs, while volunteering involves donating one’s time and skills for altruistic purposes without pay.
  • Similarity 1: Both part-time work and volunteering provide opportunities to gain experience and build skills.
  • Similarity 2: Both require commitment and dedication.
  • Difference 1: Part-time jobs provide income, while volunteering does not.
  • Difference 2: Volunteering often offers a wider range of roles, with more flexibility than part-time jobs.
  • Evaluation: The preference for part-time work or volunteering is likely to depend on personal needs, priorities, and financial stability.
  • Implications: Choosing between the two can shape an individual’s career path, financial situation, and personal growth.

Cats vs. Dogs

  • Definitions of Terms: Pet ownership refers to being responsible for an animal’s wellbeing. Cats and dogs are two of the most popular domesticated animals in this context.
  • Similarity 1: Both cats and dogs provide companionship for their owners.
  • Similarity 2: Caring for either a cat or dog requires a significant time, effort, and financial commitment.
  • Difference 1: Dogs typically demand more attention and exercise than cats.
  • Difference 2: Cats, being more independent creatures, are often easier to care for in terms of day-to-day demands.
  • Evaluation: The decision between a cat or dog depends on one’s lifestyle, commitment level, and personal preference.
  • Implications: Adding a pet to your life can bring joy, companionship, and additional responsibilities, affecting an individual’s routine, expenditures, and emotional wellbeing.

Handwriting vs. Typing

  • Definitions of Terms: Handwriting refers to writing by hand using instruments like pens or pencils, while typing involves entering text via a keyboard.
  • Similarity 1: Both handwriting and typing serve to record information and thoughts.
  • Similarity 2: Both methods can be used across a variety of platforms, like notebooks or digital devices.
  • Difference 1: Handwriting tends to enhance memory retention more than typing due to its motor movements.
  • Difference 2: Typing is often faster and enables easier edits than handwriting.
  • Evaluation: The effectiveness of note-taking can depend on the individual preference between handwriting or typing.
  • Implications: The preferred note-taking method may have an effect on productivity, learning efficiency, and workflow organization.

Renting Movies vs. Streaming Services

  • Definitions of Terms: Renting movies involves obtaining a movie for a temporary period, usually through DVD rental shops, while streaming services provide access to broad libraries of movies via a subscription model.
  • Similarity 1: Both renting movies and streaming provide access to a variety of films.
  • Similarity 2: Both provide the comfort of watching movies at home.
  • Difference 1: Renting movies usually involves a physical exchange, while streaming services utilize internet access.
  • Difference 2: Streaming services offer an extensive library for a flat fee; renting movies usually incurs a cost per movie.
  • Evaluation: The choice between renting and streaming comes down to factors such as cost, convenience, movie availability, and technological prowess.
  • Implications: This choice can impact one’s entertainment experience, movie choices, and related spending.

Early Birds vs. Night Owls

  • Definitions of Terms: Early birds are individuals who tend to wake up and function best in the morning, while night owls are people who stay up late and are productive at night.
  • Similarity 1: Both early birds and night owls have specific periods of peak productivity.
  • Similarity 2: Both can adjust their schedules to maximize productivity during their preferred time frames.
  • Difference 1: Early birds may benefit more from the conventional 9-to-5 work or school schedules, while night owls may possibly struggle with early starts.
  • Difference 2: Night owls might find peace and silence in the late evening hours for focused work, while early birds would experience similar conditions in the early morning.
  • Evaluation: Being an early bird or a night owl generally aligns with an individual’s biological predisposition or lifestyle preferences.
  • Implications: One’s designation may influence productivity levels, schedule preferences, and overall health.

Modern Pop Music vs. Classic Rock

  • Definitions of Terms: Modern pop music is a genre characterized by its wide appeal and catchy style, often championed by younger demographics, while classic rock represents a genre of music that peaked in popularity in the late 20th century, characterized by strong rhythms and guitar-based sounds.
  • Similarity 1: Both modern pop and classic rock aim to entertain, express, and connect with the audience.
  • Similarity 2: Both genres have produced renowned artists and timeless music.
  • Difference 1: Modern pop often incorporates electronic elements and is more influenced by contemporary trends, while classic rock heavily encompasses natural instrumentation and iconic guitar solos.
  • Difference 2: The thematic contents and lyrical construction of the two genres vary significantly, with classic rock often embodying a more rebellious spirit compared to pop music.
  • Evaluation: The choice between modern pop and classic rock usually comes down to personal taste, cultural exposure, and age.
  • Implications: The music genre preference can reflect an individual’s personality, influence mood, and shape emotional experiences.

