How to Write an Informative Essay Paper, Outline, Steps and Examples.

How to Write an Informative Essay Paper

An informative essay is a writing assignment that has the primary purpose of educating your audience about a specific topic or subject. Rather than making an argument or taking a persuasive stance, an informative essay serves to objectively provide factual details, clear descriptions, applicable examples, and thorough explanations on the chosen topic.

The key elements of an informative essay are impartial analysis, well-researched facts from credible sources, and a clearly organized presentation of the information. The goal is to build the reader’s knowledge and understanding in an unbiased, straightforward manner.

Informative essay
Informative essay

Reasons to write an informative essay paper

Here are some key reasons why you might write an informative essay paper:

To Educate or Increase Awareness

One of the primary purposes of an informative essay is to provide valuable information and factual knowledge to the reader about a particular subject. It allows you as the writer to share your understanding, research findings, and insights in order to educate or increase awareness about the topic.

To Explain a Concept, Process or Idea

Informative essays are ideal for breaking down complex concepts, defining terms, detailing steps of a process, or clarifying ideas. The structured format provides a logical way to comprehensively explain the subject matter.

To Compare and Contrast

An informative essay structure lends itself well to comparing and contrasting different things. You can objectively analyze the similarities and differences between two subjects, theories, events, etc. This expands the reader’s understanding.

To Describe an Event, Period, or Subject

If the goal is to thoroughly describe something in detail, an informative essay gives you the space to include all the relevant information, statistics, examples, and explanatory context. This can bring depth to the reader’s knowledge.

To Summarize Research

After conducting extensive research on a topic, an informative essay offers a way to summarize and synthesize all the key information and major findings into one cohesive piece. This creates a content piece others can reference.

To Establish Expertise and Authority

Taking the time to thoroughly research a topic and produce a well-written, factual informative essay demonstrates your subject matter expertise and authority on the issue. It establishes your credibility.

To Present Complex Information Objectively

Some subjects are too complex or nuanced for just brief overviews. An informative essay allows you to take an objective, impartial stance to examine multiple facets, perspectives, and implications in-depth.

To Provide Analysis for Decision-Making

While an informative essay itself is not making an argument, the information and analysis presented can assist others in making informed decisions regarding the topic. It lays out substantive details.

To Spark Further Interest and Discussion

An engaging, insightful informative essay has the potential to get readers interested in and wanting to explore the subject even further after reading. It opens the door to deeper discussions.

To Meet An Academic Assignment

Many academic essay assignments, especially in high school and college, take the form of informative essays to assess a student’s ability to research, analyze, organize and explain specific topics.

The core reasons to write an informative essay all revolve around comprehensively informing the reader through factual evidence, clear examples, insightful explanations, and logical organization. It allows the effective communication and dissemination of knowledge on any given subject or area of study.

Steps for Crafting an informative Essay

Here is a comprehensive guide for how to write an outstanding informative essay paper, with examples for each step of the process:

1.Choose an Appropriate Topic

An informative essay aims to educate the reader about a particular subject by providing factual information, instructions, or an explanation of a concept or process. The topic you choose should be something that your target audience would find interesting and beneficial to learn more about.

When considering potential topics, ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Is the topic something that can be thoroughly explained and explored through facts, statistics, examples, and expert opinions, rather than personal opinions or beliefs?
  2. Is there enough credible information available from reliable sources to provide a comprehensive understanding of the topic?
  3. Can you break down the topic into subtopics or key points that can be logically organized and explained within the given essay length?
  4. Does the topic have practical value or relevance to your audience’s interests, needs, or curiosities?

It’s generally best to avoid topics that are too broad, controversial, or heavily reliant on personal opinions or subjective arguments. Instead, focus on subjects that lend themselves well to objective analysis, step-by-step explanations, or the presentation of well-researched data and information.

For example, an informative essay topic like “The Causes and Effects of Climate Change” is appropriate because it allows you to present scientific evidence, data, and expert insights on the factors contributing to climate change and its observable impacts. This type of factual information can be effectively organized and explained within the essay format.

On the other hand, a topic like “Why You Should Support Environmental Regulations” would be better suited for a persuasive or argumentative essay, as it requires making a case for a particular position or viewpoint, rather than simply providing objective information.

In summary, an appropriate informative essay topic should:

  1. Provide an opportunity to educate the reader on a subject they want or need to learn about.
  2. Be based on factual information, data, and expert insights, rather than opinions or arguments.
  3. Be specific and focused enough to be thoroughly explored within the essay length requirements.

