Monday, December 2, 2013

Essay Engine is Now Even Easier

Back in May, we made our basic Essay Engine program free for two reasons. First, we built it to help students write essays, and offering it for free makes it accessible to far more students. Secondly, we wanted more users so we could see how actual students use it on real essays.

Well, we have been happy to see so many writers using Essay Engine, but we noticed something: too
many of our users were not finishing their essays.  We asked a few about this, and the most common thing we heard was that the program was too long.  Writers began their essays using our program, but they did not know how much further they had to go. And let's face it, when students start an essay, the only thing they really care about is finishing.

So we listened to our users, and made some improvements. First, we shortened our essay writing program. Because it was already efficient, there was not much we could remove. We tightened up some the written directions, edited a few of our instructional videos, and took out some early steps that explain why essay writing is important. After all, students don't care why they are writing, just what they need to write.

We also added a progress bar. It shows the writer how far she has come and how far she has to go. More importantly, the writer can click on the bar to see a pop-up overview of an expository essay. She can see which pieces she has completed and which she still has to do. This is also a nice reminder of the steps the student takes each time she writes an expository essay. Our goal has always been that students practice writing with Essay Engine so that they learn how to write on their own. Every student needs to write essays in class without help, either on an essay exam or a standardized test.

Please check our our new, more streamlined Essay Engine at And don't forget to follow us on Facebook and Twitter.