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A smiling Caucasian woman in square glasses holding a piece of chalk and pointing at a blackboard. There are symbols on the blackboard written in chalk. Symbols are: bell, paper plane, glasses, A+ grade in a circle, briefcase, apple, a paper with an A+ on it, another paper plane.

All About Buying Essays: Informative Guide On Essay Mills

Students don't have to buy an essay themselves to know that such services exist. It is no surprise that custom writing agencies are in the limelight these days. If there is demand, there will always be supply. As a natural result, the number of writing companies has skyrocketed since the 2000s.

The fast-paced environment has only made essay mills better off compared to how such agencies operated during the previous century. Writing practices existed long before the 21st century. From a simple shared space where students exchanged works labeled as their own, it has transformed into a by-post service. A client ordered work and got it via post. The invention and advancement of the Internet have changed everything - businesses spawned, which led people to remain at home and get fully-fledged works without having to move a finger.

But what are the reasons for such solid demand? Is it really necessary to order from academic agencies? What are the benefits? There are dozens of questions that arise when thinking about essay writing companies. Just as there are stacks of answers. Since the industry is vast and thousands of students employ such services, it is hard to point out all the reasons for ordering from writing agencies.

The majority of students who use such agencies state that they usually order short assignments, such as 5-page essays. The reason is simple and straightforward.

"We want to complete our weekly assignments on time to work or recharge our batteries from a constant flow of tasks," declare the group of students that preferred to remain anonymous. They also say that they turn to academic services even if their assignments are short and supposedly easily done. Many students work, so they don't have sufficient time to deal with the tasks themselves, even when those are nothing but a one-page statement or a short test.

And it seems that such a strategy pays off, as student clients get the grades they want to receive when they decide to delegate their homework and buy an essay. That is, ghostwritten paper usually scores an A or a B, which can't leave customers dissatisfied. According to the essay writing company's manager, lower grades are also possible, but it has nothing to do with the writers' finesse. The manager says that the root cause for getting a grade lower than A or B is the lack of instructions when placing orders.

"The reason for this is that assigned writers simply don't have all the course materials clients attach. Professors pay close attention to sources students use. Indeed, they appreciate when outside materials are added. But it is vital to work with the course materials above all," says the CEO.

Two Camps Of Opposite Attitudes

Every notion has its advocates and opposers, and essay ghostwriting is by no means an exception. People are entitled to their multifaceted opinions. When it comes to essay writing services, there are two camps: those who dislike such agencies and want to ban them permanently and those who find academic writing companies acceptable and even necessary, especially during a global pandemic.

Professors' Attitude Toward Essay Mills

Professors, as well as educational institutions, are entirely against essay writing companies. Labeling the whole industry as "contract cheating," they strive to eradicate each and every writing agency. Colleges and universities realize that it is now easier than ever to buy an essay.

Students don't have to spend a lot of time looking for someone to write their paper. In fact, they now can choose the agency that suits them the best in a span of several minutes. And with recent marketing campaigns, it comes as no surprise, as the abundance of such companies is overwhelming. A college freshman confirms that.

"The deadline was approaching, and it was very intimidating. Not only did I not want to write the assignment, but I also didn't know how to write it correctly. I used to be among the best students in high school. And I didn't want to become the worst one in college." She explained her frustration with a post on Facebook. "It was a simple message, such as, 'I wish somebody helped me complete my assignments!'" she casts her mind back. Several minutes after, she gets bombarded with messages along the lines of, "We can easily do this for you. Send us the topic and the instructions!"

Professors are afraid that this tendency will result in a prevalent number of students who don't want to study but feel entitled to a diploma. They claim that in the past, people turned to academic services because they worked part-time and lacked time to handle all the assignments.

"Students placed orders with such agencies realizing they wouldn't submit their works on time," says a Chicago State University professor. "Nowadays, though, students order papers because they simply don't want to work hard and integrate with the community," he adds.

"We have to eliminate this essay mill monster before it is too late for that," explains Ashley Finley, senior adviser to the president for the Association of American Colleges and Universities. She says that the practice to buy an essay is not new, but its results ring a bell and force institutions to declare war on contract cheating. Researchers empirically identified that over 20 percent of students have hired a writer to get their work done. And the number of such students is rising exponentially.

