• Features for Creative Writers
  • Features for Work
  • Features for Higher Education
  • Features for Teachers
  • Features for Non-Native Speakers
  • Learn Blog Grammar Guide Community Events FAQ
  • Grammar Guide

Expository Writing: Definition and Examples

Hannah Yang headshot

Hannah Yang

expository writing

Table of Contents

What is expository writing, what is an expository paragraph, expository writing examples, how prowritingaid can help you with expository composition.

One of the most common types of writing is expository writing. Whether you’re a student taking an English class or a professional trying to communicate to others in your field, you’ll need to use expository writing in your day-to-day work.

So, what exactly does this term mean?

The short answer is that expository writing refers to any writing designed primarily to explain or instruct.

Read on to learn the definition of expository writing as well as some examples of what this type of writing can look like.

Before we look at examples of expository writing, let’s start with a quick definition of what this term actually means.

Expository Writing Definition

The term expository writing refers to any writing that’s designed to explain something. We use the word expository to describe any passage of writing that’s supposed to present information and help you understand it in an objective way.

Some common examples of expository writing include academic essays, textbooks, instructional guides, and news reports. Good expository writing should be factual, objective, and clear.

expository writing definition

To better understand what this term means, think about the difference between a scientific article, a short story, and an advertisement.

The scientific article is considered expository writing because its primary purpose is to explain a particular topic in more detail. It presents data, analyzes what that data means, and focuses on the facts.  

On the other hand, the short story isn’t considered expository writing, because its core purpose isn’t to explain or inform—instead, it’s probably trying to entertain you or to take you on a journey. Short stories are narrative writing.

Similarly, an advertisement isn’t expository writing because its core purpose isn’t to explain or inform—instead, it’s trying to persuade you to buy what it’s selling. Advertisements are persuasive writing.   

Here’s a quick rundown of what expository essays should and shouldn’t do.

An expository essay should:

Teach the reader about a particular topic

Focus on the facts

Follow a clearly organized structure

Present information and details from credible sources

An expository essay should not:

Try to change the reader’s mind about something

Present the author’s personal opinions

Include made-up narratives or stories

Follow experimental or nonlinear structures

3 types of writing

An expository paragraph is exactly what it sounds like—a paragraph of expository writing.

A well-written expository paragraph should follow a specific format to make it as clear and easy to read as possible. Most expository paragraphs do the following things:

Start with a topic sentence, which explains what the paragraph will be about

Then, include 3 – 5 body sentences that provide supporting details for the topic sentence

Finally, wrap things up with a closing sentence that summarizes what the paragraph has said

Writing an expository paragraph is a great way to practice expository writing. That’s because the paragraph follows the same structure as a more complex expository essay, just on a smaller scale.

Most expository essays should follow this format:  

Start with an introductory paragraph that includes the thesis statement, which tells the reader the core statement of the essay

Then, include 3 – 5 body paragraphs that provide factual evidence to support the thesis statement

Finally, wrap things up with a concluding paragraph that summarizes what the body paragraphs and thesis statement said

You can see the similarities between the two formats. If you can write a fantastic expository paragraph, you’ll be well-prepared to move on to writing a full expository essay.

Example of Expository Paragraph

Here’s an example of an expository paragraph that follows the structure described above.

The leading cause of death in the United States is heart disease, which can be fatal if it leads to heart attack or cardiac arrest. Heart attacks occur when a blockage in the coronary artery prevents oxygenated blood from reaching the heart. Cardiac arrests occur when the heart stops pumping entirely, which prevents the patient from breathing normally. Both of these problems can be deadly, even in seemingly healthy people who don’t have noticeable risk factors. As a result, heart disease is an important problem that many doctors and scientists are researching.

what is the style of an expository essay

Good writing = better grades

ProWritingAid will help you improve the style, strength, and clarity of all your assignments.

There are many ways you can present information in an expository essay. Here are four of the most popular ways, along with examples of each one.  

Problem and Solution Essay

A problem and solution essay presents the reader with a problem and then considers possible solutions to that problem. 

Here’s an example passage you might find in a problem and solution essay:

Among the many proposed solutions to rising carbon emissions, one promising possibility is carbon trapping. Scientists are figuring out how to pull carbon emissions out of the atmosphere and trap it in less harmful forms, such as by injecting carbon dioxide underground so it will turn to stone.

Compare and Contrast Essay

This type of essay takes two subjects and compares and contrasts them. It focuses on highlighting the differences and similarities between those two things.

Here’s an example passage of this type of expository writing:

Though country music and R&B music have very different sounds, they also share many similarities. For one thing, both types of music embody a specific cultural identity. For another, both genres trace their roots back to the 1920s, when the Victor Talking Machine Company signed singers from the American South.

Classification Essay

In a classification essay, you describe the categories within a certain group of things.  

Here’s an example passage you might find in a classification essay:

There are three ways in which artificial intelligence might become stronger than humans in the future: high speed, high collective intelligence, and high quality. A speed AI would be able to perform calculations and experience the world much faster than humans. A collective intelligence, like a hive mind, would be able to break down a complex task into several parts and pursue them simultaneously. Finally, a quality AI would simply be able to solve more complex problems than humans could.

Process Essay

In a process essay, you give the reader the steps for completing a specific process. This is similar to a how-to guide or an instruction manual.   

Here’s an example passage you might find in this type of expository writing:

Caramelize the chopped onions in a frying pan. When the onions have caramelized, mix in the bell peppers, mushrooms, and tomatoes and stir for 4 – 6 minutes or until all the ingredients have softened. If you want to add meat, you can add ground beef and cook for another 4 – 6 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.  

Good expository writing should be easy to read. After all, the purpose of exposition is to explain things to your readers, and you won’t be able to accomplish that if they have trouble understanding your writing.

That’s why ProWritingAid can help you write an expository essay. The grammar checker can help you ensure your sentences flow well, you’re not missing any necessary punctuation, and all your words are precise and clear.

Good luck, and happy writing!

Hannah is a speculative fiction writer who loves all things strange and surreal. She holds a BA from Yale University and lives in Colorado. When she’s not busy writing, you can find her painting watercolors, playing her ukulele, or hiking in the Rockies. Follow her work on hannahyang.com or on Twitter at @hannahxyang.

Get started with ProWritingAid

Drop us a line or let's stay in touch via :

Purdue Online Writing Lab Purdue OWL® College of Liberal Arts

Expository Essays

OWL logo

Welcome to the Purdue OWL

This page is brought to you by the OWL at Purdue University. When printing this page, you must include the entire legal notice.

Copyright ©1995-2018 by The Writing Lab & The OWL at Purdue and Purdue University. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, reproduced, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission. Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our terms and conditions of fair use.

What is an expository essay?

The expository essay is a genre of essay that requires the student to investigate an idea, evaluate evidence, expound on the idea, and set forth an argument concerning that idea in a clear and concise manner. This can be accomplished through comparison and contrast, definition, example, the analysis of cause and effect, etc.

Please note : This genre is commonly assigned as a tool for classroom evaluation and is often found in various exam formats.

The structure of the expository essay is held together by the following.

  • A clear, concise, and defined thesis statement that occurs in the first paragraph of the essay.

It is essential that this thesis statement be appropriately narrowed to follow the guidelines set forth in the assignment. If the student does not master this portion of the essay, it will be quite difficult to compose an effective or persuasive essay.

  • Clear and logical transitions between the introduction, body, and conclusion.

Transitions are the mortar that holds the foundation of the essay together. Without logical progression of thought, the reader is unable to follow the essay’s argument, and the structure will collapse.

  • Body paragraphs that include evidential support.

Each paragraph should be limited to the exposition of one general idea. This will allow for clarity and direction throughout the essay. What is more, such conciseness creates an ease of readability for one’s audience. It is important to note that each paragraph in the body of the essay must have some logical connection to the thesis statement in the opening paragraph.

  • Evidential support (whether factual, logical, statistical, or anecdotal).

Often times, students are required to write expository essays with little or no preparation; therefore, such essays do not typically allow for a great deal of statistical or factual evidence.

  • A bit of creativity!

Though creativity and artfulness are not always associated with essay writing, it is an art form nonetheless. Try not to get stuck on the formulaic nature of expository writing at the expense of writing something interesting. Remember, though you may not be crafting the next great novel, you are attempting to leave a lasting impression on the people evaluating your essay.

  • A conclusion that does not simply restate the thesis, but readdresses it in light of the evidence provided.

It is at this point of the essay that students will inevitably begin to struggle. This is the portion of the essay that will leave the most immediate impression on the mind of the reader. Therefore, it must be effective and logical. Do not introduce any new information into the conclusion; rather, synthesize and come to a conclusion concerning the information presented in the body of the essay.

A complete argument

Perhaps it is helpful to think of an essay in terms of a conversation or debate with a classmate. If I were to discuss the cause of the Great Depression and its current effect on those who lived through the tumultuous time, there would be a beginning, middle, and end to the conversation. In fact, if I were to end the exposition in the middle of my second point, questions would arise concerning the current effects on those who lived through the Depression. Therefore, the expository essay must be complete, and logically so, leaving no doubt as to its intent or argument.

The five-paragraph Essay

A common method for writing an expository essay is the five-paragraph approach. This is, however, by no means the only formula for writing such essays. If it sounds straightforward, that is because it is; in fact, the method consists of:

  • an introductory paragraph
  • three evidentiary body paragraphs
  • a conclusion

what is the style of an expository essay

Teacher Habits

Helping Teachers inside the Classroom and Out

How to Write an Expository Essay: Writing Tips & Structure

Have you ever been tasked with writing an expository essay and found yourself struggling to convey information clearly and concisely? Expository essays are a unique form of academic writing, requiring a neutral stance and factual evidence to educate the reader on a specific topic.

In this step-by-step guide on how to write an expository essay, we’ll delve into the intricacies of crafting a compelling expository essay, from brainstorming to polishing the final draft. Prepare to embark on a journey to enhance your writing skills and master the art of expository writing.

Table of Contents

Expository Essay Writing: Key Takeaways

  • Expository essays are structured academic writing that analyze a given topic objectively.
  • This guide provides a comprehensive approach to crafting an expository essay, from idea generation and research through outlining, drafting, refining and polishing techniques.
  • The structure of the essay should include a precise thesis statement with evidence-based body paragraphs and transition words for coherence.

The Essence of Expository Essays

Expository essays are a type of structured academic writing that utilizes factual evidence to analyze or investigate a designated topic. Different from descriptive essays and personal opinion pieces, expository writing focuses on providing the reader with information about a given topic, maintaining a neutral stance. This objective description is crucial in academic settings, where expository essays are often assigned as a means of assessment and featured in various exam formats.

To write a good expository essay, it is important to select an engaging topic and articulate a precise, well-informed thesis statement. Examining expository essay examples can offer valuable insights into constructing a well-organized, informative essay. Remember, creativity and artistry can still be incorporated into expository writing, so don’t let the formulaic nature of such essays discourage you from developing a captivating piece.

Crafting an Effective Expository Essay Outline

An effective expository essay outline is crucial for organizing your thoughts and research, as it serves as the foundation of your essay. The basic structure of an expository essay comprises an introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion. The more comprehensive your outline is, the less time you’ll need to spend on research and writing, ultimately making the writing process more efficient.

There is no specific length for an expository essay; however, it should be sufficient to effectively articulate the thesis statement. Typically, a five-paragraph essay is a common approach, with an introductory paragraph, three body paragraphs, and a concluding paragraph. By crafting a detailed outline, you can ensure that each section of your essay supports and builds upon your thesis statement, resulting in a cohesive and well-structured piece.

The Writing Process: Step-by-Step Guide

Now that we’ve covered the fundamentals of expository essays and the importance of outline, let’s dive into the step-by-step guide to writing an expository essay.

This guide will cover idea generation, research, outlining, drafting, refining, and polishing, providing a comprehensive approach to crafting a compelling expository essay, including problem and solution essay techniques.

Generating Ideas and Researching

The first step to write an expository essay is brainstorming potential expository essay topics. Consider the topics discussed in class, anticipate what your teacher might expect, and choose something that genuinely interests you. This will ensure that you are engaged in the writing process and motivated to create a captivating essay. After narrowing down your options, conduct research on each topic to determine if reliable sources are easily accessible and gain a more comprehensive understanding of the subject.

Once you have gathered sufficient information, it’s time to analyze your research and select an expository essay topic that best suits your interests and meets your instructor’s guidelines. Keep in mind that your chosen topic should be able to provide enough factual evidence to support your thesis statement, as this will be the core of your essay. By selecting a strong, engaging topic, you set the foundation for a successful expository essay.

Organizing Thoughts with an Outline

Creating an outline is essential for organizing your thoughts and laying the groundwork for your expository essay. Start by developing a strong thesis statement that outlines the main idea of your essay and provides a well-informed, reasoned response to your research question. Your outline should specify what information will be included in each paragraph, ensuring that each section of your essay supports your thesis statement.

The outline serves as a roadmap, guiding you through the writing process and helping you stay focused on your topic. By organizing your thoughts and research in a logical manner, you’ll find it easier to begin writing and stay on track throughout the development of your expository essay.