Sociology Compare & Contrast Essay Topic Ideas

  • Eastern Family Traditions vs. Western Family Traditions
  • Capitalism vs. Socialism
  • Urban Living vs. Rural Living
  • Individualistic Societies vs. Collectivist Societies
  • Monogamy vs. Polygamy
  • Nuclear Families vs. Extended Families
  • Secular Societies vs. Religious Societies
  • Traditional Education vs. Homeschooling
  • Ageing Populations in Japan vs. Young Populations in Nigeria
  • Ethnic Enclaves vs. Assimilated Communities
  • Role of Women in Western Societies vs. Middle Eastern Societies
  • Developed Countries vs. Developing Countries
  • Single-child Policy in China vs. Expansive Families in India
  • Arranged Marriages vs. Love Marriages
  • Rural Migrations to Cities in Africa vs. Asia
  • Gender Roles in Traditional Societies vs. Modern Societies
  • Subcultures vs. Countercultures
  • Social Impacts of the Internet Age vs. The Industrial Revolution
  • Role of Community in Individualistic vs. Collectivist Cultures
  • Social Effects of Unemployment in European vs. African Nations

Psychology Compare & Contrast Essay Topic Ideas

  • Freudian vs. Jungian Psychoanalysis
  • Nature vs. Nurture
  • Behaviorism vs. Cognitive Psychology
  • IQ Tests vs. EQ Tests
  • Child vs. Adult Cognitive Development
  • Classical Conditioning vs. Operant Conditioning
  • Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs vs. Herzberg’s Two-Factor Theory
  • Short-term Memory vs. Long-term Memory
  • Traditional Therapy vs. Online Therapy
  • Anxiety vs. Depression
  • Bipolar Disorder vs. Schizophrenia
  • Stress in Adolescents vs. Stress in Adults
  • Dream Analysis: Freudian vs. Jungian
  • Social Psychology vs. Cultural Psychology
  • Substance Addiction vs. Behavioral Addiction
  • Humanistic Psychology vs. Evolutionary Psychology
  • ADHD vs. Autism
  • Intrinsic vs. Extrinsic Motivation
  • Introverted vs. Extroverted Personalities
  • Psychoanalytic Therapy vs. Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy

Compare and contrast is all about higher-order thinking . To conduct a compare and contrast, you’re engaging in analysis , which is a step required in order to achieve the next layer of higher-order thinking skills : evaluation. Whether you’re writing a direct compare and contrast essay or simply an argumentative essay , comparing and contrasting your ideas helps you to demonstrate your depth of knowledge to your teacher and build your grades!


Chris Drew (PhD)

Dr. Chris Drew is the founder of the Helpful Professor. He holds a PhD in education and has published over 20 articles in scholarly journals. He is the former editor of the Journal of Learning Development in Higher Education. [Image Descriptor: Photo of Chris]

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80 Intriguing Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for Kids and Teens

Android vs. iPhone? Capitalism vs. communism? Hot dog vs. taco?

First day of school vs. the last day of school.

In compare and contrast essays , writers show the similarities and differences between two things. They combine descriptive writing with analysis, making connections and showing dissimilarities. Remind students that in this type of writing, they’re not necessarily trying to sway the reader to one opinion or another—they’re just presenting and analyzing facts. These compare and contrast essay topics will give them plenty of practice.

  • School and Life Essay Topics
  • Entertainment Essay Topics
  • History and Politics Essay Topics
  • Just for Fun Essay Topics

School and Life Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Public and private schools
  • Online school and in-person school
  • Any two schools or colleges
  • Going to college vs. starting work full-time

Going to college vs. starting work full-time

  • Working your way through college as you go or taking out student loans
  • Parents and grandparents
  • Elementary school and high school
  • Learning to read vs. learning to write
  • The importance of any two school subjects
  • Wearing glasses vs. having braces
  • You and your best friend
  • Friendship vs. romantic love

Friendship vs. romantic love

  • Group work and individual work
  • Only child vs. having siblings
  • Nature vs. nurture
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Old friends and new friends
  • Your teacher vs. your parent/guardian
  • Car ownership and public transportation

Car ownership and public transportation

  • Learning to ride a bike vs. learning to drive a car

Entertainment Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • iPhone vs. Android
  • Instagram vs. Twitter (or choose any other two social media platforms)
  • Xbox vs. PlayStation

Xbox vs. PlayStation

  • Any two sports, like American football vs. soccer
  • Cooking at home and dining out
  • A movie based on a book and the book it was based on
  • Reading and watching TV
  • Opera music and pop music (or any two music genres)
  • Vegetarian and vegan

