How to Use ChatGPT to Write an Essay without Plagiarizing

Have you ever wondered how ChatGPT can revolutionize your essay-writing process? This incredible tool can serve as a library with access to numerous sources, a personal tutor guiding you through the writing journey, and even a simulator to help you practice and refine your essay writing skills.

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As a team, we can’t help but wish we had such a remarkable resource during our student years. However, we understand that the key to successful ChatGPT essay writing lies in approaching it mindfully and step by step, not generating the entire essay at one prompt.

In this article, our custom writing help team will share valuable tips on using ChatGPT to write an essay without plagiarism while maintaining your unique style. We’ll guide you through the steps to write an outstanding essay using artificial intelligence.

πŸ‘£ 6 Steps of Writing an Essay

Writing an essay might seem a challenging task. However, having a well-thought-out plan will help save you time and effort.

Let’s quickly recall the main stages of essay writing:

πŸ“Œ Get familiar with the assignment.Ensure you understand the essay prompt, length requirements, and any specific instructions the professor provides.
πŸ’‘ Choose a topic.Brainstorm ideas and choose the one that sparks your curiosity. Pick the topic that gives you enough space for research and writing.
πŸ•΅οΈβ€β™‚οΈ Do profound research.Gather relevant information from books, articles, and websites. Consider what evidence you may use to support your arguments.
πŸ“ Create an essay outline.Organize your thoughts into an outline. It will help you keep all the necessary essay components (introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion).
βœ’οΈ Write an essay.Collect all your thoughts, develop the key arguments, and link the thesis with other parts of the text.
πŸ”€ Edit and proofread.Review your essay for any errors in grammar, punctuation, and spelling. Check your writing for clarity and coherence.

πŸ€” Can ChatGPT Write Essays?

In short, yes.

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However, we are firmly against letting AI write whole essays. Not only do you violate multiple academic integrity rules, but you also deprive yourself of the opportunity to learn and improve your critical thinking skills. Besides, the quality of AI-generated essays is below the average, so think twice before submitting a ChatGPT-written paper.

For more information about the issues of using AI tools in academic writing, read our guides:

Use this free and authentic AI text finder to be on the safe side, and don’t submit AI-generated works.

How can you use ChatGPT to write essays, then?

  • Choose a topic. The chatbot offers numerous essay titles based on a prompt you input. Make the prompt as precise as possible to receive the perfect theme.
  • Research. ChatGPT can provide relevant information and sources related to your essay topic, so you don’t have to browse endless web pages.
  • Develop a research question or a thesis statement. The chatbot can also assist in refining and developing a specific research question that accurately reflects the essay’s main argument.
  • Write an outline. ChatGPT can help create a well-structured outline for the essay, logically organizing the main points and supporting details.
  • Find arguments and evidence. ChatGPT is a great assistant in generating ideas, arguments, examples, and evidence to support your opinion.
  • Summarize or paraphrase the text. ChatGPT can aid in summarizing or paraphrasing complex texts or research findings, saving you time.
  • Check your references. With ChatGPT, you can format a reference list according to any style you need. Ask it to produce one from scratch or scan for inconsistencies.
  • Proofread. With the help of ChatGPT, you can identify grammatical errors, spelling mistakes, and awkward phrasing to polish the essay.

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Below, we provide details on integrating ChatGPT at each essay writing step. Pay attention to the prompts we use as they determine the output.

The picture suggests 8 different ways of using ChatGPT in essay writing.

Let’s start with the research!

πŸ”Ž Using ChatGPT for Preliminary Research

Many students experience writer’s block when writing essays because they skip the preliminary research stage. It is the process of gathering information, familiarizing yourself with existing literature, and identifying key arguments related to the topic. Doing profound research helps to develop a more informed and nuanced perspective, which can ultimately strengthen the quality of your essay.

Moreover, preliminary research can help you gather evidence and examples to support your arguments. You can find relevant data, statistics, case studies, and expert opinions.

ChatGPT can help conduct research by providing a quick and efficient way to gather information. When searching for sources, you can ask ChatGPT for recommendations based on your essay’s topic. You can also use the bot to ask questions, seek clarifications, and summarize key arguments and perspectives from existing literature.

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Here’s an example of how you can use ChatGPT during your preliminary research:

What is the scholarly discussion about the ethics of AI in education? Give the controversial views in bullet points and provide sources for each position.

Alternatively, use our notes generator to prepare a list of key facts and arguments.

