Home Blog Ultimate Guide to a Expository Essay Expository Essay - A Complete Guideline to Help You

Expository Essay - A Complete Guideline to Help You

Expository Essay - A Complete Guideline to Help You Write

Have you been given an assignment to write an expository essay?

Do you struggle with writing this type of essay?

You have come to the right spot!

Read the article below, which offers you a set of step by step guidelines to help you write an outstanding expository essay.

What is an Expository Essay

Students are always confused when it comes to writing different types of essays. Expository essays being one of the most challenging writing assignments that need dedication and understanding.

Let’s start this journey with a detailed expository definition:

The term expository comes from the word “expose.” It means explaining and clarifying something with great detail. In this type of essay, a specific topic is researched and then explained. All claims in this kind of an essay must be backed with solid proof. It may sound like a simple task, but it requires effort to produce a coherent and effective expository paper just like an argumentative essay.

You must be thinking that what is the purpose of an expository essay?

As we mentioned in the above paragraph that the aim of an expository essay is to expose a particular topic. The purpose for asking you to write this particular type of essay is to investigate a topic to increase your understanding as well as the readers. To do so you need to keep in mind the following key points:

  • Understand your topic, learn about it as much as you can
  • Go through similar expository essay samples.
  • Look for supporting evidence
  • Develop an outline
  • Come up with a writing style
  • Create the rough draft
  • Edit and update
  • Write the final version

When such an essay is given to the students they usually end up fretting over it. That is the worst thing that you all can probably do. The best way to handle such a situation is to relax and go through the steps that are essential in writing an expository essay.

Keep on reading as we get you through this!

Types of Expository Essay

Expository essays are further categorized into four different types. Here are the four types of expository essay formats that are commonly used:

Compare and Contrast

The title of your essay explains the purpose of your piece.

A comparison or contrast essay involves looking at two objects or ideas and analyzing them on the basis of their similarities or differences. Bear in mind that the two objects or subjects under comparison must belong to the same cvateor. For instance, you can compare and contrast Batman and Superman but not Batman vs. Aristotle.

You can learn about them in-depth from our article on writing a compare and contrast essay.

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In a descriptive essay, you must provide a detailed explanation of an object, event, or a person.

This type of essay provides the writer with room for creative freedom. You have a variety of topics to choose and work from in descriptive essays. Here the students are supposed to use sensory information to help the reader visualize the text using their five senses.

Cause and Effect

Cause and effect essays require an analysis of an object or process. It requires students to dig a little deeper and figure out the reasons why an event occurred and its effects.

Analysis is the most crucial aspect of writing a cause and effect essay and requires critical thinking skills and able writing.

These essays examine the impact of other people or events on something in the world. Here is a detailed article on cause and effect essay, in case you want to learn more about it.

Problem and Solution

Problem and solution papers are what many think of as the typical academic assignment. In this type of expository essay, problems are identified and stated, and possible solutions are discussed. You must shed light on a problem, and propose a valid solution for it.

How to Write an Expository Essay

First things first, you have to pick out an interesting topic. Once you have chosen an intriguing topic, proceed to build a structure of the essay.


If you want to know how to write an expository essay, it is of utmost importance for you to follow the proper structure. Organizing helps you to work efficiently and to create a more coherent and structured paper .

Expository Essay Topics

Below is a list of unique expository writing prompts that can help you to grab top grades from your instructor.

Expository Essay Topics for Middle Level

  1. Discuss the strong point of view of your character.
  2. What are your suggestions on time management?
  3. Explain why aliens are real.
  4. What are the drawbacks of having a curfew?
  5. Explain the concept of love.
  6. Explain the time that you have been really happy.
  7. How is being fat different from being overweight?
  8. Do teachers truly care for students?
  9. Is there a connection between boredom and hunger?
  10. Can reading in the dark lead to blindness?

Rewarding Expository Essay Prompts for High School Students

  1. Does money make you an egotistical and self-centered person?
  2. How do you describe love?
  3. Why do students commit suicide?
  4. Why do teenagers wear makeup?
  5. Explain how being a teenmom changes life?
  6. Describe the great depression in America.
  7. Explain how important solar energy is.
  8. Significance of studying black holes.
  9. Explain the importance of tolerance in a work environment.
  10. How to cure allergies?

The key to writing an effective essay is finding the topic that fits your interests. Essay is a genre in which many things can be covered.

If you want to look at more options, here is our blog that has a wide list of expository essay topics.

How to Start an Expository Essay?

To start an expository essay, choose a brilliant topic to write on first.