Vegetarian and vegan

  • Giving and receiving gifts
  • Going to a play vs. going to a movie
  • Playing a video game and watching a movie
  • Horse racing vs. NASCAR
  • Laptop vs. tablet
  • Sprint vs. marathon
  • Poetry and rap music
  • Ping-Pong vs. tennis
  • DC vs. Marvel
  • Netflix and YouTube
  • Shopping online and shopping in person

Shopping online and shopping in person

History and Politics Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Capitalism vs. communism
  • Socialism vs. communism
  • Monarchy/dictatorship and democracy
  • Two political candidates in a current race

Two political candidates in a current race

  • Spanish flu pandemic vs. COVID-19 pandemic
  • World War I and World War II
  • American pioneers vs. first space explorers
  • Gen X vs. Gen Z
  • Abraham Lincoln vs. Barack Obama (or any other two presidents)
  • Any two U.S. states

Any two U.S. states

  • Any two historic eras
  • Queen Elizabeth I vs. Queen Elizabeth II
  • Republicans and Democrats
  • Hitler and Stalin
  • The first airplane flight vs. the first manned spaceflight
  • American president vs. U.K. prime minister

American president vs. U.K. prime minister

  • Fox News vs. CNN
  • Legislative branch and executive branch and/or judicial branch
  • Equality and equity
  • Elected politicians vs. lobbyists

Just for Fun Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Dogs vs. cats as pets

Dogs vs. cats as pets

  • Paper books or e-books
  • Hot dogs vs. tacos
  • Summer and winter
  • Fall and spring
  • Big Mac vs. Whopper
  • Coke vs. Pepsi
  • Chocolate shake vs. hot chocolate
  • Any two superheroes or villains
  • Mondays and Fridays
  • Mornings vs. evenings

Mornings vs. evenings

  • First day of school vs. last day of school
  • Christmas vs. birthdays
  • Hurricane vs. tornado
  • Birthday as a kid and birthday as an adult
  • Going barefoot vs. wearing shoes
  • Appetizers and desserts

Appetizers and desserts

  • Phone calls and texting
  • Pants vs. skirts
  • Electric cars vs. gas-powered cars

What are some of your favorite compare and contrast essay topics? Come share your prompts on the WeAreTeachers HELPLINE group on Facebook .

Plus, check out the big list of essay topics for high school (100+ ideas).

80 Intriguing Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for Kids and Teens

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Compare And Contrast Essay Guide

Compare And Contrast Essay Examples

Last updated on: Nov 20, 2023

Good Compare and Contrast Essay Examples For Your Help

By: Barbara P.

Reviewed By: Jacklyn H.

Published on: Mar 22, 2023

Compare and Contrast Essay Examples

Are you ready to challenge your critical thinking skills and take your writing to the next level? Look no further than the exciting world of compare and contrast essays! 

As a college student, you'll have the unique opportunity to delve into the details and differences of a variety of subjects. But don't let the pressure of writing the perfect compare-and-contrast essay weigh you down. 

To help guide you on this journey, we've got some great compare-and-contrast essay examples. It will make the writing process not only manageable but also enjoyable. So grab a pen and paper, and let's get started on this exciting adventure!

Compare and Contrast Essay Examples

On this Page

Good Compare and Contrast Essay Examples

A compare and contrast essay is all about comparing two subjects. Writing essays is not always easy, but it can be made easier with help from the examples before you write your own first. The examples will give you an idea of the perfect compare-and-contrast essay. 

We have compiled a selection of free compare-and-contrast essay examples that can help you structure this type of essay. 











Don't know how to map out your compare and contrast essay? Visit this link to learn how to perfectly outline your essay!

Compare and Contrast Essay Examples University

Compare and contrast paper is a common assignments for university students. This type of essay tells the reader how two subjects are the same or different from each other. Also, show the points of comparison between the two subjects.

Look at the example that is mentioned below and create a well-written essay.


Compare and Contrast Essay Examples College


Compare and Contrast Essay Examples High School

Compare and contrast essays are often assigned to high school students to help them improve their analytical skills .

In addition, some teachers assign this type of essay because it is a great way for students to improve their analytical and writing skills.



Check out the video below to gain a quick and visual comprehension of what a compare and contrast essay entails.

Compare and Contrast Essay Examples Middle school

In middle school, students have the opportunity to write a compare-and-contrast essay. It does not require an expert level of skills, but it is still a way to improve writing skills.

Middle school students can easily write a compare-and-contrast essay with a little help from examples. We have gathered excellent examples of this essay that you can use to get started.



Literary Analysis Compare and Contrast Essay Examples

The perfect way to inform readers about the pros and cons of two subjects is with a comparison and contrast essay.

