What Is a Classification Essay?

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A classification essay is simply an essay broken down into categories, and it usually includes an introductory paragraph, two to three body paragraphs, each of their own category, and a conclusion paragraph. Find out how to write a classification essay for school with information from a standardized test prep instructor in this free video on education.

Part of the Video Series: Education: English, Math & Teaching
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Video Transcript

Let's talk about how to write a classification essay. This is an example of one of those words that student gets for homework, write a classification essay. Maybe you were absent that day or spaced out while the teacher was talking about it and that's why you are watching this clip maybe because people have no idea what it means but funny enough it refers to something pretty simple, just with a word that doesn't kind of make sense to people sometimes. All a classification essay is is when you are going to write an essay that breaks things down into categories. So this is actually a really easy essay to write in like the five paragraph essay style where you use an intro two or three body paragraphs and then a conclusion. Basically your intro is going to lay out the topic and then it is going to give a thesis. Now in a classification essay the thesis is really clear because the thesis is going to tell us the categories that are going to be told in the body paragraphs that are going to be described. Each body paragraph basically should be about one category. I'll give you an example. Let's say you are writing a you know a short paper on the themes in a book and so let's say you've identified three themes. So this is a classification essay and you are given three categories. The three themes are going to be three topics and each topic is going to be one of the body paragraphs and then your conclusion will wrap it up. Another example would be let's say you're going to talk about moves in sports, right? Like moves you do in sports. So the categories might be baseball, basketball and lacrosse. Those are probably maybe even a better more clear example. So your intro is going to lay out the topic a little bit, give your thesis which is going to tell us about the moves in the three sports, each paragraph is one category and each paragraph is going to have specific examples that are the moves and it is going to tell us the moves in each sport. I can't remember the order I said but let's say baseball, basketball and lacrosse. So you are going to do the moves in baseball. You know how to pitch, how to catch, how to bat, the moves in basketball, how to shoot, the moves in lacrosse. Those are your three categories and then your conclusion you are going to maybe restate the thesis and then wrap it up and that's the best way to lay out a classification essay where you break things up into categories.


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