What is a Comparative Analysis?
Definition, Concept & Usage
In academics, writing an analysis is mandatory especially at higher education level. In comparative analysis technique, you are asked to compare and contrast two different theories, two school of thoughts, two scientific techniques or any two historical personalities.
With the help of a comparative analysis, you may find some amazing commonalities beside contrasts or differences. For example Barack Obama and John Mccain have serious differences as far as political views are concerned but they may have similarities in views to bring social reforms and for the betterment of common people.
Finding Basis for Comparison
Before going through in detail study of comparative analysis technique, here is an important thing to discuss. Let’s take an example. You are writing a comparative analysis on autocratic rule vs. democratic rule. The first thing you have to be clear about is the rationale behind this choice. Try to convince the readers that the choice you have made is meaningful and productive.
Guide Steps for Writing a Comparative Analysis Essay or Paper
Keeping in mind the above mentioned example, here is a brief guideline on how you can better develop a comparative analysis.
- First of all, the comparative analysis process is bit tricky that requires careful handling as you need to sort out the commonalities from the text. For example if you are talking about autocratic and democratic rule, as already mentioned, then you have a thorough study and absolute understanding about the two.
- Later on, with the help of your research you might be able to restructure the commonalities and then you will be able to write a comparative analysis.
- Your comparative analysis essay always starts with an introduction. Your introduction sets up the foundation of those arguments that are considered common in both approaches.
- Always get a start with a general idea and then move towards more specific ideas.
- In the end, organize your paper in proper paragraphs. A good comparative analysis is always structured in proper paragraphs.
Sample Comparative Analysis
Begin your comparative analysis with an opening paragraph having a comparison between the two situations. The best way is that you go with the description of the various points in separate paragraphs. Do not intermingle various aspects but try to describe each in a separate section. This will help you in paying equal attention to each and every argument present in the text.
For example you are writing an analysis about Autocratic VS democratic Rule. In the first paragraph you can compare definitions of the two approaches. In the second paragraph you can compare the structure of the two systems of rule. Later on, in next paragraphs you can discuss the functions of the two along with power distributions in each system. So, in this way you can easily structure the comparative analysis essay.