In cooperation with educational institutions, the Turnitin plagiarism software has recently stated that it takes the process of getting rid of essay mills to a whole new level. The company has launched a new program called Authorship Investigate. Its primary purpose is to learn the metadata of the file submitted to teachers.

"Sometimes, it is enough to briefly inspect the document and see when it was created, how many times it was edited, opened, and how it was called at the very beginning," Bill Loller, the company's vice president, says. Coupled with checking the student's writing style, it (Authorship Investigate app) will determine whether the writer is an authentic author or not. "We are hoping to boost the program's accuracy in the nearest future," Loller adds.

The question "what can colleges and universities actually do?" may arise. Even though dozens of U.S. states have prepared laws for making essay mills prohibited and under the law, they can't really forbid them. The thing is, such writing agencies are based in Kenya, India, and other countries located in Eastern Europe, which makes it impossible for the United States to prosecute such services. However, the country, colleges, and universities can at least try banning them. And the recent case with YouTubers who promoted writing services and encouraged their viewers to buy an essay went notoriously viral-both for so-called celebrities and Edubirdie itself.

The bulk of YouTube and TikTok influencers were sponsored by Edubirdie and promoted services provided by the latter. The campaign accumulated hundreds of sponsored ads until the BBC investigation in 2018 uncovered and put a stop to it. The latter found out that Edubirdie and other companies were paying enormous amounts of money to YouTube celebrities who have a young audience to persuade students to order from them. YouTube released a statement that this ad wasn't going against their policy.

However, after the problem wasn't left behind and people demanded answers from it and Facebook, they both took some measures to delete similar promotions. Silence didn't last for long, and essay writing services have popped up after some time, which means that students' immeasurable need for academic services is stronger than ever.

It is understandable why educational institutions strive to defeat essay mills. They claim such agencies are students' caveat when it comes to originality and academic integrity. Professors state that such dubious cooperation doesn't bring fruitful outcomes. According to them, writing companies promise to write fully-fledged, plagiarism-free papers, but the results, however, are completely different and far from what such services guarantee. That is, customers tend to get only 60 percent of the grade on average, which is not nearly the grade students aspire to get. However, it all depends on writing companies and their approach toward students. Every industry has honest people who want to meet the requirements and simple scammers who hunt for easy money. Those who choose wisely get anticipated results.

Besides, Tricia Bertram Gallant, director of the Academic Integrity Office at the University of California in San Diego, states that contract cheating is a dead-end in itself. As she says, creating a culture where academic integrity and ethics are the main features of successful and effective education is the solution to this serious problem.

Education and gained knowledge should be valued more than grades. It is an apt statement, indeed. However, academic integrity is a problem in itself, especially in the United States, which exploits students by forcing them to take lifelong loans and making them dependent on their grades. Students have to adapt to this fragile educational system, and turning to essay writing services tends to be the best option.

Essay Mills Advocates And Their Stance

People who use or operate in paper writing companies understand such fuss from professors and universities. They can even share their anger when it comes to basic essay mills that don't provide top-notch services. They stigmatize long-lasting agencies that have been working in the industry for years. Others, though, don't agree with those who plan on banning essay writing services and outlawing them.

"Higher education is blind and doesn't want to change itself," says the essay writing service's representative. Students face severe difficulties, which have a great impact on their knowledge and forthcoming education. Many people don't have a choice but to use writing agencies to get their assignments done. And it goes way beyond simple lack of time. Universities don't equip students with the abilities they need to successfully write essays, complete projects, and finish extensive tasks, such as theses and dissertations. The biggest focus educational institutions place is on the student money, but when the moment of returning the favor and teaching comes up, they can't offer anything apart from monotonous classes and overbearing assignments.

"We have to rely on the mills to buy an essay from because the knowledge we gain in academia is not nearly efficient. And when exams approach, we get loads of assignments we literally don't know how to handle," students state.

A Student Academic Experience Survey demonstrates a striking picture. Those who were not very satisfied and not satisfied at all stated they didn't have enough contact hours. Other complaints are related to inaccessible and insufficient teaching materials, excessively large groups, and poor feedback.

Besides, students also agreed that tertiary education doesn't provide effective knowledge. The percentage of people who think otherwise has fallen drastically since 2012. That is, it took just three years to transform 53 percent of those who were satisfied with a value-for-money ratio to 37 percent. Not to mention foreign students, who, as a matter of fact, pay more for the same education as their domestic peers. These shocking numbers prove that universities focus only on students' commercial value.