It starts by stating the thesis statement, and then you explain why these two subjects are being compared in this essay.

The following is an example that you can use for your help.


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Compare and Contrast Essay Conclusion Example

The conclusion of an essay is the last part, in which you wrap up everything. It should not include a story but rather summarize the whole document so readers have something meaningful they can take away from it.


Struggling to think of the perfect compare-and-contrast essay topic ? Visit this link for a multitude of inspiring ideas.

Compare and Contrast Essay Writing Tips

A compare and contrast essay presents the facts point by point, and mostly, the argumentative essay uses this compared-contrasted technique for its subjects.

If you are looking for some easy and simple tips to craft a perfectly researched and structured compare and contrast essay, we will not disappoint you.

Following are some quick tips that you can keep in mind while writing your essay:

  • Choose the essay topic carefully.
  • Research and brainstorm the points that make them similar and different.
  • Create and add your main statement and claim.
  • Create a Venn diagram and show the similarities and differences.
  • Choose the design through which you will present your arguments and claims.
  • Create compare and contrast essay outline. Use either the block method or the point-by-point structure.
  • Research and add credible supporting evidence.
  • Transitioning is also important. Use transitional words and phrases to engage your readers.
  • Edit, proofread, and revise the essay before submission.

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Create captivating essays effortlessly!

In conclusion, writing a compare and contrast essay can be an effective way to explore the similarities and differences between two topics. By using examples, it is possible to see the different approaches that can be taken when writing this type of essay. 

Whether you are a student or a professional writer, these examples can provide valuable insight to enhance your writing skills. You can also use our AI-powered essay typer to generate sample essays for your specific topic and subject.

However, if you don’t feel confident in your writing skills, you can always hire our professional essay writer. offer comprehensive essay writing service for students across the globe. Our experts are highly trained and qualified, making sure all of your essays will meet academic requirements while receiving top grades. 

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Frequently Asked Questions

How do i write a compare and contrast essay.

Here are some steps that you should follow and write a great essay.

  • Begin by brainstorming with a Venn diagram.
  • Create a thesis statement.
  • Develop an outline.
  • Write the introduction.
  • Write the body paragraphs.
  • Write the conclusion.
  • Proofreading.

How do you start a compare and contrast essay introduction?

When writing a compare and contrast essay, it is important to have an engaging introduction that will grab the reader's attention. A good way to do this would be by starting with a question or fact related to the topic to catch their interest.

What are some good compare and contrast essay topics?

Here are some good topics for compare and contrast essay:

  • E-books or textbooks.
  • Anxiety vs. Depression.
  • Vegetables and fruits.
  • Cinnamon vs. sugar.
  • Similarities between cultural and traditional fashion trends.

How long is a compare and contrast essay?

Usually, a compare and contrast essay would consist of five paragraphs but there are no hard and fast rules regarding it. Some essays could be longer than five paragraphs, based on the scope of the topic of the essay.

What are the two methods for arranging a comparison and contrast essay?

The two ways to organize and arrange your compare and contrast essay. The first one is the Point-by-Point method and the second one is the Block method.

Barbara P.

Dr. Barbara is a highly experienced writer and author who holds a Ph.D. degree in public health from an Ivy League school. She has worked in the medical field for many years, conducting extensive research on various health topics. Her writing has been featured in several top-tier publications.

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150+ Excellent Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

Table of Contents

Have your instructor asked you to submit a compare-and-contrast essay? Are you looking for the best compare-and-contrast essay topics for your assignment? If yes, then continue reading this blog. Here, we have presented a list of 150+ excellent compare-and-contrast essay topic ideas on different subjects. In addition to that, we have also explained how to identify the right topic and compose a brilliant comparison essay.

Before we move to the list of ideas, let us see what a compare and contrast essay means and how to craft the same.

What is a Compare and Contrast Essay?

It is a type of academic essay that compares two or more subjects that belong to the same category. The ultimate aim of this essay is to discuss the minute differences and the unknown similarities between the subjects. Most importantly, to help students build their cognitive development, teachers will ask them to write a comparison essay.

For instance, if the topic you have chosen is nuclear family versus joint family, then while preparing the compare and contrast essay, you will have to look for subtopics on similarities. Moreover, in the essay, you may explore the prevalence of immediate relations, like siblings and parents. Also, you may discuss the difference in emotional and social connection with grandparents.

