Study S2 English English - Expository Writing - Identifying structures - Geniebook

Expository Writing - Identifying Structures

In this chapter, we will be discussing the below-mentioned aspects in detail:

  • Identifying structure 
  • What is a discursive essay?
  • Relevant examples 
  • Topic of Discussion
    • Advantages and disadvantages of being an only child

 

Identifying Structure

 

Argumentative VS Expository

At the secondary level, you will be exposed to genres other than the narrative (personal recount, descriptive), specifically discursive (also commonly known as expository) and argumentative essays.

 

Discursive/Expository: Seeks to present facts in a fair and unbiased manner, with no sides taken. The objective is to expose and discuss a certain issue or topic.

Argumentative: Presents a strong argument supporting an explicitly stated stance or position. It includes points supporting the thesis statement as well as opposing viewpoints that are then rebutted to weaken their validity.

Let’s understand this with the help of some examples:
 

Question:

Study the flow of the essay outline below.

 

Topic: Public Surveillance Cameras

 
  1. Introduction: In both private and public sectors, many countries use public video surveillance as the main method to monitor population movements and prevent crime and terrorism. As Artificial Intelligence is more common now, security cameras play a major role in the smart city movement and the emerging industrial internet of things.
 
  1. Advantage 1: Surveillance cameras are installed in public spaces to ensure public safety. When people become aware that their activities are caught on video, they are much less likely to try to harm anyone.
 
  1. Advantage 2: Since the authorities are able to identify perpetrators through camera footage, surveillance cameras are able to help deter crimes.
 
  1. Disadvantage 1: However, some say that public surveillance cameras should be prohibited as they invade privacy.
 
  1. Counterargument: On the other hand, surveillance cameras are designed to ensure safety of people and their property, not for stalking purposes.
 
  1. Conclusion: CCTV systems can be used if they are implemented and used appropriately, so that public surveillance cameras and civil liberties can coexist.

 

The structure is an outline of a/an __________ essay.

 

A) Narrative

B) Personal Recount

C) Discursive/Expository

D) Argumentative

 

Answer:

D) Argumentative

 

Explanation:

The correct answer is Option No D i.e. argumentative because in this case Points No 2, 3 & 5 are my views but Point No 4 is the point of view of others to which I disagree.

Hence, because of consistency in thought, it is an Argumentative essay. Questions phrase with "Do you agree?" are typically Argumentative essays and require the essay to present an absolute stance (no sitting on the fence or saying you agree to a certain extent. The writer either agrees or disagrees with the given premise)

 

Question:

Study the flow of the essay outline below.

 

Topic: Coffee VS Tea   

 
  1. Introduction: In this world, there are two types of people: coffee drinkers and tea drinkers. Whether you favour coffee or tea, both are beneficial to your health.
 
  1. Point 1: Coffee drinkers are associated with a lower risk of heart failure, in comparison to non-coffee drinkers. 
 
  1. Point 2: Coffee includes chlorogenic acid (CGA), which is a cancer-fighting antioxidant that helps slow down the growth of cancer cells.
 
  1. Point 3: Drinking tea can reduce the risk of chronic diseases.
 
  1. Point 4: Tea has a higher level of antioxidants than coffee. Antioxidants have been linked to a variety of health advantages, including reducing inflammation and decreasing the risk of many illnesses.
 
  1. Conclusion: Both coffee and tea have similar health benefits, but determining which is better for your health depends on what is added into the beverage. As the addition of sugar, syrups, milk, cream or certain toppings can ruin any of the health benefits.

 

The structure is an outline of a/an __________ essay.

 

A) Narrative

B) Personal Recount

C) Discursive/Expository

D) Argumentative

 

Answer:

C) Discursive/ Expository

 

Explanation:

In the above structure, we have not made any decision like whether tea or coffee is good. The structure shows only what is beneficial about tea and coffee. There is no argument being made. 

There is only a discussion about Coffee Vs Tea.

Hence, the correct answer is Option No C i.e. Discursive 

 

Question:

Study the flow of the essay outline.

 

Topic: Hydropower

 
  1. Introduction: Hydroelectricity, which is generated by hydropower facilities, is a prominent renewable energy source that generates electricity by using the flow of water.
 
  1. Since it is powered by water, a naturally replenishing resource, hydroelectric energy is a renewable source of energy.
 
  1. The generation of electricity does not produce carbon dioxide, which is a greenhouse gas that contributes to global climate change.
 
