How to write an expository essay - writing guide

Many students more often than not find themselves tasked to write an expository essay. This style of writing is considered to be the most basic form of writing for academic purposes. The difficulty in writing an expository essay does not lie so much on the writer's ability to influence, but rather has more to do with what he or she can say about a certain topic. Generally, expository essays are written on topics that are factual, informative and non-controversial based questions that can be answered through research based documents found online or books in the library.

In this guide, you will learn how to write a good expository essay from start to end with examples. Let us review the expository essay definition before we can go into expository essay topics, expository essay examples, and how to start an expository essay professionally.

What is an expository essay?

An expository essay is a type of academic essay writing that aims to explain, inform, or teach its reader something. In an expository essay, the writer presents information in a clear and concise way, without using unnecessary jargon or flowery language.

One of the best ways to learn how to write an expository essay is to study some good examples. In this article, we will explore three different types of expository essays: descriptive, explanatory, and argumentative.

Descriptive-expository essay

First, let's take a look at a descriptive expository essay. This type of essay is used to describe a person, place, thing, or event. The goal of a descriptive expository essay is to paint a vivid picture for the reader using concise and specific language.

Here is an example of a descriptive expository essay about a beach:

The sun was setting in the sky, and the cool breeze was blowing in my hair. The waves were crashing against the shore, and the smell of saltwater was in the air. I could feel the sand between my toes, and the sound of the waves was soothing.

This is a great example of how to describe a scene using specific and vivid language. Notice how the author includes sensory details, such as the sound of the waves and the smell of saltwater. These details help to create a clear picture for the reader.

Explanatory - expository essay

Now let's take a look at an explanatory expository essay. This type of essay is used to explain a process, idea, or concept. The goal of an explanatory expository essay is to teach the reader something new.

Here is an example of an explanatory expository essay about how to make a paper airplane:

To make a paper airplane, fold a piece of paper in half lengthwise. Then, fold the top corner down to the crease, so it's a triangle. Next, fold the right and left corners into the center line. After that, you can either follow step three or four. To make a paper airplane that flies farther, simply fold the wings down along with attached flap (step three). For a simpler design, skip this step (step four). Then, grab your airplane and throw it like a dart!

This is an excellent example of how to teach something new using clear and concise language. The author makes sure to explain each step in detail before progressing onto another step. This helps to make sure that even beginning makers will be able to make an accurate paper airplane every time they try!

Argumentative expository essay:

Let's take a look at an argumentative expository essay. This type of essay is used to argue a point. The goal of an argumentative expository essay is to persuade the reader to agree with the author's point of view.

Here is an example of an argumentative expository essay about gun control:

Gun control is a controversial topic, and there are many different viewpoints on the issue. Some people believe that guns should be banned entirely, while others believe that gun ownership is a constitutional right. I believe that the best solution is to find a middle ground, where guns are regulated but not banned.

This is a good example of how to argue a point using clear and concise language. The author makes sure to state their position clearly at the beginning of the essay, and then he supports his argument throughout with facts and details.

Now that you have a better idea of how to write an expository essay, why not try writing one yourself? Read a book or watch a movie, and take notes on what you would like to explain. Then, get started writing your own descriptive essay, explanatory essay, or argumentative essay - expository essay writings!

Below are core steps in on how to write an expository essay that wins top grades.

Steps to write a perfect expository essay for students

The key thing to remember when tasked with this type of assignment is how you approach it. Most students find themselves having a hard time determining the direction they need to take their argumentation towards. It may seem difficult at first, but all it really takes is some practice. The following are some tips to help you write an expository essay:

  1. Start by finding a topic that you are interested in. This will make the writing process a lot easier for you. You will also be able to produce a better quality paper if you are interested in the topic.
  2. Once you have chosen a topic, do some research on it. This will help you get a better understanding of what you are writing about and it will also give you ideas on how to develop your argumentation.
  3. Begin drafting your essay by introducing your topic and providing background information on it. Make sure that your introduction is clear and concise.
  4. Next, state your thesis statement. This is the main point of your essay and you will need to support it with evidence from your research.
  5. Develop your argumentation by providing concrete examples to back up your points.
  6. Finally, conclude your essay by restating your thesis statement and summarizing your main points.