❓ Asking ChatGPT for a Research Question

A research question serves as the foundation for the entire essay. It defines the specific focus and purpose of the paper, guides the direction of the research, and shapes the content, analysis, and arguments you use. Here are some reasons why a well-crafted research question is essential:

  • It helps narrow the essay’s scope, ensuring that you stay focused.
  • It guides the process of gathering information and conducting research.
  • It provides a framework for organizing the essay and helps you present the findings logically and coherently.

ChatGPT can suggest potential research questions based on your topic, helping to refine and narrow down the essay’s focus. Additionally, ChatGPT can provide feedback on your research question to ensure it’s clear, specific, and relevant to the chosen topic.

Here’s an example of how you can generate research questions with ChatGPT:

Generate 3 effective research questions for a descriptive study on the topic “The ethics of AI in education”.

πŸ“ Writing an Outline with ChatGPT

A well-crafted outline is a lifesaver when it comes to essay writing. It can save you time and effort in the long run.By planning out your essay in advance, you can avoid constantly reorganizing and revising your writing as you go along. In addition, by outlining the main points and supporting details, you can ensure you present your ideas clearly and logically. Furthermore, by laying out the essay’s main points in advance, you can see where you may need more research or provide additional evidence to support your claims.

ChatGPT is a helpful tool for creating a detailed essay outline. Here are the tips to get the maximum:

  • Input the main points, and the bot will help you structure them.
  • Ask ChatGPT to generate arguments for you.
  • Specify the number of arguments you want to make.
  • Indicate how long each part of the essay should be.

Below is a sample prompt for creating an outline with ChatGPT. You can also try our free essay outline generator to help you organize your paper.

Make an outline for an argumentative essay on the topic “The ethics of AI in education”. The essay will argue that, despite AI literacy divide and bias in algorithms, the use of AI in education can improve fairness and equity in the classroom. The essay will be about 800 words.

✍️ How to Use ChatGPT to Write an Essay Introduction

Just as in personal interactions, a strong first impression sets the tone for the relationship. Likewise, a well-constructed essay’s introduction can captivate readers’ attention and make them eager to continue reading.

Three main elements make up a strong essay introduction: a hook, a thesis statement, and background information. Check out some ideas on how ChatGPT can assist you with them:

  1. Hook. The essay’s hook is the opening sentence or two designed to grab readers’ attention and draw them into the essay topic. ChatGPT can help you brainstorm creative and compelling ways to start your essay, whether through a thought-provoking question, a surprising fact, or a powerful anecdote.
  2. Background information. It can include a brief historical context, definitions of key terms, or the current state of the issue being addressed. For background information, ChatGPT can help provide relevant context or theories on your topic, saving you time.
  3. Thesis statement. The thesis is a sentence that states the central point of the essay, and it should be specific. If you input your ideas, ChatGPT can help you craft a thesis statement that effectively conveys the purpose of your essay. The bot can also generate several thesis statements on your topic for your inspiration.

You can also try our free essay introduction generator if you don’t want to bother creating a prompt for ChatGPT.


There are several types of hooks that you can use to grab the reader’s attention, for example:

  • Anecdotal hooks
  • Quotes
  • Fact or statistic
  • Question hooks

To quickly generate an essay hook with ChatGPT, provide a specific prompt that includes the topic of the essay and the type of hook you want to create. For instance, you can ask, “Can you help me generate an anecdotal hook for an essay about climate change?”.

Below, we’ve added an example of how to use ChatGPT to generate hooks. When asking for an attention-getter with statistics or quotes, remember to double-check any facts the chatbot gives you.

Generate 3 hooks for an essay on the topic “The ethics of AI in education”.

If you want a more straightforward tool specializing in generating hooks, try our free attention grabber generator.


In the background information, it’s essential to provide the reader with context relevant to the topic. Background can consist of:

  • Historical context, including key events, developments, or trends.
  • Definitions and explanations, introducing key terms and concepts.
  • Topic significance, explaining its relevance on a global scale.
  • Current state of the issue, discussing the ongoing processes, fresh statistics, trends, or debates.

The main challenge with writing background information is the risk of losing focus and providing irrelevant details. ChatGPT can help you stick to the key points that directly relate to the subject matter and not get lost in hundreds of web pages.

I am writing an argumentative essay on the topic “The ethics of AI in education”. What background information can I include in the introduction of my essay?