Drafting the Essay

With a comprehensive outline in hand, it’s time to start drafting your expository essay. Focus on crafting well-structured body paragraphs that stay on topic and provide factual evidence to support your thesis statement. It’s often beneficial to postpone writing the introduction until after you’ve completed the body paragraphs and conclusion, as this will allow you to develop a more accurate and engaging introduction based on the content of your essay.

As you write, use transition words and sentences to connect ideas, maintain narrative flow, and guide readers through your argument. This will ensure that your essay is coherent and easy to follow, ultimately enhancing the reader’s understanding of your topic.

Refining Your Draft

Once you’ve completed the first draft of your expository essay, it’s time to refine your work. Start by reorganizing content, ensuring that each sentence serves its purpose and enhances the reader’s understanding of your topic. Edit for clarity and coherence, and double-check that your essay remains focused on your thesis statement throughout.

As you review your draft, read the paper as if it’s your first encounter with the topic. This will help you determine if the essay is coherent and if the information provided is relevant to the intended purpose of each section. Remember to abstain from attempting to make a persuasive argument and to utilize opinions as evidence, as this can detract from the objective nature of your expository essay.

Polishing the Essay: Editing and Proofreading

The final step in crafting a compelling expository essay is editing and proofreading. Check for errors in grammar, spelling, and formatting, and ensure that your citations are accurate and adherent to the assigned style guide. Tools like Grammarly can be helpful in detecting errors and phrases that lack clarity, as well as ensuring a uniform tone throughout your essay.

In addition to self-editing, consider having someone else review your work. This can provide a fresh perspective and help identify any remaining inconsistencies or areas that need improvement. With your polished expository essay in hand, you’ll be ready to present your well-researched, informative, and engaging piece to your audience.

Analyzing Expository Essay Examples

Examining expository essay examples can be an invaluable tool in understanding how to create a well-structured, informative essay. By analysing the structure, style, and use of evidence in an expository essay example, you can gain insight into crafting your own compelling piece. Remember, it’s not recommended to directly source information or text from expository essay examples, but they can serve as an inspirational reference for your work.

Take note of how the thesis statement is presented, how the body paragraphs are organized, and how the conclusion effectively summarizes the main points of the essay. By carefully studying expository essay examples, you’ll be better equipped to create your own well-crafted, engaging, and informative piece.

Diving into Expository Essay Types

Expository essays come in various forms, each with its own unique purpose and structure. Understanding the different types of expository essays can aid in selecting a subject and organizing your essay’s overall trajectory and framework. The primary types of expository essays include classification, definition, process, compare-and-contrast, and cause-and-effect essays.

Classification essays identify and organize various subjects within one category, outlining their individual characteristics. A definition essay, on the other hand, provides a clear and concise explanation of a subject matter. A process essay outlines the steps necessary for completing a task, providing the reader with an understanding of the procedure.

Compare-and-contrast essays analyze the differences and similarities between sources cited. Cause-and-effect essays investigate the reasons behind a particular occurrence and the consequences that follow. Familiarizing yourself with these expository essay types will expand your writing capabilities and help you craft a compelling piece.

Structuring Your Expository Essay

To ensure a coherent and engaging expository essay, it’s crucial to understand the expository essay structure, which includes a distinct introduction, body paragraphs, and conclusion that support your thesis statement. The introduction should include a precise and succinct thesis statement that outlines the primary focus of your essay, providing the reader with a clear understanding of the topic at hand.

Each body paragraph should contain evidence that supports your thesis statement, ensuring that every section of your essay contributes to the overall argument.

Finally, the conclusion should succinctly summarize the main points and provide a clear and concise statement of the essay’s overarching message. By following this structure, you’ll create a well-organized, informative, and engaging expository essay that effectively communicates your ideas to your audience.

The Role of the Thesis Statement

The thesis statement serves as the foundation of your expository essay, providing a succinct, precise synopsis of the primary point of your essay. A strong, clear, and memorable thesis statement is essential, as it gives the reader a clear understanding of the main focus of your essay and sets the tone for the entire piece. Examples of effective thesis statements include: “The effects of global warming are becoming increasingly evident in our environment,” “The use of technology in the classroom can have both positive and negative effects,” and “The rise of social media has had a profound impact on our society.”

To create a thesis statement, identify your essay topic, conduct research on the topic, and formulate a main idea or argument based on your findings. This statement should be concise and direct, ensuring that your essay remains focused and well-organized throughout the writing process.

Enhancing Your Essay with Transition Words and Sentences

Transition words and sentences play a crucial role in connecting ideas, maintaining narrative flow, and guiding readers through your argument. They serve as the binding element that keeps your essay’s foundation intact, preventing confusion and ensuring that your argument remains coherent and easy to follow. A lack of logical progression of thought can make it difficult for the reader to comprehend your essay’s argument, ultimately compromising its structure.

Examples of transition words and phrases include “however,” “in addition,” “on the other hand,” and “as a result.” By incorporating these transitions into your expository essay, you’ll create a seamless reading experience that effectively communicates your ideas and maintains the reader’s interest throughout the piece.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you start an expository essay.

To start an expository essay, begin with a general statement about your topic that captures the reader’s attention. This should be followed by your thesis or main point of the essay, which can be further supported with three body paragraphs.

Use a formal tone and avoid introducing unnecessary information or summaries.

How do you write an expository essay step by step?

Writing an expository essay can be done step-by-step by organizing your thoughts, researching the topic, formulating a thesis statement, writing an introduction, composing the body paragraphs, and summarizing the essay in the conclusion.

Finally, revise and proofread the essay to ensure its quality.

What is an example of an expository essay?

An example of an expository essay is one that provides readers with a step-by-step guide on how to do something, or a descriptive essay that is loaded with details.

These types of essays seek to explain a particular topic in an informative and logical manner.

What are the 4 parts of the expository essay?

An expository essay is composed of four parts: an introduction, three body paragraphs, and a conclusion.

It provides a clear and organized explanation of a specific topic.

What is an expository essay?

An expository essay is an essay that communicates factual information, requiring the student to investigate an idea, evaluate evidence, expound on the idea, and set forth an argument concerning it in a clear and concise manner.

It is important for the student to be able to organize their thoughts and ideas in a logical manner in order to effectively communicate their argument. Splitting the text into paragraphs is a key to better readability. Start a new paragraph whenever you introduce a new idea or change direction in your argument. This will be a success.

In conclusion, crafting a compelling expository essay requires careful planning, research, and organization. By understanding the essence of expository essays, creating an effective outline, following a step-by-step writing process, and analyzing examples, you can develop your writing skills and create an engaging, informative piece.

Familiarize yourself with the different types of expository essays and the importance of structuring your essay to support your thesis statement. Remember to enhance your essay with transition words and sentences, ensuring a smooth, coherent reading experience for your audience. With these tools and techniques in hand, you’re well on your way to mastering the art of expository writing.

The Write Practice

Expository Essay: 3 Building Blocks to Propose an Idea and Defend It

by Dixie-Ann Belle | 0 comments

Want to Become a Published Author? In 100 Day Book, you’ll finish your book guaranteed. Learn more and sign up here.

If you saw the words “expository essay” on a writing assignment, would your mind draw a blank? Would you immediately feel as if you had stumbled into unexplored territory?

Well there's good news.

expository essay

This post is written by guest writer Dixie-Ann Belle. You can learn more about Dixie-Anne at the end of this article. Welcome Dixie-Ann! 

You might not realize it, but chances are this is not your first encounter with this type of essay. Once you have been writing essays in academic environments, you have probably already worked on expository writing.

In this article, I hope to help you recognize this essay type and understand the expository essay outline. Comprehending the building blocks is instrumental in knowing how to construct an exceptional expository essay.

Lay a Strong Foundation

Over the years, I have taught and tutored college students one on one as they write academic essays, in face to face classrooms and online, and I have noticed a pattern. They often approach essays in one of two ways.

Some consider them with apprehension and are fearful of making mistakes. Others feel confident that they have written many essays before and think they have already mastered expository writing.

Interestingly, it's the latter who often end up the most shaken when they realize that they are not as familiar as they think with this type of writing.

What I hope to instill in my students is that they should not feel intimidated whatever their situation or essay assignment.

I encourage them to make sure they understand the foundations of the expository essay structure. I try to get them to grasp the basic blocks that need to be there, and once they do, they have a good chance of crafting a substantial piece of writing.

What is an Expository Essay?

Students are typically assigned one of at least four types of essays: the persuasive/argumentative essay, the descriptive essay, the technical essay, or the expository essay.

Writing an expository essay is one of the most important and valuable skills for you to master.

According to the Purdue Online Writing Lab:

The expository essay is a genre of essay that requires the student to investigate an idea, evaluate evidence, expound on the idea, and set forth an argument concerning that idea in a clear and concise manner.

Keep in mind that your expository writing centers on giving your reader information about a given topic or process. Your goal is to inform, describe, or define the subject for your readers.

As you work to achieve this, your essay writing must be formal, objective, and concise. No matter what your discipline, it's almost guaranteed that you will be required to write this common type essay one day.

Some expository essay examples could include:

  • Define the term ‘democracy'
  • Compare and contrast the benefits of cable television vs streaming
  • Outline the process that generates an earthquake
  • Classify the different types of tourism
  • Outline the aspects of a good fitness program

The possibilities are endless with expository writing, and it can cover a wide variety of topics and specialties.

3 Building Blocks of a Great Expository Essay

To make sure you're on the right track with this type of paper, it helps to understand the three building blocks of the expository essay format and how to apply them to the final expository essay structure .

1. Write an introduction

Most students know that an introductory paragraph should grab the interest of the reader. However, they might not realize that it should also provide context for the essay topic.

Ask yourself : What are you talking about in this essay? Why is this topic important? Some background details could help to establish the subject for your reader.

For example:

If you were writing an essay on the impact smartphones have on society, you might want to start with some information on the evolution of smartphones, the number of smartphones in society, the way people use the phones and more.

The introduction should start off with general information.

You then work your way down to the more specific and principal part of your introduction and the crown of your whole essay, the thesis statement.

What is the thesis statement?

Your thesis statement states in concise language what this essay is going to be about. It is one clear sentence which expresses the subject and the focus of this piece of writing. If there is a prompt, the thesis statement should directly answer that prompt.

Our smart phones topic might create a thesis statement like:  Smart phones have many positive impacts for adults in the business world.

Right away the reader has some idea of what's ahead.

2. Write your body paragraphs

With your thesis statement clear in your mind and your introduction setting the scene, it is time to write your body paragraphs.

Each body paragraph contains supporting information including factual evidence for your essay topic. Each paragraph should each focus on one idea.

Depending on your word count and the teacher requirements, you can write any number of body paragraphs, but there are usually at least three for a basic five paragraph essay.

Each body paragraph should start with a topic sentence. A topic sentence is one single statement that explains the point of the paragraph. It directly refers to your thesis statement and tells you what the body paragraph is going to be about.

Remember our smart phone thesis statement? You need something that will relate to that thesis sentence and will alert the reader to what is to come.

Here's one possibility: 

Smart phones can help increase productivity  for professional adults.

This topic sentence not only reminds us that you are talking about positive impacts for adults with smart phones, it now shows us what the following paragraph will cover.

The best body paragraphs will go on to include different types of details, all of which would support your topic sentence. A good abbreviation to encapsulate the different details is spelt TEEES.

The TEEES Body Paragraph Structure

Let's break down this abbreviation and explore the types of details you'll need in your body paragraphs

T: Topic sentence

You'll begin with your topic sentence establishing the purpose of this paragraph. We'll use our example from above:

Smartphones can help increase productivity for professional adults.

E: Explanation

This is where you expand on your topic and include additional supportive information.

If you were talking about smartphones and productivity, maybe you could mention what elements of the smartphone make it optimal for productivity.

E: Evidence

This is the information from reputable sources you researched for your topic. Here's where you can talk about all the information you have discovered from experts who have carefully studied this subject.

For our smartphone essay, perhaps you could mention a quote from a technology reporter who has been following the rise of smartphones for years.

E: Examples

This would be concrete subject matter to support your point.

Maybe here you can list some of the smartphone apps which have proven to increase productivity in the workplace.

S: Significant/Summarizing sentence

This is the last sentence in the body paragraph which summarizes your point and ends this part of your essay. There should be no doubt in the reader's mind that you have finished talking about your topic, and you are moving on to another in the next paragraph. Here's how we could conclude this paragraph on smartphones and productivity:

Smartphones have transformed the productivity of the modern workforce.

3. Write the conclusion

Once you have written your body paragraphs, you're in the home stretch. You have presented all of your points and supported them with the appropriate subject matter. Now you need to conclude.

A lot of students are confused by conclusions. Many of them have heard different rules about what is supposed to be included.

One of the main requirements to keep in mind when ending an expository essay is that you do not add new information.

This is not the time to throw in something you forgot in a previous body paragraph. Your conclusion is supposed to give a succinct recap of the points that came before.

Sometimes college students are instructed to re-state the thesis, and this puzzles them. It doesn't mean re-writing the thesis statement word for word. You should express your thesis statement in a new way.

For example, here's how you could approach the conclusion for our smartphone essay.

