How to Write an Extended Definition Essay on your Chosen Topic

It is always important for students and researchers to understand how to write different types of essays. As a student or an academic writer, you will be expected to write extended definition essays from time to time. There is very little difference between a definition essay and an extended definition essay when it comes to the structure and style of writing.

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The two types of essays try to establish the different meanings of a given term through analysis in different contexts. The only difference is that an extended definition essays is more general and cast doubt on some of the perceived mundane definitions of a particular term. The following are some useful tips on how to write an extended definition essay:


Select the Right Term

In most instances, a list of terms will be given to you based on various situations and experiences. Therefore, it is advisable to select a term that you will be confident to write about. Self-confidence is very critical when writing an extended definition essay and that is why you must have the required self-confidence and information before choosing an extended definition topic. For example, you can select the term “love” if you feel that you have enough confidence and knowledge to analyze the term.


However, choosing a difficult term to write about may be a clear demonstration that you are an excellent definition essay writer. In other words, the only way your paper can appear genuine and stand out from the rest is by going for the difficult terms. The “easy” topics are popular among average writers that are not confident about their ability to write an extended definition essay.


Organization of an Extended Definition Essay

The best way to develop your ideas when writing an extended definition essay is by coming up with an outline. For instance, a five-paragraph extended definition essay should have an introduction, the body section, and the conclusion.


  • Introduction

The introduction part highlights the context of the term to be analyzed. In addition, you will need to mention the different definitions of the term and finally point out on your preferred definition as a thesis statement for the paper. You must also justify why you prefer a particular definition as compared to other available definitions.


  • Body

A detailed extended definition essay should have at least three paragraphs in the body section. This section covers the analysis part of the paper, and it involves comparing different definitions of a particular term. In case of three paragraphs, you need to identify three different definitions of the selected term for analysis. It is also a good idea to give at least one example for each of the definition during your comparisons to demonstrate that you actually understand the extended definition essay topic. 


  • Conclusion

The conclusion is basically a summary of all the major arguments in your paper, and it is always important to restate your thesis statement at the beginning of your conclusion. You also need to make a final case for your selected definition to convince that readers that it is actually the best definition from the rest. In simple terms, you should let the readers know why your selected definition stands out.


Reference to Particular Situations  

It is important to ensure that the readers understand your arguments and ideas when writing an extended definition essay. You can stick with the abstract thought, but this might not generate any interest from readers. In this case, it is a good idea to briefly refer to different cases or situations in your analysis. However, it is advisable to avoid being too emotional in your analysis to appear professional. This can be achieved by using an impartial language in your explanations and arguments.


The Opposition Strategy

An advanced type of an extended definition essay may involve the opposition strategy. In this strategy, the writer focuses on criticisms of the existing perceptions and widely accepted definitions of a particular term. Definition of terms is the conventional strategy for writing an extended definition essay, but one can decide to do things differently by using the opposition strategy. This strategy involves opposing various definitions of a particular term with strong arguments.


In conclusion, an extended definition essay is meant to demonstrate your understanding of a particular term. As a writer, you must be able to convince readers why your definition of choice is the best through comparisons and arguments. Also, one can decide to adopt the opposition strategy and criticize the existing definitions of a particular term. 

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