For choosing the perfect topic, brainstorm different ideas that interest you and create an extensive list. Select the topic that interests and inspires you and start your research. Note that it is equally important to keep your readers preference in mind as well.

Create a rough expository essay format by mentioning every main point that is going to be discussed in each paragraph. Keep your outline organized and closely knitted.

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Now that you have gathered sufficient research material on your topic, create a rough draft of your essay.

To start an expository essay, the most important component is to focus on the thesis statement. A thesis statement indicates the main point of the essay and what is going to be discussed further in it. Write the thesis statement in one-two lines towards the end of the introduction, followed by they body.

Each body paragraph should start with a topic sentence. The topic sentence highlights the main point of the paragraph. Or the claim it will discuss and defend in a particular paragraph.

Each body paragraph should have a different topic sentence. That means that each body paragraph should discuss and cover a different and single idea. Do not try to cram it with multiple ideas and topics, it will only disrupt your essay's structure.

Restate your thesis statement with supporting evidence in the conclusion of your essay. Make sure that you do not introduce any new information here. It is your essay's closure, not an opportunity to introduce a new idea.

Crafting an outline is an essential part of writing your essay. It will help you learn how to outline your essay and what your introduction, body and conclusion paragraphs should look like.

Revise your Essay

Once you have created a rough draft of your essay, revise it thoroughly.

Keep the following points in your mind while you are checking your essay.

  • Is your essay written with an unbiased analysis?
  • Are the facts and examples relevant to the topic of the essay?
  • Is the information clearly written and communicated to the readers?
  • Are there any unnecessary details included in the essay?
  • Is the entire content of the essay focused on the topic?
  • Are there strong transition words being used in the body paragraphs?
  • Is there a smooth flow between the body paragraphs?
  • Is the conclusion correlating with the supporting details mentioned in the essay?

If your essay is written according to these parameters, then you have composed a strong expository essay.

Edit your Essay

Now you are almost done with your essay.

Don't forget to proofread your essay before you submit it.

No matter how strong and detailed content you have added in your essay. If there are grammatical mistakes in it, the whole rhythm of your essay will be ruined.

Expository Essay Outline

An expository essay structure, like all essays is comprised of three fundamental parts:

  • Introduction
  • Body Paragraphs
  • Conclusion

Expository Essay Introduction

When writing the introductory paragraph, remember that there are three purposes: grab the reader’s attention, define expository essay topic, state the main idea/purpose of the essay.

To attract the reader’s attention and engage them with just the first few lines, a tool “hook sentence” is used. A hook sentence is written using different ways such as quotations, anecdotes, statistics, rhetorical questions, personal stories, etc.

This technique helps attract the reader’s attention, motivating them to read further. The type of hook sentence, however, depends on the essay and its topic. You can find some interesting hooks for your understanding in this detailed article on hook examples.

Once you have hooked the reader, present necessary information about the topic to clear any ambiguities. And lastly, end this section with stating your thesis.

Expository Essay Body

The body is where you will discuss and define your topic. Present information about the topic logically, prioritize different points based on importance. Also, provide supporting facts and evidence and explain their significance. Don’t forget to cite the sources in order to avoid plagiarism.

Expository Essay Conclusion

The last section of your essay is the concluding paragraph. Brush up on all the main points without repeating them. Highlight the significance of your topic and provide a solution if you addressed an issue.

Establish a strong connection between these parts to make a solid structure. Make sure you fulfill all the requirements that are necessary for writing process of the expository essay and follow the guidelines of your instructor.

Always read the essay before giving it in to ensure maximum success.

Give Evidence, not Claims

This type of essay requires strong and accurate evidence. Follow the basics of a process essay to ensure success.

Simply making claims will weaken the effectiveness of your essay.

Read the following example to understand how important evidence can be in making your argument convincing.

  • Ordinary Claim: It is surely a fact that listening to loud music can impair hearing.
  • Claim with Evidence: It is a fact that listening to loud music can impair hearing, as per a research study conducted at the American Psychological Center in 2017.
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Conclude Your Essay with Perfection

Most of the students consider the conclusion paragraph to be a simple summary of the evidence provided in the essays.

Students are rarely aware of how important a conclusion can be to the effectiveness of an academic essay.

Expository Essay Examples

If you still feel that more guidance is needed, check out these examples of expository essays to get a clearer picture:

Remember to follow the expository essay format specified by your instructor. It will help you craft your essay using the defined standards. Most essays follow the same format that you can learn from our complete guide on essay format.

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Expository Essay Examples (PDF)
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Expository Essay Guide (PDF)

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