You've come up with three points to support your thesis statement, and you've explored these three points in your body paragraphs. After brainstorming, you might decide the benefits of smartphones in the workplace are improved productivity, better communication, and increased mobility.

Your conclusion is the time to remind your reader of these points with concise language. Your reader should be able to read the conclusion alone and still come away with the basic ideas of your essay.

Plan Your Essay Based on an Expository Essay Outline

While writing fiction, it is sometimes okay to “pants” it and just leap into writing your story.

When writing essays in academia, this is rarely a good idea. Planning your essay helps organize your ideas, helps you refine many of your points early on and saves time in the long run.

There are lots of great brainstorming techniques you can use to get your ideas together, but after that, it's time to create a topic to sentence outline.

There are three steps to creating your topic to sentence essay outline.

  • Develop a powerful thesis statement. Remember, this is the overarching idea of your entire essay, so you have completed a significant step once you have one done.
  • Come up with the ideas you would like to support your thesis statement.
  • Based on your points, craft your topic sentences.

Here is an example of a topic to sentence outline:

Having these important foundation details completed is a great way to develop your essay as you build on each part. It is also an effective method to make sure you are on the right track.

Depending on your instructor (or tutor, if you have one), you can show your outline to them to get feedback before you launch into your entire essay.

Even if you don't have anyone to provide a critique, the outline can make it easier to revise how you will approach the rest of your paragraph essay.

You now have some firm foundations to help you as you construct your expository essay.

How do you organize an expository essay?  Let us know in the comments .

Take fifteen minutes to practice writing your own expository essay.

First, choose an expository writing assignment topic. If you can't think of one, use one of the expository essay examples below .  

  • What are the nutritional elements of a healthy breakfast?
  • What are some of the most influential types of music?
  • Compare and contrast the benefits of electric and gas cars. 
  • What are the major steps to planning a stress-free vacation?
  • How do smartphones affect mental health?
  • Define true love.

Craft a thesis statement about your topic. Then, write three topic sentences for your body paragraphs.

With the time you have left, start writing your essay. You might be surprised how much you can write in fifteen minutes when you have a clear outline for your essay!

When your time is up, share your outline and your essay in the Pro Practice Workshop here . After you post, please be sure to give feedback to your fellow writers.

Happy writing!

what is the style of an expository essay

Join 100 Day Book

Enrollment closes May 14 at midnight!

' src=

Dixie-Ann Belle

Since she started scribbling stories in her notebooks as a child, Dixie-Ann Belle has been indulging her love of well crafted content. Whether she is working as a writing teacher and tutor or as a freelance writer, editor and proofreader, she enjoys helping aspiring writers develop their work and access their creativity.

Submit a Comment Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Submit Comment

Join over 450,000 readers who are saying YES to practice. You’ll also get a free copy of our eBook 14 Prompts :

Popular Resources

Book Writing Tips & Guides Creativity & Inspiration Tips Writing Prompts Grammar & Vocab Resources Best Book Writing Software ProWritingAid Review Writing Teacher Resources Publisher Rocket Review Scrivener Review Gifts for Writers

Books By Our Writers

Vestige Rise of the Pureblood

You've got it! Just us where to send your guide.

Enter your email to get our free 10-step guide to becoming a writer.

You've got it! Just us where to send your book.

Enter your first name and email to get our free book, 14 Prompts.

Want to Get Published?

Enter your email to get our free interactive checklist to writing and publishing a book.

Article type icon

How to Write an Expository Essay

#scribendiinc

Does Expository Writing Have You Confused?

Maybe you find yourself on this page because your instructor asked you to write an expository essay, and you aren't exactly sure what's expected of you—if so, you've certainly found the right place. Expository writing, or exposition, is a type of discourse used to describe, explain, define, inform, or clarify. It literally means "to expose." Exposition can be found in writing or oral discourse, but for the sake of this article, we'll stick with expository writing.

You are likely familiar with expository writing already, even if the name sounds unfamiliar. Common examples include newspaper articles, how-to manuals, and assembly instructions. Expository writing is also the most frequent type of academic writing !

Present the facts, and only the facts

If you are asked to write an expository essay, then you are essentially being asked to present the facts; there is no place for bias or opinion in expository writing. In a way, this makes writing simple—it is a matter of gathering and presenting the facts about a certain topic.

Something important to keep in mind when writing exposition is that you should not assume your readers have any knowledge of the topic; don't gloss over basic or important details, even if you think they're common knowledge.

When writing expository essays, it is best to use third person narration, although second person is acceptable in some instances, such as for instructions—or articles on expository writing.

Characteristics of expository writing

There are a few characteristics of expository writing you should remember when crafting an expository essay. The first is to keep a tight focus on the main topic, avoiding lengthy tangents, wordiness, or unrelated asides that aren’t necessary for understanding your topic.

In the same vein, be sure to pick a topic that is narrow, but not so narrow that you have a hard time writing anything about it (for example, writing about ice cream would be too broad, but writing about ice cream sold at your local grocery store between 5:00 and 5:15 pm last Saturday would be too narrow).

You must also be sure to support your topic, providing plenty of facts, details, examples, and explanations, and you must do so in an organized and logical manner. Details that can support your expository writing include:

  • Comparisons
  • Descriptive details
  • Definitions
  • Charts and graphs

Formatting an expository essay

The typical format for an expository essay in school is the traditional five-paragraph essay. This includes an introduction and a conclusion, with three paragraphs for the body of the paper. Most often, these three paragraphs are limited to one subtopic each.

This is the basic essay format, but expository writing does not need to be limited to five paragraphs. No matter how long your essay is, be sure your introduction includes your thesis statement and that the paper is based on facts rather than opinions. And, as with all good essay writing , make sure to connect your paragraphs with transitions.

Methods for writing an expository essay

There are a few different methods for writing an expository essay. These include:

  • Compare and contrast
  • Cause and effect
  • Problem and solution
  • Extended definition

Generally, you will want to pick one method for each piece of expository writing. However, you may find that you can combine a few methods. The important thing is to stay focused on your topic and stick to the facts.

Now that you have a clearer understanding of expository writing, you're ready to write your essay. One final tip: be sure to give yourself plenty of time for the writing process. After you've completed your first draft, let your paper sit for a few days—this lets you return to it with fresh eyes. If you'd like a second opinion, our essay editors are always available to help.

Image source: picjumbo_com/Pixabay.com

Let’s Make an Impact on Your Reader

Hire one of our expert editors , or get a free sample.

Have You Read?

"The Complete Beginner's Guide to Academic Writing"

Related Posts

Essay Writing: Traffic Signals for the Reader

Essay Writing: Traffic Signals for the Reader

Five Habits to Avoid in Your Academic Writing

Five Habits to Avoid in Your Academic Writing

How to Write a Great Thesis Statement

How to Write a Great Thesis Statement

Upload your file(s) so we can calculate your word count, or enter your word count manually.

We will also recommend a service based on the file(s) you upload.

English is not my first language. I need English editing and proofreading so that I sound like a native speaker.

I need to have my journal article, dissertation, or term paper edited and proofread, or I need help with an admissions essay or proposal.

I have a novel, manuscript, play, or ebook. I need editing, copy editing, proofreading, a critique of my work, or a query package.

I need editing and proofreading for my white papers, reports, manuals, press releases, marketing materials, and other business documents.

I need to have my essay, project, assignment, or term paper edited and proofread.

I want to sound professional and to get hired. I have a resume, letter, email, or personal document that I need to have edited and proofread.

 Prices include your personal % discount.

 Prices include % sales tax ( ).

what is the style of an expository essay

Home / Guides / Writing Guides / Paper Types / How to Write an Expository Essay

How to Write an Expository Essay

Every student has to write an expository essay at least once in their educational career. These are actually fairly simple essays to write, but they do require some serious research skills. Like most academic essays, the expository essay requires formal writing with an introduction, body, and conclusion.

Guide Overview

  • Focus on the thesis
  • Listen to the assignment
  • Explain, don’t argue
  • Revise and edit, revise and edit
  • Choosing the right topic

Tips for Writing a Kick-Butt Essay

Want to really impress your professor? Here are a few ways you can turn an ordinary essay into something that will blow their socks off.

Focus on the Thesis

Your thesis is the central point of the entire essay, so if it’s amazing, you’re off to a great start. Begin with this and make sure you decide on something that is impressive to kick off the essay.

Listen to the Assignment

Your professor may give you hints on what they’re looking for. If you just write down the basics of the assignment, you could miss out on some key points. For example, your professor may hint at a preferred topic or give tips that could result in a higher score. Write it all down and then analyze what is wanted before you write.

Long before you actually put pen to paper or fingers to keyboard to write the essay, you need to complete the pre-writing phase. This is where you do research and outline your essay. You’ll be amazed at how much better your writing is when you have these basic elements in place first. If you need help with these basic elements consider using an Expository Essay Template.

Explain, Don’t Argue

If you’re not careful, an expository essay can turn into a persuasive or argumentative essay. Focus on explaining the topic, rather than convincing people of something about it.

Revise and Edit, Revise and Edit

Going over the essay once to edit and polish isn’t really enough. If you’re tight on time, such as when writing an essay for an exam, just once will do. However, if you have time, it’s a good idea to edit immediately, then let the essay sit overnight or even longer. When you come back, you won’t be as close to the writing and can look at it more objectively.

Choosing the Right Topic

Topics for an expository essay vary widely, but ideally, you should select something you’re interested in writing about. Topics can answer a question such as “How can we prevent bullying in school?” or they can describe something like a historical building in your area. Other interesting topics to inspire you include:

  • How does technology affect our relationships?
  • How to treat a burn
  • What are the must-haves for a freshman in college?
  • How to handle anxiety attacks naturally
  • How to train your dog to stop barking on command
  • Research the history of a monument in your area
  • Why roller skating is a great exercise

As you can see, there’s no limit to the types of topics you can choose for your essay and it really comes down to what the professor assigns you and what you enjoy writing about. How narrow your topic is will also depend on how much you plan to write. An entire history of the Civil War won’t fit into two page, for example, so you’ll need to narrow it down to a specific battle or element of the Civil War.

Writing an expository essay can actually be a fun experience if you approach it the right way. When you enjoy the topic and are interested in it, your essay will show that and will stand out from those written out of boredom.

Finally, if you’re ever facing writer’s block for your college paper, consider WriteWell Essay Templates to help you get started.

EasyBib Writing Resources

Writing a paper.

  • Academic Essay
  • Argumentative Essay
  • College Admissions Essay
  • Expository Essay
  • Persuasive Essay
  • Research Paper
  • Thesis Statement
  • Writing a Conclusion
  • Writing an Introduction
  • Writing an Outline
  • Writing a Summary

EasyBib Plus Features

  • Citation Generator
  • Essay Checker
  • Expert Check Proofreader
  • Grammar Checker
  • Paraphrasing Tools

Plagiarism Checker

  • Spell Checker

How useful was this post?

Click on a star to rate it!

We are sorry that this post was not useful for you!

Let us improve this post!

Tell us how we can improve this post?

Grammar and Plagiarism Checkers

Grammar Basics

Plagiarism Basics

Writing Basics

Upload a paper to check for plagiarism against billions of sources and get advanced writing suggestions for clarity and style.

Get Started

  • How it works

researchprospect post subheader

How to Write an Expository Essay

Published by Grace Graffin at August 17th, 2021 , Revised On July 26, 2023

Expository means “to describe or explain something” . It is related to the words ‘exposition’, ‘expound’, and ‘expose’ – to explain or reveal the meaning, to lay open, speak one’s mind.

Whenever there is a need to gather research and describe an idea, a  topic , or a process clearly and logically, it is done in the form of an expository  essay .

An expository essay requires the writer to take a balanced approach to the subject matter rather than justifying a particular point of view.

Expository essays are assigned to students to evaluate their subject knowledge and composition skills. When compared with  argumentative essays , they involve a lot less research.

Definition of Expository Essay

“The expository essay is the  type of essay  that involves an investigation of an idea or topic, appraises relevant supporting evidence material, and presents an argument in a clear and concise manner. ”

When to Write an Expository Essay

Your school or university could assign an expository essay to you as coursework or as part of an online exam.

However, the guidelines may or may not clearly state that your assignment is an expository essay. If that is the case, then look for keywords like ‘explain’, ‘describe’, ‘define’, etc., to be sure that what has been asked for is an expository essay.

You might even be asked to explain and emphasise a particular concept or term. Writing a simple definition will not be enough because you will be expected to explore the ideas in detail.

Writing an Expository Essay

An expository essay should not be based on your  personal  experiences and opinions. It rather takes an objective approach. You will be expected to explain the topic in a balanced way without any personal bias.

Make sure to avoid the first and second person (“I” and “You”) when writing an expository essay.

How to Structure an Expository Essay

The  structure  and format of your expository essay assignment will depend on your school’s guidelines and the topic you are investigating. However, it is always a good idea to develop an outline for your  essay  before starting to work.

The Five-Paragraph Essay Writing Approach

An expository essay will require you to take the five-paragraph essay approach: an  introductory paragraph , a main body paragraph , and a concluding paragraph . This is often referred to as the hamburger style of the essay because, like a hamburger, it contains five main parts: the introduction and conclusion being the bun that encapsulates everything.