Some even say that working at essay writing companies brings more benefits than the education itself. People who operate as writers and provide services state this job is intellectually demanding and stimulates their brain, on top of allowing them to work with students of different educational institutions and subjects.

Plenty of writers graduated from universities or still remain students, and they entirely realize the systematic problems current students face.

"Every writing company has lots of services. Those who want to ban essay mills are led by misty intentions and don't know how companies operate," says a writer. Agencies offer several services. They don't necessarily write papers from scratch for people and thus help them get excellent grades. There are also editing and proofreading options, which under no circumstances can be banned.

"You can ask your parents to proofread the paper. This sort of assistance is widely accepted and available. But what if students want to perfect their papers but don't have anyone to scan it over?" he adds. The fact that university chiefs urge to ban essay mills is not shocking nowadays, as the idea has been brought to the table and failed many times before. If that ever succeeds, it will be a hugely hypocritical and pointless move.

Objective Statistics

Whatever universities may say about essay mills and students that are involved in this type of "academic fraud," the list of customers doesn't include only learners. Essay writing companies provide people with the bulk of services, starting with paper writing, editing, and proofreading, and ending with more complicated tasks.

People seek help from such agencies for many reasons. Some want to polish their resume to shine. Others desire to create a case study for their future business. The business model of writing companies where you can buy an essay is successful, clear, and has proved its efficiency. Working as universal assistance for everyone, including students, it covers various fields and customers with different requirements.

That is, not only young people turn to academic services to have their assignments completed-there is also an older generation that wants to bolster their skills. They may not have sufficient time and/or money to enroll in university and study full-time. Essay writing companies serve as excellent alternatives. Besides, the target audience of such services are:

  • People who do a second or subsequent degree to move up the career ladder
  • People who are proficient yet don't have time to study and obtain a degree
  • People who work and aspire to upgrade their level and to be promoted

Many workers who claim they don't earn enough want to hone their skills by getting second degrees and working simultaneously. The below pie chart demonstrates how many people of different income order from writing services.

Based on the data from online survey with 10000 respondents conducted in January 2021

As we can see, even people with an income of over $49,999 have sought help from services at least once. And they are not students.

Of course, students order most often, but there are many reasons for doing that aside from the most stereotypical ones. Typically, students are looking for outside assistance when:

  • They are stressed
    Completing assignments can be daunting and stressful. There are many cases when students don't have sufficient abilities and have no idea how to write the task. A tutor can provide excessively complicated instructions for tight deadlines. Students then can't do anything but seek help.
  • They are snowed under with tasks.
    Many students say that they wouldn't have ordered from writing companies if they haven't been so overwhelmed with the assignments. Dozens of subjects result in numerous tasks. Completing them all at once is unattainable physically as well as psychologically. Even one delegated paper can help students keep up with the program.
  • They want to get top-quality content.
    Professors often have tight schedules and can't provide office hours for every student who doesn't understand the material and seeks an explanation. No one wants to get low grades, so it is out of necessity to hire a professional writer to understand the topic and be ready for different tests and exams.

Based on the data from online survey with 10000 respondents conducted in January 2021

The chart demonstrates why students use writing companies. Over half of respondents declared they don't have enough time to complete academic assignments.

Based on the data from online survey with 10000 respondents conducted in January 2021

The following graph may be the answer to the previous figure. Over 60 percent of students stated they worked full-time or part-time, which explains why they lack time to deal with tasks themselves.

Based on the data from online survey with 12000 respondents conducted in December 2020

This chart indicates students of what majors have used academic writing assistance at least once to buy an essay.

Based on the data from online survey with 12000 respondents conducted in December 2020

In turn, this chart showcases the academic levels of students that turned to essay writing agencies.

Based on the data from online survey with 12000 respondents conducted in December 2020

Here is a general picture of the gender identities of students that sought help from paper writing companies.

Based on the data from online survey with 12000 respondents conducted in December 2020

Finally, this chart demonstrates the nationality of respondents that have utilized essay writing services at least once.

