Understanding the Different Types of Essays Used in Academic Writing

Types of essays

Writing a wonderful piece of essay has become crucially important to get academic success. Nowadays, essay writing is so common that at some point of time, each one of us might have written an essay- whether its for professional purpose, for college admission tests or simply for a school assignment.

Before you start to write my essay online, you must choose its type as it will help you in writing promptly and rightly. With so many types of essays, students often get confused and fail to manage the variations.

To help them out, here we are exploring different types of essays that they might find helpful in various academic stages of their life. You can choose any of them depending upon its objectives.

Four Major Types of Essays for Academic Writing Purposes:

Every writer has to face different challenges in completing their essay writing assignments at various stages of academic life. Although there are several types of essays such as explanation essay, discursive essay, reflective essay, illustration essay, we have presented four major types of essays here. You can take a definitive look at it to know about it in details:

1. Expository Essay

An expository essay is the most time-consuming of the different types of essays that exists in the academic field. It includes a brief explanation of any idea or theme. You can expand these expository essays by fulfilling some its common yet specific requirements, like a proper investigation of an idea, its comprehensive and systematic explanation, a detailed assessment of evidences, and a brief statement about an idea.

Features that an effective Expository essay must possess:

  • It should have a distinct thesis statement and an extinct statement of intent.
  • Address your thesis or answer the question in no-frill approach.
  • Support your thesis, claim or answer with factual evidences.
  • It must have brevity and conciseness.

While writing expository essays, its first paragraph should be the shortest as there you need to state your intent, thesis and research question clearly. For writing the first paragraph, a maximum of 200 words is sufficient.

Contrary to this, the body of the succeeding paragraphs will have larger word count. These paragraphs should be crucial enough to possess all the essential details required for supporting your thesis statement. But make sure to keep it straightforward and factual.

At last, there will be a concluding paragraph where you need to summarize your main ideas and emphasize your point without dwelling it much.

2. Persuasive Essay

When different types of essays are compared, the persuasive essay is the toughest among them. This is because here you need to influence the readers using logical reasoning and insist them to look from the writer’s point of view. To get useful and comprehensive tips on how you can insist your readers through your arguments, you can follow some persuasive essay examples.

It is a challenging task to write persuasive essays as you have to be convincing and eloquent in proving your argument to be imperative.

Few qualities that a persuasive essay must have:

  • Your reasoning should be valid.
  • Include only factual evidences to prove your arguments
  • Try to sustain the interest of the readers
  • The essay conclusion can be forceful, yet it must be convincing to readers.
  • There should be a natural progression of ideas in the entire body of the essay.
  • Avoid using fillers as it might discredit the argument of your topic.

While writing persuasive essays, you can even use transitional devices to give more cohesive and coherent look to your sentences. It is important that your writing should be concise, to-the-point and follow a progressive phase.

Moreover, if you want to include compelling arguments and its related substantial evidences to your essay, then it could be a bit lengthy. Thus, the essay length could be of 2,000 words or more, depending upon your essay topics and requirements.

3. Narrative Essay

Generally, a narrative essay is based upon real-life experiences. If you don’t know how to write a narrative essay, then know that it is all about recalling a particular day of your life or a particular incident of your life that your target readers might find interesting. As this essay is like a story-telling, it is written from the point-of-view of first person. A unique feature of narrative essay is that while writing this, you don’t need any reference or help from external sources. You can follow some narrative essay examples to get concise idea upon it.

Some characteristics that these narrative essays possess are:

  • It contains sensory details, emotions, personal experience, as well as vivid imageries.
  • Includes every essential element that a story must have like setting, characters, plot, themes, tone, style, etc.
  • Helps in developing the creative approach of a student.
  • You can even add some dialogues or anecdotes into the narrative to make it look more realistic.
  • The type of language used here is evocative or descriptive.

In order to write a full-bodied narrative essay, you must need at least 1000 words as you have to be descriptive while sharing your personal feelings and experiences. At times, these narrative essays can be considered as a concise version of a novel, where every particular section of the essay represents a different chapter in the story.

