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Types of Essays

The type of essay will depend on what the writer wants to convey to his reader. There are broadly four types of essays. Let us see.

Narrative Essays: This is when the writer is narrating an incident or story through the essay. So these are in the first person. The aim when writing narrative essays is to involve the reader in them as if they were right there when it was happening. So make them as vivid and real as possible. One way to make this possible is to follow the principle of ‘show, don’t tell’. So you must involve the reader in the story.

Descriptive Essays: Here the writer will describe a place, an object, an event or maybe even a memory. But it is not just plainly describing things. The writer must paint a picture through his words. One clever way to do that is to evoke the senses of the reader. Do not only rely on sight but also involve the other senses of smell, touch, sound, etc. A descriptive essay when done well will make the reader feel the emotions the writer was feeling at the moment.

Expository Essays: In such an essay a writer presents a balanced study of a topic. To write such an essay, the writer must have real and extensive knowledge about the subject. There is no scope for the writer’s feelings or emotions in an expository essay. It is completely based on facts, statistics, examples, etc. There are sub-types here like contrast essays, cause and effect essays, etc.

Persuasive Essays: Here the purpose of the essay is to get the reader to your side of the argument. A persuasive essay is not just a presentation of facts but an attempt to convince the reader of the writer’s point of view. Both sides of the argument have to presented in these essays. But the ultimate aim is to persuade the readers that the writer’s argument carries more weight.

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Type of Essay

Skills Tested

Essay Prompt

Argumentative Essay

Using research to form a viewpoint.

Developing a fact-based arguments

Has the growth of the internet impacted education in a good or bad way?

Descriptive Essay

Use of imaginative language

Observing and describing visual cues

Define an item that has a special place in your heart.

Expository Essay

Understanding of a subject

Clearly communicating information

Describe how the printing media transformed European civilization in the 1500s.

Narrative Essay

Use of imaginative language

Creating an engaging story

Describe a time when you discovered something unique concerning yourself.


Argumentative essay example paragraph

Tutors are often frustrated by students’ excessive usage of Wikipedia as a source of information for their assignments. Wikipedia’s influence over students is not exaggerated; as per a research Wikipedia has been used by the vast majority of students questioned (Head & Eisenberg, 2010). According to a recent article in The Guardian, “a dependence on Wikipedia might prevent students’ engagement with true academic writing” (Coomer, 2013). Professors are factually correct in believing that Wikipedia use is widespread among their pupils; nonetheless, the allegation that it limits interaction with scholarly articles remains to be researched deeper. Several professors consider this to be quite obvious, whereas Wikipedia openly urges learners to investigate alternative material. The web’s main researching instructions state clearly this should be used as a beginning point, emphasizing that readers must always “review the sources and evaluate whether they truly do corroborate what the article claims” (“Wikipedia: Researching with Wikipedia,” 2020). Several students’ initial exposure with the ideas of citation and reference is on Wikipedia. As a result, Wikipedia usage does have a positive impact that deserves more attention than it now gets.

Expository essay example paragraph

The print media, which was invented in 1440, altered the scenario immensely. The layout of the press was based on Johannes Gutenberg’s expertise of metallic materials, because he had already worked as a goldsmith. His type was fashioned of a long-lasting alloy of “lead, tin, and antimony”, permitting for the consistent creation of excellent books. This newfound technology made it possible to duplicate and spread writings on a far wider scale than before. In the 1450s, the Gutenberg Bible was published, and in the decades that followed, a significant number of printing presses grew up all throughout Europe. Gutenberg’s innovation altered European cultural production, paving the way for the Protestant Reformation, besides other things.

Narrative essay example paragraph

I always have preferred science and math over the humanities since primary school. These courses always seemed to me to be more substantial and intense than ones like English. Why try since there would be no proper answer, I reasoned? After taking my first philosophy class lately, I’ve learned a lot about my academic interests that I didn’t realize before.

I had my doubts before ever stepping foot in the classroom. I stood outside with some other classmates, wondering what precisely philosophy entailed—I had no clue. Endless, stilted chats discussing the essence of existence, that’s what I envisioned. But I experienced something very different.

When I saw Mr. Jones—”but you may call me Rob,” he said—he was anything but the balding, buttoned-up elderly guy I’d imagined him to be. Rob engaged us on our level instead of dragging us into academic debates about abstruse philosophies. We examined our own decisions in order to discuss free will. To discuss morals, we looked at moral difficulties that we had experienced in the past. By the conclusion of the semester, I’d learned that problems with no clear solution might be the most intriguing.

I learned to think more “philosophically” as a result of the experience, and not due to the fact that I attended a class of philosophy. I discovered that letting go of my preconceived notions, I may learn a great deal about things that I previously dismissed. The experience provided me to look at things with an unbiased view in more ways than one.

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Descriptive essay example

Weekend afternoons are my ideal time to relax in the yard behind my house. Reading and relaxing in a rocking chair placed at the end of the garden, which is a small corridor of green that extends from the rear of the home, sitting under the tree shade, feeling the grass on my feet, the calming movement of the fishes in the pond behind me: I’m in my own calm heaven.

My cat dashes across the yard and jumps to the top of the fence to view it from afar. He watches over his little kingdom and keep track on the people next door from his perch. He only stops when the dog barks from next door startles him off his perch, and he rushes through the ‘cat flap’ to dominate from a safe distance.

My only company is the fish, whose only existence is constrained to that of the little pond at my feet. Each day, the fishes investigate the pond as if it were their first, exploring and studying each stone. I have the similar feeling when relaxing in this beautiful garden; I know it better than anybody, yet every time I come, I feel compelled to notice all of its subtleties and differences—like a bird singing while sitting on a tree branch, or how much the grass has grown from my previous visit, the insects it harbors.


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