Rationale and Thesis Statement

Start your essay  with a rationale and thesis, also known as the  thesis statement , so your readers know what you set out to achieve in your expository essay assignment. Ensure the thesis statement is narrow enough to follow the guidelines in the assignment brief. If the thesis statement is weak and too broad, you will struggle to produce a flawless expository essay.

The Framework

Construct a framework, so you know what elements will constitute the basis of your essay.

Expository Essay Introduction

Like other  essay types , an expository essay begins with an  introduction , including a hook, background to the topic, and a thesis statement. Once you have grabbed the readers’ interest, it will be easier to get them to read the remaining essay.

Frequently Asked Questions

Will i need the skill of expository writing after i finish my studies.

It depends on what you are studying for. While you might or might not write any more expository essays after your formal education has ended, the skill will be very useful in certain careers, such as business reports, journalism, and in scientific and technical writing.

How does an expository essay differ from an argumentative essay?

An argumentative essay is usually longer and requires more research. It starts with a claim about something that will need supporting evidence. And both sides of the argument need to be discussed. In an expository essay, there is no requirement to make an original argument and defend/support it.

What is the purpose of expository essays?

This style of essay is necessary when you have to showcase your knowledge on a given subject, or your ability to gather research on one and present your findings.

How long is an expository essay?

There is no fixed length but an expository essay could be part of an exam, in which case it might only be 1,000 words or less. They are usually shorter than argumentative essays . It can depend on the subject under discussion. You will likely be given instructions on the required word count.

Are there different types of expository essay?

There are six different types of expository essay, each with a different purpose.

The six types are:

Process essay – describing a task, a method, how to complete something Cause and effect essay – why something happened and its effects Problem-solution essay – provide analysis of problems and their solutions Compare and contrast essay – describe the similarities and differences between two subjects Definition essay – define the topic in detail and explain the how, what, and why Classification essay – separate the topic’s categories and define them in detail

When you are assigned your essay, you should be able to distinguish which of these approaches you are required to take.

You May Also Like

Before you totally lose your mind here let’s see whether the broken argument in an essay needs to be dumped or just neatly reworked and fixed.

What are topic sentences? In academic writing they briefly describe what a paragprah will explore. Here is all you need to know about topic sentences.

Learn what is the difference between essays and reports so you can work out why and you should prefer one form of writing over the other.

USEFUL LINKS

LEARNING RESOURCES

researchprospect-reviews-trust-site

COMPANY DETAILS

Research-Prospect-Writing-Service

  • How It Works

What Is Expository Writing?

How to Write an Expository Essay

  • Ph.D., Rhetoric and English, University of Georgia
  • M.A., Modern English and American Literature, University of Leicester
  • B.A., English, State University of New York

Expository writing is used to convey factual information (as opposed to creative writing, such as fiction). It is the language of learning and understanding the world around us. If you've ever read an encyclopedia entry, a how-to article on a website, or a chapter in a textbook, then you've encountered examples of expository writing.

Key Takeaways: Expository Writing

  • Just the facts, M'am: Expository writing is informational, not creative writing.
  • Anytime you write to describe or explain, you use expository writing.
  • Use a logical flow when planning an expository essay, report, or article: introduction, body text, and conclusion.
  • It's often easier to write the body of your article first, before composing the introduction or conclusion.

Expository writing is everywhere in everyday life, not just academic settings, as it's present anytime there's information to be conveyed. It can take form in an academic paper, an article for a newspaper, a report for a business, or even book-length nonfiction. It explains, informs, and describes.

Types of Expository Writing

In  composition studies , expository writing (also called exposition ) is one of the four traditional  modes of discourse . It may include elements of  narration ,  description , and  argumentation . Unlike creative or  persuasive writing , which can appeal to emotions and use anecdotes, expository writing's primary  purpose  is to deliver information about an issue, subject, method, or idea using facts.

Exposition may take one of several forms:

  • Descriptive/definition:  In this style of writing, topics are defined by characteristics, traits, and examples. An encyclopedia entry is a kind of descriptive essay. 
  • Process/sequential:  This essay outlines a series of steps needed in order to complete a task or produce something. A recipe at the end of an article in a food magazine is one example.
  • Comparative/contrast:  This kind of exposition is used to demonstrate how two or more subjects are the same and different. An article that explains the difference between owning and renting a home and the benefits and drawbacks of each is one such an example.
  • Cause/effect:  This kind of essay describes how one step leads to a result. An example is a personal blog chronicling a workout regimen and documenting the results over time.
  • Problem/solution: This type of essay presents a problem and possible solutions, backed by data and facts, not just opinion.
  • Classification: A classification essay breaks down a broad topic into categories or groupings.

Tips for Expository Writing

As you write, keep in mind some of these tips for creating an effective expository essay:

Start where you know the information best. You don't have to write your introduction first. In fact, it might be easier to wait until the end for that. If you don't like the look of a blank page, move over the slugs from your outline for the main body paragraphs and write the topic sentences for each. Then start putting in your information according to each paragraph's topic.

Be clear and concise.  Readers have a limited attention span. Make your case succinctly in language that the average reader can understand. 

Stick to the facts.  Although an exposition can be persuasive, it should not be based on opinion only. Support your case with facts, data, and reputable sources that can be documented and verified.

Consider voice and tone.  How you address the reader depends on the kind of essay you're writing. An essay written in the first person is fine for a personal travel essay but is inappropriate if you're a business reporter describing a patent lawsuit. Think about your audience before you begin writing.

Planning Your Essay

  • Brainstorm: Jot down ideas on a blank piece of paper. Connect them with arrows and lines, or just make lists. Rigor doesn't matter at this stage. Bad ideas don't matter at this stage. Just write down ideas, and the engine in your head will lead you to a good one. When you've got that idea, then repeat the brainstorming exercise with ideas that you want to pursue on that topic and information you could put in. From this list, you'll start to see a path emerge for your research or narrative to follow.
  • Compose your thesis: When your ideas coalesce into a sentence in which you can summarize the topic you're writing about, you're ready to compose your thesis sentence. Write down in one sentence the main idea that you'll explore in your paper.
  • Examine your thesis: Is it clear? Does it contain opinion? If so, revise that out. For this type of essay, you stick to the facts and evidence. This isn't an editorial. Is the thesis' scope manageable? You don't want your topic too narrow or too broad to be covered in the amount of space you have for your paper. If it's not a manageable topic, refine it. Don't be dismayed if you have to come back and tweak it if your research finds that your initial idea was off-kilter. It's all just part of the process of focusing the material.
  • Outline: It may seem inconsequential, but making even a quick outline can save you time by organizing your areas of pursuit and narrowing them down. When you see your topics in an organized list, you may be able to discard off-topic threads before you research them—or as you're researching them and you find they just don't work.
  • Research: Find your data and sources to back up the areas you want to pursue to support your thesis statement. Look for sources written by experts, including organizations, and watch for bias. Possible sources include statistics, definitions, charts and graphs, and expert quotes and anecdotes. Compile descriptive details and comparisons to make your topic clear to your reader, when applicable.

What Is an Expository Essay?

An expository essay has three basic parts: the introduction, the body, and the conclusion. Each is crucial to writing a clear article or effective argument.

The introduction: The first paragraph is where you'll lay the foundation for your essay and give the reader an overview of your thesis. Use your opening sentence to get the reader's attention, and then follow up with a few sentences that give your reader some context for the information you're about to cover.

The body:  At a minimum, include three to five paragraphs in the body of your expository essay. The body could be considerably longer, depending on your topic and audience. Each paragraph begins with a topic sentence where you state your case or objective. Each topic sentence supports your overall thesis statement. Then, each paragraph includes several sentences that expand on the information and/or support the topic sentence. Finally, a concluding sentence offers a transition to the following paragraph in the essay.

The conclusion:  The final section of your expository essay should give the reader a concise overview of your thesis. The intent is not merely to summarize your argument but to use it as a means of proposing further action, offering a solution, or posing new questions to explore. Don't cover new material related to your thesis, though. This is where you wrap it all up.

Expository Examples

An expository article or report about a lake, for example, could discuss its ecosystem: the plants and animals that depend on it along with its climate. It could describe physical details about its size, depth, amount of rainfall each year, and the number of tourists it receives annually. Information on when it was formed, its best fishing spots, or its water quality could be included, depending on the audience for the piece.

An expository piece could be in third person or second person. Second-person examples could include, for example, how to test lake water for pollutants or how to kill invasive species. Expository writing is useful and informative.

In contrast, someone writing a creative nonfiction article about a lake might relate the place to a defining moment in his or her life, penning the piece in first person. It could be filled with emotion, opinion, sensory details, and even include dialogue and flashbacks. It's a much more evocative, personal type of writing than an expository piece, even though they're both nonfiction styles.

  • The Ultimate Guide to the 5-Paragraph Essay
  • Definition and Examples of Analysis in Composition
  • How to Write a Solid Thesis Statement
  • Understanding Organization in Composition and Speech
  • Development in Composition: Building an Essay
  • How To Write an Essay
  • How to Structure an Essay
  • Definition and Examples of Body Paragraphs in Composition
  • Tips for Writing an Art History Paper
  • Understanding What an Expository Essay Is
  • What an Essay Is and How to Write One
  • 6 Steps to Writing the Perfect Personal Essay
  • Write an Attention-Grabbing Opening Sentence for an Essay
  • Expository Essay Genre With Suggested Prompts
  • Tips on How to Write an Argumentative Essay
  • How to Write a Narrative Essay or Speech

Expository Essay

Types Of Expository Writing

Caleb S.

Types of Expository Writing - Definition and Examples

11 min read

types of expository writing

People also read

Complete Guide to Expository Essays: Writing Help and Topics

Interesting Expository Essay Topics For Your Next Paper

How to Write an Expository Essay Outline Like a Pro

Free Expository Essay Examples For Students

Ultimate Guide to Writing an Expository Essay About a Person

Learn to Write an Expository Essay About Yourself

Learn the Basics of Crafting an Expository Essay about a Book

Learn to Write Expository Essay About Mental Health - Examples & Tips

How to Write an Expository Essay about Bullying: A Guide

Expository Essay About Dogs: Steps, Examples & Topics

A Guide to Writing an Expository Essay about Education

Expository Essay About Friendship: A Writing Guide

Discover How to Write Expository Essays About Music – A Step-by-Step Guide

Writing an expository essay is quite more difficult than any other type of essay. Creating an impressive essay requires time, thorough research, skills, and knowledge. 

There are 10 main types of expository writing, each of which has a unique objective. They all are similar in nature but serve a different purpose. 

Read on to learn what are the different types of expository writing and what purpose they serve.

Order Essay

Tough Essay Due? Hire Tough Writers!

Arrow Down

  • 1. Expository Writing Definition
  • 2. What are the Types of Expository Writing?
  • 3. Types of Expository Writing Examples
  • 4. Tips for Expository Writing

Expository Writing Definition

Expository writing is a genre of writing that is used to explain, describe, inform, or clarify a particular expository essay topic to the reader. 

Unlike other forms of writing that may involve personal opinions or persuasion, the characteristics of expository writing include a focus on providing factual information in a clear and organized manner.

Expository essay writing is a very common form of writing; journals, newspaper articles, and essays usually demonstrate this type of writing.

While writing an expository essay, you need to explain everything in detail to make the idea clear for the reader. You can take help from  expository essay examples  to see what elements make a perfect expository essay.

What are the Types of Expository Writing?

There are 10 types of expository essay writing, including:

  • Compare and Contrast Essay 

Cause and Effect Essay

  • Problem and Solution Essay 

Process Essay

Definition essay.

  • Classification Essay 
  • Descriptive Writing
  • Exploratory Writing
  • Anecdotal Evidence
  • Sequential Writing

Let’s take a look at common types of expository writing one by one.

Compare and Contrast Essay

The  compare and contrast essay  is a type of essay in which the writer compares and contrasts two things. The writer compares the similarities between the two selected subjects and contrasts the differences in those subjects. The subjects should belong to the same category.

In the  cause and effect essay , the writer tries to find the cause of something; why did something happen? and what effects it might have. This type of essay has built around the reason that caused something to happen and its possible impacts.

There are two ways to structure a cause and effect essay:

  • Block structure:  All the causes are presented first, and then all of their effects.
  • Chain structure:  Each of the causes is followed by its effect straight away.

This essay could be based on assumptions or could be based on facts, but either way, they should be validated.

Problem and Solution Essay

In the  problem solution essay , the writer identifies a problem and then proposes its solution. The writer examines the particular subject from various aspects and perspectives prior to providing a solution. This essay is somewhat similar to the cause and effect essay.

The process essay refers to the process of something, i.e., how to make an apple pie. This type of writing includes a step-by-step process of making or doing something.

This is how you write a process essay; it provides the complete process of doing something. The goal is to provide the process in such a way that the reader can follow the sequence without any mistakes.

The  definition essay  is a type of expository essay that gives a complete description of the topic. It explains what the term or the topic of the essay exactly means. Some terms have concrete meanings like glass, book, etc. Whereas some have abstract meanings like love, respect, honor, etc.

The definition essay revolves around explaining the purpose, what, why, and how aspects of the topic of the essay. This essay could start with the dictionary definition and ultimately provide the extended definition.

