Expository Essay Examples and Samples

When writing an expository essay, you need to show the deeper side of your chosen subject. Check out our expository essay samples to better understand the process of writing one yourself.

Expository Essay Guide - What You Need to Know

In school and college students’ lives are filled with writing. Be it essays, research papers, reports, or a thesis, learners will inevitably need to put the sharpness of their minds on paper. It is always better to have a know-how guide at your disposal that will show you the right steps to do it. In this article, AcademicHelp will tell you the nuts and bolts of writing an expository essay. 

What is an expository essay?

The key to successful writing is to lay out the foundation. The definition of an expository essay is simple – it exposes what is written in the composition. Simply put, this academic piece of writing describes the main information by informing the reader. And everything is backed by facts, statistics, and analysis. Objective writing is common in essays, guides, reports, and textbooks. It focuses on presenting facts impartially.  

It is a common practice to write an expository essay as part of a university assignment or a college in-class activity. In practice, such compositions are short-form assignments that are made to test writing skills or put to the test a basic understanding of a subject. While expository essays must be impartial, when writing one you must concentrate on providing factual evidence for a certain topic

What is the purpose of an expository essay?

An expository essay intends to educate the reader by providing objective information. Since this type of composition is always written in straightforward language, and supported by actual information, readers can draw personal conclusions rather than believing in the author’s opinion on the subject. Popular expository text examples are in the fields of journalism, business, and science. 

In short, an expository essay demonstrates facts. But there might be cases when the author’s idea would be to entertain readers. Though, it is a secondary purpose of such composition. 

Expository essay outline examples

Any essay must start with an outline which will be the skeleton of the written piece. The structure is needed for organizational purposes. An expository essay sample is comprised of 5 paragraphs. So, not to get sidetracked, create a step-by-step writing process. 

Step 1. Brainstorm and create a draft

If you do not have a topic to write about, start with brainstorming ideas. Jot down as many topical themes as can be good enough to write an expository essay about them. After this creative outburst, it’s time to get things under control. Continue with the next step which is ‘writing an outline’. Before moving to the first draft, your essay structure should be detailed and include the essential elements of every paragraph. 

From the first stage of planning remember that academic writing is not about personal experiences or ideas. Meaning, an expository essay requires a third-person point of view. Avoid using the pronouns “I” and “you”. This is a safe way to not accidentally state personal opinions. 

Step 2. Write an introductory paragraph

An introductory paragraph or a thesis statement is a bridge between the idea and the body of the essay. For it to work, start your introduction with a “hook” to catch the reader’s attention and continue with the main point of the essay. When you cannot come up with a unique “hook”, it’s better to start with the statement thesis. 

If you want to reach successful results, write in simple language. But do not be scared to break the rules once in a while. People find dry and scientific narration off-putting. To avoid such situations, sprinkle some figurative language in the thesis to build the flow. 

Step 3. Write body paragraphs

The body of the essay is the most important part. It should consist of at least three paragraphs to cover the topic in detail. Since it’s the main part of the essay, make sure to go over all issues and answer all questions. Start each paragraph with a topic sentence. Such an approach will develop the introduction thesis and will give an understanding of what the first idea is going to be about. To make all three paragraphs full of information, use concrete details, real-world examples, and statistics to prove the statement. Always remember to provide commentary, opinions, and insights that can support the chosen factual information. In an expository essay, keep your focus on a logical order and clear transitions between paragraphs. Wrap up each thought with a concluding sentence that restates the main idea. 

Step 4. Write concluding paragraph

The concluding paragraph should summarize all the main points that were made in the body. No new information should be introduced in the conclusion. Let us provide you with expository paragraph examples. The perfect way to build the concluding paragraph is by starting with a broad summary sentence where you mention the topic in general terms. Then consider adding an overview sentence. This one should expand on the previous one by giving a brief overview of the key points of the essay. Dedicate the final sentence of the concluding paragraph to the key takeaway. Write a strong statement that can highlight the most essential point.

Step 5. Revise and Proofread 

Always double-check your final result for coherence, typos, grammar errors, and credibility. On top of everything, make sure that the tone of the expository essay is impartial and informative. Before submitting the final paper, do a self-checkup by answering some questions like, “Have I answered the main questions?”, or “Have I added all the main ideas in the essay?”, and “Are all my paragraphs well-written?”. If you received positive answers, feel free to send the essay for evaluation.

Expository writing examples

Expository essays come in different genres which depend on the writer’s goal. The most common expository writing essays are process, cause and effect, problem solution, compare and contrast, definition, and classification essays.

Process essay

The purpose of the process essay derives from the name. The writer describes in detail a step-by-step guide to making or doing something. For instance, it can be a cooking recipe or a manufacturing process. How do you go about writing? Provide detailed instructions for the readers so that they can come along.

Cause and effect essay

If you want to write about the reason why something is happening and causes the chain reaction of positive and negative effects on something then you need to base your composition on the structure of the cause and effect essay. Since there is an obvious contrast in the essay, readers have two individual narration lines. Cause and effect essay in one of the expository writing examples. That’s why it must be supported by real evidence between two ideas. 

Problem solution essay

In the problem-solution essay, the writer searches for possible fixes to the issue. The traditional approach is to offer an endless number of solutions and underscore the pros and cons of each. Tre problem-solutions essay has four main elements in its structure. They are the following: situation, problem, solution, and evaluation. 

Compare and contrast essay

The one and only approach to writing this expository essay sample is by setting arguments side by side to show similarities and differences. If you choose to write compare and contrast, ensure to pick the right topic to make the perfect statement. 

Definition essay

A definition essay describes the chosen topics. They can vary from abstract to concrete ones. The definition essay answers why, what, and how questions. This type of expository essay allows personal observations and opinions. Usually, definition compositions start with a dictionary definition.

Classification essay

A classification essay consists of categories and groups. The writer themselves sorts out categories and provides definitions and examples. Classification essays help to learn about individual features of particular things.


What are the 5 examples of expository writing?

An expository essay is met not only in the academic environment but also in magazines, newspapers, and others. For instance, definition, classification, and process essays as well as cookbook guides, and news reports are considered to be a type of expository writing. These examples inform the readers and express certain opinions, so they fit under the definition of expository writing. 

How do I write an expository essay?

An expository essay, just like any academic writing can be mind-boggling. Many struggle with how to go about formal writing. The best advice is to start your draft by brainstorming. You as a writer need to understand what interests you about the topic. Having come up with a few statements, you are ready to write an introductory thesis. Continue with the same approach throughout the whole essay. 

What are 3 famous examples of expository writing?

Newspaper, magazine, and encyclopedia articles, manuals with instructions, and textbooks are the most common examples of expository writing. Their purpose is to illustrate a problem or expose some new information. 

What should an expository essay include?

An expository essay is not different from any other type of writing when it comes to structure. Everything starts with an introduction, then the body paragraph where you need to support and explain the main points of your essay and finish off with the summary. This typical outline consists of 5 paragraphs. Each of the main three blocks is essential, so we recommend writing them consistently. 

What is the first sentence in an expository essay?

The best approach to kick off an expository essay is with a “hook” which guarantees to attract readers’ attention. Remember that the introduction should not be wordy or sloppy, structure and accurate delivery matters. 

What is the introduction of an expository text?

An introduction in the expository text is called a thesis or main point of the essay. Since it must continue the core idea of the piece, write it simply. Moreover, it must support the following 3 paragraphs of the body part of the text.