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Home Blog A Guide to Expository Essay Writing Types of Expository Writing - Definition and Examples

Types of Expository Writing - Definition and Examples

types of expository writing

Writing an expository essay is quite more difficult than any other type of essay. It requires time, thorough research, skills, and knowledge to create an impressive essay.

There are 6 different types of expository essays and each of them has a unique objective. They all are similar in nature but serve a different purpose. Read on to learn what are the different types of expository essay and what purpose they serve.

Definition Of Expository Writing

Expository essay writing is a type of academic writing that investigates a particular subject. It describes or explains or provides some important data about the essay topic. It is a very common form of writing; journals, newspaper articles, and essays usually demonstrate this type of writing.

Writing an expository essay is like writing a case investigation report. An investigating agent who has investigated a case and is now presenting his analysis to solve the case. The agent explains everything to let the reader know how and why things happened.

While writing an expository essay; you need to explain everything in detail to make the idea clear for the reader. You can take help form expository essay examples to see what elements make a perfect expository essay.

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Types Of Expository Writing

There are six common types of expository essay writing:

  • Process essay
  • Cause and effect essay
  • Problem solution essay
  • Compare and contrast essay
  • Definition Essay
  • Classification Essay

Let’s take a look at them one by one.

Compare And Contrast Essay

The compare and contrast essay is a type of essay in which the writer compares and contrasts two things. The writer compares the similarities between the two selected subjects and contrasts the differences in those subjects. The subjects should belong to the same category.

For example; Compare and contrast two oranges or two apples, rather than comparing and contrasting an apple with an orange. You can compare and contrast the color of apples, the shape, the size, etc. You cannot compare the color of an apple with an orange. It doesn’t make sense as they don’t belong to the same category.

Cause And Effect Essay

In the cause and effect essay, the writer tries to find the cause of something; why did something happen? and what effects it might have. This type of essay has built around the reason that caused something to happen and its possible impacts.

There are two ways to structure a cause and effect essay:

  • Block structure
  • Chain structure

In the block structure, all the causes are presented first and then all of its effects. Whereas, in the chain structure, each of the causes is followed by its effect straight away. It could be based upon assumptions or could be based on facts, but either way, they should be validated.

Problem Solution Essay

In the problem solution essay, the writer identifies a problem and then proposes its solution. The writer examines the particular subject from various aspects and perspectives prior to providing a solution. This essay is somewhat similar to the cause and effect essay.

For example; You choose to write about the coronavirus. You’ll examine the problem thoroughly i.e. how the virus came into existence? How is it spreading, What problems has it caused for society? etc.

After examining the problem, you’ll suggest its possible solutions; how to overcome this situation? What precautionary measures do we need to take to protect ourselves from the virus? etc.

Process Essay

The process essay refers to the process of something i.e. how to make an apple pie. This type of writing includes a step by step process of making or doing something.

For example; You are writing about how to bake a cake. You’ll provide the complete recipe in a proper sequence i.e.

  1. Preheat the oven for half an hour at 180 degree
  2. Mix the baking powder, cocoa powder, flour, and sugar
  3. Beat the eggs
  4. Add the beaten eggs into the mixture
  5. Melt the butter and chocolate and add them into the mixture
  6. Pour the batter into the pan and bake

This is how you write a process essay, it provides the complete process of doing something. The goal is to provide the process in such a way that the reader can follow the sequence without any mistake.

Definition Essay

The definition essay is a type of expository essay that gives a complete description of the topic. It explains what the term or the topic of the essay exactly means. Some terms have concrete meanings like glass, book, etc. Whereas some have abstract meanings like love, respect, honor, etc.

The definition essay revolves around explaining the purpose, what, why, and how aspect of the topic of the essay. This essay could start with the dictionary definition and ultimately provide the extended definition.

Classification Essay

The classification essay divides the essay topic into different groups and categories. The categories are further explained in detail to clarify the topic. Each group or category has its own examples, object, character and ideas.

For example:

If you write about different types of shoes, each of the body paragraphs will define the characteristics of different shoes.

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