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

Compare and Contrast Essay Topic Selection

Though you may find numerous compare-and-contrast essay topics on the internet, yet you don’t know what is appropriate. Thus, to make your essay attention-seeking, consider following the conditions below:

  • Firstly, be sure to choose topics that are relevant to your study area. Also, you may analyze different conditions, places, past events, and fictional or real characters in your essay.
  • Secondly, consider doing library research on your topics, as you may want to make your essay credible. Also, find some influences from TV series, news, and documentaries. Perhaps, link the latest events to your past, read the most trending articles, and follow the people’s comments.
  • Thirdly, you may consider researching on the internet as it serves as an outstanding source to find your topics. However, be sure to follow only credible sources, because all information you find is not authentic.
  • Lastly, consider sub-topics that have something in common, because you need a base for comparison and contrast. However, don’t choose very identical topics, as you experience difficulties in distinguishing between them.

Compare and Contrast Essay Writing

Though you may not always, enjoy writing a compare-and-contrast essay, yet you might make it exemplary. Let’s explore how.

  • Certainly, reading is the best, when it comes to writing a compare and contrast essay. Hence, be sure to select two topics and read about them. In this way, you may find captivating ideas and thereby make notes on them.
  • Besides, consider organizing your task as much as possible. Hence, you may enlist the similarities and differences in two columns to make it both readable and understandable. Perhaps, add any details that you find and make your comparison and essay topics comprehensive.
  • Subsequently, select the most suitable and important points as you ought to develop your key argument.  You must read Argumentative Essay Topics for You to Explore
  • Consequently, ensure to write 5 or 6 paragraphs on your compare and contrast essay topics and make your work ideal. Perhaps, give a general idea in the introduction, but provide specific statements in the body paragraphs. Most, importantly, restate your thesis statement, when concluding your essay.

Apart from these, add enough transition words in your essay, as you might want the readers to understand your work. Also, your essay may sound logical and you may easily move from one paragraph to another. Furthermore, consider proofreading your work and check for grammatical mistakes through a grammar checker . Lastly, ensure to take the feedback of your friends and families before the final submission, as a second opinion is important.

List of Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

For your convenience, below we have added a list of the best 150+ compare and contrast essay topics worthy of securing top grades. In case, you run short of ideas, from the list, choose any topic of your choice and craft a detailed comparison essay after analyzing the two subjects.

Simple Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Daytime working versus Night-time working- Analyze its benefits.
  • Reality versus fiction in Roman mythology.
  • Influence of African countries’ freedom.
  • Fall of the Ottoman Empire- Analyze the Arab country’s freedom before and after the downfall.
  • Summer versus winter people- Explore the basic characteristics.
  • The influence of tea and coffee on health.
  • USA fast food versus England fast food- A comparative analysis.
  • Animals against humans- How do they connect?
  • Online shopping versus traditional shopping.
  • Night owl versus Early Bird- What is your category?

Basic Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Video games versus Board games- Which is better?
  • Instagram versus Facebook- Analyze their popularity methods.
  • American style and British fashion- Compare and contrast.
  • Discuss the impact of technology on both young and adults.
  • Radio versus Newspaper- A comparative analysis.
  • Twitter versus Facebook- Social media sharing techniques.
  • Compare and contrast between traditional marketing communication techniques and modern marketing communication techniques
  • Compare and contrast between Hinduism and Christianity
  • Critical comparison between the American Civil War and the European Civil War
  • Bureaucratic leadership style versus Laissez-Faire leadership style: Which is better to apply in businesses and why?
  • Compare and contrast between Ancient Roman architecture and ancient Egyptian architecture
  • Discuss the differences and similarities between RISC (Reduced Instruction Set Computer) and CISC (Complex Instruction Set Computer) architecture
  • Offline shopping versus online shopping: Which is more secure and why?
  • Compare and contrast between traditional commerce and e-commerce
  • Apple computer versus Dell computer: Which one is the best to choose?
  • Compare and contrast the cultural practices of South Africans and Europeans
  • Compare and contrast the philosophical values of Socrates and Plato
  • Why practical education is more effective compared to theoretical education?
  • Analyze the differences and similarities between AR (augmented reality) and VR (virtual reality)
  • Why Transformational Leadership is better than Autocratic Leadership?

High-Quality Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Pros and cons of AI robots in education.
  • Tablets or Desktop computers.
  • Ice bucket challenge versus 10 years challenge.
  • Android Mobile Platforms and IOS.
  • Snapchat versus Instagram- What makes both these social networking sites unique?
  • Email writing versus letter writing – Where is the difference?
  • Electric cars versus gas cars- Compare and Contrast.
  • Traditional phones versus Smartphones- A comparative analysis.
  • Print book versus E-books- Compare and Contrast.
  • Rap culture values and the Rock music culture- Where is the difference?
  • Vegetables versus Meat- Advantages and disadvantages.
  • 2D or 3D screening contrast.
  • Vampires and Werewolves- How were they portrayed differently in the movies?
  • Women versus Men- Picasso work.
  • Avengers or the Fantastic Four.

