How to write a classification essay

How to Write a Classification Essay

At some stage in your high school or college education, you are likely to be assigned a classification essay. Tutors or instructors assign classification essays to help them evaluate a student’s ability to categorize data based on particular properties. Writing this type of essay may seem challenging if you have never approached this type of assignment, but once you learn how to write one you will come to realize that it really isn’t that hard after all. In this article, you are going to learn the meaning of classification essays, and some of the tips and tricks you can use to properly structure one.

What Is a Classification Essay?

A classification essay is a formal piece of writing where one is required to showcase categorization and generalization skills. It involves organizing things into groups and providing relevant examples that fit into each. You can choose your own classification criteria but ensure you are able to explain your reasoning. Unsure where to start? We can write a classification paper for you at

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The Structure of a Classification Essay

Before you start writing, it’s crucial to understand the structure of a classification essay. One of the popular structures of a classification essay is the ‘five paragraphs’ structure. It includes the introductory paragraph, three body paragraphs, and the concluding paragraph. However, you can include additional paragraphs if appropriate.

  1. Introductory Paragraph– As with most types of essays, you’ll need to begin with the introduction. Since the introduction is the first part of your essay, it’s crucial to clearly identify your subject by explaining what you are going to be categorizing. A good introduction offers the readers an explanation of the purpose or significance of your essay. Ensure you also include a reason for categorizing these items. Finally, your introduction should include a thesis statement. This will identify your groups and also offer a brief explanation of the criteria for each of them.
  2. Body Paragraphs– The purpose of the body in an essay is to develop the thesis or argument outlined in the introduction fully. Divide the body of your essay into 3 or more paragraphs. Each paragraph in the body discusses one major point in the development of the main case perhaps discuss the strengths or weaknesses. While writing the contents of your essay, each paragraph should start with a topic sentence. The topic sentence should relate to your thesis statement to put emphasis and strengthen your ideas. Ensure to include relevant examples. Ensure you keep your paragraphs short since readers will most likely be frustrated by large blocks of writing and end up skipping your essay.
  3. Conclusion– this will be last paragraph of your essay. The concluding paragraph is where you will pull together the various categories that you have examined in the body of your classification essay. Ensure you provide a brief summary on each of them. Restate your thesis statement to make it striking and convincing. Depending on the subject matter, you may also decide to recommend the particular one over the others, but if you do so make sure you explain why you have come to that conclusion.

How to Write a Classification Essay

Since you now know how to structure your essay, it is time to sit down and plan how to write a classification essay. Writing an effective classification requires a clear plan of action. Proper planning will ensure you produce not only a compelling essay but a coherent one as well. The following are some crucial steps you may want to consider:

  • Brainstorming Ideas– If you haven’t been assigned a topic then your first step is going to be to brainstorm a few potential ideas. Brainstorming will help you focus on a group of people, things or ideas that can be logically divided up and brought together into groups. While brainstorming, ensure you settle on something that has definite categories for easier comparison. Avoid topics that are too broad or with too many categories, but also avoid topics that are too narrow. You should aim at choosing categories that would be enough to make comparisons and can go with your criteria for classification.
  • Choosing Your Categories– after selecting your topic, you’ll need to think about how you are going to divide your categories. Choose the appropriate angle you will approach them since some topics have multiple options. For instance, if it is about a group of people, would you sort them by age, appearance, occupation or something else? Ensure, each of your categories have a single basis of classification.
  • Choose an Order– when discussing your categories it is important to consider the order you are going to place them. The best way would be to make bullet point notes on points you wish to discuss for each category. This will allow you to highlight similarities which will help you write linking sentences and transitions that will make your essay flow smoothly and logically. The best way is to refer back to previously discussed paragraphs for comparison. Ensure to order your points appropriately within each discussion. You can start from the most important to least important or vice versa.
  • Develop a Thesis– include a compelling thesis statement in your introductory paragraph that will control the subject matter of the essay. A well-developed thesis statement will help keep your writing on track. Ensure to indicate what you are dividing into classes, list the different categories and explain what properties or criteria is used to classify them. Your thesis may also explain the purpose of classifying these items or ideas.

The above pre-planning steps will help you with the actually writing of your classification essay. But if can’t crack it out in one sitting, you can seek professional help from our expert writers. Our academic writing services are top-notch and will greatly help you improve your academic performance.

Useful Tips for How to Write a Classification Essay

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Here are a few quick tips that will also help with how to write a classification essay.

  • Make sure you outline or define each of your categories. Begin by making a list of their main characteristics and then discuss them.
  • You will need to provide several descriptive examples. Look for relevant examples which offer a typical representation of the class. Ensure you have an equal number of examples in each of them.
  • Use the comparison and contrast technique to point out the various similarities or differences between each of your categories.

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