Whether you are a student in high school or college, there is a 100% chance that you will have to write some sort of informative essay during your educational years. Your teacher may either assign you a topic or allow you to choose one for yourself. Depending on the length and requirements for the paper, your topic options will narrow down. A lot of the times, students will end up receiving a subject that they are completely clueless about and thus have really no starting point to build off. Do not worry, EssayPro is here to teach our students everything they need to know about crafting an informative essay!
Table Of Contents
What Is An Informative Essay?
Believe it or not, as a student you have written this sort of an essay before! To understand the concept of this paper, you must understand its definition. An informative essay is a piece of writing that aims to educate an audience about a certain topic. This is NOT an essay that is persuasive or argumentative, and the end goal is to make sure that the audience has learned new and interesting information. Generally speaking, this type of essay will compare controversial viewpoints about a certain topic.
This Type of Essay is similar to an Expository Essay
This essay family contains the:
Informative Essay Topics
If the topic is not assigned, you will need to choose your own topic. You might probably stuck on this step if you have a wide range to choose from. Take your time and keep these pieces of advice in mind to select the most appropriate topic.
Make sure that your topic is not too broad and not too narrow. You need to have enough information about your subject to write about, but not so much to make your essay a novel.
The topic should be attractive and interesting to your audience. Think ahead about who might be reading your paper. Of course, if it was assigned for your class, the teacher will be your main audience.
The best option is to choose the topic that interests you. It will make the writing process much more pleasant and will let you express your enthusiasm fully.
Sometimes, teachers and professors will require presentations or speeches to come along with the written essay. This is why it is smart to pick a topic that is interesting enough to a wide audience (something people can relate to) and can be explained clearly through speech. Here are some examples!
- The origin of language.
- The origin of the universe!
- How to maximize financial efficiency!
- Why do people procrastinate?
- What causes addiction?
- Evolution of human rights
- Legalization of Marijuana
- Why do we dream?
- How do 3D-glasses work?
Steps to Take Pre-Writing
Before you sit down in front of your computer screen and start typing away, there are some necessary steps to make and items to prepare before hand. Having a set plan allows you to organize information effectively, and this greatly speeds up the entire essay writing process.
Brainstorm Ideas: Unless specifically given subject instructions by the coordinator, students are usually given freedom in choosing the topic of their essay. Depending on the importance of the class or your enthusiasm towards crafting this work, a topic should be chosen accordingly. You may choose a topic that you are already well-rounded in, however, this will make the process swift and boring. Ambitious students should choose a topic that they have limited knowledge about. Doing this will increase their general knowledge as well as challenge the students in regards to analyzing new information. Regardless of what type of topic you choose, brainstorming ideas and creating a general outline of your essay will help you organize your thoughts, logically allowing you to pick the most suitable topic.
Choosing a Topic: After narrowing down your options, it has finally come time to choose the most appropriate topic. Remember, the Find a happy medium which will allow you to fully answer the informative question. This will prevent you from worrying about the fact that you may need more content or that not everything you wanted to express got down on paper!
Crank Out Some Informative Research: Gather information about your topic. Use various sources including primary and secondary ones! Primary sources are physical pieces of evidence relating to the topic at hand. For example, if you are talking about the Evolution Of Human Rights, a primary source could be a speech written by Martin Luther King Jr! Secondary sources are articles and papers written based on that topic. For example, if the topic is about addiction, a secondary source would be Bruce K. Alexander’s Rat Park Study!
Use a variety of sources, and validate their reliability: Using sites like Wikipedia is generally frowned upon, however checking out the links used at the bottom of every wiki page is an effective way to get sources quickly! Provide different types of sources to make your informative essay well-rounded!
Informative Essay Outline
As a writer, you may be wondering: “If I hire someone to write my essay for me, will they know how to structure my informative essay?” This is definitely a good question to ask and an idea to consider if you have decided upon this path. If the writer presents you with something similar to what is shown here, then you are in good hands!
The informative essay is written in the standard essay style. Usually speaking, it will consist of an Introduction, 3 Body Paragraphs, and a Conclusion. The introduction serves to present the main argument in an exciting and interesting manner. The 3 Bodies will be mainly used to support the thesis created in the intro. The conclusion will wrap up the information and present its significance in the real world!
The intro should start out with a flashy hook statement that grabs the reader's attention. This sentence should be relevant to the topic, so using an informative rhetorical question would be a good example.
Afterward, reveal any background context that will be necessary for the reader to understand while reading through the essay. These sentences should pay the way for an excellent thesis statement.
