Ability to analyze, build evidence and express one’s thoughts lies on the basis of writing any academic texts – from abstracts and articles to exam papers and dissertations. Writing expository essay is a good practice to learn how to do it.
What is an Expository Essay?
An expository essay is a written work, presupposing a methodical analysis and evaluation of some topic or problem. When doing this task, it is easy to fall into one of two extremes. Sometimes students describe the facts, bypassing the interpretation (fearing its subjectivity), or vice versa, describe their personal opinion without backing it with facts. The art of writing essays is precisely in finding this balance, in the ability to express one’s position, logically leading to it and backed up by rational, objective arguments.
Expository writing implies the description and discussion of several positions, and then on their basis, a conclusion is drawn reflecting the author’s opinion. Therefore, before writing an essay, a student always needs to formulate what his position is, what idea he will be defending. Before start writing, you should comprehend what are you invited to do. An expository essay is rather a specific task. It requires the researching of some idea or concept, and then you need to formulate your own opinion on this matter and provide strong arguments why you are thinking in this way but not in the opposite. You can use several methods doing this type of work. The primary method is a research; then it can be combined with comparing and contrasting, analyzing and synthesizing the data collected.
And the last step is to express your own perspective based on the arguments provided and add some creativity. You can make an attempt to transfer the matter you are writing about to other spheres and form your conclusion.
Standard Plan to Write an Expository Essay
This type of work is a kind of universal task, so the topics can be different and broad. You may be asked to analyze some economic matter or political issue or to analyze a historical event or somebody’s personality. The structure of this paper is rather standard. It is a five paragraph essay that starts from introduction where you explain the essence of the analyzed issue, the next three paragraphs should include your arguments and their evidence, and the last part is a conclusion where you can give your personal perspective about the topic you have told about.
From What to Start
The first step is searching for reliable materials for your paper. Refer to the literature, try to make an approximate picture of what you will write about; at this stage, you need to make a plan containing the main topics that you want to raise. In the introduction, you describe the question and its context and briefly talk about the direction of your reasoning. For example, you can briefly represent the selected study and state why you have chosen it. The second part is the discussion. Here the arguments and evidence of your perspective should be presented. The discussion should be clear and concise.
After the essay plan is drawn up in conformity with this “skeleton” of five paragraphs, you can start writing. You can write from any part. Some students prefer to initially have a written discussion, and then frame it with an introduction and conclusion; some make all the parts consistently. The main thing is to try to express your affirmations clearly, briefly, and devote one single thought to each paragraph.
Already written text should be checked and edited. Have you answered the question posed? Is it worth changing some fragments in places, in order for the proof to be more consistent? Do not you need to shorten the text to keep within the established limit? Is the text literate and free of misprints? After own verification, the text with the same questions can be shown to friends – at this stage a fresh look is always useful.