How To Write a Definition Essay: Brief Guide and Tips

How To Write a Definition Essay: Brief Guide and Tips

Students have to write many different assignments during the studying. The definition essay is one of the writing assignments which requires special attention, more time, efforts to succeed with it. But it’s not hard to write it if you have good guide. You’re lucky to find one of them, read this article and definition essay won’t be a challenge that goes beyond achieving.

What is the Definition Essay?

It is a type of writing assignments in which its author defines some word, concept, term, gives the deep explanation of the meaning of words, terms (for example, Love, Friendship, Success, etc.). Author should conduct his own research, study dictionary meanings, gather information about what this word means, consider different ways in which people describe it. Definition essay usually has an introduction, thesis statement, body paragraphs, conclusion.

A well-written definition essay is based on the explanation of the logical, historical and behavioral aspects of the term and provides author's personal, deeper, more extended definition of abstract term in comparison with other definitions.

Choosing the Topic of Definition Essay

In order to succeed and get good result, writer should choose an abstract word. Choose concept which gives the space for investigation, research, analysis. Writer should also think about meaning of the word for him personally: think what really worries him, what is important to him, think about his personal feelings, experience.

How to choose good topic: Tips

  • Choose word, term which has complex meaning providing space to explore.
  • Choose the word (concept) which is familiar - one should have some experience, thoughts, feelings concerning it.
  • Check dictionary explanation. It is one of main steps which allows comparing academic definition with your own understanding of the term.  
  • Choose the topic which is disputable. The successful paper contains the analysis of different points of view on the topic which the author describes.
  • Choose the word which has an interesting origin - it will be easier to understand the meaning of the concept.

50 Best Topics for Definition Essay

Find here the most interesting topics which allow you to go beyond the obvious, succeed with this writing piece. You can also find the samples of high-class essays here.

  1. What makes person a Hero 
  2. How will you define Trust
  3. What is Intelligence
  4. Define Racism
  5. How can you define Justice
  6. What is Honor
  7. What is the meaning of the word Friendship
  8. What is Self-assurance
  9. What is the meaning of Success
  10. What is the Right to privacy
  11. Define the Courage
  12. What is the Effect of Synergy
  13. How will you describe Sexism
  14. Describe Love
  15. What is Heroism
  16. Define the sense of Charisma
  17. Describe the word Beauty
  18. Describe the meaning of definition Generosity
  19. What is Happiness
  20. Explain the definition of Loyalty
  21. Describe the Ambition
  22. How can you explain Respect
  23. Describe Maturity
  24. How can you define Optimism
  25. Give the explanation of the word Humility
  1. What makes someone a Team player
  2. How can you describe Dedication
  3. Define Feminism
  4. How do we define Sensitivity
  5. Explain the definition of Political correctness
  6. What is Vanity
  7. How can you describe Kindness
  8. What is Frustration
  9. Define the Sense of humor
  10. What makes people Liberal
  11. What makes people Conservative
  12. What is Personality
  13. What is the definition of Leadership
  14. Describe a Happy marriage
  15. How do you define Citizenship
  16. Describe the definition Responsibility
  17. What is Cheating
  18. Explain Honesty
  19. How can you describe Masculinity
  20. How can you define Femininity
  21. What is Home
  22. Describe Poverty
  23. How can you explain Self-esteem
  24. What is Parenting
  25. How can you describe Culture

The Outline of the Definition Essay

The outline is the important part of an essay. The outline of the definition essay will vary depending on the complexity of the topic. Before start working on writing, do the next steps:

  • Do some historical research on the chosen term.
  • Study dictionary definitions;
  • Ask your friends, relatives, other readers if needed about their thoughts on your topic.
  • Analyze the information, write the outline of the essay.
You can read more about how to write an outline here.

The Structure of the Definition Essay


This part includes the common definition of the word and your explanation. You should give your own definition. It is based on the research, analysis, ideas and contains links to the body paragraphs in which you will describe and explain your definition.

Thesis Statement

Giving the thesis definition consider that it is the main subject to which your essay is devoted. It is important. It can be some kind of mix of the standard definition of the word, your experiences, with your own explanation style.

Body Paragraphs

It is the basic, the biggest part of definition essays. Here the author provides different points of view on his topic. They can be similar to your view to empower your thoughts as well as contrast to your definitions in order to consider all the complexity of the topic. Give some background information, results of your research here. Include several paragraphs, each paragraph should be devoted to different defined points.

Essay’s Conclusion

It is the last but not the least part of the paper in which the writer should complete his essay with the general overview of all points which he gave above. In conclusion show the reader your own attitude, experience about the term. It will be great if you wrap up your definition essay by restating your main point which you gave at the beginning.

Additional Writing Tips

  1. Present information which is necessary, clear.
  2. Revise your essay when it's finished;
  3. Know your audience - use facts, examples that they can understand;
  4. Avoid concrete terms as well as concrete objects.

We tried to give some tips, advice on how to write a good definition essay, follow them and write a high-class essay. If any questions still remain, please feel free to ask in the comments. The team of our professional writers will be happy to answer them.