The last sentence of the introduction should be a well formed and coherent thesis statement. Since this is the sentence that the entire informative essay is based around, make sure that you have constructed it properly. In other words,
The purpose of this section of the essay is to defend the thesis statement, so the content in these paragraphs must be tip-top. Create a smooth transition from your intro by creating a topic sentence that links the thesis to your first main point. (A smooth transition should also be created for the second and third body paragraph!)
With each body paragraph, there must be a target point and a supporting detail. A target point is the part of the thesis that you are aiming to prove. The supporting detail is the outside validation that enriches your statement.
After introducing your topic sentence, it is time to follow the CCE format to craft the most important part of the essay. This is your main argument of the body paragraph. Since the quality of the essay is dependent upon how well the thesis is defended, make sure that your 3 claims are strong.
After defining your claim, you must introduce the evidence. This is your physical proof that validates your claim. Usually, in informative writing, this will be a quote from some sort of Without this, your informative essay will hold no value. It would basically be the same as accepting opinion as fact.
To conclude the CCE process, the writer must present an explanation of his claim. In other words, they need to display how this claim proves their thesis statement as fact. This is absolutely necessary and should be explained coherently. If eager to gain extra validation points, the writer can go into more depth about how the evidence backs up the claim. However, if this can be inferred without the need of extra information, then that would be ideal.
To conclude a body paragraph, a sentence should be created that gives a general synopsis of the argument presented. The main purpose of this sentence is to display assertiveness; in other words, display that your opinion is the right one! This gives your entire essay more strength and makes your argument/thesis look sharp!
After portraying your three main arguments, it is time to wrap up your essay.
The conclusion of an essay restates the thesis statement and offers final thoughts and insights on the topic. Explain it in different words and provide room for a smooth transition.
This “room” is necessary because you will now need to briefly restate the impact of each one of your arguments. If done correctly, the restatement and then the brief argument relay should mix well with each other!
In order to effectively finish the essay, one must come up with an overall concluding statement. This statement should serve as an explanation for the significance of your argument. In other words, explain why the informative writing you just crafted has value and where this information can be applied. This gives the work “real-world” value!
Post-Writing To Do List
Vocabulary: After rereading the draft, make sure that you are satisfied with the language you have used. If the words were not crafty enough or phrases could have been stated in a smoother manner, then edit accordingly.
Grammar: Nothing aggravates teachers more than having to pause their reading to fix grammar mistakes. It shows carelessness and a lack of proper editing. Use websites like GrammarCheck to make sure that there are no issues with punctuation, spelling, etc.
Coherency: From a writer's perspective, this is the most important textbox to have checked. Using language that can be easily understood as well as proper transitional skills is an awesome way to keep your paper moving smoothly.
If you were to imagine your paper as a road, then a coherent paper would be a straightforward and clean path. An incoherent essay would be one with bumps on the road and unexpected sharp turns!
Peer Editing: Having a second pair of eyes to read through your paper is a surefire way of validating your work. If the essay sounds fluent and makes sense to another brain, then you are increasing the odds of it sounding great to the teacher. If your peer has any tips or recommended some amendments, consider their advice! Here at EssayPro, you can speak to a professional essay writer that knows useful tactics that will put a smile on the professor's face!
The final touch: As you have edited your final draft, your next step will be transforming it into a full-fledged essay. Give your final draft one more read-through. Read it aloud and fix small mistakes your eye might not catch.
Essay Writing Advice From Our Professional Team
Prof. Essie, from EssayPro
An informative essay is the best way to explain a complicated idea. When you write one of these essays, most of the writing process comes before you write the essay itself. My advice is to spend the most of your writing time on research. (To inform someone on how to do something, you first need to know to do it). The first step to anything, of course, is to choose a topic. Gather all the details on that subject by doing a thorough investigation. List of the important facts and main steps of your paper. Make sure your sources and facts are reliable and accurate. In your outline, write a topic sentence for each fact. After doing all of these steps, you can structure the thesis statement. That's right! Don’t start your essay by writing a thesis statement. Make sure you wholesomely understand your topic before you introduce it. After this organizational process, you can draft your essay and edit it. Good luck!
Read the Article and Still Have Questions?