Finally, try to conclude your essay with a personal statement or a proper conclusion. Doing this will make your essay memorable for the readers. You can also refer to some narrative essay examples to get a clear idea on how to write it more effectively.

4. Analytical Essay

In an Analytical essay, you examine, analyze as well as interpret the core components of any idea, event or any works of art like paintings, book, films, plays, poems etc. and present your arguments respectively.

Some popular characteristics of Analytical essay are discussed below:

  • In the introduction, the argument should be presented in such a way that it highlights the text that you are considering here.
  • A proper analysis of the text should be done. Make sure that it should be relevant to the arguments that you are presenting and it should meet the author’s goals and their illustrations.
  • It must sustain the interest of the readers
  • Present a personal response to the essay, either positive or negative. You should formulate your opinion on the basis of a through comprehension of the text.

A common literary analytical essay can range from 500 words to 700 words. It should not be that much lengthy but it must cover all the main points of the essay. Moreover, the overall essay should concentrate upon the text analysis.

Some helpful tips that will help you in writing a perfect analytical essay:

  • Avoid using first person in the writing
  • Never use colloquialisms or informal language in the writing.
  • Try to avoid the use of contractions
  • Always try to analyze the story, do not retell it.
  • Analyze critically and sometimes your personal responses might not be positive.

Some Other Types of Essays for Academic Writing Purpose:

Apart from the four major types of essays that are popular with academic writers, there are some more types of essays that exist. Few of them are given below:

1. Definition Essay

 A definition essay, as the name suggests, is a type of essay that defines different ideas, things, and perceptions. Though this is one of the simplest types of essays, yet here the definitions are not copied from any dictionary. But sometimes plagiarism might exist as in these sorts of essays, you need to include both the official definition as well as that of one based upon individual understanding. For example, you can define ‘school bullying’, ‘justice’, etc.

2. Cause and Effect Essay

A cause and effect essay is a type that makes readers understands that everything is quite inter-related to each other in this universe. Likewise, one thing is the cause and the other thing is the effect of that particular cause.

In these types of essays, a writer tries to draw a parallel between some events or subjects by certainly specifying the reasons for the things to occur and simultaneously its consequences that will take place. A popular example of that could be the ‘Cause and effects of the Civil War in US.’

3. Reflection Essay

In a Reflection essay, the writer needs to focus on their personal opinions and responses about the analyzed topic. Here the writer explains the main topic of the essay and it is based upon credible facts and evidence. Thus, it has a domain of subjectivity on one side.

4. Critical Analysis Essay

A critical analysis essay often deals with a complete understanding of the covered material. Here the writer needs to select a piece of text from any scholarly article or any chapter of the book that is related to the topic. Then he/she should analyze, write, and interpret the modified results in your personalized way.

5. Descriptive Essay

A descriptive essay is one of the original types of essays that are written by giving a detailed analysis of any literary piece or any events. Here a detailed description is provided for describing the topic that might include many descriptive words. Some of the popular literary tools that writers use while writing any descriptive essays are allegories, metaphors, analogies, personifications, similes, etc.

The main motive behind writing such essays is to visualize things, whether it is the description of any personal experience or sharing emotions, etc.

6. Argumentative Essay

A basic style of writing an argumentative essay is to present some arguments in such a way that it looks favorable to a certain literary text or any events, incidents, etc. While writing any argumentative essay topics, there is an additional body paragraph that represents arguments contrary to the previous paragraphs. For example, in an argumentative essay, you could take a stance on whether renewable energy is the best solution to our energy needs, and provide evidence to support your position.

7. Compare and Contrast Essay

In this compare and contrast essay category, either you need to make a comparison or a contrast between two similar or different things. In addition to this, you can also mention both similarities as well as differences between the selected events, locations, and people.

This essay helps you to know more than a single topic at a time. Also, you will have a better understanding of different topics in a single essay by mentioning both similarities as well as differences.

8. Process Essay

A Process essay generally involves a process of either making or doing anything. The main thought behind writing such essays is that after going through the essay the readers will get a complete idea of how to do or make any particular thing.

After going through this article, hope you have got a clear-cut idea on the different types of essays and how you can focus upon writing any of them. While writing essay, always keep in mind to keep your article succinct.

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