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The Essentials of an Excellent Expository Essay

In essay writing, you don't always have to give your opinion or try to win someone over to your
way of thinking. Sometimes you can just go ahead and expound in an objective and unbiased
manner simply to convey useful information to your audience. You do this through writing an
xpository ssay.
!he purpose of an xpository ssay is to describe or explain a topic to readers, and having facts,
lots of facts, is the solid foundation of your essay. "ith this type of essay, you convey #uality
information or explain something in detail. You do so without using a persuasive argument
approach. In addition, you don't pour forth your deeply held personal opinions. You simply state
the facts to inform and educate your readers.
$ere are the three steps to take before you begin the actual writing of your xpository ssay%
Choose Your Topic
&irst off, you may have no choice in a topic as you may have one assigned to you. 'un with it
and strive to tackle the subject as best you can. $owever, if you are free to choose your own
topic, choose one that you have a real interest in.
!his ensures you do the necessary research and devote the time and effort to create an interesting
essay. "hen you enjoy what you're writing about, the writing process, from idea creation to
revision, is much easier. !herefore, spend some time choosing a topic you're passionate about
and can't wait to investigate further.
Know Your Audience
(efore you engage in pre)writing and writing efforts, know who will be reading your xpository
ssay. Is this essay for classmates, an audience of co)workers, or for a trade maga*ine or
journal+ Is your essay for children or teenagers+ Is your essay for a predominantly male or
female audience+ You have to know these things so you can focus your writing appropriately.
Research and Outline Your Expository Essay
,nce you've chosen your topic and you know who the audience will be, do the research
necessary to speak intelligently on your topic. Strive to present in)depth information on your
topic, not trite old news that is common knowledge to your readers. -ig deep and come up with
rich nuggets of information that shed new light on a topic.
If you can, talk to experts concerning your topic. Seek anecdotes and stories from people well
versed and experienced on the topic you're writing about. -o the necessary book and online
research to give a well)rounded view on the subject at hand. .resent, vividly, your own
experiences. -o all of this in an objective way, stating only the facts you and others have
accumulated.
/ow, organi*e all of this information by coming up with an outline. Your outline lays out your
title, introduction, body copy, and conclusion.
0t last, you can get down to the writing. &irst, you begin with your title. Your title tells
succinctly what your xpository ssay is about. $aving a title to work off usually helps you
keep your writing focused as you go along. You must always ensure your paragraphs deal with
what your title says the essay concerns, avoid going off on a tangent.
/ext, you write your introduction. Your introduction states your thesis. Your xpository ssay
thesis statement is not an expression of your opinion or your position on the topic. It states a fact,
or facts, and is the core that the rest of your essay emanates from.
0n example of a thesis statement is 1!he $2/2 virus is a significant concern for the "orld
$ealth ,rgani*ation because of the unpredictable nature of this virus strain.1 You are not saying
whether you agree or disagree with this statement. /or are you going to try to persuade people to
your way of thinking concerning this topic in your essay. You are merely stating a fact.
!he next step is to write the body paragraphs that make up the bulk of your xpository ssay.
ach paragraph develops a separate point to support your thesis. !hese body paragraphs provide
#uality information from reputable sources, factual examples, data, statistics, charts, and #uotes
from experts if available.
3onse#uently, your body paragraphs concerning the above)stated thesis would present
information, stats, and such showing why the $2/2 virus is a concern to the "orld $ealth
,rgani*ation. 'emember4 don't make statements or claims that you cannot support with trusted
facts. -on't let emotion or your personal views colour your xpository ssay. 5ive great
information on the topic and let people come to their own conclusions.
!hey key to an elegant presentation of your xpository ssay is the smooth flow of thought from
paragraph to paragraph. $ave your sentences within these paragraphs move logically from one to
the next. $ave each point you want to convey succinctly explained in their specific paragraph.
6se your outline to keep you focused and moving in a systematic fashion from beginning to end.
In this way, you won't stray off topic. "hen you meander into side topics not closely related to
your thesis, you dilute the power of your xpository ssay.
!he side trips into uncharted territory that are not part of your outline may find you injecting
your personal opinion into your essay. !hat is not the purpose of an xpository ssay. You tread
on dangerous ground if you change the tone and purpose of your essay part way through it. You
confuse your reader and may encourage them to stop reading. !hey came to your xpository
ssay for facts, not arguments, so stay the course and give them what they're looking for.
0fter you finish writing your body paragraphs, ties everything up with a concise conclusion.
'estate your thesis to bring your xpository ssay full circle. 5ive a brief summation of the
information you presented. !his reinforces the heart of your essay in your readers' minds.
,f course, upon completion of your xpository ssay, rewrite and revise as necessary. 7ook for
spelling and grammar errors. -ouble)check all your facts. 3heck that your essay tone is
informational not confrontational or argumentative. 3heck again that the thoughts flow logically
and that your writing is clear, making for an easy read.
0n xpository ssay is your vehicle for presenting useful information to your audience. 6se this
type of essay to enlighten your audience with fresh, relevant, and timely information. You want
them walking away from your xpository ssay more knowledgeable about a topic than they
were when they started reading about it.