In planning and writing an expository essay, is important to first begin with an outline. [ An outline is a useful tool for assisting the writer with moving past writer’s block and helping him/her to organize the information in a logical, balanced sequence. It helps indicate the relationship of pieces of information to each other, and lets the writer know early in the process if he or she needs to acquire more information in a certain area, or if he has too much in another. Organizing the information ahead of time in this manner helps create unity and coherence throughout the essay, rather than the alternative, which is to write randomly about whatever ideas come to mind.
The outline will also help the writer determine topic sentences for each body paragraph, as each heading in a simple outline typically lends itself to be used for this. Once those key ideas have been established, the writer can fine tune the topic sentences, and move on from that point to further develop the supporting points. The supporting points are the sub-headings found in an outline, with details extending from those. For example, the structure might resemble something like the following:
Topic Sentence (ex: One factor to consider with the growth of the world’s population is the effect on the environment.)
Supporting Point (ex: As cities grow, natural areas diminish.)
Supporting Point (ex: As humanity increases, natural resources decrease.)
Supporting Point (ex: As humanity uses natural resources over and over again, such as land, it does not allow time for recovery.)
The topic sentence is generally placed at the beginning of each new paragraph, with a transitional statement to move the reader fluidly from one idea to the next. Transitional words and phrases might be those like “therefore,…” and “due to this,…”. These help to create unity and coherence throughout the essay, as well. ] (More)