By selecting a topic that meets these criteria, you can ensure that your informative essay effectively achieves its purpose of providing the reader with new and valuable knowledge or understanding.

2.Research Credible Sources

Once you have an informative topic, research is crucial to gather accurate facts, data, expert commentary, and true-to-life examples. Dedicate time to finding reliable, authoritative, and up-to-date sources that provide substantive information relevant to your topic.

For print sources, stick to scholarly books, academic journals, verified news publications, and credentialed subject matter experts. For online sources, verify the authority and credentials of the website or author. Most .edu, .gov and established .org sites are generally trustworthy, but carefully evaluate .com sites.

Compile a list of supporting details, descriptions, statistics, quotes and specific examples from your research findings. These will help thoroughly explain and illustrate the key points in your essay.

Example credible source: The Environmental Protection Agency’s website on climate change ( provides data and explanations of causes from leading scientists.

3.Develop an Outline

informative essay
informative essay

Organizing your informative essay into a clear, logical outline is crucial for presenting the information and ideas in a structured, easy-to-follow manner. A standard outline includes:

I. Introduction

  • Opening statement/hook to grab the reader’s attention
  • Background information on the topic to provide context
  • Defined terminology (if applicable)
  • Thesis statement

II. Body Paragraphs (3-5 paragraphs) –

Main point #1 (supported by facts, descriptions, examples) –

Main point #2 (supported by facts, descriptions, examples)

Main point #3 (supported by facts, descriptions, examples) –

Additional points as needed…

III. Conclusion

Restate main points/thesis

Summarize key takeaways

Concluding perspective on the significance of the topic

Developing a outline helps you logically organize the information so your informative essay flows smoothly and covers the subject comprehensively.

Example outline:

I. Introduction
  • Hook: Did you know the Earth’s temperature has risen over 2°F in just the last century?
  • Background: Climate change from global warming poses environmental risks
  • Defined term: The “greenhouse effect” trapping excess heat
  • Thesis: The main causes of climate change are human-produced greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels and deforestation.
II. Body

Greenhouse gas emissions from burning fossil fuels (examples: coal power, gasoline vehicles)

Deforestation and reduced CO2 removal from atmosphere – Other contributions like agriculture and industrial production

III. Conclusion

Restate causes: human impacts like emissions/deforestation are primary drivers

Why it matters: potential severe environmental, economic, health consequences if unchecked

Call for taking action on solutions to reduce carbon footprints

4. Write and Revise the Drafts

Once your outline is complete, you can begin drafting the full informative essay by expanding on each section with clear, well-structured paragraphs.

The introductory paragraph should capture the reader’s interest with an engaging hook, provide necessary background and context, define key terminology, and end with a clear thesis statement presenting the main idea of the essay.

Each body paragraph should focus on one of the main points from the outline, using your researched facts, explanations, examples, and other supporting details to thoroughly inform the reader. Use transitions between paragraphs.

Craft an insightful conclusion paragraph that reinforces the thesis and main points, synthesizes the key takeaways, and leaves the reader with a final perspective or insight about the topic’s impact or significance.

Throughout the drafting process, maintain an objective, unbiased tone appropriate for an informative essay. Use precise language and advanced vocabulary to enhance your explanations. But take care not to come across as overly technical – strike the right balance so it is understandable for your intended audience.

Example body paragraph: “One of the primary causes of global climate change is the greenhouse gas emissions produced from burning fossil fuels like coal, oil and natural gas. When fossil fuels are burned to generate electricity at power plants or provide energy for vehicles and industrial manufacturing, greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide are released into the Earth’s atmosphere. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the combustion of fossil fuels for electricity and transportation are the two largest contributors of greenhouse gas emissions in the United States, accounting for 62% of emissions in 2020 (EPA). Once released, these heat-trapping gases accumulate in the atmosphere and contribute to the greenhouse effect that is dangerously warming the planet.”

Don’t worry about making the first draft perfect – leave room for improvements through revising and editing. Read back through your writing multiple times to check for logical flow, sufficient support and explanation, pertinent examples, and thorough coverage of the topic.

5. Polish the Final Draft

After multiple revision rounds, the final step is polishing and perfecting your informative essay into its final form. This involves meticulous editing and proofreading to ensure:

  • All information is accurate and factual
  • Details, descriptions and explanations are thorough yet concise
  • The tone is objective, clear and engaging for the audience
  • All format, structure and style guidelines are properly followed (title, header, citations, etc.)
  • Transitions between ideas are smooth and natural
  • There are no errors in grammar, spelling or sentence structure
  • Research sources are properly cited throughout in the required style

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Triple check all quotations, statistics, dates, names and any other easily verifiable information from your sources to ensure complete accuracy.

