How to write an explanatory essay


Explanatory essays are pieces of writing where you present some opinions on a particular topic, situation, or event. This opinion doesn’t have to be the one the writer agrees with, but it should be logical and have some research. Often you decide what topic you want to write about and then you approach it from a certain direction. This direction is usually complicate, which gives the room for a discussion. You need to present an opinion of your choice and explain why you reached a certain outcome.

Many students make a mistake thinking that they are defending one position of an issue in an argument or criticize us some perspectives. However, explanatory papers are supposed to present a neutral position on a certain topic by offering analysis from logically crafted theory and research. The general objective is to clear any confusion and offer a concise explanation as to why something happened the way it did. When your readers finish reading your paper, they should have a clear comprehension of the idea even if they disagree with it. Below you will find useful recommendations on how to write an explanatory essay to make the readers engaged in your topic.

Choosing a subject you understand

Even though you may think that explanatory essay is difficult to prepare, it is pretty basic in fact. Using this type of writing, you can explain almost anything as long as it is within the instructions of your task. You may write a paper on one of the following topics:

  • Describe the process of buying a new car.
  • Talk about the gluten-free diet and whether or not it is necessary for most people.
  • Tell why it is good to know at least two languages.
  • List the reasons that led up to World War II.

Stay within the frames of an exploratory essay

When working on explanatory essay, you may start getting into the process of preparing a process or persuasive essay. Even though both papers use explanations, try to stick to the explanatory style. This way you will show your professor that you understand the concept in full.

When presenting evidence to support your subject, you don’t need to necessarily sway the audience to your side but make a strong case. When describing a process, don’t make it a step-by-step guide but try to make it more of a discussion.

Pre-writing instructions

Before getting to the writing process, you need to properly collect all the information and do a profound research. The opinion you are presenting should be a combination or outside information and your personal ideas. If you want your ideas to be properly validated, research the topic and find many sources that support your thoughts.

Once you have the information you need, craft a strong thesis statement. It will lay down a concrete version of your general point of view about the subject. You will be explaining what you will be telling your readers. Keep in mind that you are not criticizing or arguing, you are simply stating facts.

Working on an outline


The plan of your paper will vary and be based on the length of the topic and the information you are showing. Most papers of this kind are a page or two long, so the general length will be around five paragraphs. The general structure will look as follows:

  • The entry will introduce the topic to the reader along with the thesis statement.
  • Then you will present body sections supporting your statement with the statistics, logic, facts, etc.
  • Finally, in the deduction you will sum up the main ideas of your paper and demonstrate a general concluding proposal.

Finishing with a strong deduction and entry

Your paper should end on a strong note. Link all your thoughts together with strong summary proposals in a memorable final section. Keep in mind the following:

  • The first words of your paper are very important as well. Thus, it is a good idea to write your entry once you finish working on the whole paper. This way, you know what your paper is really about, and you will be able to draw the readers’ attention using a strong language.
  • Expository papers are not that technical. They can be prepared on various topics. Select the subject you are passionate about, so you can deliver a professional paper.

Polishing up the essay

Before submitting your final variant, make sure you thoroughly check your paper for possible mistakes.

The main objective of an explanatory paper is to explain a certain event or topic. That is why you need to make sure that you’re writing concisely elucidate and makes it easier for the reader to understand the main idea. You don’t want your readers to be confused once they finish your paper, questioning the general point you were attempting to make.

One of the worst things that can be found in your paper is grammatical errors and the usage of wrong words that kill the eloquence of the content. Before submitting a paper to the professor, reread it a few times and make sure it is smooth and doesn’t have any mistakes.

Even if your writing makes sense to you, it doesn’t mean that everyone else understands your paper as well. Ask your friends or teachers to look through your essay and give some final adjustments. This way you will be able to produce a high-quality essay.

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