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56 Compare and Contrast Essay Topics to Inspire College Students

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56 Compare and Contrast Essay Topics to Prevent the Writer’s Block

Table of Contents

56 Compare and Contrast Essay Topics to Prevent the Writer’s Block
How to Write a Compare and Contrast Essay?

Compare and Contrast Essay Example Proposed by Expert

What Are Some Good Compare and Contrast Essay Topics to Consider?

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for College Students

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for High School

Compare and Contrast Topics for Middle School

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for 6th Grade

AP World History Compare and Contrast Essay

Things to Compare and Contrast

Easy Compare & Contrast Topics

56 Compare and Contrast Essay Topics to Prevent the Writer’s Block

“World War II was more terrifying and tragic than World War I regarding the number of sacrifices and loss of resources.”

That is how a thesis statement or an opening sentence of the compare and contrast essay topics on history may look like. The article explores how to write a compare and contrast essay. Read it if your teacher asks to find differences and similarities between 2 or more objects.


If you don’t, the smartest thing to do is to contact online academic writers of MA and PhD level and order custom academic paper of any type.

How to Write a Compare and Contrast Essay?

Before we share some of the best ideas to include in your writing, we should discuss how to write a compare and contrast essay in several stages.

  1. Consider 2 or more objects/events/people to detect similarities & differences. The primary goal is to read the assignment’s prompt, analyze it, highlight the keywords , brainstorm, and prepare an action plan called outline . Take notes while reading the materials – it is a solid head-start!
  2. Prepare a list of the core things that the objects have in common, and then specify what makes them different from each other. Experts recommend developing separate columns to include the results there.
  3. Exclude the most significant ideas and create a thesis statement based on them. Cherry-pick the points that underline the differences & similarities between the target objects in the most persuasive way . Think about the major themes, characters, and the messages of every topic.
  4. Make a final draft of the outline to ground the paper. An outline breaks down the primary points to discuss. In case of this type of homework assignment, it is better to avoid developing papers larger than 6 paragraphs in length (approximately 2-3 pages).
  5. Add textual elements to come up with the final draft. After writing a plan, everything left to do is to involve a credible evidence to support the main points of the text. To collect such information, a detailed primary research is required.
  6. Proofread & edit once you are done. Even if you are sure in the quality of work, dedicate some time to re-reading and checking the final draft before turning it into the final paper and submitting. Remember: once the teacher receives the paper, a student cannot get it back to fix something. Do not miss the chance to scan the text for the common mistakes such as grammar, spelling, punctuation errors, and even small typos that can affect the final grade. Another great idea is to ask someone to read & analyze the paper.

Compare and Contrast Essay Example Proposed by Expert

In short, here are the parts a student should include in his work:

  • Introduction. Lay out the overall idea behind the main point; it might sound something like, “I believe the way these works draw parallels and gaps between these elements are significant as…” The next thing to step in is the body.
  • Body paragraphs. A student is encouraged to prepare 4 body paragraphs for a paper of this type: list and describe minimum 2 similarities & 2 differences when it comes to discussing the offered ideas. A student may choose one of the possible body structures.

1st scenario:

Paragraph 1 – Issue 1 Compare

Paragraph 2 – Issue 2 Compare

Paragraph 3 – Issue 1 Contrast

Paragraph 4 – Issue 2 Contrast

2nd scenario:

Paragraph 1 – Issue 1 Compare

Paragraph 2 – Issue 1 Contrast

Paragraph 3 – Issue 2 Compare

Paragraph 4 – Issue 2 Contrast

Some students prefer standing out form the rest of their classmates by offering a hybrid model.

  • Conclusion. In a concluding part, sum up the offered opinions and reword a thesis statement.

What about a good differences & similarities essay example? Professional online writing services like the one mentioned in the opening paragraph of this article provide thousands of free essay samples to enjoy. As for the in-text examples, the experts say the following:

“It is not necessary to have a lot of examples as a single killer example based on personal experience or real-life situation can prove the writer’s point. Depending on the depth of work, a student may bring in outside criticism to back up the arguments. The second set of eyes may help to review the work from a critical perspective. Parents or peers can decide whether the essay is easy and interesting to read.”

Linda Strong, a certified academic & business writer at EssayClick.


What Are Some Good Compare and Contrast Essay Topics to Consider?

Look for the best ideas shared by the top students in the lists below.

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for College Students

A freshman may start from one of these essay topics for college students. You may also relate some to the years spent on a college campus.

  1. Mineralogy & geography
  2. Several different theories of Albert Einstein
  3. Political regime in the United States today as to the one 50 years ago
  4. Volcano eruption or tsunami: Which natural disaster is more threatening?
  5. How has the fashion changed since the early 90s?
  6. Would you prefer to stay miserable in a mansion or happy in a shanty?
  7. The life on campus is better than life with family
  8. Netball versus basketball rules

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for High School

What about compare and contrast essay topics for high school? Youth today s technologically advanced – focus on this perspective.

  1. Samsung on Android or Apple iOS devices
  2. Linux or Windows operating system
  3. Flat & private houses
  4. Chemistry and Biology: Differences & Similarities
  5. Kennedy and Obama: Comparing 2 American presidents
  6. Money or gifts make people happier when it comes to holidays
  7. Which of the 2 date scenarios is better to implement?
  8. Do aliens exist or not?