Classification Essay

Classification essays are a type of expository writing that categorizes and organizes objects, people, ideas, or concepts into distinct groups based on shared characteristics, features, or criteria. The goal is to help readers better understand the relationships and differences between these categories. 

Descriptive Writing 

Descriptive writing is a type of expository writing that aims to paint a vivid picture of a person, place, object, event, or concept in the reader's mind. It uses sensory details and vivid language to create a sensory experience for the audience. 

Exploratory Writing 

Exploratory writing aims to investigate a topic or question from multiple angles, often without taking a definitive stance. It allows the writer and reader to explore various viewpoints and ideas. 

Anecdotal Evidence 

Anecdotal evidence refers to personal stories, individual accounts, or isolated examples that are used to support a claim or argument. While anecdotal evidence can be compelling and relatable, it is based on personal experiences and may not reflect broader trends or realities. 

Sequential Writing 

Sequential writing, also known as chronological writing, involves organising information or events in a clear, time-based order. This approach is often used when presenting a series of actions, or events in a logical sequence, making it easier for readers to understand a process.

Types of Expository Writing Examples

You can use these types of expository writing PDF examples as a guide when writing your own paper. These examples show you what types of information to include and how it all comes together in one cohesive piece.

Types of Expository Writing Middle School

Types of Expository Writing Structure

Expository Writing Examples Pdf

Paper Due? Why Suffer? That's our Job!

Tips for Expository Writing

The following are some easy types of expository writing strategies and tips. They will help you write an amazing essay.

  • Write your introduction in the most interesting way possible. Start with a hook, thesis statement, or exciting detail to make readers want more.
  • Make your essay clear and concise so that it doesn't confuse readers.
  • There are many ways to support your topic. You can use facts, data, and authentic sources.
  • It is important to consider the audience of your paper before you start writing.
  • Use authoritative sources to gather data for your paper.
  • To avoid any errors in the essay, proofread and edit it before submitting it.

As we've explored various types of expository writing, it's clear that each type serves a unique purpose. 

By choosing the right type, you can engage readers and make complex ideas accessible to a wide audience.

Still, if you need help with an expository essay or any other type of essay, you can hire a professional essay writer. 

My PerfectWords.com  is an online writing service that you can rely on for getting quality essay help. 

Our  expository essay writing service has a team of experts that can create a perfect essay in no time. They can cater to all of your expository essay writing needs. From choosing a topic to crafting an expository essay outline to essay writing, they do it all.

So connect with our paper writing service today and get your essay in no time!

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the 4 characteristics of expository text.

FAQ Icon

The four main characteristics of expository text are;

  • Informative
  • Organization of the text

What are the five elements of expository writing?

The main five elements of expository writing are;

  • Topic sentence
  • Organization
  • Transitions
  • Evidence and examples 

How many types of expository writing are there?

There are generally eight common types of expository writing:

  • Process/How-To Writing
  • Cause and Effect Writing
  • Compare and Contrast Writing
  • Problem-Solution Writing
  • Definition Writing
  • Classification Writing

AI Essay Bot

Write Essay Within 60 Seconds!

Caleb S.

Caleb S. has been providing writing services for over five years and has a Masters degree from Oxford University. He is an expert in his craft and takes great pride in helping students achieve their academic goals. Caleb is a dedicated professional who always puts his clients first.

Get Help

Paper Due? Why Suffer? That’s our Job!

Keep reading

Expository Essay

helpful professor logo

5 Expository Essay Examples (Full Text with Citations)

  • Video Overview
  • Quick Example
  • Formatting Guide

An expository essay attempts to explain a topic in-depth, demonstrating expert knowledge and understanding.

This form of essay is structured around the clear, factual presentation of information, devoid of the writer’s personal opinions or arguments.

The primary goal is to inform or explain rather than persuade.

Unlike an argumentative essay, which is built around defending a particular point of view with evidence and persuasion, an expository essay maintains a neutral stance, focusing on delivering straightforward facts and explanations.

An example of expository writing could be an article explaining the process of photosynthesis.

The article would systematically describe each stage of how plants convert sunlight into energy, detailing the role of sunlight, water, and carbon dioxide.

It would explain the sequence of reactions – first, second, third, fourth, fifth – that occur and the importance of each step in supporting the life of the plant.

An expository essay generally follows this essay format:

expository essay format and structure template

  • A) To persuade the reader to adopt a particular viewpoint
  • B) To inform or explain a topic clearly
  • C) To present the writer’s personal opinions and arguments
  • D) To entertain the reader with creative writing
  • A) An expository essay uses creative storytelling techniques
  • B) An expository essay remains neutral and avoids personal opinions
  • C) An expository essay focuses on persuading the reader with evidence
  • D) An expository essay prioritizes the writer’s personal experiences

Expository Essay Examples

#1 impacts of technology on education.

955 words | 4 Pages | 15 References

impact of technology on education essay

Thesis Statement: “The integration of technology in education represents a complex and critical area of study crucial for understanding and shaping the future of educational practices.”

#2 Impacts of Globalization on Education

1450 words | 5 Pages | 9 References

impacts of globalization on education essay

Thesis Statement: “This essay examines the profound and multifaceted effects of globalization on education, exploring how technological advancements and policy reforms have transformed access to, delivery of, and perceptions of education.”

#3 The Role of Emotional Intelligence in Interpersonal Relationships

1211 Words | 5 Pages | 22 References

emotional intelligence essay

Thesis Statement: “The central thesis is that EI, defined as the ability to perceive, understand, and manage emotions, is a crucial determinant of success and well-being.”

#4 The Future of Renewable Energy Sources and Their Impact

870 words | 4 Pages | 20 References

renewable energy essay

Thesis Statement: “The essay posits that although renewable energy sources hold immense promise for a sustainable future, their full integration into the global energy grid presents significant challenges that must be addressed through technological innovation, economic investment, and policy initiatives.”

#5 The Psychology Behind Consumer Behavior

1053 words | 4 Pages | 17 References

consumer behavior essay

Thesis Statement: “The thesis of this essay is that consumer behavior is not merely a product of rational decision-making; it is deeply rooted in psychological processes, both conscious and subconscious, that drive consumers’ choices and actions.”

How to Write an Expository Essay

expository essay definition and features, explained below

Unlike argumentative or persuasive essays, expository essays do not aim to convince the reader of a particular point of view.

Instead, they focus on providing a balanced and thorough explanation of a subject.

Key characteristics of an expository essay include:

  • Clarity and Conciseness
  • Structured Organization (Introduction, Body, Conclusion)
  • Objective Tone
  • Evidence-Based (Cite academic sources in every body paragraph)
  • Objective thesis statement (see below)
  • Informative purpose (Not argumentative)

You can follow my expository essay templates with AI prompts to help guide you through the expository essay writing process:

Expository Essay Paragraph Guide

How to write a Thesis Statement for an Expository Essay

An expository thesis statement doesn’t make an argument or try to persuade. It uses ‘is’ rather than ‘ought’ statements.

Take these comparisons  below. Note how the expository thesis statements don’t prosecute an argument or attempt to persuade, while the argumentative thesis statements clearly take a side on an issue:

💡 AI Prompt for Generating Sample Expository Thesis Statements An expository essay’s thesis statement should be objective rather than argumentative. Write me five broad expository thesis statement ideas on the topic “[TOPIC]”.

Go Deeper: 101 Thesis Statement Examples

Differences Between Expository and Argumentative Essays

Expository and argumentative essays are both common writing styles in academic and professional contexts, but they serve different purposes and follow different structures.

Here are the key differences between them:

  • Expository Essay : The primary purpose is to explain, describe, or inform about a topic. It focuses on clarifying a subject or process, providing understanding and insight.
  • Argumentative Essay : The goal is to persuade the reader to accept a particular point of view or to take a specific action. It’s about presenting a stance and supporting it with evidence and logic.
  • Expository Essay : It maintains a neutral and objective tone. The writer presents information factually and impartially, without expressing personal opinions or biases.
  • Argumentative Essay : It often adopts a more assertive, persuasive, and subjective tone. The writer takes a clear position and argues in favor of it, using persuasive language.
  • Expository Essay : The reader is expected to gain knowledge, understand a process, or become informed about a topic. There’s no expectation for the reader to agree or disagree.
  • Argumentative Essay : The reader is encouraged to consider the writer’s viewpoint, evaluate arguments, and possibly be persuaded to adopt a new perspective or take action.

Go Deeper: Expository vs Argumentative Essays

Ready to Write your Essay?

Expository Essay Template

Take action! Choose one of the following options to start writing your expository essay now:

Read Next: Process Essay Examples

Chris

Chris Drew (PhD)

Dr. Chris Drew is the founder of the Helpful Professor. He holds a PhD in education and has published over 20 articles in scholarly journals. He is the former editor of the Journal of Learning Development in Higher Education. [Image Descriptor: Photo of Chris]

  • Chris Drew (PhD) https://helpfulprofessor.com/author/chris-drew-phd/ Social-Emotional Learning (Definition, Examples, Pros & Cons)
  • Chris Drew (PhD) https://helpfulprofessor.com/author/chris-drew-phd/ What is Educational Psychology?
  • Chris Drew (PhD) https://helpfulprofessor.com/author/chris-drew-phd/ What is IQ? (Intelligence Quotient)
  • Chris Drew (PhD) https://helpfulprofessor.com/author/chris-drew-phd/ 5 Top Tips for Succeeding at University

Leave a Comment Cancel Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

what is the style of an expository essay

The Plagiarism Checker Online For Your Academic Work

Start Plagiarism Check

Editing & Proofreading for Your Research Paper

Get it proofread now

Online Printing & Binding with Free Express Delivery

Configure binding now

  • Academic essay overview
  • The writing process
  • Structuring academic essays
  • Types of academic essays
  • Academic writing overview
  • Sentence structure
  • Academic writing process
  • Improving your academic writing
  • Titles and headings
  • APA style overview
  • APA citation & referencing
  • APA structure & sections
  • Citation & referencing
  • Structure and sections
  • APA examples overview
  • Commonly used citations
  • Other examples
  • British English vs. American English
  • Chicago style overview
  • Chicago citation & referencing
  • Chicago structure & sections
  • Chicago style examples
  • Citing sources overview
  • Citation format
  • Citation examples
  • College essay overview
  • Application
  • How to write a college essay
  • Types of college essays
  • Commonly confused words
  • Definitions
  • Dissertation overview
  • Dissertation structure & sections
  • Dissertation writing process
  • Graduate school overview
  • Application & admission
  • Study abroad
  • Master degree
  • Harvard referencing overview
  • Language rules overview
  • Grammatical rules & structures
  • Parts of speech
  • Punctuation
  • Methodology overview
  • Analyzing data
  • Experiments
  • Observations
  • Inductive vs. Deductive
  • Qualitative vs. Quantitative
  • Types of validity
  • Types of reliability
  • Sampling methods
  • Theories & Concepts
  • Types of research studies
  • Types of variables
  • MLA style overview
  • MLA examples
  • MLA citation & referencing
  • MLA structure & sections
  • Plagiarism overview
  • Plagiarism checker
  • Types of plagiarism
  • Printing production overview
  • Research bias overview
  • Types of research bias
  • Example sections
  • Types of research papers
  • Research process overview
  • Problem statement
  • Research proposal
  • Research topic
  • Statistics overview
  • Levels of measurment
  • Frequency distribution
  • Measures of central tendency
  • Measures of variability
  • Hypothesis testing
  • Parameters & test statistics
  • Types of distributions
  • Correlation
  • Effect size
  • Hypothesis testing assumptions
  • Types of ANOVAs
  • Types of chi-square
  • Statistical data
  • Statistical models
  • Spelling mistakes
  • Tips overview
  • Academic writing tips
  • Dissertation tips
  • Sources tips
  • Working with sources overview
  • Evaluating sources
  • Finding sources
  • Including sources
  • Types of sources

Your Step to Success

Plagiarism Check within 10min

Printing & Binding with 3D Live Preview

Expository Essay – Definition, Types & Structure

How do you like this article cancel reply.

Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.

Expository-Essay-Definition-1

An expository essay is a type of writing where the author presents facts and evaluates a concept about a place, an object, a person, or an experience. The writer is expected to present information regarding the concept unbiased and accurately while ensuring it is written in the third person and delivered in chronological sequence. Writing an expository essay is a common task for high school and college students, and knowing what it entails sets a successful and an unsuccessful student apart.

Inhaltsverzeichnis

  • 1 Expository Essay – In a Nutshell
  • 2 Definition: Expository essay
  • 3 The purpose of an expository essay
  • 4 Types of expository essays
  • 5 Structuring an expository essay
  • 6 How to write an expository essay

Expository Essay – In a Nutshell

An expository essay aims to provide a solution or explanation of a subject or issue at hand. Techniques in writing this type of essay can come in handy when a fact-based analysis is required in any field. Learn everything you need to know about writing an expository essay in this article:

  • There are 4 types of expository essays: Descriptive essay, process essay , compare and contrast essay , and cause and effect essay .
  • An expository essay includes 3 main sections : Introduction, body, and conclusion.
  • Learn tips and tricks to consider when writing an expository essay

Definition: Expository essay

A style of academic writing known as an expository essay tries to clarify, observe, and describe a thought, problem, or notion. It entails looking into a theory, assessing the supporting data, outlining the theory, and then developing an argument based on the research.