Different types of essays require different thesis statements. Here are some examples:

  • Argumentative thesis. A thesis statement for an argumentative essay presents the main argument and your stance on a controversial issue.
  • Expository thesis. For an expository essay, the thesis statement should present the topic and provide an overview of the information covered in the paper.
  • Analytical thesis. In an analytical essay, the thesis statement should analyze a particular issue or element of the examined work.
  • Compare and contrast thesis. A thesis for a compare and contrast essay should highlight the similarities and differences between the two subjects being compared.

ChatGPT cannot just write the whole thesis statement for you, but it can generate some ideas you’ll need to develop. The bot has certain limitations, including understanding topic-specific vocabulary and providing a unique opinion on the subject matter. To help ChatGPT generate compelling thesis statement ideas, input the key terms and specify the type of essay and the direction you would like your paper to go. You can easily make a list of the main ideas with this key points generator.

Look at the sample prompt you can use to generate a thesis statement example:

Suggest an example of an argumentative thesis statement for an essay on the topic “The ethics of AI in education”. The essay will focus on the impact of AI on fairness and equity in education.

πŸ“ƒ How to Use ChatGPT to Write Body Paragraphs

Each body paragraph presents a single idea or aspect of the main topic and provides evidence, examples, and explanations to support that idea effectively. A body paragraph should begin with a clear topic sentence introducing the main idea, followed by supporting sentences providing relevant details and evidence.

ChatGPT is especially helpful when writing body paragraphs for your essay. You can start by generating arguments to support your thesis statement. Make sure you specify your stance, whether you want the bot to make arguments for or against something.

Once you have come up with the arguments, ChatGPT can suggest supporting details, evidence, and examples. These can include relevant statistics, quotes, and research findings. Remember to make specific prompts, for example, “Can you give concrete examples of how using AI violates academic integrity?”.

Before including the supporting details generated by AI in your essay, it’s essential to fact-check and verify the accuracy of the information. You can do this by cross-checking the examples and evidence provided by ChatGPT with reputable sources, such as academic journals, books, or reliable websites. Smoothly connect the sections with each other using our transition sentence generator!

Here’s how you can ask ChatGPT to help you with the main points for your essay’s body:

I’m writing an argumentative essay on the topic “The ethics of AI in education. My thesis statement is as follows: “Despite concerns over the AI literacy divide and algorithmic bias, the integration of AI in education can significantly enhance fairness and equity in the classroom”. Suggest 3 arguments I can use to support my thesis statement.

πŸ“• How to Use ChatGPT to Write a Conclusion

A conclusion is essential to any essay as it serves multiple purposes. There, you need to restate your thesis, highlight the findings, and share your paper’s contribution to the discussion. Additionally, it is crucial to summarize your main points when writing an essay’s conclusion.

ChatGPT can help you summarize any text you give to it. Here’s a sample prompt you can use to shorten your arguments for the essay conclusion:

Write a possible conclusion for an essay with the thesis statement: “Despite concerns over the AI literacy divide and algorithmic bias, the integration of AI in education can significantly enhance fairness and equity in the classroom”. My arguments are that AI provides personalized learning opportunities, gives access to quality education, and minimizes human bias in students assessment.

Remember to edit any text generated by ChatGPT to avoid plagiarism and not get caught. Although the chatbot can greatly assist in producing content, the output should be carefully reviewed to ensure the language and structure are unique.

πŸ“‘ Using ChatGPT for Referencing

Essay references are sources of information used to support and validate the content. They can include books, journals, articles, websites, and even images and films. All the sources should be mentioned in a reference list at the end of the document, including the author’s name, publication title, date, and other relevant details.

The number of references in essays with citations can vary depending on assignment guidelines and the topic complexity. A good rule of thumb for a standard academic paper is to include three to five references for every 1000 words.

There are at least two ways ChatGPT can help you with references:

  • Formatting. ChatGPT can compile a reference list for you according to your preferred citation style (APA, MLA, Chicago, etc.). You simply need to provide the bot with the details for each reference, like the author, the title, the year, etc.
  • Error checking. ChatGPT can help you spot mistakes and inconsistencies within your reference list. Once your reference list is ready, paste it into ChatGPT, and ask to check it according to the chosen citation style.

