With an introduction up front and a conclusion on the end, we'd have a five-paragraph theme.
If the items are very different, then the same criteria don't apply to them.
If there are very many criteria to explore, the essay tends to break up into too many pieces for easy reading.
Sample thesis statement for compare/contrast paper: While both Facebook and My Space allow you to meet other users who have similar interests, only My Space allows you to demonstrate your personal style.
If you want to write a successful compare/contrast essay, you'll need to avoid writing about really obvious differences and similarities.
You could also suggest that though both basketball and football require a lot of teamwork, basketball players are expected to be a lot more versatile than football players.
You don't have to be a genius to write an interesting compare/contrast essay--you just have to look at ordinary things in a new way!
Some instructors prefer that you only write about the differences between two things, while others want you to focus on explaining the similarities as well.
Either way, you'll need to make sure that your thesis statement reflects your instructor's expectations.
There are two primary ways to organize your compare and contrast paper.
Chunking: placing all of the information for each individual subject in one place (chunk), and then using similarities as transitions.