Informative essays tend to be difficult assignments for students as sometimes explaining certain concepts takes a lot more critical thinking than expected. This causes students to submit low-quality work and receive poor grades for their efforts. To alleviate this problem, we here at EssayPro, the best custom essay writing service on the web, have hired qualified writers to create high-level content for very fair prices. Our writers are college graduates with various degrees who have dealt with the struggle of college essay writing. They have learned all of the tricks and tactics to astonish college professors and will guarantee the swift delivery of a custom informative essay! Hire online essay writer!
Next:Interim recommendation: styleUp:Text Typology Previous:Topic
Style is a notorious term, because it is used in so many different ways by researchers from several disciplines, and has popular meanings as well. It is used here to mean the way texts are internally differentiated other than by topic; mainly by the choice of the presence or absence of some of a large range of structural and lexical features. Some features are mutually exclusive (e.g. verbs in the active or passive mood), and some are preferential, e.g. politeness markers and mitigators.
As with topic, there are no institutionalised schemata to which we can turn. Although a great deal is talked about style, and there are several parameters of organisation proposed in the literature, there are no agreed standards for any one parameter. For example, most students of language believe that a parameter of formality is required, and terms like `formal', `informal', `colloquial', etc., are freely used and not always well defined. In one of the most influential proposals (in its time), Joos (1961) set five levels of `frozen', `formal', `informal', `colloquial', `intimate'. However useful this was, Joos might just as easily have proposed four, six, seven or twenty, because the motivation for five levels was mainly convenience.
Halliday et al. (1964) distinguishes between registers according to three dimensions, `field of discourse', `mode of discourse' and `style of discourse' (in later work he changed the label `style' to `tenor'). Style is used here to refer to the relations among the participants. Halliday suggests a primary distinction into `colloquial' and `polite', a primary distinction which is adopted in many of today's dictionaries. He also claims that the styles of discourse must be treated as a cline with categories such as `casual', `intimate' and `deferential'.
In most of today's dictionaries there is a classification of certain words according to style. The most common distinction is between formal and informal language. Even within these broad categories, one dictionary may classify a word a formal where another may not. Since such decisions rest with the lexicographer, it is not surprising that inconsistencies exist between interpretations of the style of a word. `Formal' is defined as a label which
[...] usually means that this is a word which is most likely to be used in highly formal writing or in formal speech read aloud.Outside lexicography, categories such as `formal' and `informal' are usually defined by the type of context of situation in which the language is found, for example formal language will be found in forms, pronouncements, official documents and the like.
(Summers et al., 1993)
Some dictionaries (e.g. Collins Robert (Atkins et al. (eds), 1987)) have grades of formality or informality so that there are sub-groups of style within the formal and informal labels. For example we find a class for a word which
while not forming a part of standard language, is used by all educated speakers in a relaxed situation but would not be used in a formal essay or letter, or on an occasion when the speaker wishes to impress.Further down the cline, is a word which
indicates that the expression is used by some but not all educated speakers in a very relaxed situation.What would then qualify as a `relaxed situation' and is it expected to be the same for all these `educated speakers'?
In Webster's Dictionary (Woolf et al., 1976) the style labels are `slang', `nonstandard' and `substandard', each defined by its relation to a standard or norm. Most of the dictionaries provide style labels for words which are not though to be part of standard language. Some dictionaries go as far as to provide labels for the particular sub-language in which a word is predominately used. Sansoni (Macchi (ed), 1988) offer a whole range of style labels which situate words into different sub-languages, for example linguaggio burocratico, commerciale, cinematografico, giornalistico, infantile, marinaro, scolastico, universitario and so on; the list is substantial.
`Literary' style is also a popular class of style in dictionaries. Alongside this we also find `poetic' style but it is not clear how the two relate. Is poetic style a sub-class of literary style? Do we assume both can be considered under Webster's class of `nonstandard'. Do we then class `slang' as a style within `substandard' with `informal' as a kind of bridge between the two? In which case where would we place the category `offensive' which is also a common style label. Is this on the opposite pole from `polite'? If so how does it relate to Halliday's term `colloquial', which is the alternative to `polite'?
There seem to be so many different style labels used in dictionaries that it is difficult to see how they relate to one another in the proposed cline between the colloquial and polite, informal and formal. There is a whole mass of categories which accompany the informal/formal distinction, though the structure or hierarchical value of each is unclear. Other style categories used such as slang, colloquial, common, polite, rare, popular are not often defined by the dictionaries that use them, as if it is assumed that they have self-explanatory boundaries.