Here’s a sample prompt you can use to ask ChatGPT to help you with referencing:

I need help formatting a reference list entry in APA7. Here are the details about the source:
  • Title: AI and education: A guidance for policymakers
  • Year: 2021 – Authors: Fengchun Miao, Wayne Holmes, Ronghuai Huang, Hui Zhang
  • Publisher: UNESCO Publishing
  • Source type: book

You can also use our free citation generator to cite your sources quickly in APA, MLA, Chicago, Harvard, and Turabian.

πŸ’‘ Other Ways to Use ChatGPT for Essay Writing

Here are ten bonus ideas on how you can use ChatGPT for your writing assignments:

  • Paraphrase. ChatGPT can help with rephrasing sentences or paragraphs to avoid plagiarism and improve the essay’s readability.
  • Generate ideas. If you’re struggling to develop ideas for your essay, ask the chatbot to provide brainstorming prompts and suggestions for your inspiration.
  • Create titles. ChatGPT allows you to create catchy and relevant titles for your essay to grab the reader’s attention and set the tone for the content.
  • Get feedback. The chatbot can review your essay and provide valuable feedback on the structure, coherence, and overall quality of your writing.
  • Find sources. ChatGPT can suggest relevant sources, effective research strategies, and credible resource databases.
  • Expand an essay. ChatGPT helps reach the required word count by suggesting additional information, explanations, and examples for your short essay.
  • Edit and proofread. ChatGPT can proofread your paper for grammar, punctuation, and spelling errors for free and almost in no time.
  • Clarify concepts and understand content. You can ask ChatGPT to explain difficult concepts related to your essay topic or simplify a hard-to-read passage from a scholarly source.
  • Get writing advice. ChatGPT can guide you in improving your writing skills or using specific writing techniques, like rhetorical devices.
  • Improve your time management. The chatbot can offer advice on managing your time effectively during the writing process and help set realistic deadlines for each writing stage.

❌ How NOT to Use ChatGPT for Essays

While ChatGPT is free and convenient, it’s important to resist the temptation to write an entire essay in one prompt. It may negatively impact the quality of the paper and will be considered plagiarism. Consult this compilation of the best AI detectors for students.

Avoid these things when using Chat GPT to make an essay:

  • Copying without editing. Avoid directly copying the responses generated by ChatGPT without editing or properly citing and attributing the source.
  • Not verifying information. Do not skip double-checking the accuracy of the information provided by ChatGPT.
  • Using overly complex language in prompts. Avoid using technical and metaphorical language in your prompts to ensure that AI-generated responses align with your writing purpose.
  • Neglecting proofreading. Skipping proofreading and editing can result in grammatical errors, spelling mistakes, and unclear phrasing, even in the content generated by ChatGPT.
  • Using ChatGPT for college essays. College essays require a high level of personal insight, originality, and individual expression, which cannot be fully conveyed through AI-generated text.
  • Violating your university’s academic integrity policy. Different actions can constitute academic dishonesty, such as plagiarism, unauthorized collaboration, or other forms of unethical behavior. Always uphold the principles of academic integrity in your essay writing process.
This image shows the dos and don'ts of using ChatGPT in essay writing.

βœ”οΈ General Tips for Using ChatGPT

ChatGPT is undoubtedly a valuable tool for essay writing. Its ability to generate ideas, provide structure, and offer language suggestions can be incredibly helpful for students. However, it’s important to remember that ChatGPT is not a substitute for critical thinking, research, and personal input. While it can aid in writing, it should be used mindfully and in conjunction with other resources.

ChatGPT has limitations like any AI tool. It may not always understand the nuances of a topic or be able to provide accurate information. Therefore, it’s essential to critically evaluate the content it generates and supplement it with your own knowledge and research.

To boost your experience using ChatGPT for academic writing, we would like to suggest bonus tips:

  • Give clear prompts. When using ChatGPT for essay writing, provide clear and specific queries.
  • Stay patient. ChatGPT may take several attempts to generate a relevant response. Be patient and let the chatbot process your prompt and provide thoughtful suggestions for your essay.
  • Use natural language. When interacting with ChatGPT, use natural language and provide context to help the AI better understand your essay topic.
  • Experiment with different prompts. Try experimenting with prompts and questions to explore various angles and ideas for your essay. This can help generate diverse perspectives and insights for your writing.

Ultimately, ChatGPT is a powerful ally in essay writing, offering support and guidance along the way. While ChatGPT can provide valuable assistance, it is your unique perspectives, insights, and voices that can make any essay outstanding.

Check out other excellent materials about ChatGPT and similar AI tools:

πŸ”— References

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