It is important to remember that expository essays are not meant to be persuasive, but rather informative. So make sure that you stay objective throughout the writing process and do not try to force your opinion on the reader. If you can follow these tips, you will be able to write a high quality expository essay.

Expository essay: What is it? purpose and essential elements

As pointed in our definition, an expository essay is a type of writing that aims to explain and inform. The purpose of an expository essay is to present ideas, facts, or arguments in a clear and concise way. Unlike other types of essays, expository essays are typically not personal in nature. Instead, they focus on presenting information objectively. In order to write an effective expository essay, it is important to understand the four essential elements:

  1. Thesis statement: The thesis statement is the main point of the essay. It should be clear and concise, and it should state your position on the topic.
  2. Supportive evidence: In order to back up your thesis statement, you will need to provide supporting evidence. This evidence can come in the form of facts, statistics, expert opinions, or personal experiences.
  3. Well-organized paragraphs: When writing an expository essay, it is important to organize your thoughts into well-written paragraphs. Each paragraph should have a clear topic sentence, and each point should be supported by evidence.
  4. Clear and concise language: In order to ensure clarity and understanding, it is important to use clear and concise language when writing an expository essay. This means avoiding longwinded sentences and using simple words and phrases.

By understanding these four essential elements, you can create a well-crafted expository essay that will effectively communicate your ideas to the reader.

How to define exposition writing?

A basic way to define exposition writing, it can be simply described as providing information to the reader. Exposition in writing can be used for various reasons, such as introducing a character, setting, or event; explaining the background of a story or situation; or revealing key plot points.

When it comes to fiction writing, exposition is often used to orient readers to the story world and establish the setting and characters. In nonfiction writing, exposition can be used to provide factual information about a topic or subject. In both cases, exposition should be clear and concise so that readers can easily understand the information being presented.

There are several techniques that writers can use to effectively deliver exposition in their writing. One common approach is to include expository passages between dialogue scenes. This allows readers to get the information they need while also continuing to follow the story. Exposition can also be delivered through narration, which allows writers to provide more detailed information than what is possible in dialogue.

In order to make exposition more interesting for readers, writers can use a variety of techniques, such as including action, using descriptive language, and employing suspenseful devices. By making exposition an integral part of their writing, writers can help ensure that their stories are well-rounded and engaging.

When used effectively, exposition can provide readers with the information they need to understand a story or situation. By following the tips outlined above, writers can create passages of exposition that are clear and concise, while being interesting and engaging.

What is an exposition in an essay?

An exposition in an essay is a detailed description of the subject, as it is related to your topic. Think of an expository essay as a piece wherein you explore one idea or aspect of something through descriptions and examples. This type of writing also includes research-based analysis on a particular subject, which explains its significance and provides proof that helps support the writer's assertions.

Who may need to write an exposition?

Writers who want to identify with this kind of work include university students who have been assigned essays that focus on skilled argumentation and reasoning skills. In this case, most professors look for insightful explanations from their students so they use this form of writing to help guide them along with proper guidance all throughout the process.

What are the usual steps of creating an exposition?

Below are the usual steps of creating an exposition for school or business writing exercise.

Step 1: Thesis Statement:

The first step is to come up with a thesis statement, which will be your main point. This should be something that can be persuasively argued and supported by evidence throughout the essay.

Step 2: Topic research:

After that, you will then need to do some research on the topic so that you can familiarize yourself with all available information.

Step 3: Create an outline:

Next, develop an outline so that you can organize your thoughts in a coherent manner. Write the body of the essay using clear and concise language, making sure to support your arguments with evidence.

Step 4: Create a perfect conclusion:

Finally, conclude with a strong statement that reaffirms your position and leaves the reader with something to think about.

How to write a thesis statement for expository essay

Writing an expository essay means that you want to convey information or describe your experience of something. You will need to provide some background information on the topic first, then present your findings and conclusions. The task is not as simple as it might seem since not all topics are equally suitable for writing about.

Before writing an essay, it would be a good idea to have a strong thesis statement ready so that you know what exactly you are going to say in the rest of your paper. If you don't have one yet, here are some tips that will help you create a powerful thesis statement with ease.