Expository essays follow a format similar to other types of academic essays , such as persuasive essays or argumentative essays . The primary distinction is that the expository essay necessitates more investigation and factual information to substantiate the claim. Common examples of expository essays include a process, or how-to essay that provides instructions on how to accomplish a task, assembly instructions, and newspaper articles.

Ireland

The purpose of an expository essay

An expository essay is written when the researcher intents to provide a solution or an explanation about a specific topic or issue. The primary purpose of such an essay is to explain or analyze a complex topic and is often used to explore complex or controversial issues. Mostly, these essays investigate an idea or subject, evaluate the evidence available, develop the idea, and provide an argument regarding that idea clearly and concisely.

Types of expository essays

There are four main types of expository essays:

Descriptive essay

A descriptive essay gives details on a particular person, place, thing, or experience. The author describes the topic with sensory information describing an individual, place, thing, or experience while giving in-depth information about the subject. Providing an intricate description of something or an event is the primary objective of such an essay.

Process essay

A process essay describes how to carry out a task or how something is supposed to take place. The author must ensure that the steps in the process are described in chronological order. A process essay’s primary goal is to give comprehensive directions on carrying out a task with minimal mistakes.

A beach description essay can discuss the sound of the waves lapping against the shore, the salty air, and the sensation of sand between the toes. Additionally, a person’s physical attributes, psychological traits, and interests could all be discussed in a descriptive essay about that individual.

A process essay on how to bake a cake might describe the processes involved, from combining the ingredients to placing the cake in the oven. Also, planting crops must follow a specific process lest they fail in their tracks.

Compare and contrast essay

A compare and contrast essay explains the differences and similarities between two or more individuals, things, places, or experiences. In a comparison essay, two objects are compared, and their similarities and differences are discussed. This essay’s primary goal is to make the reader understand the subjects under comparison.

Cause and effect

A cause and effect essay explains the reasons for something or the effects of something. This essay will discuss the causes of a problem or situation and its consequences. The main purpose of a cause-and-effect essay is to help the reader understand the reason behind a problem or situation.

In a compare and contrast essay about two nations, you might talk about how the two nations’ cultures, languages, and religions differ. Further, a compare and contrast essay on two books can discuss how the themes are similar but the character development differs.

An essay on obesity’s causes and effects can go over the factors contributing to the country’s rising obesity rates. Also, a cause and effect essay about the Vietnam War can go into the conflict’s origins and how it affected the Vietnamese people

Structuring an expository essay

The structure of this essay is similar to that of other essays, such as the five-paragraph essay.

Expository-essay-structure-of-an-essay

The introduction:

Introduces the essay’s core idea while providing critical background information. Start your introduction with a catchy sentence to draw the reader in, such as rhetorical questions, quotations, anecdotes, concessions, intriguing facts, or questions that will be addressed in your body section. The thesis statement for a narrative essay has a slightly different function than an expository essay because the former can introduce the plot’s events.

A three-paragraph body is the standard format for such essays. The topic is introduced in the first paragraph, followed by complementary information in the second paragraph, and then the bottom-line section as the third body paragraph.

The conclusion:

An expository essay also has a conclusion, acting as the summary of the essay’s main points.

How to write an expository essay

The most efficient method to begin an essay is simply, to begin writing. Get your ideas down on paper first without worrying about grammar or spelling. Check it for grammatical and spelling issues when you’ve finished writing your essay.

Make sure your thoughts are concise, and your essay flows naturally while editing. Read your writing aloud as a means to verify this. If you become lost or confused while reading your work, this is a good indicator that you have probably not adequately ordered your work.

What is an expository essay?

This type of essay explores a specific subject or issue in detail and is often used to analyze a complex or controversial topic.

What are the different types of expository essays?

The most common types of such essays include cause and effect essays, compare and contrast essays, process essays, and descriptive essays.

What is the purpose of an expository essay?

This type of essay is usually used when the aim is to analyze complex and controversial topics.

We use cookies on our website. Some of them are essential, while others help us to improve this website and your experience.

  • External Media

Individual Privacy Preferences

Cookie Details Privacy Policy Imprint

Here you will find an overview of all cookies used. You can give your consent to whole categories or display further information and select certain cookies.

Accept all Save

Essential cookies enable basic functions and are necessary for the proper function of the website.

Show Cookie Information Hide Cookie Information

Statistics cookies collect information anonymously. This information helps us to understand how our visitors use our website.

Content from video platforms and social media platforms is blocked by default. If External Media cookies are accepted, access to those contents no longer requires manual consent.

Privacy Policy Imprint

  • Share full article

Advertisement

Supported by

Guest Essay

The Deep, Tangled Roots of American Illiberalism

An illustration of a scene of mayhem with men in Colonial-era clothing fighting in a small room.

By Steven Hahn

Dr. Hahn is a Pulitzer Prize-winning historian at New York University and the author, most recently, of “Illiberal America: a History.”

In a recent interview with Time, Donald Trump promised a second term of authoritarian power grabs, administrative cronyism, mass deportations of the undocumented, harassment of women over abortion, trade wars and vengeance brought upon his rivals and enemies, including President Biden. “If they said that a president doesn’t get immunity,” Mr. Trump told Time, “then Biden, I am sure, will be prosecuted for all of his crimes.”

Further evidence, it seems, of Mr. Trump’s efforts to construct a political world like no other in American history. But how unprecedented is it, really? That Mr. Trump continues to lead in polls should make plain that he and his MAGA movement are more than noxious weeds in otherwise liberal democratic soil.

Many of us have not wanted to see it that way. “This is not who we are as a nation,” one journalist exclaimed in what was a common response to the violence on Jan. 6, “and we must not let ourselves or others believe otherwise.” Mr. Biden has said much the same thing.

While it’s true that Mr. Trump was the first president to lose an election and attempt to stay in power, observers have come to recognize the need for a lengthier view of Trumpism. Even so, they are prone to imagining that there was a time not all that long ago when political “normalcy” prevailed. What they have failed to grasp is that American illiberalism is deeply rooted in our past and fed by practices, relationships and sensibilities that have been close to the surface, even when they haven’t exploded into view.

Illiberalism is generally seen as a backlash against modern liberal and progressive ideas and policies, especially those meant to protect the rights and advance the aspirations of groups long pushed to the margins of American political life. But in the United States, illiberalism is better understood as coherent sets of ideas that are related but also change over time.

This illiberalism celebrates hierarchies of gender, race and nationality; cultural homogeneity; Christian religious faith; the marking of internal as well as external enemies; patriarchal families; heterosexuality; the will of the community over the rule of law; and the use of political violence to achieve or maintain power. This illiberalism sank roots from the time of European settlement and spread out from villages and towns to the highest levels of government. In one form or another, it has shaped much of our history. Illiberalism has frequently been a stalking horse, if not in the winner’s circle. Hardly ever has it been roundly defeated.

A few examples may be illustrative. Although European colonization of North America has often been imagined as a sharp break from the ways of home countries, neo-feudal dreams inspired the making of Euro-American societies from the Carolinas up through the Hudson Valley, based as they were on landed estates and coerced labor, while the Puritan towns of New England, with their own hierarchies, demanded submission to the faith and harshly policed their members and potential intruders alike. The backcountry began to fill up with land-hungry settlers who generally formed ethnicity-based enclaves, eyed outsiders with suspicion and, with rare exceptions, hoped to rid their territory of Native peoples. Most of those who arrived in North America between the early 17th century and the time of the American Revolution were either enslaved or in servitude, and master-servant jurisprudence shaped labor relations well after slavery was abolished, a phenomenon that has been described as “belated feudalism.”

The anti-colonialism of the American Revolution was accompanied not only by warfare against Native peoples and rewards for enslavers, but also by a deeply ingrained anti-Catholicism, and hostility to Catholics remained a potent political force well into the 20th century. Monarchist solutions were bruited about during the writing of the Constitution and the first decade of the American Republic: John Adams thought that the country would move in such a direction and other leaders at the time, including Washington, Madison and Hamilton, wondered privately if a king would be necessary in the event a “republican remedy” failed.

The 1830s, commonly seen as the height of Jacksonian democracy, were racked by violent expulsions of Catholics , Mormons and abolitionists of both races, along with thousands of Native peoples dispossessed of their homelands and sent to “Indian Territory” west of the Mississippi.

The new democratic politics of the time was often marked by Election Day violence after campaigns suffused with military cadences, while elected officials usually required the support of elite patrons to guarantee the bonds they had to post. Even in state legislatures and Congress, weapons could be brandished and duels arranged; “bullies” enforced the wills of their allies.

When enslavers in the Southern states resorted to secession rather than risk their system under a Lincoln administration, they made clear that their Confederacy was built on the cornerstone of slavery and white supremacy. And although their crushing defeat brought abolition, the establishment of birthright citizenship (except for Native peoples), the political exclusion of Confederates, and the extension of voting rights to Black men — the results of one of the world’s great revolutions — it was not long before the revolution went into reverse.

The federal government soon allowed former Confederates and their white supporters to return to power, destroy Black political activism and, accompanied by lynchings (expressing the “will” of white communities), build the edifice of Jim Crow: segregation, political disfranchisement and a harsh labor regime. Already previewed in the pre-Civil War North, Jim Crow received the imprimatur of the Supreme Court and the administration of Woodrow Wilson .

Few Progressives of the early 20th century had much trouble with this. Segregation seemed a modern way to choreograph “race relations,” and disfranchisement resonated with their disenchantment with popular politics, whether it was powered by Black voters in the South or European immigrants in the North. Many Progressives were devotees of eugenics and other forms of social engineering, and they generally favored overseas imperialism; some began to envision the scaffolding of a corporate state — all anticipating the dark turns in Europe over the next decades.

The 1920s, in fact, saw fascist pulses coming from a number of directions in the United States and, as in Europe, targeting political radicals. Benito Mussolini won accolades in many American quarters. The lab where Josef Mengele worked received support from the Rockefeller Foundation. White Protestant fundamentalism reigned in towns and the countryside. And the Immigration Act of 1924 set limits on the number of newcomers, especially those from Southern and Eastern Europe, who were thought to be politically and culturally unassimilable.

Most worrisome, the Ku Klux Klan, energized by anti-Catholicism and antisemitism as well as anti-Black racism, marched brazenly in cities great and small. The Klan became a mass movement and wielded significant political power; it was crucial, for example , to the enforcement of Prohibition. Once the organization unraveled in the late 1920s, many Klansmen and women found their way to new fascist groups and the radical right more generally.

Sidelined by the Great Depression and New Deal, the illiberal right regained traction in the late 1930s, and during the 1950s won grass-roots support through vehement anti-Communism and opposition to the civil rights movement. As early as 1964, in a run for the Democratic presidential nomination, Gov. George Wallace of Alabama began to hone a rhetoric of white grievance and racial hostility that had appeal in the Midwest and Middle Atlantic, and Barry Goldwater’s campaign that year, despite its failure, put winds in the sails of the John Birch Society and Young Americans for Freedom.

Four years later, Wallace mobilized enough support as a third-party candidate to win five states. And in 1972, once again as a Democrat, Wallace racked up primary wins in both the North and the South before an assassination attempt forced him out of the race. Growing backlashes against school desegregation and feminism added further fuel to the fire on the right, paving the way for the conservative ascendancy of the 1980s.

By the early 1990s, the neo-Nazi and Klansman David Duke had won a seat in the Louisiana Legislature and nearly three-fifths of the white vote in campaigns for governor and senator. Pat Buchanan, seeking the Republican presidential nomination in 1992, called for “America First,” the fortification of the border (a “Buchanan fence”), and a culture war for the “soul” of America, while the National Rifle Association became a powerful force on the right and in the Republican Party.

When Mr. Trump questioned Barack Obama’s legitimacy to serve as president, a project that quickly became known as “birtherism,” he made use of a Reconstruction-era racist trope that rejected the legitimacy of Black political rights and power. In so doing, Mr. Trump began to cement a coalition of aggrieved white voters. They were ready to push back against the nation’s growing cultural diversity — embodied by Mr. Obama — and the challenges they saw to traditional hierarchies of family, gender and race. They had much on which to build.

Back in the 1830s, Alexis de Tocqueville, in “Democracy in America,” glimpsed the illiberal currents that already entangled the country’s politics. While he marveled at the “equality of conditions,” the fluidity of social life and the strength of republican institutions, he also worried about the “omnipotence of the majority.”

“What I find most repulsive in America is not the extreme freedom reigning there,” Tocqueville wrote, “but the shortage of guarantees against tyranny.” He pointed to communities “taking justice into their own hands,” and warned that “associations of plain citizens can compose very rich, influential, and powerful bodies, in other words, aristocratic bodies.” Lamenting their intellectual conformity, Tocqueville believed that if Americans ever gave up republican government, “they will pass rapidly on to despotism,” restricting “the sphere of political rights, taking some of them away in order to entrust them to a single man.”