Excellent Compare-and-Contrast Essay Ideas

  • Soap operas versus Sitcoms.
  • Prince versus Michael Jackson- Who is the real king of pop?
  • Discuss the differences and similarities between 3D movies and 4D movies
  • Compare and contrast between Libertarianism and Utilitarianism
  • Socialism versus Capitalism: Which one is better and why?
  • Outdoor games versus indoor games: Which are better for children’s psychological health and well-being?
  • Montessori school versus Waldorf school: Which is better for a child and why?
  • American educational system versus European education system: Which one is more effective and why?
  • Compare and contrast between Communism and Socialism
  • Work-from-home versus Work-from-office: Which is more effective to increase employee productivity and why?

Also read:  Motivational Quotes for Students to Succeed in Academic Life

Miscellaneous Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Batman versus Superman- An incredible contrast of who wins the race.
  • Medieval literature work in Europe and the Middle East.
  • Is there life on other planets? Explain your viewpoints.
  • Non-fiction books versus Fiction books.
  • Romeo and Juliet- Past edition versus modern edition.
  • Chemistry versus Physic- Which is more interesting to study?
  • Modern medicines versus Traditional medicines.
  • Fossil energy versus renewable energy.
  • Tornadoes versus Hurricanes- Compare and contrast their impacts.
  • Bible verses Quran- Compare their teachings.

Intriguing Compare and Contrast Essay Prompts

  • Jesus Christ versus Buddha.
  • Life of Moses versus the life of Jesus Christ- What is the difference?
  • How do Islam and Zoroastrianism relate to each other?
  • Right versus wrong in different religions- Compare and contrast.
  • Halloween or Thanksgiving- Which is your favorite American holiday?
  • Stress-free education for the students.
  • The impact of parents and celebrities on teenagers.
  • Compare and contrast between Catholic and Protestant doctrine
  • Transformational leadership versus Transactional leadership: Which is better for an organization with a hierarchical structure?
  • Compare and contrast between Cold War and World War II

Popular Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Poor versus rich.
  • Democracy versus monarchy.
  • Attending seminars versus attending classes.
  • College versus high school.
  • Private college and Public college- Where is the difference?
  • Communism versus Socialism.
  • Business studies versus economics.
  • Real classrooms versus real classrooms.
  • Written learning versus oral learning.
  • Basketball versus Football.
  • Practical and theory classes.
  • US political system versus UK political systems.
  • Creative writing versus research paper writing.
  • Spending time on sports versus spending time on studying.
  • Home tuition versus online tuition.

Unique Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Salary versus Stipend.
  • Freelancer versus Employees- What do you prefer?
  • Medical versus Engineering.
  • College degree versus Jobs.
  • Joining corporates versus joining start-ups.
  • Viruses versus Bacteria
  • Reptile versus Mammals.
  • Modern scientific techniques versus scientific techniques.
  • School games versus Community projects.
  • English class versus Math class- Which is better for you?

Amazing Compare and Contrast Essay Questions

  • Trees versus herbs and shrubs.
  • Paper versus Plastic.
  • Academics versus extracurricular activities.
  • Chemical versus Mechanical engineering.
  • Gymming versus Running- Which option is the best for you?
  • Sales versus marketing.
  • Arts versus Science.
  • Saving your first salary versus spending it.
  • Badminton versus Tennis.
  • Soccer versus Rugby.

Remarkable Compare and Contrast Essay Ideas

  • Amazon Prime versus Netflix.
  • One Plus or Apple.
  • Selection of the right discipline and career success.
  • Test-books versus E-books.
  • Male doctors versus female doctors.
  • Natural remedies versus medicines.
  • Allopathic medicine versus Homeopathic medications.
  • Home care versus hospital care.
  • Traditional schooling versus homeschooling.
  • How to manage friends and enemies?
  • Compare and contrast the farewell speeches of Barrack Obama and Bill Clinton
  • Analyze the similarities and differences between cultural diffusion and cultural imperialism
  • Analysis of the similarities and differences between various investment strategies that build wealth
  • Compare and contrast the role of public administration and private administration in a developing nation
  • Compare and contrast the impact of European and American modern art on Indian architecture

Captivating Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Studying science versus studying the language.
  • Watching movies at the cinema hall versus the home.
  • Skipping breakfast versus eating.
  • Weekday activities versus Weekends.
  • Growing a tree versus raising a child.
  • Xbox versus Play stations.
  • Diet vs. physical exercise
  • Football vs cricket  
  • Sachin Tendulkar vs. Brain Lara  
  • Trade situations of least developed nations and highly developed nation
  • Lifestyles of the people of a developed country and the people least developed country    
  • Medical facilities in the developed countries and least developed countries  
  • US Dollar vs. UK Pound  
  • For and against Brexit  
  • European Union vs. the UK  

