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What Does It Take to Write a Good Expository Essay?

What Does It Take to Write a Good Expository Essay?

When you decide to craft a good expository essay, you must forget about your personal opinion. Only then you’ll understand what is an expository essay. And it is all about facts and evidence-based arguments. Usually, in the task to an expository essay, the first words you meet would be “Explain” or “Determine”. That is it! Expository essay predetermines a detailed analysis on a particular topic and requires only viable statements.

Why do you need to know how to write an expository essay?

The reason is that it reminds the editorial style and if you plan to become a newspaper reporter or a blogger, you’ll need to practice in expository writing. The definition of expository essay talks for itself, you are supposed to expose or describe some information to your audience. These are also the main features of a newspaper article or a “how-to” manual.

Key features:

  • No first person
  • Simple facts, statistics, and examples
  • No author’s feelings or emotions


  • To investigate the main idea
  • To evaluate supporting evidence
  • To explain and present your idea
  • To set out an argument regarding the idea

You can write the expository essay using comparison and contrast, cause and effect, “How to”, example and definition variations.

A common structure is a 5-paragraph essay with an introduction, 3 body paragraphs which present your evidence and conclusion.

In the introduction, include a concise and clear thesis statement that presents your topic’s leading point.

In the main body, present a separate idea in each paragraph logically connected to a strong thesis statement in your first introductory paragraph. The particular evidence must sustain every idea.

In the conclusion, summarize what you have mentioned in the body paragraphs and reiterate your thesis statement.

This type of essay is a common assignment which requires logical thinking, synthesis, and analytical writing skills. It is shorter and can be assigned to a student as a writing exercise or a part of GED, GRE tests.

What are the main types of an expository essay?

Unlike a narrative essay example, an expository essay has four main types and you will have to study all their samples. These types are also called methods of exposing information.

Cause and Effect Essays

To remember the main purpose of cause and effect essays, you should mind that any cause stems from an action, and its effect is a particular outcome we observe. So, your task is to explain the connection between the cause and effect.

For instance, breaking the last stool in your kitchen is the cause and having nothing to sit on is the effect of this action. You’ll have to explain the logic, bring an analysis, and provide some explanations for the outcomes.

Classification Essays

This type of an essay can teach you how to organize information into categories and sort out the most confusing things. Some people are born to put in order the chaos around them. Hence, they know how to generate categories of a huge pile of unrelated things from the first glance.

They know where to find a single principle by which they can build all the categories. However, writing classification essay you should know one more thing. These are examples that could match each category you create.

Compare and Contrast Essays

When you are assigned to write a compare and contrast essay, you should both present similarities and differences. Usually, a student receives a task to compare two contrasting objects and bring to the surface things that could be similar or different for both of them.

There are two approaches to writing such essays: block-by-block and point-by-point. Using a point-by-point structure, you should discuss each idea in a separate paragraph. The key element of this approach is to start each paragraph with a thesis statement. It is also essential to present certain comparisons and contrasts of your main points.

If you decide to follow a block-by-block structure, you should mind the fact that comparing and contrasting could be used in neither of your main body paragraphs. Unlike a point-by-point approach, in a block structure, you cannot present cursory contrasts and comparisons in the paragraphs. It is better to do in a conclusion paragraph.

Definition Essays

It simply explains the term and gives a detailed definition in the essay form. So, when you get a term to write your essay about, consider these few tips. First, explain the meaning of your term by the function, structure, and analysis. You can also describe wrong definitions of the term and clarify why they are invalid. Moreover, you must use particular facts and examples to support a defined term.

Process Essays

Generally, a process essay requires a stepwise structure. For instance, if you need to explain how some particular thing works you should bring concise explanations of its main features. In the task to the process essay, you can be either asked to explain how you must do something or how the actual thing works.

Thus, an expository essay is complex and can have many variations. Use our short tips to finally clarify all the difficulties and craft an essay that could match the quality of a good newspaper article.

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