  1. Hydropower facilities cause a variety of problems, from environmental issues to disrupting fish migration cycles.
 
  1. Building hydroelectric power facilities is very costly. One hydroelectric plant can cost millions of dollars to develop up front.
 

       6) Conclusion: While no power source is perfect, hydropower offers a good balance of renewable energy which produces steady power with limited environmental consequences.

 

The structure is an outline of a/an _________ essay.

 

  1. Expository
  2. Argumentative

 

Answer:

A) Expository

 

Explanation:

The correct answer is Option A i.e. Expository because both the good and bad points about hydropower are being discussed objectively. 

 

Question:

Study the flow of the essay outline.

 

 

Topic: Esports vs Traditional Sports

 
  1. Introduction: 1) Introduction: As schools grow more familiar with the notion of esports and begin to develop a better understanding of the numerous ways it can help people, the comparison between esports and traditional sports has become increasingly pertinent in academic contexts.
 
  1. Competitive esports allow like-minded individuals to build friendships and develop social skills.
 
  1. Students gain valuable and practical skills that will be useful to them throughout their lives. The skills, acquired through exposure to esports, include strategic thinking, teamwork, fast reflexes and preparation and management of both success and failure.
 
  1. However, physical exercise and exertion are the biggest and most obvious areas where traditional sports provide a benefit that esports cannot.
 
  1. In spite of that, traditional sports pay disproportionate attention to physically inclined students who are already better at the sport in question, resulting in disengagement among others who are less athletic. On the other hand, esports provide everyone with an equal opportunity to participate in the sport regardless of how athletic they are.
 

        6)  Conclusion: While traditional sports certainly have some advantages over esports, esports also instil many of the same skills and valuable lessons. Together with the accessibility esports can offer, it is highly valuable within our society.


 

 

The structure is an outline of a/ an _________ essay.

 

  1. Expository
  2. Argumentative

 

Answer:

B) Argumentative

 

Explanation:

It is an argumentative essay because it depicts only good points. Hence, because of consistency in thought, it is an Argumentative essay. The stance presented is consistent and absolute, with Paragraph 4 serving as a counter-argument, which is then rebutted in Paragraph 5.

 

 

What is a discursive essay?

A discursive essay presents and discusses issues, situations or problems surrounding a particular topic. A good discursive essay must include a thorough discussion of both sides of the topic. Points in favour of, as well as points against, or the advantages and disadvantages of a particular topic, must be developed distinctively in each paragraph and supported by justifications, examples, and/or reasons. It is unnecessary to take a stance, though students can choose to lean towards one side of the argument more than the other.

 

 

Paragraph Development

 

One common way to develop a paragraph is to use the following structure:

Topic Sentence – the main idea of the paragraph

Elaboration – explain in greater detail your understanding of the topic 

Example / Evidence – supports your point

Link – sums up the paragraph by linking it to the topic

 

Question:

Topic Sentence - One advantage that only children of single-child families can benefit from is the undivided attention they can get from their parents.

With the hectic work schedules and the higher financial pressure, one advantage of being an only child is that parents are able to focus on his or her emotional and material needs, as opposed to couples who have more than one child. As parents can focus their time and energy on their only child, the child would probably feel more valued. As a result, an only child is more likely to bond more with his or her parents, as compared to children with siblings.

The excerpt in the box above is a/an _______________.

 

  1. Counter-argument
  2. Elaboration
  3. Rebuttal
  4. Example

 

Answer:

B) Elaboration

 

Explanation:

Rebuttal is the same thing as a counter-argument and this is not a counter-argument. It’s either an elaboration or an example. 

As there are no specific names or numbers, it is an elaboration.

Hence, the correct answer is Option B i.e. Elaboration.

 

 

Question:

Topic Sentence - One advantage that only children of single-child families can benefit from is the undivided attention they can get from their parents.

Thus, the benefit of being an only child is that one is likely to enjoy more undivided attention from his or her parents, which also makes the bond stronger.

The excerpt in the box above is a/an _______________.

 

  1. Link to Topic 
  2. Elaboration
  3. Rebuttal
  4. Example

 

Answer:

A) Link to Topic

 

Explanation:

Elaboration is like unpacking your luggage. The second paragraph is very similar to the topic sentence which shows it is nothing else but a link to the topic. 

Hence, the correct answer is option A.

 

 

Question:

Topic Sentence - Being the only child in the family may often lead to too much attention that can spoil them and make them self-centred.