Education in English-speaking countries

Australia, the U.K., and the U.S. are the three main English-speaking countries that offer tertiary education. They are all different in terms of quality, the number of students and educational institutions, and success rate. Let's glance at every country individually.

Australia has 45 universities that allow students to undertake a higher degree. The largest and most prestigious academic institution is Monash University in Melbourne, estimating five campuses and over 80,000 students. Australia is attractive to foreign students, which makes over 1 million international students come to Australia and study there. Coupled with its domestic counterparts, Australia has over 1,5 million university students. As to the success rate, over 30 Australian universities are listed in the QS World University Rankings, which means the country's education system is good.

Recently, Australia became the pioneer of penalizing essay mills, running them out of the country with a new law prohibiting the use of such services. Repercussions for breaking this law include a jail sentence of up to two years and a fine reaching $74,000. The result was instantaneous and predictable - essay mills have packed up their encyclopedias and skedaddled from the Land Down Under.

The United Kingdom has four times more universities than Australia. England has 165 higher education institutions. According to statistics, England had 2,38 million students in 2019 enrolled in higher education programs. Student satisfaction is high, as over 80 percent of students declared they were happy with their courses. It makes education in England among the best and attractive to foreign students. Oxford University is the best educational institution in the United Kingdom. It is also the top-one university, according to QS Ranking.

Unlike their southern mates, the UK authorities are only talking about banning essay mills, as they have been doing for years now - with no end result or solid plans in sight.

The United States of America has around 4,500 higher educational institutions within the country. It estimates approximately 20 million students that enrolled in colleges and universities. Even though forty universities are included in the QS Global Ranking, the success rate is not so high. The main problem is in tertiary education, which has doubled its internal income in the last three decades. Families can't afford to provide their children with higher education, so students have to take loans with extremely high-interest rates, which make them indebted for dozens of years.

Here, the situation with trying to outlaw essay mills is the most despondent yet. US students comprised a huge chunk-if not the majority-of essay services customer base. One might even argue that "contract cheating" will remain a boogeyman but never actually fought for decades to come. Colleges might crack down on their students all they want - when there is a problem, there is always a solution.

Which University Pushes Its Students the Most?

It goes without saying that students of U.S. colleges and universities order papers most often. While England and Australia have a slightly different approach to education and students, providing them with more contact and office hours, the U.S. is fully into essay writing culture. Most students who order papers from essay writing companies study online.

Based on the data from online survey with 10000 respondents conducted in January 2021

According to the pie chart, 45 percent of customers are studying in an online college, whereas only 8 percent of students are achieving campus degrees and studying on-site. Even though the country has a multitude of universities, the five main online institutions from which students order writing services are:

Walden University

Walden University is a full-fledged online private university situated in Minneapolis, Minnesota. It provides three degrees (Bachelor, Master, Doctor of Philosophy) in various disciplines. Walden University is accredited by all the leading commissions and associations, which makes it credible and attractive for students. There are currently over 50,000 students studying at Walden University.

Chamberlain University

Chamberlain University is another online private nursing and healthcare school. Likewise, the institution offers three degrees for students. Moreover, Chamberlain University has a college of nursing that offers undergraduate and graduate programs and a college of health professions with several graduate program options. The university has over 22 campuses nationwide, over 100,000 students and alumni, and more than 600 educational alliances.

Strayer University

Strayer University is a private educational institution founded in Virginia. As for now, it is situated in Washington, DC. The university has more than 50,000 enrolled students worldwide. There are 76 campuses across the country. Strayer University offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in several disciplines, including but not limited to IT, management, business, education, healthcare, and applied science.

Grand Canyon University

Grand Canyon University is a private university that offers three study types: on-site, online, and evening school. The institution belongs to the Christian community, mainly the Arizona Southern Baptist Convention. The total number of students is around 115,000, with 90,000 studying online and 25,000 undertaking a traditional or combined learning. The university offers Bachelor's, Master's, and Ph.D. degree courses.

Capella University

Capella University is a private online university located in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The institution provides around 2000 online programs for students of different countries. Capella University has students from every state. The university offers B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. degrees. The total number of students is 39,000, with over 40 percent doing M.A. degrees and 25 doing Ph.D. degrees.

On-site universities:

California State University

CSU is a public net of universities in California. The system has around half a million active students. CSU has 23 campuses across the state and over 20,000 staff and 25,000 faculty members. Over 100,000 students graduate from CSU yearly, which makes the university the largest institution. The university offers an exhaustive list of Bachelor's, Master's, and Doctoral degrees.