Outstanding Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • Comparing truth and fiction as they relate to Roman mythology.
  • Compare and contrast civil rights in the eighteenth and twenty-first centuries.
  • How did politics impact art in the USA’s 60s vs. 90s music scenes?
  • Did history repeat itself in World War I and World War II?
  • Life in Japan before and after World War 2 was different.
  • How did life change in America after the Vietnam War?
  • Arab nations both prior to and during the fall of the Ottoman Empire.
  • Native American and Ancient Egyptian customs: similarities and differences.
  • impact of independence in African nations.
  • Between a classic and a smartphone, there are differences and similarities.
  • Compare and contrast the cause and effects of Ebola and Marburg virus-led diseases on the economy of Ghana and Nigeria
  • Compare and contrast the impact of the bubonic plague and Black Death on the global economy
  • Compare and contrast the consequences of first wave feminism and second-wave feminism
  • Compare and contrast Symbolism and Imagery
  • Compare and contrast Joseph Conrad’s  Heart of Darkness  and Joyce Cary’s  Mister Johnson : an Anthropological Exploration
  • Critical analysis of the benefits and drawbacks of working at home and working in an office
  • Compare and contrast AI and ML
  • Compare and contrast the American Civil War and the Russia-Ukraine war
  • Analysis of the similarities and differences between the leadership styles of Mahatma Gandhi and Nelson Mandela
  • Compare and contrast the cultural richness of Harappaand Mohenjo-daro  civilization and Nile Valley civilization

Also read: Top Greek Mythology Essay Topics and Ideas

Ph.D. Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

  • What are the parallels and differences between poetry and hip-hop?
  • Hamlet vs. Macbeth: Handling personal struggles
  • European and American literature in the 19th century: Differences and Similarities
  • How do the many gospels depict the life of Jesus Christ?
  • Getting instructional knowledge from books or the internet?
  • Students who play musical instruments or participate in sports.
  • Dare to Compare and Contrast while you’re among family or friends.
  • Comparison of homeschooling’s advantages and downsides to regular education
  • Contrasting the religious practices of ancient Egypt and ancient Rome.
  • Explain how social media posts and trends are received by people.
  • Compare and contrast print media and broadcast media
  • Discuss the differences and similarities between The Great Man Theory and Situational Theory of leadership
  • Compare and contrast folk music and hip-hop music
  • Compare and contrast the American Civil War and European Civil War
  • Analyze the similarities and differences between public and private administration
  • Critical analysis of the similarities and differences between Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome
  • Greek Mythology vs. Roman Mythology: Which is stronger and why?
  • Compare and contrast Ancient Greek and Roman Gods and Goddess
  • Analysis of the similarities and differences of the American Revolution and the French Revolution
  • Compare and contrast homeschooling and attending public school

Wrapping Up

Out of the 150+ ideas suggested above, choose any topic of your choice and compose a detailed compare-and-contrast essay with valid facts and supporting evidence. In case, you are not satisfied with the list of compare and contrast essay topics recommended above or if you need an expert to help you in writing a brilliant comparison essay, call us immediately. On our platform, we have numerous assignment experts online to offer cheap and best essay writing help for all kinds of academic essays including compare and contrast essays. Especially, while working on your order, our essay helpers will strictly prepare an original and plagiarism-free comparison essay in accordance with your requirements and will help you fetch top grades.

Without hesitation, just book your order and buy a customized compare-and-contrast essay ahead of the deadline.


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  4. 127 Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

    127 Compare and Contrast Essay Topics. Crafting a compare and contrast essay is typically much more interesting and fun than working on a dissertation. With this piece of writing, a student gets his chance to be creative. Besides, one doesn't have to re-invent the bicycle: these essays already have a purpose and a topic.

  5. 50 College-Level Compare and Contrast Topics for an Essay

    8. Voting rights in the past and today. 9. Immigration to the U.S. in the past and today (compare and contrast the reasons for immigration, its prevalence, requirements of the state, etc.) 10. Communism versus libertarianism. 11. The role of religion in creating legislation in different countries/cultures. 12.

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    Recycling vs. Landfill. Motorcycle vs. Bicycle. Halogen vs. Incandescent. Newton vs. Einstein. . Go on vacation vs. Staycation. Rock vs. Scissors. Cite this Article. These compare and contrast essay topics provide teachers and students with great and fun ideas for home and class work.

