Types Of Examples In Expository Essays

An O-Level expository essay requires you to illustrate your ideas to your readers with supporting examples. Often, when students see that they have to give examples, they tend to draw them from their own social contexts.

However, an essay that only consists of these limited examples will only illustrate a very small range of personal experiences! In order for your essay to resonate more strongly with the general reader, you should use a diversity of example types.

Having a wide range of supporting material also helps provide your point with more justification, as you are reinforcing your point with different sorts of proof. For example, while a statistic might highlight the widespread occurrence of a phenomenon, a quotation by a famous person might express the emotional or more personal side of the particular phenomenon!

One way to beef up your body paragraphs with good supporting content is to FEED them. Just like in any conversation, apart from supporting your main points, facts, examples, experiences, details and quotations also liven up the discussion!

Padding your body paragraphs with relevant details and examples makes your points more credible. Compare the two examples below:

Paragraph 1a

Point: Mobile phone usage is bad for health

Example: My eyes get tired after staring at the screen for too long.

Paragraph 1b

Point: Mobile phone usage is bad for health

Example: According to the Straits Times, South Korean research has shown that the more screen time a young child gets, the higher risk they are at for delays in language development.

While there might not be anything wrong with the first example, you may realise that the second paragraph has stronger justification as it applies more generally across many people and the evidence comes from a credible source. The second example also allows you to talk about a longer-lasting impact on health!

Of course, these details and examples don’t simply come to you with just a snap of your fingers. Like anything precious, they have to be collected through a long process of consistent reading across a wide range of topics. Luckily for you, the iThink magazine has a diverse range of topics (and essay notes) all in one place.


Puzzled by expository writing? Check out our articles on writing expository essays: