Know how to write good essays

1.0 Know how to write good essays.

 1.1 List the different types of essays.

Essay Writing


An essay is a short composition on a particular theme or subject. It involves the arrangement of sentences into paragraphs that are logically connected.

One of the important things in an essay is that the writer adopts a particular point of view on a particular topic. This reflects his style.


Parts of an Essay

We have three parts of an essay. They are introduction, body, and conclusion.



This is the first paragraph of the Essay. It covers a paragraph only.  Also, it informs the reader of the subject of the entire essay with basic explanations. Further, it reveals the tone of the essay, for instance, anxiety or impatience. The style of the writer is also revealed, for example, short sentences can reflect the tone of impatience.


In this paragraph, the writer presents the main argument, explanation, and information process. It contains more paragraphs that support the main idea in the introduction. These paragraphs are logically connected by linking words like, in addition to, besides, although, yet, in other words, and some others.


The conclusion is usually the last paragraph. It ends the essay and brings together all that has been discussed in the essay. Also, it does not present new points rather it drives home the points discussed.

Types of Essays

There are four basic types of Essays. These include the descriptive essay, narrative essay, expository essay, and argumentative essay.


1.2 Identify the features of each type of essay listed in 2.1 above.

Descriptive Essay

The descriptive essay as the name implies describes something. It draws a clear picture with words. It can describe an object, a process, a person, a house, and many other things. In essence, it gives a graphic detail of something. It makes use of imagery and precise details.

Narrative Essay

A narrative essay relates a sequence of events or tells a story. It can be based on fact or the writer’s imagination. It gives attention to details in terms of character, setting, and conflict. The structure is usually, the beginning, conflict, climax, and resolution.

Expository Essay

The expository essay is used to inform the readers, explain something, or analyze certain facts. In essence, it passes relevant information. In most cases, it follows chronological ordering. For example, a review of books or films, and instruction leaflets that are attached to television sets or other purchased items. It can tell us how something is put together, operated, or repaired.

Argumentative Essay

In this type of writing, the writer persuades the reader to accept his views or position on a particular issue. The essence is to convince or influence the audience.


1.3 Generate/Gather relevant information on a given topic.

To write a good essay one should first gather relevant information on the Essay topic. Below are some methods that could be used to generate/gather relevant information for Essay topics.


Your instructor or teacher is always a source of help. You can find out from your teacher the sources of information for a given topic. This might include relevant papers that might have been written on that topic. It might also include some sections of the library and some other relevant sources. The teacher’s direction to any source of information is of great relevance and time saving because it helps you to directly assess the sources relevant to your Essay topic.


One can as well brainstorm the Essay topic. This involves focusing your thought on the topic. Any idea that comes to your mind about the topic is important and should be written down fast. At this level, it does not matter if the information is wrong or right. Just write down either the words or phrases that come to mind when you think of the topic.


You can carry out a mini-research or study on the topic. You may read what others have written about it, textbooks, online materials, materials from e-libraries, and some other sources. As you read these materials you note down the information related to your essay topic.


A visit to your school library or state library can help one explore relevant textbooks, journals, newsprints, and other important sources in the library. As you read through the materials from this source take notes from discussions that concern your topic. At this level, you do not need to organize the information. Just write them down as full sentences or phrases.


You can discuss the essay topic with your parents, classmates, or some other groups. Find out their ideas or opinions on your topic. This method helps you to generate information that might differ from what you already have. It is important that you note them down and compare them with your opinion or other information you have noted down.


Your class notes or subjects that contain discussions on the essay topic or related topics could be of great help. Search them to see if there are relevant pieces of information from these sources. Write down any related or relevant information found.


1.4 Outline

An outline is a skeletal framework of the essay you intend to write. In a nutshell, it presents the main ideas and supporting ideas in your intended essay. This will direct the writer to achieve the objective and purpose of the essay. It also helps one to maintain an organized structure of the essay.

To write a good outline one can follow the following steps:

  • The topic of the essay:

If you have not been given an essay topic, you must choose your topic. In doing this one should consider the purpose of the essay and what he wants the readers to learn.


  • Gather/Generate relevant information on the chosen topic (see 1.3):

Gather relevant information for your essay. Then pick the main points or the information that is most useful to your essay, considering the purpose and relevance to your audience.


  • Organize your ideas:

Having selected the main ideas, you need to organize them. This forms the structure of your essay. The organization of your essay is relative to the type of structure you want to adopt. You can adopt the chronological process, classification, cause and effect, numerical or logical order. You should choose one type of organizational structure and use it till the end of the essay.


  • Create your supporting ideas:

At this level decide what your supporting ideas should be. As you have decided your main ideas, list the supporting ideas for each main idea. These could be examples, facts, theories, or minor stories that support a particular main idea.


  • Review and edit:

You must read and edit everything you have written. Also, you need to establish a link between the main ideas and make sure that you uphold the same structure till the end.


 Format of an outline:


An umbrella statement that reflects the main points or major ideas in the essay.


Body paragraphs:

Paragraph 1:

Main point: Topic sentence

Supporting ideas


Paragraph 2:

Main point: Topic sentence

Supporting ideas


Paragraph 3:

Main point: Topic sentence

Supporting ideas



A statement or statements that recapitulates the main points or major idea

reflected in the introduction.


The number of the body points depends on the number of points/main ideas that you would like to discuss. If you have more points, it means that you would have more paragraphs. It is vital to include every main idea you want to use for your essay in the outline. Also, any point you would not use in your essay should not be added to your outline. The outline should strictly serve as your guide.


1.5 Steps for writing a good Essay:

The following are a few basic steps for writing a good essay:

  • Decide the topic (where it is not given).
  • Jot down the points (or ideas you want to discuss).
  • Organize your points and draw an outline.
  • Write the essay following the outline.
  • Edit
  • Read once more and correct.



  • Discuss the term essay writing.
  • Write an essay on any of the following topics, bearing in mind the types of essay writing discussed, and adhering strictly to the steps for writing a good essay.
  • My first day at college
  • The effects of COVID 19 in the education sector
  • The impact of social media on businesses









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