Read through the final version out loud – slowly. This technique helps identify areas that may need clarification or feel choppy and awkward. Revise any lingering rough spots.

Example edited conclusion: “In summary, the primary drivers causing the global climate change crisis are greenhouse gas emissions from burning fossil fuels like coal, oil and natural gas, as well as deforestation reducing carbon dioxide absorption. While activities like agriculture, industrial manufacturing, and transportation also contribute emissions and environmental damage, transitioning away from fossil fuels to clean, renewable energy will be crucial to slowing global warming. Reducing emissions and reversing deforestation trends require both governmental policy changes and individual actions. Citizens can minimize their carbon footprint and there is still time to avoid the worst projected impacts of climate change. However, the window for action is rapidly narrowing. Understanding the root causes makes it clear – bold changes must be made quickly to protect the planet’s future.”

Thorough editing and proofreading ensure your informative essay provides clear, polished and accurate explanations and insights into the topic for the reader. A well-written and carefully revised informative essay demonstrates your credibility through knowledgeable analysis and precise use of evidence.

By following these steps – selecting an appropriate topic, conducting thorough research, creating an outline, writing and revising drafts, and meticulously polishing the final version – you can craft an excellent informative essay that enlightens your audience through an objective exploration of factual details, insightful examples, and comprehensive explanations on the subject matter.

The key to an outstanding informative essay is taking the time to cover the topic in-depth, while presenting the information through clear descriptions, relevant examples and an organized structure. Follow this process, and you’ll develop the skills to construct essays that educate your readers and expand their knowledge in an engaging, well-informed way.

Tips for Crafting an informative Essay

Here are some helpful tips for crafting an effective and well-written informative essay:

Choose a Topic You Can Provide Depth On

Select a topic that is specific enough to explore in-depth and provide substantial, interesting details. Overly broad topics make it difficult to be comprehensive.

Start with an Outline

Creating a detailed outline helps organize all the information you plan to include. This provides a roadmap to follow for a logical, smooth flow.

Hook the Reader’s Interest

Open the essay with an engaging fact, rhetorical question, anecdote or striking statistic related to the topic to grab the reader’s attention from the start.

Define Key Terms/Concepts Early

If there are complex terms or concepts central to the topic, define them clearly in the introduction so the reader understands.

Use Credible, Up-To-Date Sources

To establish trust and credibility, incorporate factual information, expert quotes, and statistics from verifiable, authoritative sources in your research.

Aim for Objectivity and Precision

Use precise language and an objective, unbiased tone appropriate for an informative piece. Avoid opinionated statements unless substantiated.

Provide Examples and Descriptive Details

Along with facts and data, incorporate concrete, real-world examples, vivid descriptions, and other illustrative details to enhance the reader’s understanding.

Maintain Parallel Structure

Within each section, aim for parallel structure in your phrasing and formatting of supporting points for a more organized, cohesive feel.

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Use Transition Sentences

Utilize transitional phrases between paragraphs and key ideas to establish clear connections and flow for the reader.

Avoid Repetition

While reinforcing main points is good, be cautious about being too repetitive with the same information, quotes or examples repeatedly.

Have a Relevant, Insightful Conclusion

Go beyond just summarizing – offer meaningful concluding thoughts that reveal larger significance, impacts or lingering questions about the topic.

Use Examples to Support and Illustrate

Complement factual information with real-world examples that clarify and illustrate the ideas in a relatable way.

Review and Revise

Leave time to review and revise your drafts to tighten up language, enhance flow, correct errors and rework anything confusing or ineffective.

Stay Focused and On-Topic

It can be easy to get sidetracked or go on tangents. Stay disciplined and focused on comprehensively covering the main topic.

Format Properly

Follow all requirements for structure, formatting citations/references based on the specified style guide to ensure professionalism.

By thoughtfully implementing these tips, you can craft an informative essay that provides a comprehensive, substantive and engaging exploration of the subject matter for the reader.