The slide toward despotism that Tocqueville feared may be well underway, whatever the election’s outcome. Even if they try to fool themselves into thinking that Mr. Trump won’t follow through, millions of voters seem ready to entrust their rights to “a single man” who has announced his intent to use autocratic powers for retribution, repression, expulsion and misogyny.

Only by recognizing what we’re up against can we mount an effective campaign to protect our democracy, leaning on the important political struggles — abolitionism, antimonopoly, social democracy, human rights, civil rights, feminism — that have challenged illiberalism in the past and offer the vision and political pathways to guide us in the future.

Our biggest mistake would be to believe that we’re watching an exceptional departure in the country’s history. Because from the first, Mr. Trump has tapped into deep and ever-expanding illiberal roots. Illiberalism’s history is America’s history.

Steven Hahn is a Pulitzer Prize-winning historian at New York University and the author, most recently, of “ Illiberal America: a History .”

The Times is committed to publishing a diversity of letters to the editor. We’d like to hear what you think about this or any of our articles. Here are some tips . And here’s our email: [email protected] .

Follow the New York Times Opinion section on Facebook , Instagram , TikTok , WhatsApp , X and Threads .

E. B. White is one of the most famous children’s book authors. But he should be better known for his essays.

what is the style of an expository essay

I was well into adulthood before I realized the co-author of my battered copy of The Elements of Style was also the author of Stuart Little and Charlotte’s Web . That’s right, the White of the revered style manual that everyone knew as “Strunk and White” also wrote children’s books…as well as some of the best essays in the English language.

If you’re of a certain age, you might well remember E. B. White’s pointers in The Elements of Style :

Place yourself in the background; write in a way that comes naturally; work from a suitable design; write with nouns and verbs; do not overwrite; do not overstate; avoid the use of qualifiers; do not affect a breezy style; use orthodox spelling; do not explain too much; avoid fancy words; do not take shortcuts at the cost of clarity; prefer the standard to the offbeat; make sure the reader knows who is speaking; do not use dialect; revise and rewrite.

That’s some good advice, much better than the terrible counsel offered on Page 76: “Avoid the elaborate, the pretentious, the coy, and the cute.” Thanks, E. B., I do what I want. ☹️

Born in 1899 in Mount Vernon, N.Y., Elwyn Brooks White attended Cornell University, where he earned the nickname “Andy.” (Weird historical fact: If your last name was White, you were automatically an Andy at Cornell, in honor of the school’s co-founder, Andrew Dickson White. There is no connection to fellow Cornell alum Andy Bernard .) After graduation, White worked as a journalist and an advertising copywriter for several years. He published his first article in The New Yorker the year it was founded, 1925.

White became a staff writer at The New Yorker in 1927, but was an early enthusiast of the work-from-home movement, initially refusing to come to the office and eventually agreeing to come in only on Thursdays. In those days, he shared a small office (“a sort of elongated closet,” he called it) with James Thurber.

His famous officemate later recalled that White had an odd a brilliant habit: When visitors were announced, he would climb out the office window and scamper down the fire escape. “He has avoided the Man in the Reception Room as he has avoided the interviewer, the photographer, the microphone, the rostrum, the literary tea, and the Stork Club,” Thurber later remembered of the chronically shy author. “His life is his own.”

In 1929, White and Thurber co-authored their first book, Is Sex Necessary? Or, Why You Feel the Way You Do . (Don’t worry: It was comic essays.) That same year, White married Katharine Angell, The New Yorker’s fiction editor from its inaugural year until 1960. She was the mother of Roger Angell , the famed essayist and baseball writer who himself became a fiction editor at The New Yorker in the 1950s.

In 1938, White and Katharine moved permanently to a farm in Maine they had purchased five years before. If you’re wondering about the inspiration for 1952’s Charlotte’s Web , look no further than White’s 1948 essay for The Atlantic, “ Death of a Pig .” (He bought the pig with the intention of fattening it for slaughter; instead, he later nursed it through a fatal illness and buried it on the farm.)

Stuart Little had been published seven years before Charlotte’s Web . Along with 1970’s The Trumpet of the Swan , these books have made White one of the nation’s best-known children’s authors. I’m sure White didn’t mind, but by all rights, he should be better known for his essays. He authored over 20 collections of such classics as “Once More to the Lake,” “The Sea and The Wind That Blow,” “The Ring of Time,” “A Slight Sound at Evening” and “Farewell, My Lovely!” Endlessly anthologized, many are also taught in writing workshops to this day.

In 1949, White published Here Is New York , a short book developed from an essay about the pros and cons of living in New York City. In a 2012 essay for America , literary editor Raymond Schroth, S.J., noted White’s juxtaposition in Here Is New York of technological terrors like nuclear bombers (the Soviet Union detonated its first atomic bomb in 1949) with the simple beauties of nature:

Grand Central Terminal has become honky tonk, the great mansions are in decline, and there is generally more tension, irritability and great speed. The subtlest change is that the city is now destructible. A single flight of planes no bigger than a flock of geese could end this island fantasy, burn the towers and crumble the bridges. But the United Nations will make this the capital of the world. The perfect target may become the perfect “demonstration of nonviolence and racial brotherhood.” A block away in an interior garden was an old willow tree. This tree, symbol of the city, White said, must survive.

“It is a battered tree, long suffering and much climbed, held together by strands of wire but beloved of those who know it,” White wrote in Here Is New York . “In a way it symbolizes the city: life under difficulties, growth against odds, sap-rise in the midst of concrete, and the steady reaching for the sun. Whenever I look at it nowadays, and feel the cold shadow of the planes, I think: ‘This must be saved, this particular thing, this very tree.’”

The tree lasted for another six decades —two more than the Cold War, in fact—before finally being chopped down in 2009.

In a 1954 review of books by White and James Michener, America literary editor Harold C. Gardiner, S.J. , said White “has one of the most distinctive styles discernible on the American literary scene.” Since even the most cursory review of Father Gardiner’s many years of commentary shows he hated almost everything, it was quite a compliment. (Later in the review, he noted that “Mr. Michener, who has done better in his other books, comes a cropper here mainly because his style is wooden, sententious and dull.”)

In 1963, White received the Presidential Medal of Freedom for his writings. Fifteen years later, he was awarded a special Pulitzer Prize for “his letters, essays, and the full body of his work.” In 2005, the composer Nico Muhly debuted a song cycle based on The Elements of Style at the New York Public Library. Among its signature moments was a tenor offering more of White’s good advice, this time in song:

Do not use a hyphen between words that can be better written as one word .

White died in 1985 at his farm in Maine. His wife Katharine had died eight years earlier. His obituary in The New York Times quoted William Shawn, the legendary editor of The New Yorker:

His literary style was as pure as any in our language. It was singular, colloquial, clear, unforced, thoroughly American and utterly beautiful. Because of his quiet influence, several generations of this country's writers write better than they might have done. He never wrote a mean or careless sentence. He was impervious to literary, intellectual and political fashion. He was ageless, and his writing was timeless.

Our poetry selection for this week is “ Another Doubting Sonnet ,” by Renee Emerson. Readers can view all of America ’s published poems here .

Also, news from the Catholic Book Club: We are reading Norwegian novelist and 2023 Nobel Prize winner Jon Fosse’s multi-volume work Septology . Click here to buy the book, and click here to sign up for our Facebook discussion group .

In this space every week, America features reviews of and literary commentary on one particular writer or group of writers (both new and old; our archives span more than a century), as well as poetry and other offerings from America Media. We hope this will give us a chance to provide you with more in-depth coverage of our literary offerings. It also allows us to alert digital subscribers to some of our online content that doesn’t make it into our newsletters.

Other Catholic Book Club columns:

The spiritual depths of Toni Morrison

What’s all the fuss about Teilhard de Chardin?

Moira Walsh and the art of a brutal movie review

​​Who’s in hell? Hans Urs von Balthasar had thoughts.

Happy reading!

James T. Keane

what is the style of an expository essay

James T. Keane is a senior editor at America.

Most popular

what is the style of an expository essay

Your source for jobs, books, retreats, and much more.

The latest from america

what is the style of an expository essay

What is ChatGPT? Here's everything you need to know about ChatGPT, the chatbot everyone's still talking about

  • ChatGPT is getting a futuristic human update. 
  • ChatGPT has drawn users at a feverish pace and spurred Big Tech to release other AI chatbots.
  • Here's how ChatGPT works — and what's coming next.

Insider Today

OpenAI's blockbuster chatbot ChatGPT is getting a new update. 

On Monday, OpenAI unveiled GPT-4o for ChatGPT, a new version of the bot that can hold conversations with users in a very human tone. The new version of the chatbot will also have vision abilities.

The futuristic reveal quickly prompted jokes about parallels to the movie "Her," with some calling the chatbot's new voice " cringe ."

The move is a big step for the future of AI-powered virtual assistants, which tech companies have been racing to develop.

Since its release in 2022, hundreds of millions of people have experimented with the tool, which is already changing how the internet looks and feels to users.

Users have flocked to ChatGPT to improve their personal lives and boost productivity . Some workers have used the AI chatbot to develop code , write real estate listings , and create lesson plans, while others have made teaching the best ways to use ChatGPT a career all to itself.

ChatGPT offers dozens of plug-ins to those who subscribe to ChatGPT Plus subscription. An Expedia one can help you book a trip, while an OpenTable one will get nab you a dinner reservation. And last month, OpenAI launched Code Interpreter, a version of ChatGPT that can code and analyze data .

While the personal tone of conversations with an AI bot like ChatGPT can evoke the experience of chatting with a human, the technology, which runs on " large language model tools, " doesn't speak with sentience and doesn't "think" the way people do. 

That means that even though ChatGPT can explain quantum physics or write a poem on command, a full AI takeover isn't exactly imminent , according to experts.

"There's a saying that an infinite number of monkeys will eventually give you Shakespeare," said Matthew Sag, a law professor at Emory University who studies copyright implications for training and using large language models like ChatGPT.

"There's a large number of monkeys here, giving you things that are impressive — but there is intrinsically a difference between the way that humans produce language, and the way that large language models do it," he said. 

Chatbots like ChatGPT are powered by large amounts of data and computing techniques to make predictions to string words together in a meaningful way. They not only tap into a vast amount of vocabulary and information, but also understand words in context. This helps them mimic speech patterns while dispatching an encyclopedic knowledge. 

Other tech companies like Google and Meta have developed their own large language model tools, which use programs that take in human prompts and devise sophisticated responses.

Despite the AI's impressive capabilities, some have called out OpenAI's chatbot for spewing misinformation , stealing personal data for training purposes , and even encouraging students to cheat and plagiarize on their assignments. 

Some recent efforts to use chatbots for real-world services have proved troubling. In 2023, the mental health company Koko came under fire after its founder wrote about how the company used GPT-3 in an experiment to reply to users. 

Koko cofounder Rob Morris hastened to clarify on Twitter that users weren't speaking directly to a chatbot, but that AI was used to "help craft" responses. 

Read Insider's coverage on ChatGPT and some of the strange new ways that both people and companies are using chat bots: 

The tech world's reception to ChatGPT:

Microsoft is chill with employees using ChatGPT — just don't share 'sensitive data' with it.

Microsoft's investment into ChatGPT's creator may be the smartest $1 billion ever spent

ChatGPT and generative AI look like tech's next boom. They could be the next bubble.

The ChatGPT and generative-AI 'gold rush' has founders flocking to San Francisco's 'Cerebral Valley'

Insider's experiments: 

I asked ChatGPT to do my work and write an Insider article for me. It quickly generated an alarmingly convincing article filled with misinformation.

I asked ChatGPT and a human matchmaker to redo my Hinge and Bumble profiles. They helped show me what works.

I asked ChatGPT to reply to my Hinge matches. No one responded.

I used ChatGPT to write a resignation letter. A lawyer said it made one crucial error that could have invalidated the whole thing .

Read ChatGPT's 'insulting' and 'garbage' 'Succession' finale script

An Iowa school district asked ChatGPT if a list of books contains sex scenes, and banned them if it said yes. We put the system to the test and found a bunch of problems.

Developments in detecting ChatGPT: 

Teachers rejoice! ChatGPT creators have released a tool to help detect AI-generated writing

A Princeton student built an app which can detect if ChatGPT wrote an essay to combat AI-based plagiarism

Professors want to 'ChatGPT-proof' assignments, and are returning to paper exams and requesting editing history to curb AI cheating

ChatGPT in society: 

BuzzFeed writers react with a mix of disappointment and excitement at news that AI-generated content is coming to the website

ChatGPT is testing a paid version — here's what that means for free users

A top UK private school is changing its approach to homework amid the rise of ChatGPT, as educators around the world adapt to AI

Princeton computer science professor says don't panic over 'bullshit generator' ChatGPT

DoNotPay's CEO says threat of 'jail for 6 months' means plan to debut AI 'robot lawyer' in courtroom is on ice

It might be possible to fight a traffic ticket with an AI 'robot lawyer' secretly feeding you lines to your AirPods, but it could go off the rails

Online mental health company uses ChatGPT to help respond to users in experiment — raising ethical concerns around healthcare and AI technology

What public figures think about ChatGPT and other AI tools:

What Elon Musk, Bill Gates, and 12 other business leaders think about AI tools like ChatGPT

Elon Musk was reportedly 'furious' at ChatGPT's popularity after he left the company behind it, OpenAI, years ago

CEO of ChatGPT maker responds to schools' plagiarism concerns: 'We adapted to calculators and changed what we tested in math class'

A theoretical physicist says AI is just a 'glorified tape recorder' and people's fears about it are overblown

'The most stunning demo I've ever seen in my life': ChatGPT impressed Bill Gates

Ashton Kutcher says your company will probably be 'out of business' if you're 'sleeping' on AI

ChatGPT's impact on jobs: 

AI systems like ChatGPT could impact 300 million full-time jobs worldwide, with administrative and legal roles some of the most at risk, Goldman Sachs report says

Jobs are now requiring experience with ChatGPT — and they'll pay as much as $800,000 a year for the skill

Related stories

ChatGPT may be coming for our jobs. Here are the 10 roles that AI is most likely to replace.