The purpose of writing an essay is always connected with specific goals. There are various types of essays with different purposes but there are common steps that you can follow every time:

  1. Think about the topic and try to determine if it is suitable for writing about. It should also be interesting enough so that you will want to spend a lot of time on researching and organizing information. Make sure that your thesis statement answers basic questions such as "Why am I going to write this paper?" or "What will my audience gain from reading it?". If you do not feel like there is any reason why anyone should listen to what you have to say, then it might be better if you choose another topic. For example: You want to compare two books that deal with the same theme but in different ways. Your thesis could look like this: "The works of X and Y offer two different perspectives on the same topic that are both worth exploring."
  2. Gather as much information about the topic as possible. This will help you come up with a strong argument and support your thesis statement. Make sure to use reliable sources and avoid relying too much on your own personal opinion.
  3. Organize information in a logical way. This step is especially important if you are writing a longer paper since it will help readers follow your arguments more easily. It might be helpful to create an outline before you start writing so that you have a general idea of what you want to say.
  4. Write your thesis statement last. After you have gathered all of the information, it's time to put everything together and form a strong argument. This is your thesis statement and it should be clear, concise, and easy to understand.

Thesis statements can be tricky but with a little practice, you will be able to write them like a pro. Just make sure that you take the time to research your topic thoroughly and organize information in a logical way. Your thesis statement should reflect all of that work so that readers know what to expect from your essay. Good luck!

Thesis Statements for expository Essays

Let's start with the basic thesis statement types:

  1. Gives an example or generalization - The United States is a free country, as long as you aren't poor, aren't black and don't live in Ferguson.
  2. Compares two things - Yoonhwan and Chulsoo are polar opposites and embody everything that I love about Korean culture.
  3. Presents a cause/effect relationship – Without any proper education on how to wear condoms, young people will continue to contract STDs at alarmingly high rates.
  4. Explains something – Irony describes an event where there is a great difference between what is expected and what actually happens; it often leads to humor or tragedy depending on the situation.
  5. Proposes a solution to a problem – If we want to save the environment, everybody needs to use fewer plastic bags and recycle more.

Now that you know all of the thesis statement types, it's time to plan your essay! You can take an existing topic or make up your own; either way, remember that the goal is always to come up with something interesting enough to be written about in an extended format. The following steps will help you brainstorm ideas and create a good outline before you start writing out your thesis statements:

  1. Brainstorm topics
  2. Decide on one idea (or narrow it down to 2-3 for comparison purposes)
  3. Make an outline so that you have an idea of what you want to say
  4. Come up with a thesis statement that reflects what you have written in your outline, using one of the 5 types above.
  5. Write! Remember to stay organized and get your thoughts down on paper. Now, take out a pen or pencil, choose an idea to work with and follow the steps listed above. Once you are done writing your essay, go back and revise so that everything is clear and well-written. The more time you spend brainstorming ideas beforehand, the easier it will be for you to write an amazing paper in the end!

Famous Essays & Expository Thesis Statements

  • To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee : There are two examples in this novel that are worth exploring: how Boo Radley is a victim of society's perception, and how racism is still a problem in the United States.
  • The Catcher In The Rye by J.D. Salinger: Holden Caulfield is an example of somebody who is unable to conform to society's expectations and ends up paying the price.
  • An Essay on Man by Alexander Pope: This poem reflects on how man can never fully understand his role in the universe or the world around him.
  • The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald: Jay Gatsby represents the American dream and its inherent flaws, while also exploring the theme of love vs. obsession.
  • "The Yellow Wallpaper" by Charlotte Perkins Gilman: This short story explores the impact of patriarchy and male dominance on women's mental health.
  • The Color Purple by Alice Walker: This novel tells the story of black women in the American south during the early 20th century and their struggle for equality.

Pro tips will help you write a strong thesis statement for an expository essay

Choosing a good topic is only half the battle; you also need to come up with a thesis statement that will help you stay focused throughout the writing process. The following tips will help you write a strong thesis statement that sets the tone for your essay:

  1. Make sure your thesis statement is clear and easy to understand
  2. Make sure your thesis statement reflects all of the ideas that you have written about in your essay
  3. Make sure your thesis statement is interesting enough to be written about in an extended format
  4. Pick one of the 5 types of thesis statements listed above
  5. Make sure your thesis statement does not include any words that aren't necessary for its meaning (such as "very" or "all"). This will make you a more concise and effective writer.
  6. Remember to only use the first person point of view when writing an essay – no "we" or "they".
  7. Don't forget to write a conclusion! Your conclusion should summarize all of the main points from your essay, reiterate your thesis statement, and leave readers with something interesting to think about. It's also good practice to end on a positive note! And now that you know how to plan, write, and revise an essay the right way, it's time to put your skills to the test! Choose a topic, come up with a thesis statement, and get started!