Best Topics for an Informative Essay

Here are some great topic ideas to consider for an informative essay:

Health and Science

  • How mRNA vaccines work (like the COVID-19 vaccines)
  • The benefits and risks of going gluten-free
  • Exploring the science behind lucid dreaming
  • Understanding the autism spectrum disorder
  • The effects of social media on mental health


  • Understanding the causes and impacts of climate change
  • Overview of renewable energy sources like solar or wind
  • The importance of protecting biodiversity and ecosystems
  • Explaining the greenhouse effect
  • Causes and solutions for plastic pollution in the oceans

History and Culture

  • The influence of the Renaissance on art and society
  • Daily life in Ancient Rome or Greece
  • Origins and traditions of Dia de Los Muertos (Day of the Dead)
  • The role of media in the Civil Rights Movement
  • Exploring the history and culture of the Mayans


  • How virtual reality technology works
  • The future of self-driving cars and their impacts
  • Cybersecurity risks and protection methods
  • Breakthroughs in artificial intelligence
  • The evolution of smartphone technology

Social Issues

  • The gender pay gap: causes, data, and impacts
  • Understanding the wealth gap and income inequality
  • Ethnic diversity in media representation
  • Effects of poverty on childhood development
  • Examining the history and modern realities of racism

Skills and Processes

  • Steps for effective public speaking or presentations
  • How to become a critical thinker and better problem solver
  • Tips and techniques for speed reading
  • Breaking down the writing process for essays
  • Methods for managing stress and anxiety

The key is to select a topic that is reasonably broad enough to allow for an in-depth, multi-faceted exploration, while still remaining focused and manageable within the scope of the essay length. Topics should aim to inform, explain, describe or define the subject through factual details, examples, data analysis and objective reasoning rather than personal opinions.

Look for subjects that you can provide credible research on from authoritative, up-to-date sources. Additionally, consider topics that hold personal interest or relevance to broaden your own knowledge through the research and writing process. An informative essay allows you to share insights and increase understanding on complex issues and lesser-known subjects.

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Example 1 of an Informative Essay

To illustrate how to write an informative essay, here is an example on the topic

“The Impact of Social Media on Society”:


Social media has revolutionized the way people communicate, share information, and connect with others. From Facebook and Twitter to Instagram and Snapchat, social media platforms have become integral to modern life. This essay explores the impact of social media on society, focusing on communication, relationships, and mental health.

Body Paragraphs


Social media has transformed communication by making it faster and more accessible. People can now share information in real time, connect with others worldwide, and participate in online communities. According to a study by Pew Research Center, 72% of adults in the United States use social media, highlighting its widespread use. Social media platforms enable users to stay informed about current events, share personal updates, and engage in discussions on various topics.


While social media can strengthen existing relationships and foster new connections, it also has the potential to negatively affect interpersonal interactions. Research by the American Psychological Association suggests that excessive social media use can lead to feelings of jealousy, envy, and loneliness. Additionally, the curated nature of social media profiles can create unrealistic expectations and pressure to present a perfect image. Despite these challenges, social media can facilitate long-distance relationships and provide support networks for individuals facing similar challenges.

Mental Health

The impact of social media on mental health is a topic of growing concern. Studies have shown that excessive use of social media can contribute to anxiety, depression, and low self-esteem. For instance, a study published in the Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology found that limiting social media use to 30 minutes per day significantly reduced feelings of loneliness and depression. Conversely, social media can also provide a platform for mental health awareness and support, connecting individuals with resources and communities that promote well-being.


In conclusion, social media has a profound impact on society, influencing communication, relationships, and mental health. While it offers numerous benefits, such as enhanced connectivity and access to information, it also presents challenges that must be addressed. By understanding the effects of social media, individuals can make informed decisions about their use and navigate the digital landscape responsibly.

Example 2 of an Informative Essay

The Impact of Climate Change on Polar Bears


Climate change is a pressing issue that affects various aspects of the natural world. One of the most significant impacts is on polar bear populations in the Arctic. This essay explores how climate change affects polar bears, focusing on changes in their habitat, hunting patterns, and survival rates.

Body Paragraph 1: Habitat Changes

The melting of Arctic ice due to rising temperatures is a major concern. Polar bears rely on sea ice for hunting seals, their primary food source. As the ice diminishes, polar bears are forced to travel greater distances, leading to increased energy expenditure and reduced hunting success.

Body Paragraph 2: Hunting Patterns

With the reduction in sea ice, polar bears’ hunting patterns have changed. They are spending more time on land, where food sources are scarce. This shift has resulted in malnutrition and decreased reproductive rates, threatening the species’ long-term survival.

Body Paragraph 3: Survival Rates

The cumulative effects of habitat loss and altered hunting patterns have led to a decline in polar bear populations. Research indicates that if current trends continue, polar bears may become endangered within the next few decades. Conservation efforts are critical to mitigate these impacts and preserve polar bear populations.


In conclusion, climate change poses a significant threat to polar bears through habitat loss, altered hunting patterns, and decreased survival rates. Immediate action is required to address climate change and implement conservation strategies to protect these iconic creatures of the Arctic.

Rebecca J.
Rebecca J.
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