The University of Texas at Austin

UT is a public university in Austin, Texas. It is the leading institution in the University of Texas System. UT has a wide range of museums and libraries for researchers and is famous for its graduates, researchers, and alumni. Over 50,000 students study at UT, as the institution offers over 300-degree programs. More than half of graduates are B.A. students. It is ranked 34th in the Best Global Universities ranking.

Florida State University

Florida State University is a public institution headquartered in Tallahassee, Florida. It emphasizes research and is classified as a strong research university. FSU tends to be among the best public research universities and has over 40,000 students enrolled from all states and more than 100 countries worldwide. Students of Florida State University have the chance to work with a Nobel Laureate and active members of national academies.

Top States Where Students Use Essay Mills

The following chart demonstrates which students are inclined to use essay writing services. It can help understand that students of these ten states are prone to be under the pressure of a hefty flow of assignments, despite the prestige or fame their university can boast.

Based on the data from online survey with 20000 respondents conducted in November 2020

What Service To Choose?

Since the writing industry has soared, there are myriads of writing companies offering "the best" services. It is hard to identify which one to choose at first glance. Some may seem credible but too expensive, which doesn't mean it is actually reliable and can provide papers of the highest quality. Others are hidden, and no one knows about them, but they might have professional writers. Here is the list of five writing services with ranks from independent review services to give you a clear picture of who to trust and who not to.


Wiseessays is another example of a credible writing service to buy an essay from.The company has been operating within the industry since 2011. During this time, it has gained a proven track record of delighted customers. The writing agency offers an extensive list of services for High School, College, and University Students. Wiseessays keeps the clients' data secure and doesn't disclose it to third parties. The writers are competent in different topics, and they deliver assignments on time. Prices are average, and the company offers generous discounts frequently, which makes Wiseessays the best options in the market.


Being a bit more expensive than the previous agency, it also provides assistance with any academic level. According to the website, Grademiners writers are ESL speakers, and yet, delivered works have high quality. The company has an amiable customer support team in case any question arises. SiteJabber gives them a solid 4.06 out of 5.


EssayBox has customer-oriented policies that won't leave any client behind if something occurs. That is, everyone can get revisions and is entitled to ask for a refund. The company is the most expensive compared to the mentioned ones. Still, the quality of completed works is high and satisfactory. Plus, EssayBox usually offers discounts for people. TrustPilot reviews add up to 4.5 out of 5 rating.


EssayPro's customers have a unique chance to select a writer for their projects. Although the bidding system is usually dubious and creates many second thoughts regarding its efficiency, it demonstrates outstanding results when it comes to this writing service. Clients can choose whatever writer they want, be it a Ph.D. student or an ongoing university professor. EssayPro holds a strong 4.7 (according to SiteJabber).


Last but not least, PaperHelp. The company treats its customers very earnestly. Not only does it assign top-notch writers to every assignment, but it also has many other perks, such as a loyalty program system. PaperHelp has a very friendly and informative web page where people can find all the company's crucial information. According to SiteJabber, PaperHelp demonstrates a success rate of 4 out of 5, and TrustPilot gives them an even higher rating of 4.6/5.

The Bottom Line

The essay writing industry has long been present in the market. With the rapid development of technology and social media platforms, paper writing services have become more efficient and accessible for every person in need of a completed task. Educational institutions are firmly against such companies, as-according to universities-writing agencies patronate academic fraud and make student life more manageable and, of course, unfair, compared to those who study individually and work hard to receive the highest scores.

However, various independent essay writing agencies debunk such statements, calling them manipulative. People of diverse backgrounds, genders, incomes, and nationalities choose to buy an essay and use writing services for different purposes, not educational ones solely. And despite universities' chiefs and other authorities' aspirations to ban such companies-purportedly because they foster dishonesty and make students refrain from academic integrity-essay writing services have never been better off. This is proved by statistics of online and on-site institutions, whose students order most often.

In the end, the question of essay mills vs. academic integrity remains forever open, as it is extremely hard to procure solid evidence and settle on a single opinion-after all, colleges will never stop boasting about academic integrity, and students will forever remain victims of such multilayered farce.

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