Now that you know how to write a strong thesis statement, it's time to put your skills to the test! Choose a topic, come up with a thesis statement, and starting writing your expository paper!

Can expository writing be used for other purposes?

Yes, expository writing can also be used for other purposes outside of the academic community. It is often used in reports because it presents information in a direct manner to help readers understand important points.

It can also be used for business proposals to lay out an argument about why investing in something would be beneficial for both sides.

Expository writing can even be applied in literary works when authors want to convey certain ideologies or themes that are explored within their novels or poetry collections.

How can I improve my exposition skills?

One way you could improve your exposition writing skills is by reading more articles online and accessing academic material written by professionals in this field so you get acquainted with its style. You should also read literature on related topics so you can develop a better understanding of the subject at hand and learn how to argue convincingly in favor of your point of view. Additionally, it is helpful to practice writing regularly so you can improve your ability to organize your thoughts and express yourself clearly. Finally, be sure to have someone else read your work so they can provide feedback on areas that could be improved.

Structure of expository essay writing

The structure of an expository essay is very simple. It has five paragraphs though your instructor can provide different instructions. Check out 5 parts of an essay.

A basic 5 paragraph essay will have: the introduction, three body paragraphs, and the conclusion.

Each paragraph should have a topic sentence that states the main point of the paragraph, and supporting sentences that provide evidence or examples to back up the main point.

The writer must present information in a logical order, and use accurate and specific information to support their points.

Follow the 5 body paragraphs outlined below:

  • Introduction paragraph: In the introduction, the writer should introduce the topic and state their thesis statement. The thesis statement is a clear and concise statement of what will be discussed in the essay.
  • First body paragraph: In the first body paragraph, the writer should discuss one aspect of their thesis statement. They should provide evidence or examples to support their point.
  • Second body paragraph: In the second body paragraph, the writer should discuss another aspect of their thesis statement. They should again provide evidence or examples to support their point.
  • Third body paragraph: In the third body paragraph, the writer should discuss the final aspect of their thesis statement. They should again provide evidence or examples to support their point.
  • Conclusion: Finally, in the conclusion, the writer should restate their thesis statement and summarize the main points of the essay.

How to conclude an expository essay

Once you have finished writing your essay, it's important to conclusion effectively. Here are a few tips:

  1. Mention some practical applications of the information you have presented in your essay. This will make it easier for readers to understand what they can do with this new knowledge.
  2. Conclude by restating your thesis statement briefly before moving on. This lets the reader know that you are finished and encourages them to read on if they haven't already done so.
  3. End with a strong closing sentence, such as "In conclusion..." or "To conclude..." You might also want to ask a question or pose an observation related to your expository essay topic for readers to consider, especially if the next step is studying further about your topic by reading another article or doing more research themselves.

Now that you know what an exposition is and some ways to improve your skills, you're ready to start writing essays with a clear and convincing argument. Remember to stay focused on the topic at hand and use evidence to support your points. Good luck writing your expository paper!


  1. Structure of a General Expository Essay - Mt. SAC
  2. 4.1: Expository Essays - Humanities LibreTexts
  3. planning-an-expository-essay.pdf
  4. Expository Essay Handout_SP2020 - Cal State East Bay
  5. Writing an Expository Essay
  6. Structure of a general expository essay
  7. 3.1 Expository Essay - CK-12
  8. The expository essay - LibGuides at Melbourne High School
Which statement best describes an expository text? a.It provides a first-person account of a personal experience.

Which statement best describes an expository text?

a.It provides a first-person account of a personal experience.

b.It presents information using a common structure.

c.The primary purpose is to construct a logical argument.

d.The author's feelings are more prominent than are facts.

Expository writing is designed to A. Argue B. Entertain C. Explain D. Persuade

Expository writing is designed to

A. Argue

B. Entertain

C. Explain

D. Persuade

Concise expository writing is best described as writing that is
Concise expository writing is best described as writing that is...