For example, it is often observed that China’s one-child policy has created the ‘Little Emperor’ effect where the child is often indulged by his parents to the extent that he grows up spoiled and self-centred.

The excerpt in the box above is a/an _______________.

 

  1. Counter-Argument 
  2. Elaboration
  3. Example
  4. Link to Topic

 

Answer:

C) Example

 

Explanation:

The correct answer is Option C i.e. Example because the above statements use a specific name like “Little Emperor”, a specific name of a country like “China”, specific name of a policy i.e. “one-child policy”.

Hence, the answer is Example.

 

Question:

For example, clinical psychologist, Linda Blair, author of the book Birth Order, noted that an only child enjoys more attention and resources that are critical for his or her development, and it also leaves the parents with the room to enjoy their lives. Research done by sociologist Dr Susan Newman in 2012 suggests that an only child tends to grow closer to his or her parents as they visit their parents more when they become adults, as compared to children who have siblings.

Which topic sentence does the above example fall under?

 

  1. Another disadvantage of being a single child is the lack of companionship in the familial home that can make them feel lonely or lacking in social skills.
  2. However, being the only child in the family may often lead to too much attention that can spoil them and make them self-centred.
  3. In addition, single child has been found to be more imaginative and flexible in their thinking.
  4. One advantage that only children of single-child families can benefit from is the undivided attention they can get from their parents.

 

Answer: 

D) One advantage that only children of single-child families can benefit from is the undivided attention they can get from their parents.

 

Explanation:

The correct answer is Option D as we can see in the above paragraph that an only child tends to grow closer to his or her parents as they visit their parents more when they become adults, as compared to children who have siblings.

Hence, one advantage that only children of single-child families can benefit from is the undivided attention they can get from their parents.

 

 

Test Your Concepts

 

Answer the following questions based on the concepts we’ve covered in this article. If you get stuck, revisit the relevant section to revise the concepts.

Question:

Study the flow of the essay outline.

 

 

Topic: Social Media

 
  1. Introduction: 1) Introduction: As humanity advances, so does the way people communicate, making it easier and more effective to communicate with each passing year. With the increasing popularity of platforms like Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and other messaging apps, some started to argue that real life communication is close to extinction.
 
  1. People who are on social media frequently tend to use verbal language less, which could harm real-life communication. They are not able to develop their verbal skills and emotional intelligence as effectively.
 
  1. Social media encourages the creation of false ideals of how a flawless world should be. This causes girls and boys to have insecurities and doubts about themselves.
 
  1. Social media improves the state in which people live. They are provided with the latest news and it can be used to raise awareness for an important cause.
 
  1. However, besides the news section of the sites, most of the social media posts are extremely irrelevant and unimportant to our world.
 

  6)  Conclusion: Many of the world's issues and solutions can be traced back to social media, but for the time being, people only use social media as a form of communication The time when social media will be entirely replaced by real-life interactions will not come if people maintain a great balance between face-to-face and online communication.

 

The structure is an outline of a/ an _________ essay.

 

  1. Expository
  2. Argumentative

 

 

Question:

Topic Sentence - One advantage that only children of single-child families can benefit from is the undivided attention they can get from their parents.

For example, clinical psychologist, Linda Blair, author of the book Birth Order, noted that an only child enjoys more attention and resources that are critical for his or her development, and it also leaves the parents with the room to enjoy their lives.

The excerpt in the box above is a/an _______________.

 

  1. Counter-argument
  2. Elaboration
  3. Thesis Statement
  4. Example

 

 

Question:

Topic Sentence - Being the only child in the family may often lead to too much attention that can spoil them and make them self-centred.

Thus, one disadvantage could be how the excessive attention on the only child may breed self-centredness and turn them into spoilt brats.

The excerpt in the box above is a/an _______________.

 

  1. Counter-argument
  2. Elaboration
  3. Thesis Statement
  4. Link to Topic

 

 

Question:

Topic Sentence - Being the only child in the family may often lead to too much attention that can spoil them and make them self-centred.

Only children are often thought to be spoilt and egocentric, as they do not learn how to share their toys with a sibling and are too used to getting their parents’ undivided attention. They may also lack the opportunities to learn how to adjust to the presence of another sibling, and cultivate the virtue of cooperation and tolerance. Being the only apple of the parents’ eyes, the only child may also be over-protected by their parents from risks and dangers to the extent that they do not learn how to be independent.

The excerpt in the box above is a/an _______________.

 

  1. Counter-argument
  2. Elaboration
  3. Thesis Statement
  4. Link to Topic
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