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A Dummies Guide to Crafting an Appealing Expository Essay

Primary Purpose

The main aim of writing an expository essay is to enlighten the readers to a particular idea, fact or situation via logical analysis as well as solid evidence.

Some students believe that the boundary between expository and argumentative writing is thin. This is the main reason why they get confused by the two genres. For starters, unlike argumentative essays, expository paper never follows a debatable tone nor does it assess the conflicting sides of the subject matter. Secondly, and most importantly at that, it never presents the personal criticism of the writer.

In other words, an expository paper simply identifies a topic, analyse it in detail using facts and figures, and lay down the concluding analysis in a lucid manner.

Rough Sketch of an Expository Paper

  • Opening statement (attention getter)
  • Background of the topic
  • Thesis
  • Paragraph 1 (Point 1)
  • ⊙ Topic sentence ⊙ Evidence ⊙ Description
  • Paragraph 2 (Point 2)
  • ⊙ Topic sentence ⊙ Evidence ⊙ Description
  • Paragraph 3 (Point 3)
  • ⊙ Topic sentence ⊙ Evidence ⊙ Description
  • Reiterate Thesis
  • Summarise points
  • Final thoughts
Quick Guidelines
  • Illustrations like graphs or charts can be used for more clarification
  • The topic shouldn't be broad but specific
  • Appropriate references or sources should be used to cover the major points of the essay
  • All the evidential data will be covered in the body only
  • References should either be include as footnotes or in a separate sheet

Expository Writing

Lay Down Clear and Succinct Introduction

An ideal introduction is one that starts with an attention grabber and impressively transits to a brief description of the topic’s background which is then followed by thesis statement as well as the key points that is later used to elaborate on the provided thesis.

Provide Detailed Explanation in the Body

It is important to remember that each paragraph of the essay's body should start with a clear topic sentence. Plus, each paragraph should be restricted to a single point that expounds on the thesis using supporting facts and figures.

Transitional sentences also count a lot when it comes to descriptive writing like expository essays. Therefore, use smooth transitions between paragraphs to demonstrate how one point directs to the other.

Readdress the Thesis in the Conclusion

The concluding section shouldn't only readdress what you've already discussed above but also provide briefly-stated final thoughts while taking into consideration the supporting evidence.

Expository Essay Topic Ideas

  • Ways to become a better roommate
  • Why teens bunk classes
  • Why college students become attract to marijuana
  • Racism explained
  • Surviving the first days in college
  • Ways to prevent bullying
  • Causes of depression or stress
  • Autism explained
  • Ways to plan career
  • Benefits of being a drop out
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