An academic essay is a focused piece of writing that develops an idea or argument using evidence, analysis and interpretation.
Consider practicing writing under time pressure. You`ve probably written dozens of essays before–the only thing that sets a timed essay apart is that it`s timed. Students often struggle to complete the full essay within the time constraints, particularly if they have to write longhand when they`re accustomed to working on the computer.
If you did your best to write a complete, clear, and insightful essay within the time allotted, you should have nothing to worry about.
Start planning if you can. Although the situation described above sometimes occurs, it`s also very common for professors to give their students a fairly detailed idea of what an essay question will involve in advance of the test day.
Before you start writing, you should make sure you have a clear idea of what you want to say and how you`re going to say it.
After the topic sentence, present evidence such as data, examples, or quotes from relevant sources. Be sure to interpret and explain the evidence, and show how it helps develop your overall argument.