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    Animals Compare and Contrast Essay Examples Compare and Contrast Paragraph—Dogs and Cats. Sample lines: "Researchers have found that dogs have about twice the number of neurons in their cerebral cortexes than what cats have. Specifically, dogs had around 530 million neurons, whereas the domestic cat only had 250 million neurons.

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    This handout will help you first to determine whether a particular assignment is asking for comparison/contrast and then to generate a list of similarities and differences, decide which similarities and differences to focus on, and organize your paper so that it will be clear and effective. It will also explain how you can (and why you should ...

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  10. How to Write a Compare and Contrast Essay

    Compare and contrast essays examine topics from multiple viewpoints. This kind of essay, often assigned in middle school and high school, teaches students about the analytical writing process and prepares them for more advanced forms of academic writing. Compare and contrast essays are relatively easy to write if you follow a simple step-by-step approach.

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    Professors in college and university also prefer to give such tasks because they can easily estimate the authors' skills of analyzing and critical thinking. The task is called contrast or compare essay. The writer needs 2 subjects to describe in the paper. It could be similarities, differences, and both of them at the same time.

  12. 70 Compare and Contrast Essay Topics to Help You Get Started

    There are infinite possibilities when it comes to choosing from compare and contrast essay topics about culture and society. The trick here is to pick a topic that is very specific and interesting. Here are some ideas. 57. Korean concept of beauty vs. American concept of beauty.

  13. 75 Dynamic Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

    Whether you're in middle school, high school, or college, these compare and contrast essay ideas will help you get inspired to write some great work.

  14. 440 Good Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

    Similarities and differences between ballet and jazz lessons. Compare waking up early with sleeping in. Following a vegan diet vs. eating meat every day. Contrast the effects of praying daily with not praying at all. Compare wearing makeup and wearing no makeup. Similarities and differences between cats and dogs.

  15. 80 Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

    Simple compare-contrast tasks and compare and contrast essays have one significant difference. Simple tasks typically have minimal metrics to define what areas of the report the writer is considering, while compare and contrast essays have a specific algorithm of features analysis and determine the similarities and differences between the two subjects of interest.

  16. 260 Best Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for Students

    Scientific Topics for Compare and Contrast Essays. Microwave vs Oven. Chemistry vs Physics. Andromeda and Milky Way. What are the differences between Mars and Earth. Differences and similarities of the two moon missions. DaVinci vs Thomas Jefferson. Tsunami vs Earthquakes - what's the worse natural phenomenon.

  17. 125 Amazing Compare and Contrast Essay Topics & Prompts

    Make sure that you follow the right outline and format. A compare and contrast essay should be made up of 5 or 6 paragraphs. The introduction should provide a general idea of your work while each body paragraph should contain a clear statement. Don't forget to restate what you think or feel in the concluding paragraph.

  18. 200+ Best Compare And Contrast Essay Topics (2023)

    History Compare and Contrast Essay Topics. Renaissance and Baroque Art. US President vs. British Prime Minister. Fascism and Totalitarianism. Religious Studies vs. Anthropology. America vs. Soviet Government. Gandhi and Jinnah's political approaches. Communism vs. Liberalism. Make a comparison between Russian emperors.

  19. 50 Great Compare and Contrast Essay Examples (2023)

    Criteria analysis involves comparing and contrasting two or more items based upon a pre-determined criteria. For example, if comparing cats and dogs, you criteria might be 'domestication history', 'social structure', 'grooming', 'training and obedience', and exercise needs. We can then compare them as below: Criteria.

  20. 100+ Interesting Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

    Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for Students - 2022 Ideas. A compare and contrast essay is an important academic assignment for school or college students. An essential point that you must keep in mind when choosing a compare and contrast essay topic is to go for the subjects that belong to the same category.

  21. 80 Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for Kids and Teens

    Learning to read vs. learning to write. The importance of any two school subjects. Wearing glasses vs. having braces. You and your best friend. Friendship vs. romantic love. Group work and individual work. Only child vs. having siblings. Nature vs. nurture. Anxiety and depression.

  22. 15+ Outstanding Compare and Contrast Essay Examples

    Compare and Contrast Essay Examples Middle school. In middle school, students have the opportunity to write a compare-and-contrast essay. It does not require an expert level of skills, but it is still a way to improve writing skills. Middle school students can easily write a compare-and-contrast essay with a little help from examples.

  23. 150+ Excellent Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

    List of Compare and Contrast Essay Topics. For your convenience, below we have added a list of the best 150+ compare and contrast essay topics worthy of securing top grades. In case, you run short of ideas, from the list, choose any topic of your choice and craft a detailed comparison essay after analyzing the two subjects.