Compare and Contrast Topics for Middle School

A list of the comparison topics for middle school is a bit less complicated than the one for high school & college students. Focus on the fun!

  1. Purchasing goods online against buying products in traditional shops
  2. Cinema or traditional theater
  3. Fiction plus non-fiction
  4. Holidays in Orthodox church versus those celebrated in Buddhism
  5. Which type of activity is more effective when it comes to losing weight: sports or diets?
  6. Wearing pants or dresses in the office
  7. Were mythological Gods real?
  8. Wearing uniform or having no school uniform at all

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for 6th Grade

We recommend choosing something fun to discuss in essay topics for 6th grade. Pick several heroes from comics or popular ways of online communication.

  1. E-mails versus traditional posting
  2. Various concepts of beauty in modern world
  3. Heavy metal & hip-hop music
  4. Fruits vs. Vegetables
  5. Superman versus Batman
  6. Summer or winter
  7. Sailor Moon or Pokemon
  8. Toys & cookies

AP World History Compare and Contrast Essay

Have you heard about the Advanced Placement exam? Here are some AP world history essay topics!

  1. Draw a parallel between 2 or more distinguished leaders in history
  2. What did World War I and WW II have in common?
  3. How is the development of Ancient Greece different from the development of Ancient Rome?
  4. What is the difference between Southern & Northern states?
  5. Cleopatra & Margaret Thatcher
  6. Christianity & Islam
  7. Sparta & Athens
  8. Mesopotamia differences

Things to Compare and Contrast

Observe the list of common things to analyze. Those are simple ideas for this type of paper.

  1. Playing video games against reading: more preferred pastime
  2. Messaging is killing live communication: Pros & cons
  3. A personal lifestyle versus the lifestyle of the target role model
  4. Hollywood & Bollywood
  5. Similar & different traits children share with their parents
  6. Several quotations of famous people
  7. SEO or traditional approaches to marketing
  8. Comedy or drama movies

Easy Compare & Contrast Topics

  1. Active or passive leisure
  2. Having a long hair versus having a short haircut
  3. Driving a car or a plane
  4. Pick 2 plays of William Shakespeare to discuss (more authors are listed here )
  5. Select any 2 books from the epoch of Romanticism
  6. Gothic and Baroque art in history of mankind
  7. MacDonald’s & Burger King
  8. US English & UK English comparison

Choose one of the offered topics or come up with your own unique idea! Teachers would appreciate the creative approach. After reading several valuable tips, a student may still have no idea how to start a paper or attract reader’s attention. It is a separate art. If you are not ready to master the art of academic writing alone, there is no need to – go the website of an official writing service for students and buy a cheap paper written from scratch to stand out from the rest of your peers!

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Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

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:

  • Books
  • Magazines
  • Documentaries
  • Scientific magazines
  • Academic journals
  • Official Reports
  • Newspapers

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:

  • Events
  • Situations
  • People and Fiction
  • Places

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:

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

6th Grade Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

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

Middle School Essay Topics

  1. Zeus vs King Arthur – which one is cooler?
  2. Role models of 1950s compared to modern role models
  3. Watching a move at home compared with going to the cinema
  4. Is there a link between school bullies and dictators?
  5. Is a hurricane worse than a tsunami or the other way around?
  6. Christmas, Halloween or Prom night – which one is the most fun?
  7. Bicycle or car driving – which one is more difficult?
  8. 5-star hotels vs 3-star ones – why should you choose each of them?
  9. Parents or celebrities – who influences a teenager most of all?

High School Compare and Contrast Essay Themes

  1. Historic literature or fiction – which one appeals most to college students?
  2. College Tests vs High School examinations – what is the most important of the two?
  3. E-learning versus traditional learning – is science and technology really helping with the learning process?
  4. New England Patriots vs Atlanta Falcons – who has more fans?
  5. Printed books vs e-books – what is the most appealing form of reading for colleague students?
  6. Story buildings or wooden houses – what type of construction is best?
  7. Portugal and Spain – what are the main similarities and differences?
  8. Japanese concept of beauty compared with the American one – what are the standards?
  9. 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

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

Politics and History Compare Essay Topics

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

Easy to Approach Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

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

Opposite Compare Essay Topics

  1. Males vs Females
  2. Pepsi or Coke?
  3. White vs Red
  4. Peace vs War
  5. Riding the bus or driving a car?
  6. Hatred and love
  7. Positive and negative aspects of working a lot
  8. Sun and the Moon
  9. Soft toys or dolls – what are the most appropriate toys?

Compare and Contrast Topics for Teenagers

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

Social Media and IT Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

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

Music and Movie Compare and Contrast Essay Themes

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

Literature-Inspired Compare and Contrast Essay Ideas

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

Scientific Topics for Compare and Contrast Essays

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

Popular Compare Essay Themes

  1. Football vs Soccer
  2. Korean vs Chinese
  3. Personal point of view vs public opinion
  4. Water or juice
  5. Dark beer vs light beer
  6. Obesity and Anorexia – what is the most dangerous
  7. Divorce and marriage
  8. Linux or Windows – Paid vs free OS
  9. Capitalism vs Marxism

Philosophical Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

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