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How to Write an Informative Essay

If you're writing an informative essay, it's essential to be as explanatory and persuasive as possible. Unlike an expository essay, you are trying to prove a point rather than simply describing a topic.

For instance, an informative essay could be a paper describing why it's important to diversify your investments. However, a comparable expository essay would be one that's titled "What is a Portfolio," simply providing a description to the reader rather than attempting to prove a point.

However, even with an informative essay, you still need to write as though the reader does not know anything about the subject. If you’re already pretty knowledgeable about the topic you're writing about, this can be challenging. You must gather the information you need and present it well to your audience.

Therefore, the way you express yourself can be just as valuable as the information you're conveying. This is especially true if persuasion is part of the assignment. While the first step is to thoroughly look over the professor's instructions, these other tips will help you to create a compelling essay.

1. Do Thorough Research

The first and most crucial part of creating an informative essay is doing adequate research. While it's typically best to do your research online, you need to make sure that you’re using credible websites. Determining whether or not a site has reliable information can be difficult, but these tips can help:

Know Where the Information Came From

Determine who has published the website. Reputable sources will ensure that the information they post online can be easily verified. However, it can be much harder to determine that a site is not a credible source.

That's because these sources tend to make the source of information far less clear. Luckily, these tips can help you to figure out where a website's information is coming from:

  • Always remember that .gov and .edu websites are typically considered to be the most reliable sources.
  • Only source articles that fully list their sources. That way, you won’t make the mistake of accidentally citing unreliable information from poorly referenced sources.
  • Do some light research to verify that sources do not have a poor reputation.
  • If you are ever in doubt, there are reliable fact-checkers available online, such as Snopes.com and Mediabiasfactcheck.com.

Avoid Sites That Make Outlandish Claims

Always take a look at the navigation section of the home page, and examine the list of articles featured on the side of a website you're considering as a source. If there is any information on the site that appears dubious, it's best to stay away.

Avoid Websites That Have Strong Bias

If a website appears to have a strong bias, you probably won’t want to cite their articles, especially if they have a very obvious political leaning or otherwise promoting some sort of agenda.

2. Start By Creating an Outline

Making an outline for your paper will substantially speed up the process once you get to actually writing it. There are two main steps for creating an outline: writing a thesis statement and outlining the article itself.

Create a Thesis Statement

Your thesis statement should describe the argument that you're making with the rest of the article. You should be able to express this statement concisely—ideally in a single sentence. This will be the point that you are trying to make with your essay, and the rest of it will simply be providing evidence to prove your point.

Outline the Essay

To write an effective essay, it's essential to know what you're going to say before you begin writing. That’s where a well-organized outline comes in. Here are a few tips that you'll need to keep in mind when mapping out your paper:

  • The introduction should include a basic overview of what the rest of the essay will provide readers.
  • You should organize the body of the essay in a linear structure. In other words, one section should lead naturally into the next.
  • After you organize the body of the article, you need to highlight the article's main talking points.

3. Write the Headers

The headers will play a key role in how much your paper draws in the reader to continue reading your essay. Use language that evokes strong emotions in the reader, such as joy, intrigue, excitement, surprise, or fear. Simply stating facts, on the other hand, will bore your audience and likely end up affecting your final grade.

4. Create the First Sentences

Every paragraph's first sentence is a critical part of your essay. Make sure that you summarize what you're going to say in the rest of the paragraph in your first sentence to ensure that the readers know what to anticipate, which in turn, makes them more interested in reading the rest of the paragraph.

5. Know What You're Going to Say in Each Paragraph

If you don't know what you're going to say in each paragraph, providing all the necessary information will be impossible. While your outline can help to give you ideas of what to say, take some time to consider how to properly deliver the information to the reader in every paragraph. Usually, the best way to do this is with a tone that is conversational yet professional.

However, the tone of each essay will undoubtedly vary considerably depending on the unique nature of every topic. Thoroughly assess the tone that the reader will be looking for in each section by effectively reading over the instructions before beginning your work.

6. Effectively Edit the Entire Essay

After you finish writing your essay, you'll need to begin the process of editing it. The amount of time that this step will take depends on your editing experience, the essay topic, and other variables.

While thorough editing is essential to a good essay, be sure to also focus on the headers and the introduction. These are the first things that people will see when they read your essay, so you want to make them count.

Read the essay aloud to identify any awkward sections and verify that all of your writing is grammatically correct. Here are a few key aspects of the essay's grammar to look at:

  • Combine clauses with the appropriate use of commas throughout the article.
  • Ensure that all sentences end with the proper punctuation. Avoid combining separate sentences with a comma.
  • Space paragraphs apart appropriately. Avoid walls of text because these are difficult to read and can detract from your point.

If you need help with editing or proofreading your paper, UnemployedProfessors offers that as well.

7. Check the Formatting

The formatting of your essay will play a crucial role in the final grade that you receive. Most essays need to be in 12-point, Times New Roman font and double-spaced. Citations and bibliographies will differ based on the particular style required by your institution or professor. Also, ensure that all headers are the same size and are in title case (first letter of each word is capitalized). There are a few key exceptions to be aware of. For example, you should not capitalize "the," "are," "a," and other articles. These will remain in sentence case.

Or, we can take the task off your hands and help you format your essay properly. Be sure to ask about our essay formatting services!

UnemployedProfessors Writes Professional-Level Informative Essays

Writing an effective informative essay can be challenging, but that won't be the case if you seek assistance from UnemployedProfessors. That's because we have worked on just about every type of research paper and essay that you can imagine for every concentration under the sun. Get in touch with us today for high-quality essay writing services at affordable rates and quick turnaround.


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