AI is going to eliminate way more jobs than anyone realizes

It's not AI that is going to take your job, but someone who knows how to use AI might, economist says

4 careers where workers will have to change jobs by 2030 due to AI and shifts in how we shop, a McKinsey study says

Companies like Amazon, Netflix, and Meta are paying salaries as high as $900,000 to attract generative AI talent

How AI tools like ChatGPT are changing the workforce:

10 ways artificial intelligence is changing the workplace, from writing performance reviews to making the 4-day workweek possible

Managers who use AI will replace managers who don't, says an IBM exec

How ChatGPT is shaping industries: 

ChatGPT is coming for classrooms, hospitals, marketing departments, and everything else as the next great startup boom emerges

Marketing teams are using AI to generate content, boost SEO, and develop branding to help save time and money, study finds

AI is coming for Hollywood. 'It's amazing to see the sophistication of the images,' one of Christopher Nolan's VFX guy says.

AI is going to offer every student a personalized tutor, founder of Khan Academy says

A law firm was fined $5,000 after one of its lawyers used ChatGPT to write a court brief riddled with fake case references

How workers are using ChatGPT to boost productivity:  

CheatGPT: The hidden wave of employees using AI on the sly

I used ChatGPT to talk to my boss for a week and she didn't notice. Here are the other ways I use it daily to get work done.

I'm a high school math and science teacher who uses ChatGPT, and it's made my job much easier

Amazon employees are already using ChatGPT for software coding. They also found the AI chatbot can answer tricky AWS customer questions and write cloud training materials.

How 6 workers are using ChatGPT to make their jobs easier

I'm a freelance editor who's embraced working with AI content. Here's how I do it and what I charge.

How people are using ChatGPT to make money:

How ChatGPT and other AI tools are helping workers make more money

Here are 5 ways ChatGPT helps me make money and complete time-consuming tasks for my business

ChatGPT course instruction is the newest side hustle on the market. Meet the teachers making thousands from the lucrative gig.

People are using ChatGPT and other AI bots to work side hustles and earn thousands of dollars — check out these 8 freelancing gigs

A guy tried using ChatGPT to turn $100 into a business making 'as much money as possible.' Here are the first 4 steps the AI chatbot gave him

We used ChatGPT to build a 7-figure newsletter. Here's how it makes our jobs easier.

I use ChatGPT and it's like having a 24/7 personal assistant for $20 a month. Here are 5 ways it's helping me make more money.

A worker who uses AI for a $670 monthly side hustle says ChatGPT has 'cut her research time in half'

How companies are navigating ChatGPT: 

From Salesforce to Air India, here are the companies that are using ChatGPT

Amazon, Apple, and 12 other major companies that have restricted employees from using ChatGPT

A consultant used ChatGPT to free up time so she could focus on pitching clients. She landed $128,000 worth of new contracts in just 3 months.

Luminary, an AI-generated pop-up restaurant, just opened in Australia. Here's what's on the menu, from bioluminescent calamari to chocolate mousse.

A CEO is spending more than $2,000 a month on ChatGPT Plus accounts for all of his employees, and he says it's saving 'hours' of time

How people are using ChatGPT in their personal lives:

ChatGPT planned a family vacation to Costa Rica. A travel adviser found 3 glaring reasons why AI won't replace experts anytime soon.

A man who hated cardio asked ChatGPT to get him into running. Now, he's hooked — and he's lost 26 pounds.

A computer engineering student is using ChatGPT to overcome learning challenges linked to her dyslexia

How a coder used ChatGPT to find an apartment in Berlin in 2 weeks after struggling for months

Food blogger Nisha Vora tried ChatGPT to create a curry recipe. She says it's clear the instructions lacked a human touch — here's how.

Men are using AI to land more dates with better profiles and personalized messages, study finds

Lawsuits against OpenAI:

OpenAI could face a plagiarism lawsuit from The New York Times as tense negotiations threaten to boil over, report says

This is why comedian Sarah Silverman is suing OpenAI, the company behind ChatGPT

2 authors say OpenAI 'ingested' their books to train ChatGPT. Now they're suing, and a 'wave' of similar court cases may follow.

A lawsuit claims OpenAI stole 'massive amounts of personal data,' including medical records and information about children, to train ChatGPT

A radio host is suing OpenAI for defamation, alleging that ChatGPT created a false legal document that accused him of 'defrauding and embezzling funds'

Tips on how to write better ChatGPT prompts:

7 ways to use ChatGPT at work to boost your productivity, make your job easier, and save a ton of time

I'm an AI prompt engineer. Here are 3 ways I use ChatGPT to get the best results.

12 ways to get better at using ChatGPT: Comprehensive prompt guide

Here's 9 ways to turn ChatGPT Plus into your personal data analyst with the new Code Interpreter plug-in

OpenAI's ChatGPT can write impressive code. Here are the prompts you should use for the best results, experts say.

Axel Springer, Business Insider's parent company, has a global deal to allow OpenAI to train its models on its media brands' reporting.

Watch: What is ChatGPT, and should we be afraid of AI chatbots?

what is the style of an expository essay

  • Main content

IMAGES

  1. How To Write An Expository Essay (7 Best Tips)

    what is the style of an expository essay

  2. What Is an Expository Essay? Examples and Guide

    what is the style of an expository essay

  3. How To Write An Expository Essay in 6 Steps

    what is the style of an expository essay

  4. Expository Essay: Examples and Tips of a Proper Writing That Will Be

    what is the style of an expository essay

  5. Expository Essay Masterclass: The Art of Perfect Writing

    what is the style of an expository essay

  6. 🌷 Types of expository writing. 6 Types Of Expository Writing With

    what is the style of an expository essay

VIDEO

  1. Expository Essay Conventions

  2. expository essay| Nzee Academy #shorts #youtube

  3. Expository Preaching & Reformation Began Here

  4. Expository Essay Brainstorming Video

  5. Expository-"The Lottery"

  6. Essay 18: THE EXPOSITORY ESSAY

COMMENTS

  1. How to Write an Expository Essay

    The structure of your expository essay will vary according to the scope of your assignment and the demands of your topic. It's worthwhile to plan out your structure before you start, using an essay outline. A common structure for a short expository essay consists of five paragraphs: An introduction, three body paragraphs, and a conclusion.

  2. Expository Writing: Definition and Examples

    The term expository writing refers to any writing that's designed to explain something. We use the word expository to describe any passage of writing that's supposed to present information and help you understand it in an objective way. Some common examples of expository writing include academic essays, textbooks, instructional guides, and ...

  3. Expository Essays

    The expository essay is a genre of essay that requires the student to investigate an idea, evaluate evidence, expound on the idea, and set forth an argument concerning that idea in a clear and concise manner. This can be accomplished through comparison and contrast, definition, example, the analysis of cause and effect, etc.

  4. How to Write an Expository Essay: Writing Tips & Structure

    Writing an expository essay can be done step-by-step by organizing your thoughts, researching the topic, formulating a thesis statement, writing an introduction, composing the body paragraphs, and summarizing the essay in the conclusion. Finally, revise and proofread the essay to ensure its quality.

  5. How to Write an Expository Essay: Types, Tips, and Topics

    An expository essay is a type of essay wherein the writer investigates and expounds on an idea, evaluates evidence, and presents an argument about that idea in a clear and concise manner. The word expository comes from exposition , the noun form of "expose," which means to uncover something to let others know what it is.

  6. Expository Essay: 3 Building Blocks to Propose an Idea and Defend It

    The expository essay is a genre of essay that requires the student to investigate an idea, evaluate evidence, expound on the idea, and set forth an argument concerning that idea in a clear and concise manner. Keep in mind that your expository writing centers on giving your reader information about a given topic or process. Your goal is to ...

  7. How to Write an Expository Essay

    Formatting an expository essay. The typical format for an expository essay in school is the traditional five-paragraph essay. This includes an introduction and a conclusion, with three paragraphs for the body of the paper. Most often, these three paragraphs are limited to one subtopic each. This is the basic essay format, but expository writing ...

  8. How to Write an Expository Essay

    These are actually fairly simple essays to write, but they do require some serious research skills. Like most academic essays, the expository essay requires formal writing with an introduction, body, and conclusion. Guide Overview. Tips for writing a kick-butt essay. Focus on the thesis; Listen to the assignment; Pre-write; Explain, don't argue

  9. How to Write an Expository Essay in 5 Steps

    Level Up Your Team. See why leading organizations rely on MasterClass for learning & development. Learning how to write a good expository essay is an academic writing skill that lays the foundation for the type of expository writing that's necessary for numerous professions.

  10. What Is an Expository Essay? Examples and Guide

    An expository essay is a type of essay that involves explaining an idea or theme within a given subject or topic. We guide you through writing one with examples.

  11. How to Write an Expository Essay

    An expository essay will require you to take the five-paragraph essay approach: an introductory paragraph, a main body paragraph, and a concluding paragraph. This is often referred to as the hamburger style of the essay because, like a hamburger, it contains five main parts: the introduction and conclusion being the bun that encapsulates ...

  12. How to Write an Expository Essay (Professor Approved Guide)

    Step One: Research Your Topic. An expository essay starts with research. You need to understand the topic before you write about it. You also need to understand what points the reader needs to know to comprehend the subject. The internet has been outstanding in terms of helping people get access to information.

  13. What Is Expository Writing?

    Key Takeaways: Expository Writing. Just the facts, M'am: Expository writing is informational, not creative writing. Anytime you write to describe or explain, you use expository writing. Use a logical flow when planning an expository essay, report, or article: introduction, body text, and conclusion. It's often easier to write the body of your ...

  14. Expository Writing

    Expository writing is a type of writing that is used to explain, describe, and give information and uses evidence, details, and facts to support the topic. An example of expository writing is ...

  15. PDF Expository Essay Handout SP2020

    In short, the main difference between the expository and argumentative essays is that one is objective (expository) while the other is subjective. (argumentative). Argumentative. Expository. Chooses a position either for or against something. Explores multiple viewpoints of a topic in a neutral way. May be written in the first person (as ...

  16. Expository Essays

    An expository essay is an unbiased, factual piece of writing that provides an in-depth explanation of a topic or set of ideas. It aims to explain a topic from all angles and takes no decisive stance on it. Expository essays make no new arguments on a topic but rather explain preexisting information in a structured format.

  17. Types of Expository Writing

    Expository Writing Definition. Expository writing is a genre of writing that is used to explain, describe, inform, or clarify a particular expository essay topic to the reader.. Unlike other forms of writing that may involve personal opinions or persuasion, the characteristics of expository writing include a focus on providing factual information in a clear and organized manner.

  18. 5 Expository Essay Examples (Full Text with Citations)

    Expository Essay: The reader is expected to gain knowledge, understand a process, or become informed about a topic. There's no expectation for the reader to agree or disagree. ... Cite this Article in your Essay (APA Style) Drew, C. (January 16, 2024). 5 Expository Essay Examples (Full Text with Citations). Helpful Professor.

  19. Expository Essay ~ Definition, Types & Structure

    Definition: Expository essay. A style of academic writing known as an expository essay tries to clarify, observe, and describe a thought, problem, or notion. It entails looking into a theory, assessing the supporting data, outlining the theory, and then developing an argument based on the research. Expository essays follow a format similar to ...

  20. 4 Different Types of Writing Styles: Expository, Descriptive

    1. Expository. Expository writing's main purpose is to explain. It is a subject-oriented writing style, in which authors focus on telling you about a given topic or subject without voicing their personal opinions. These types of essays or articles furnish you with relevant facts and figures but do not include their opinions.

  21. Opinion

    Dr. Hahn is a Pulitzer Prize-winning historian at New York University and the author, most recently, of "Illiberal America: a History." In a recent interview with Time, Donald Trump promised a ...

  22. Tips on Comparison Essay Writing

    Additionally, the structure of a comparison essay is distinct. It can follow a point-by-point or block method, each requiring a systematic approach to ensure clarity and coherence. This differs from the flexible structures of other essay types, like expository or persuasive essays, which often allow for more varied organizational patterns.

  23. E. B. White is one of the most famous children's book authors. But he

    That's right, the White of the revered style manual that everyone knew as "Strunk and White" also wrote children's books…as well as some of the best essays in the English language.

  24. What Is ChatGPT? Everything You Need to Know About the AI Tool

    OpenAI's AI-powered chatbot took the world by storm when it first launched. Now, it's getting a new futuristic update.