Expository essays are one among the four major categories of essays. Mostly written in colleges, universities, and other institutions of higher academic level, expository essays are generally not very personalized, but are written to prove a general point. The points that are addressed in an expository essay are not points of a specific opinion. Okay, before we go into any details, let us first define an expository essay properly.
What is an Expository Essay?
An expository essay is one that uses examples and evidences to establish a theory and support it. It states a fact and by the use of examples, their relevance, and the evidences that support the statement that is being addressed, it tries to establish that the fact or the thesis that was asserted was true.
To understand it in a better way, let us think about it as a half of a debate.
What happens in a debate? You either speak for or you speak against the topic. Before you actually get to the dais, you have to prepare your piece. In that particular write-up, you have a fact, topic, or statement that you have to back using arguments that support the main topic or statement.
Writing an expository is exactly like writing your piece for a debate. You have to use examples, theories, facts, and figures to back up the topic that you’re writing on.
There is one particular thing that is very specific about expository essays – it does not cater to one specific point of opinion. An expository essay is not about what you feel about that particular topic; it only relies on proven and established facts, figures, and evidences to prove the point.
For example, consider the topic – Should euthanasia be legalised? While writing an expository essay on this, you must not mention what are your opinions on euthanasia. You can mention, but you cannot use them to arrive at the conclusion of the essay. You have to include the statistics, theory, the history, etc related to euthanasia to prove the point.
Types of Expository Essay
There are several types of expository essays that are termed based on the topics that are classified under them. Let us look at the definitions with examples:
- Definition: This type of expository essay looks to describe a particular thing. It can be an object, an experience, or anything that is highly specific in its category. Examples:
- A trip that went out of the way.
- The best car ever built.
- The Cause and Effect: one of the most widely written expository essay categories is the cause and effect essay. In this, the author establishes/identifies a relationship between subjects and uses facts to establish the cause of it. After that, the author uses theories to make clear the consequences of it, therefore covering the basic ‘cause and effect’ factor. Examples:
- Mass production of technical robots from engineering colleges – a study.
- Global Warming – how and why?
- Comparison: As is evident from the name, this type of expository essay writing includes the comparison on two contrasting entities. It can be two personalities, concepts, or objects of a class. This essay takes examples to illustrate the similarities and the differences between two entities. Examples:
- Android or iOS – which is better?
- Kim Jong-Un and Adolf Hitler – a contrasting essay.
- Process: This is the classic ‘how to’ essay writing. This category of expository essay contains a step-by-step procedure to accomplish a goal. This category covers the most topics that are ever written as essays, simply because it actually gives the reader accurate and to-the-point information on how to do the thing that they were looking to do.
- How to make pancakes?
- How to save money?
- How to sleep quickly?
- Classification: This category of essay writing includes breaking down a problem and using examples to find a probable solution for it. The author uses various points to clarify each possible solution for the given problem.
- Can terrorism be curbed?
- How can we deal with poverty of countries with a history of colonisation?
What are the parts of an Expository Essay?
I got this piece of information from my professor last week when I asked her, “How will I write my essay that you’ve assigned?” She told me the most useful way of writing an expository essay, and I’m sharing it with you. There are three main parts to any essay – the introduction, the body, and the conclusion.
Now, there are few things that are specific to an expository essay. You should keep these points in mind while drafting the three main parts of the expository essay. I will break it down in bullets.
- Introduction: Like any other essay, the introduction to an expository essay should be interesting enough for the reader to get hooked to the rest of the essay. But since an expository essay doesn’t entertain personal point of opinions, the normal techniques are not going to work. So let us look at some of the pointers that might help you write a good introduction for expository essay:
- Use an opening line that is related to the topic that you have to establish.
- Use the next few sentences to give context to your opening sentence.
- End the introduction with a transition into the main concern that you are addressing in the essay
- Body: The body constructs of various paragraphs that are all individual examples for the sake of proving the point in your essay. There is a definite structure for each paragraph that you should use. Follow the given pointers:
- The opening sentence of the paragraphs should be topic sentences. As in, they should tell about the topic from the context of the example that you were about to give.
- The rest of the paragraph should be the evidence part, where you explain why and how does this specific point affect your topic and the fact that you’re trying to prove.
- There should be a transition in the body of essay. The paragraphs should appear in a certain pattern or order, not in a haphazard manner.
- The Conclusion: There are a few points about the conclusion as well:
- The conclusion should be assertive.
- By no means, should your conclusion talk about facts that you haven’t already stated in the body.
- Also, there should not be any sign of stubbornness in your conclusion. Assertive and stubborn are different.
In the End
An expository essay is a very specific kind of essay, and it takes a lot of care and precision to write it. If you feel like you’re being tied up by this heavy work, you can always transfer it off to an essay writing service.
Here are some more essay guides that might help you!