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Tips for Writing a Top-Notch Expository Essay

Updated: Oct 26

Many different essay genres such as persuasive essays, argumentative essays, discussion-type essays, expository essays, and narrative essays are found in academic writing. An expository essay is one of the most common types of a five-paragraph essay in academic writing.

Among the six types of expository essays including definition essays, topical essays, cause-effect essays, problem-solution essays, compare-and-contrast essays, and process essays, the topical essay is the most common type that requires students to define, describe, inform, explain, and explore a specific topic.

Below are the tips on writing a top-notch expository essay in five paragraphs within a specific time duration in three different writing stages: pre-writing, writing, and post-writing.

Writing Tips Solutions

1. Pre-Writing

  1. Spend 20-30 per cent of this stage's total writing time duration.

  2. Before writing, you have to bear this in mind: You are not required to discuss, express your opinion, argue, and persuade the reader when writing an expository essay.

  3. If you are given an essay title to write, interpret the keywords from the task, such as state, explain, express, discuss, and opinion, to determine the required essay genre.

  4. Identify the topic or subject matter and the scopes from the keywords in the given essay title.

  5. Make sure your ideas are confined within the scope based on the title.

  6. Use the mapping technique to brainstorm and list out your points.

  7. Select, sort out, and arrange your points into introduction, first body paragraph, second body paragraph, third body paragraph, and conclusion clusters.

  8. Outline your essay based on the selected points in the clusters and write them in point form instead of complete sentences as your draft.

  9. Ensure the thesis statement is written as the last sentence in the introduction.

  10. The topic sentence, supporting details (two or three sentences), and concluding sentence (optional) should be stated in each body paragraph.

  11. The conclusion summarises all the main ideas (topic sentences) from the body paragraphs.

  12. Emphasise the thesis statement instead of providing a new point in the conclusion.

2. Writing

  1. Spend 50-60 per cent of the total writing time duration in this stage.

  2. Follow the draft by elaborating the points into complete sentences.

  3. You can modify the points while writing based on the draft in a clear structure of introduction, body, and conclusion.

  4. Below are the tips for writing different sections in an expository essay.

  5. Introduction:

  6. Write a well-developed and engaging introduction using attention grabbers like statistics, quotes, and anecdotes.

  7. Ensure the thesis statement is clearly stated and effectively written in a general or specific form.

  8. The length of introduction should be shorter than any of the body paragraphs.

  9. Body:

  10. Each body paragraph must contain only one main and new idea expressed in a topic sentence.

  11. Do not repeat the same idea in different body paragraphs.

  12. Write an effective topic sentence with well-developed details and examples given.

  13. Your word choice must be accurate and concise.

  14. Write in an objective tone from the third-person perspective.

  15. A first-person or second-person perspective is acceptable if it links to a personal experience.

  16. To minimise grammatical, spelling, capitalisation, and punctuation errors, read and remember all the correct language uses by referring to Which One Is Correct in English?

  17. Use various sentence patterns like simple, compound, complex, and compound-complex sentences.

  18. Avoid constructing a wordy sentence written in more than two lines.

  19. Use linkers to achieve effective, mature, and appropriate transitions of each well-organised body paragraph.

  20. Make sure the length of each body paragraph is almost similar.

  21. Conclusion:

  22. Write an effective and powerful closure beyond restating the thesis statement.

  23. Do not add new ideas to the conclusion.

  24. Emphasise the topic's importance, impact, or implication to end your conclusion.

3. Post-Writing

  1. Spend 10-20 per cent of this stage's total writing time duration.

  2. Revise your content to ensure that the essay has fulfilled the tasks' requirements.

  3. Make sure the total length of your essay does not exceed the word limit.

  4. Ensure the thesis statement, main ideas, supporting details, and concluding sentences (optional) are clearly stated and well-supported.

  5. Edit your language on grammar, spelling, and punctuation.

  6. Proofread the essay's overall correctness, conventions, format, and organisation (cohesiveness and coherence).

  7. If you wish to request editing, proofreading, and translating services, you can refer to Does a Writer Need an Editor?

  8. Submit or publish your essay before the deadline if relevant.


Below are the samples of expository writing tasks:

  1. Write an essay of 250-300 words on the ways to create social harmony in the community.

  2. Write an essay of 250-300 words on how university students can use social media wisely.

  3. Write an essay of 250-300 words on ways to contribute to the less fortunate students in the university.

  4. Write an essay of 250-300 words on ways to create a better classroom learning experience at the university.

  5. Write an essay of 250-300 words on the effects of watching violent movies on teenagers.

  6. Write an essay of 250-300 words on productive ways students can spend their leisure time.

  7. Write an essay of 250-300 words on the benefits of an internship in preparing university students for their future careers.

  8. Write an essay of 250-300 words on the benefits of taking care of personal hygiene.

  9. Write an essay of 250-300 words on ways to create awareness of endangered animals among students.

  10. Write an essay of 250-300 words on how the internet has changed the way people talk to each other.

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