In practical lexicography, where compilers face decisions about style classification on a daily basis, it is clear that there is absolutely no natural consensus about the formality of an expression. People are all different, for a start, and likely to have different baselines from which they make their judgements. They have different attitudes to propriety in language use, and they have different language experience, where the influence of their ages and the regions of their upbringing play a part. They are also unsure of the way in which the terminology should be applied. Is it good or bad or neutral to be colloquial? Where does slang fit in?
There is also an underlying issue that never resolves itself -- some choices made in writing are considered informal, but the same choices in speech are just neutral. Is there a systematic displacement of the spoken language with respect to the written so that its realisations are always a notch or two down in formality from writing? Definitive answers to such questions require an alignment of internal and external criteria for which we will have to wait for some time, but the questions indicate the lack of clarity that characterises the description of style.
Style is the other criterion for which we recommend an automatic analysis based on linguistic criteria, and we recognise that no suitable package is yet available. There are signs of progress in the statistical analyses of texts such as those already being used in literary and forensic linguistics for questions of authorship. What is important for the purposes of a text typology is that the criteria for categorisation according to style be established objectively.
Biber (1988) offers a methodology for the objective grouping of variations in English texts through statisitcal analyses. The analysis is based on the identification of different clusters of linguistic features across a range of written and spoken English texts. Using a technique called factor analysis, he successfully identifies the linguistic characteristics of texts by an objective analysis of the language data. Biber's fundamental claim is that the frequent co-occurrence of a group of linguistic features in texts is an indication of an underlying function shared by those features. Therefore we can identify which linguistic features consistently group together to perform a particular communicative function, which features co-occur and which features are mutually exclusive. We can interpret these results to establish a correlation between variations in linguistic groups and function. Not only that, but we can use the analysis to objectively define a set of texts which belong to each variation in the English language, with the intention of using this kind of classification technique to categorise new texts for inclusion in a corpus. We envisage, however, that the categories would be continually refined and not fixed, to cater for the steady flow of language into and out of the corpus.
Biber, who sets out to identify fundamental variations between speech and writing, works with texts taken from the LOB (Lancaster-Oslo-Bergen) corpus of written English and the London-Lund Corpus of spoken English. These texts have previously been categorised into various genres for the corpus, based, we assume, on external criteria. Categories in the LOB corpus include such genres as `press reportage', `editorials', `press reviews', `religion, `skills and hobbies', `popular lore', `biographies' and so on; in the London-Lund corpus categories are `face-to-face communication', `telephone conversation', `planned speeches', `broadcasts', and so on.
Biber differentiates between `genre' which he uses to describe categorisation according to external criteria, and `text type' to refer to groupings of texts that are similar with respect to their linguistic form, irrespective of genre categories.
The first step in Biber's methodology for definition of text type through internal linguistic criteria is to review any previous research on linguistic features which will identify potentially important features. Here the aim is not to establish which are the more important linguistic features (since this should be done objectively through statistical analysis of the data) but to provide as wide a range as possible of possible significant linguistic features. Biber identifies 67 linguistic features of English text which he includes in the analysis (Biber, 1988: 86-87 offers a full list). Having chosen the texts to work with, the investigator must then obtain frequency counts of all 67 linguistic features in each of the texts used in the analysis. These figures must then all be normalised for a certain text length (here 1,000 words) to ensure comparability. The mean, minimum and maximum frequencies, the range between these frequencies and the standard deviation are all calculated before the factor analysis begins. Features with very low frequency of occurrence are discarded as insignificant.
The aim of the factor analysis is to identify groups of linguistic features which co-vary. To say they co-vary does not necessarily mean that they co-occur but that there is a definite correlation (or inverse correlation) between their frequency counts in the texts. This means that it is equally important to learn that two features co-occur as it is to learn that two features are mutually exclusive, or that the presence of one will point to the absence of the other.
In this way Biber establishes factors, which are sets made up of different linguistic criteria. The factor will include both negative and positive `weightings' which indicate linguistic features which co-occur (positive weightings) or whose presence marks the absence of the other (negative weightings). The most significant features are those which have the largest weighting irrespective of whether this is shows attraction or repulsion. Biber ultimately establishes 7 factors which are representative of the texts in the study and are mutually exclusive.
We now turn to the interpretation of these factors by which have been identified from the texts and which will, in turn, be used to identify styles of text. Up to this point identification of the features, calculation of their frequencies and the extent of their co-variation has been objective and automatic. The factors which have been established are then interpreted by Biber to show the communicative functions to be associated with each factor. The reader is referred to Biber (1988: 104-114) for a full interpretation of the factors identified. For convenience we show here some examples of some of the kind of results obtained.
