How to Write an Expository Essay

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How to Write an Expository Essay

When writing an essay, follow these eight basic steps:

Select a topic:
Be sure the topic is narrow enough to make it manageable within the space of an essay

Write a thesis sentence:
Be sure the thesis statement(or sentence) expresses a controlling idea that is neither too
broad nor too specific to be developed effectively

Select a method of development:
Check through all the methods before you finally settle on the one which will best serve your thesis:

definition example
compare and contrast cause and effect
classification process analysis

Organize the essay:
Begin by listing the major divisions which the body paragraphs in your essay will discuss; then fill in the primary supports that each body paragraph of the essay will contain

Write topic sentences for the body paragraphs of the essay:
For each body paragraph, furnish a topic sentence that directly relates to the thesis sentence

Write the body paragraphs of the essay:
Each body paragraph should develop the primary support covered in that paragraph's topic sentence

Furnish a paragraph of introduction:
An introductory paragraph should state the thesis of the essay, introduce the divisions in the body paragraphs of the essay, gain the interest of the reader

Write a paragraph of conclusion:
A concluding paragraph should restate the thesis and divisions of the essay bring the essay to an appropriate and effective close without digressing into new issues.
Source: Ida Masters Hollowell, James A. Levernier, A. Franklin Parks, Structuring Paragraphs: A Guide to Effective Writing. 2nd ed. New York: St. Martin's,1986.

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