Essay Types: D

These are essays that attempt to explain a particular topic to give the reader a clear grasp of its place, structure, function, meaning, relevance, and value.

Aspects of the subject that are difficult to understand must be clearly explained.

Create a thesis statement. Do the required research. Analyze the subject to its finest detail. Be well informed about the topic.

Write in support of your thesis giving accurate information and fitting examples. Use comparison and contrast, cause and effect, analogies, and anecdotes.

Your objective is simply to inform, not to criticize or persuade.


Create a vivid picture in your reader’s mind by describing something–people, animals, nature, places, objects, an experience–by using the reaction of your own senses of sight, hearing, touch, smell, and taste as well as your emotions, intellect, and spirit.

Use comparisons, contrasts, insinuation, allusion, satire, exaggeration, and understatement, besides adjectives that should not be overused.

Steer clear of stating the obvious: Instead of saying today is overcast, focus briefly on a pattern of raindrops beginning to form on the steps and the slow descent of yet another autumn leaf adding to the pile already there. This is both challenging and creative.

Having a focal point to convey a specific theme and message will save the essay from being broad and rambling.

Dissertation or Thesis

Look under Thesis or Dissertation.

DBQ (Document-based Questions)

Read all instructions and guidelines as well as the rubric (to be aware of how the DBQ essay will be graded).

Study the questions. Read, interpret, analyze, and synthesize the content of the supplied documents. Establish a thesis that will answer the questions and not stray from what the questions require. Make an outline.

Write the essay with introduction, body, and conclusion. The essay must present a logical argument that thoroughly supports your thesis with clear evidence from the supplied documents. In your writing, you should incorporate relevant knowledge gained in related fields of study.


Page 2 of 3 | Previous page | Next page