He finds, for example, that in the first factor there is a high weighting of nouns, private verbs, present tense, pronouns, WH-questions and so on. This is what the statistics tell us. Biber then interprets these patterns of linguistic features in terms of the style of the text. A high density of nouns (the primary bearers of referential meaning in a text), for example, indicates a great density of information. Longer word length suggests more specific, specialised meanings, and the type/token ratio also points to a high density of information as well as very precise lexical choices resulting in an exact presentation of informational content. An interactive style is indicated by a high weighting of present tense forms indicating a verbal rather than a nominal style, also of pronouns and WH-questions. The interpretation continues but there is no need to go into such detail here. The important point is the value of such analysis in the identification of style in text.
Biber relates the factor to the text and the text is then given a factor score. This enables us to relate the linguistic groupings of the first factor, for example, to two separate communicative parameters, namely that the primary purpose of the writer/speaker is informational while adopting an interactive, affective and involved style; and secondly that the production circumstances are such as to allow careful editing possibilities, allowing precise lexical choices and an integrated textual structure.
The dimensions identified by Biber are then related to the genres which have already been pre-established for classification of texts in the corpora used. It becomes obvious that these genres are not coherent in terms of their linguistic features. Some dimensions are equally applicable to various genres, while within one genre there may be a wide range of variation. As example, Biber shows that within `academic prose' there is a wide range of variation, as is there within the genre `conversation'. This would indicate that we can not take these genres as representative of written and spoken English respectively, nor can we take the analysis of any one text to be representative of the genre. The study also shows that there is no one, absolute difference between speech and writing, but that there are, instead, several dimensions of variation which are manifested in both.
The dimensions identified in this study succeed in defining a set of relations among texts which can be used for an overall text typology. As Biber points out, since the texts in the study cover a wide range of discourse types in English as well as the linguistic features of many communicative functions, the dimensions of variation that he establishes provide parameters of linguistic variation which he claims exist among English texts as a whole.
The implications of such research are many. The methodology outlined here has already been applied to various other kinds of research, namely the comparison of dialects within English and identification of linguistic variation between British and American English through analysis of lexical and syntactic features; for stylistic comparisons not only between specific authors, but of the historical evolution of English written texts. Particularly relevant in the discussion of style is the stylistic research done by Biber & Finnegan (1988) who use the technique outlined here in conjunction with cluster analysis to identify eight styles of stance in English texts, e.g `Cautious', `Secluded from Dispute', and so on. Within a multi-lingual environment, the consequences of this kind of analysis are important since this approach to textual analysis can be used for other languages, if similar features for classification can be identified, and therefore we can provide comparable text types within a multilingual environment.
Biber works with a considerable number of linguistic features; by contrast Nakamura has developed techniques for examining the classificatory role of individual features, using Hyashi's Quantificational Method, Type Three. In a series of papers (Nakamura, 1986; Nakamura, 1987; Nakamura, 1992; Nakamura, 1993) he has shown how texts, genres and corpora can be differentiated according to the incidence of chosen features.
The basis of Nakamura's method is the means by which a large number of individual observations or classifications of language can be grouped together to show broad general tendencies. Although the statistical processing allows up to 14 different parameters of grouping (called `axes'), in practice the top three usually account for the vast bulk of the data; also since the results are easiest to interpret when presented in the form of a diagram, three dimensions is the most complex structure that can be shown with ease. Nakamura's diagrams show graphically the relative distances of linguistic items from each other, or the relative distances from each other of texts or corpora containing these items.
Nakamura's techniques can be brought in to classify in a wide range of circumstances. The distribution of pronouns in texts, or the distribution of grammatical tags, or the distribution of the vocabulary; there can be a lot of corpus material or a little -- Nakamura works on corpora from 1 million words to 200 million, and can use a single simple criterion or a complex set of them. From the above discussion it can be concluded that the specification of style in terms of internal criteria is feasible, but that work has only just started. Biber's classifications depend on the relevance of earlier, individual studies, and have not yet incorporated and feedback from large corpus analysis, which promises to offer new dimensions. Nakamura's most recent work (Nakamura & Sinclair, 1995) investigates collocational patterns in multi-million word corpora, showing that his analytical procedure can cope with such a scale. But these are only shafts of light in a vast darkness. As Biber recommends, progress will best be made by frequent cross-checking between internal and external criteria so that each establishes a framework of relevance for the other.
Next:Interim recommendation: styleUp:Text Typology Previous:Topic