Types of Essays Narration Description

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Types of Essays




Styles of Expository Writing



Argumentative OR Persuasive

An essay with a reasonable argument that is supported with evidence

An essay that uses an emotional appeal, call to action, and supported evidence, to convince you of an opinion.

Methods of Development/Organizational Patterns

Elements of Narration:

- Chronological Order

- A beginning, middle, end

- Uses “I” or “We”

- Based on an element of truth (cannot be fantasy)

- Can have the elements of a story (such as dialogue)

- Answers the 5 “W”s

- There is a moral or lesson stated

Elements of Description:

- Spatial or Directional Order

- Appeals to the 5 senses

- Uses adjectives and adverbs

- Dominant Impression

- Cannot describe things/events that occur before or after

- The “weakest” form of essay, it usually cannot stand alone. You generally find example of it IN other essays.

Expository Methods of Development:


-Sequence (Process Analysis)

-Example and Illustration


- Cause and Effect

-Classification and Division

*Use transitional terms to help you recognize/identify the correct pattern/method being used*

Coherence: The physical connection between sentences and paragraphs. It creates a logical flow of ideas.

This is SEPARATE from the information above. Coherence is the way a writer organizes their thoughts so that it makes sense.

Transitional Terms – Transitions are connecting words that help link within sentences, between sentences and between paragraphs.

Example: The cows stood silently in the garden. However, in the pig pen chaos ensued as the pen was a flurry of activity.

Example from an essay:

True, they didn’t do so when he was 14 and his consuming passion was collecting hip-hop CDs with especially nasty lyrics.

And true, they didn’t put their foot down when he announced at 16 that he was going to drop out of Tamiscal High School – the elite “alternative” school where students determined their own courses of study and only saw a teacher once a week.

Granted, they didn’t interfere when he abruptly decided to become a Muslim after reading The Autobiography of Malcolm X, grew a beard, and took to wearing long white robes and an oversized skullcap. On the contrary: His father was “proud of John for pursuing an alternative course”, while his mother told friends that it was “good for a child to find a passion.”

  1. To Show Time. after, afterward, always, as soon as, at last, at once, briefly, eventually, finally, immediately, in the meantime, in the past (or future), last, later, meanwhile, next, never, now, often, once, promptly, sometimes, soon.

  2. To Show Place. above, among, around, at this point, behind, below, beside, beyond, down, forward, from, here, in front of, inside, nearby, next to, on, on the other side, opposite, over, through.

  3. To Add An Idea. again, also, and, as well as, besides, for one thing, further, furthermore, in addition to, last, likewise, more, moreover, next, similarly, too.

  4. To Illustrate or Explain an Idea. for example, for instance, in other words, in particular, namely, specifically, such as, that is, thus, to illustrate.

  5. To Compare or Contrast Ideas. but, even so, conversely, differently, however, in contrast, in spite of, in the same way, nevertheless, on the contrary, on the other hand, still, yet.

  6. To Show a Result. accordingly, as a result, consequently, for that reason, hence, then, therefore, thus.

  7. To Emphasize an Idea. above all, especially, indeed, in fact, most important.

  8. To Summarize an Idea. as has been noted, finally, in brief, in other words, in short, on the whole, to sum up.

Synonym Usage -- Synonym usage is using different words with the same meaning. (Helps the writer stay on topic)

He stumbled while looking for the keys in the dark, finally managed to open the door. He shuffled through the hallway, switched on the lights, and in his drunken haze, fumbled with his coat buttons…

"Space is big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-bogglingly big it is. I mean, you may think it's a long way down the road to the chemist's, but that's just peanuts to space."

Pronoun or Antecedent Reference -- The pronoun used in the next sentence replaces the noun it represents, therefore unnecessary repetition is avoided.

  • Kelly lifted Mickey into the air and then set him down.

  • Ex: Mary had a little lamb. She had nice wool mitts. (She, being the pronoun)

Parallel Structure -- Parallel structure involves putting together elements of similar structure to achieve balanced writing. Good parallel structure improves the clarity of writing

Example: On the weekend I enjoy skiing, skidooing and sliding.

Example: I walked over the bridge, across the meadow, and into the deserted cabin.

Example: I came. I saw. I conquered.

Emphasis: Methods that the writer uses to emphasize, highlight, and stress key ideas

  • Effective Diction – Cornucopia, Anguish, Peril

  • Rhetorical Questions – “What is the meaning of life?”, “Now, doesn’t that sound like fun?”

  • Sentence Brevity (Short sentences) –. There was silence. They can fetch!

  • Sentence Fragments – So, like, there we were!

  • He jumped!

Use of Effective Punctuation – “!”, “….”, “?”, “ ”

  • Use of ellipsis (…)

  • Use of dash (--), parenthesis, brackets ()

  • Hyphenated words – for a purpose (ex: honey-coloured or sugar-flavoured makes these words one image – one adjective to describe and object, place, person)

  • Unusual Expressions – “Beep. I’m sorry there must be some mistake. Beep”.


  • Use of Parallel Structure – Be sure to eat your supper, complete your homework, and study your notes before going to sleep tonight.

  • Use of FontHello, Hello! Hello

  • Purposeful Repetition – It is important you study for your test. If you do not study, you will not get the marks you deserve!

Unity: When an essay remains on ONE topic or idea throughout the essay.

This is to be considered separately from coherence which is the PHYSICAL connecting of sentences and phrases.

1Thesis restatement

- an essay has unity when each paragraph relates to the main idea/thesis of the whole essay.

2Repetition of key words/phrases (or synonyms)The use of key words, phrases, or clauses more than once in a short passage—to reinforce a specific point, message, or argument.

We will look at specific examples in this unit to practice identifying this element.

Closing By Return -- A restatement of the thought, opinion, or sentiment found in the thesis statement, sometimes used in the clinching sentence.

See below for example. We will look at specific examples in this unit to practice identifying this element.

When assessing unity in an essay, the approach that is most often used in English is as follows:

Paragraph one: introduction. Introductory techniques and thesis statement.

Paragraph two: the development of first reason, example...and its relationship to thesis.

Paragraph three: the development of second reason...tie in to thesis.

Paragraph four: the development of third reason...return to thesis.

Conclusion: a summation, a restatement of thesis, closing by return...whatever seems to be the most effective way of concluding this specific answer.

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