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Writing for College and Beyond

Life Lessons from the College Composition Classroom

Series:

CJ Kent

Writing for College and Beyond: Life Lessons from the College Composition Classroom explains how the many skills taught in the Freshman Composition course apply at work and in life. The composition class is a pre-requisite and General Education course for most colleges and universities in the United States. It reaches students in every area of study. As people wonder about the value of a liberal arts education and question whether colleges and universities are truly preparing students for the workforce, Writing for College and Beyond challenges those arguments by pointing out exactly how classroom policies and writing assignments apply beyond school walls. Professors, lecturers, and graduate students teaching Freshman Composition courses will find this book helpful. Administrators who service the Freshman Composition population, such as Writing Center Directors, will also find Writing for College and Beyond: Life Lessons from the College Composition Classroom a wonderful aid.

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Chapter Eight: Compare and Contrast for the Job Cover Letter

Extract

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CHAPTER EIGHT

Compare and Contrast for the Job Cover Letter



Compare shows similarities and contrast shows differences between two things. One is meaningless without the other, which is why they often go together. The challenge is learning how to manage two objects so that your reader is clear on your focus, what similarities and differences you are highlighting, and why you are doing so. We compare and contrast in conversation all the time but doing it in writing poses many challenges. Practicing this skill in school is preparation for the many cover letters you will write in the future when you compare your skill set to the job description, helping them see why you are the applicant they want.

When you write a cover letter for a job, you are comparing your qualifications and resume to the job description. You are finding points of commonality and acknowledging differences in order to reconcile them. Be clear that the terms, though used interchangeably, mean specific things. We talk about a compare and contrast because you always do a little bit of both, but one is the primary goal.

Compare—show similarities between two things.

Contrast—show differences between two things.

In a cover letter, you want to show how your experience matches the criteria for the job. You fit the job because you understand what needs to be done. You do ← 96 | 97 → this by...

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