4 Outstanding Suggestions On How To Start A Definition Essay

If you've been given a definition essay to write and you don't know how to define that sort of paper, you may feel like you are in trouble! What exactly is a definition essay? If you've got to write one, that's a question you're going to need an answer to before you begin actually writing! Well, there's no need to worry, for there is always help at hand!

What is it?

As the name of the essay sounds, a definition essay is all about defining a certain term. You've probably already been given a term to define within your paper title, so now you need to know how to define it. Some terms will have a very definite definition while others may be more abstract and open to interpretation.

You can look up a term in a dictionary and elsewhere to learn the precise meaning, but you need to ascertain that you have a complete grasp yourself before you can begin to introduce the topic to others.

It can also be a good idea to limit your definition. For example, if you need to define 'depression', it will be beneficial to specify this more as, say, 'Clinical depression' or the more everyday use of the word. Obviously the more a word is open to analysis and interpretation, the more you will be able to explore it in your paper.

There are various ways you can define a term. You may look at the word's function, you may define it by structure, or by analysis. Think carefully about the angle you're taking and the points you want to make clearly before beginning the actual writing of your paper.

You will need to be clear and concise in explaining the term to the reader. You will also need to use facts, anecdotes and examples to present your definition of a term in its broadest sense.

How to start

So, when starting your essay, these are the four things to remember:

  1. Give the generic term that is to be defined and how it is defined by others.
  2. Start with an interesting fact to get your reader's attention straight away.
  3. Elaborate on the specificity of the term. The more abstract a term is, the more you can explore it.
  4. Give your definition of the term, ready for it to be explored further in the body of the proceeding paper.

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