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10 Quick Tips For Writing An Outstanding Exploratory Essay


  1. Understand what an exploratory essay is
  2. There are dozens of different kinds of essays, so it is important that you understand what is required and expected for the kind of paper you’ve been assigned. An exploratory essay is more or less what it sounds like—rather than arguing a point, it serves to explore a subject. It is most similar to a research paper, but it can be a bit looser in structure.

  3. Pick a dynamic topic
  4. One key to success in writing an exploratory paper is to choose a topic that lends itself well to exploration. You’ll want to choose one that is dynamic and has enough different parts, interactions, and that you can start to ask ‘why’ and ‘how’ about. Unlike with a research paper, you don’t need to have one central point of the topic that you write around.

  5. Try to take a unique approach
  6. You should try to show your readers something that they didn’t already know, or wouldn’t otherwise think about, for your topic. Similarly, try to synthesize the information you find to make new points, so that you aren’t just parroting someone else’s writing.

  7. Research sources
  8. Having outside sources that provide information and analysis about your topic will make writing your paper much easier. They can also serve to validate points that you are making.

  9. Outline your paper
  10. Outlining your paper can make it much easier to organize your paper well.

    Particularly with an exploratory paper, it is important to have your paper flow well, moving from one topic to another in a way that makes sense, and doesn’t just jump around.

  11. Make sure it is exploratory
  12. Once you’ve outlined your paper, it’s a good time to go back and make sure that your paper is serving the role it is supposed to.

  13. Format citations early on
  14. This will make the writing process much easier, and save you a lot of time when you’re finished writing.

  15. Break the paper into sections
  16. Including section headers in your paper will make it more organized, and make it easier for the reader to navigate it.

  17. Write at least two drafts
  18. Writing at least one rough draft will give you a chance to edit the paper, and make any organizational changes once you have it written.

  19. Have someone proofread it
  20. Proofread your paper yourself first, then find someone else like a family member or classmate to read over it for you too. Chances are they’ll catch mistakes you’ve missed.