50 Explanatory Essay Topics for Desperate Students

Explanatory essay topics may be challenging

While the explanatory essay writing may seem like a daunting task, with a little bit of our professional guidance and an extensive list of essay topic examples and geeky tips, you will feel much better in a moment! As the deadline approaches and you already have too much on your plate, you are not alone! Trust me, most students struggle to choose an excellent explanatory essay topic for their paper! Most often, when you try to look for help, you end up with a list of unclear ideas from the countless sources and only waste your time as the deadline is coming up.

Without a doubt, embarking on a quest to pick an explanatory essay topic is like looking for a needle in a haystack! To save you time and nerves, I have consulted with our team of college and university graduates, college professors, and the tutors to make a list of excellent 50 explanatory essay topics to help you jumpstart your brain and deliver the best paper just in time! 👇

   What is an Explanatory Essay?

Explanatory Essay Definition and Examples

So what is really an explanatory essay, you might wonder? Let me tell you that such papers are also known as expository essays. An explanatory article is one of the most common academic requirements in school. Speaking from my experience, it can also appear in your final exams! Depending on your teacher, your task can be in the form of:

  • Compare and contrast essays
  • Definition essays
  • How-to essays
  • Cause and effect essays

Turning to the Purdue OWL website, we can see that an explanatory article allows a student to:

  • Investigate and expound on an idea.
  • Evaluate the evidence.
  • Form a clear and defined thesis statement.

Let me remind you that your explanatory topic can range from an environmental issue and education struggles in your community to history and the technology. With the thought in mind, I have divided all the themes by subject, so you can get the idea and scroll to what fits your future major or interests you the most! 👇

Explanatory Essay Topics List

      Topics In the Field of Business

When choosing a business topic, make sure to use a strong argumentation and see if you can compare and contrast the issue to an opinion that you have in mind! See the examples:

  1. Sexual harassment or gender discrimination in the workforce and its impacts.
  2. How do the employers ensure the physical and mental health of their employees?
  3. Discrimination against older job applicants vis-à-vis younger job searchers (ageism).
  4. How do the office politics work? How does an individual handle it?
  5. Compare and contrast business plans from the feasibility studies.
  6. Compare and contrast business organizations (sole proprietorship, partnership, and corporation).
  7. How do the businesses benefit from behavioral tracking and marketing strategies?
  8. How can businesses affect (or contribute) to the environment?
  9. How do businesses use social media to promote their goods and services?
  10. How can the businesses manage negative reviews on social media platforms (or incompetent employees)?

      History and Politics Explanatory Essay Topics

An explanatory essay is a great chance to discuss and research the conflicts that took place in our history, talk about the laws, and the politics. If something tickles your brain and concerns you, look through the ideas we have to get your topic:

  1. How did the Israel and Palestine conflict ensue? (You also have an option to tackle other inter-state disputes that you may find interesting!)
  2. How are the laws implemented in a state?
  3. Compare and contrast realism, liberalism, globalism/Marxism, and constructivism (Explore the International Relations theories).
  4. Compare and contrast the three waves of feminism.
  5. Discuss the history of the Atlantic slave trade and its impacts.
  6. How is diplomacy used in foreign policy to prevent or de-escalate the war?
  7. How does an international law restrict the behavior of states and their sovereignty in the international arena?
  8. The role of geography in a state (Ex: United States).
  9. An expository essay on the history, functions, and role of the United Nations.
  10. Religion and politics: Explain the role of religion in the political sphere of a state/states.

Do you want to write a paper that will hook up reader’s attention from the very beginning? Check out our Essay Hook Guide with Examples and take your reader’s breath away! 

Learn More   

      The Internet, Cyberspace, and Technology Related Explanatory Essay Topics

Living in the age of the Internet and technological advancements, there is a lot to choose from when you are interested in the technology related topics:

  1. An explanatory essay on states and cybersecurity.
  2. The deep web and human trafficking/terrorism.
  3. How can the parents safeguard their child’s safety online without infringing on their right to privacy?
  4. How do computer viruses and malware form and spread?
  5. How can the overconsumption of social media contribute to depression and other mental illnesses?
  6. How can social media shape an individual’s perception of beauty?
  7. The dangers of leaving a digital footprint.
  8. How can modern technologies benefit students and their education?
  9. Internet monitoring or censorship in states?
  10. Compare and contrast WhatsApp and Viber (or any other software applications).

      Explanatory Essay Topics Related to Science

Even the engineering and science majors do get explanatory essay assignments! I have tried to make it look interesting:

  1. How are astronauts sent into space?
  2. How does the brain impact a person’s decision making process?
  3. The development of the periodic table of the elements.
  4. How do technology and scientific advances curb infectious diseases?
  5. Compare and contrast the animal cells from the plant cells.
  6. How does the body maintain homeostasis?
  7. How does a sedentary lifestyle affect an individual’s health?
  8. An explanatory essay on the nervous system (or any organ system).
  9. A discussion on the water cycle.
  10. The connection between physical and mental health.

      Other Explanatory Essay Topics

Of course, the ideas are not limited to a definite list of subjects, so look through these other topics to see how broad and extensive your explanatory essay can be!

  1. An explanatory essay on how video games are being developed and designed.
  2. Stress management in a college/high school environment.
  3. How to eat healthy in a college without resorting to spending a substantial amount of money.
  4. Compare and contrast American, Australian, and British English.
  5. Explain the relationship between overpopulation and poverty.
  6. How are the books being made? A historical explanatory essay.
  7. How can a person remain optimistic amidst negativity and the hardships?
  8. How can we identify genuine news/information from the bogus reports?
  9. The youth bulge theory and the violence.
  10. An explanatory essay on the issue of modern slavery.

Not enough topics? Want to focus on current issues? Check out 50 Unique, Controversive and Appealing Pop Culture Topics collected by a practicing private Geek for his students. 

Learn More   

Basically, I always try to ask myself the following questions before I choose the topic:

  • What is my future major and what are the main concerns of my subject?
  • What topic am I most knowledgeable about?
  • What topic is my true passion and the one I can deliver to the audience?
  • What sources and academic backup can I find?
  • Should it be more “compare and contrast” explanatory or analysis explanatory essay?

Do not forget to be curious and attentive because the excellent topic idea may be just around the corner (literally!). As we all know, your only creative limit is the sky above! However, explanatory essay writing tips may further aid your task — read them below! 👇

Browse and download essay examples from the most full and up to date Free Online Essay Database at Homework Lab. All the examples of college essays have been donated by the students to boost your writing creativity.

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   How to Write an Explanatory Essay?

How to write an explanatory essay

I want to share some helpful explanatory essay tips and tricks that I have found helpful. As you read below, you will find a detailed template to help you see what parts have to be present. Now let us start with the list of things to check and follow:

1 Always Plan Ahead!

One of the most challenging things when writing an essay is meeting your deadline and making sure that you nothing is missed! Therefore, you should learn to manage your time, strength, and workload.

  • Dedicate time for researching a potential topic for your explanatory essay.
  • Set a feasible deadline for yourself.
  • Make sure that you stay away from the things that distract you and if there is something that troubles or irritates you, deal with it first.

Take note: An accurate time management practice helps you to prevent yourself from procrastinating.

2 Find a Good Topic!

As you start looking for a good topic, bear in mind the following topic hunting guidelines:

  • You can try listing a set of topics that you would like to write about.
  • You may opt to consult a list of explanatory essay topics online for inspiration (or just do it here!).
  • If you are a college student, you may find a topic related to your course or a field of study.
  • Look for relevant social or environmental topics in your local community. Seek for the issues that worry your friends and people in your local area.

Note: Always consider your target audience too! Here are some important reminders to take note of:

  • Don’t forget to consult your teacher’s essay prompt for more details.
  • Study the prompt carefully to determine the purpose of your explanatory essay.
  • Remember to ask your teacher or a college professor about format requirements and the word count in case something is not clear.

3 Research for Potential Sources!

Do not solely rely on the information that you may find online! You should also consider visiting your campus library for help and inspiration. Explore and look for the references on EbscoHost if your school or college have access to it!

When looking for the credible sources for your explanatory essay, remember to use:

  • Journal articles and academic journal portals
  • The government, school, or company websites
  • Official websites of non-government organizations/international organizations
  • Relevant News articles
  • Books
  • Magazines

Depending on the length of your expository essay, you might need to gather, (and read!) as many sources as you can for your topic to be backed up with information and the evidence. Get ready to be overloaded with information! Most importantly, don’t forget to take helpful notes down or highlight any important information as you read through the sources!

Take note: Do not cut corners and read actively! Avoid skimming through your references!

4 Work with An Outline!

I’m sure you have your notes prepared by now. Hence, you are welcome to draft your outline and construct an interim thesis statement.

   Explanatory Essay Writing Template

    Writing the Introduction:

  • Begin your introductory paragraph with an engaging hook. It can be an interesting fact or data.
  • You should also contextualize your topic in the said paragraph (Ex: Date, author’s name, summary, etc.). This is to help your reader understand your essay!
  • Narrow your introduction down to a thesis statement. A thesis statement is the main claim in your expository essay. Ideally, it should be one to two sentences long.
  • Avoid using the pronoun “I” in your essay unless your teacher permits you. Generally, your article should be written in a third-person.

     Writing the Body:

  • Explanatory essays typically consist of five body paragraphs. Nevertheless, it is to best to follow the requirements stated in the prompt.
  • Be sure to include supporting evidence when writing the details of your paper. Don’t forget to cite with the parenthetical citations. Keep in mind to abide by your teacher’s chosen citation and formatting style.
  • You may embed direct quotations in your explanatory essay, but you have to cite and format them properly. Direct quotes should not exceed 10% of the word count. However, this percentage may vary from instructor to instructor.
  • Avoid cramming information in one paragraph! Ideally, you should dedicate at least one paragraph per theme/topic.
  • Use transition words and topic sentences! They help a lot!

     Writing the Conclusion:

  • Reassert your thesis statement. Your re-stated thesis in the conclusion should not necessarily be a direct copy of the thesis in the introduction.
  • Summarize the main points of your explanatory essay. No new information should be added to the concluding paragraph!
  • You may want to write a call to action or a brief insight into your topic to conclude your essay.

    Edit and Proofread!

  • Proofread and edit your explanatory essay for grammatical and mechanical errors.
  • Make sure that your references/works cited page are formatted properly. Information such as the author’s name and the publishing date should be correct.
  • Restructure or rephrase any unclear statements in your essay.

   When Nothing Works

We all have been through the times when we have to work and study at the same time and the levels of stress and anxiety make it barely possible to finish the task. Just when you need a bit of professional guidance and homework help, our team of professionals in your academic field will happily help you through your assignment by breaking down all of these brain blocks and the mental barriers. It is perfectly fine to ask for help with your task and save your time and the grades. Tell us of your task, fill in the simple form and let us help you do the rest! Never forget that you can always get help here!

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