Login with Facebook

What is a Definition Essay?

What is a definition essay?

Definition essay is a type of essay stating what a word or a term means. The essay that is written is not only a personal take on the word, term or phrase but is also backed by factual statements and notes. There are two types of words or phrases that can be used, one is an abstract and complex definition. An abstract and complex definition is when a term, phrase or word is open to interpretation from the reader’s point of view, such as love, honesty, or home. The concrete definition is when a word has a definite meaning to everyone, such as a house, cup, or glass.

When writing a definition essay, one must be certain to clearly state the term that is defined; the definition is presented clearly and has all the basic information, and lastly, examples and anecdotes should be used for the reader’s understanding.

Selecting the word or term to be defined

Writing a good definition essay requires one to first choose an abstract and complex word or term. Good definition writing requires a clear understanding of the term or word before defining it. For the chosen term, the person can opt to limit the term, for example, “home” is a broad topic and one can write about various aspects of “home”. However, if the term selected is “country home”, it encompasses a broader topic, and also has a limiting factor.

For the selection, nouns that refer to an idea, such as imperialism, is a better word define. Adjectives also work well for definitions as adjectives are subject to one’s perception. Therefore, by logical deduction, definition essays can be subjective in nature, as the word or term defined by the writer can differ from another writer’s point of view.

The easiest way to explain the term or word is with the use of facts, examples, and anecdotes; the body should contain, definition, analyzation, and comparison/negation, to explain to the reader the term in the best possible manner.

How should the word, phrase, or term be defined?

The definition has to be created, and there are various ways to define a word or term.

A word or term can be defined:

1. By function: the writer has to describe what it does or how the word is utilized.

2. By structure: placing the word in a sentence or phrase to show its structure.

3. By analysis: defining the word by comparison to other terms/words/ members of the same class.

For example, if the term that one is writing about is snow tires:

(Term) (Precise definition)

The snow tires are tires that allow the car to have a superior grip on the road while driving on snow; they have a broader surface area with grooves, allowing for better grip than regular ones.

One can define a term by comparing it to what it is not or by negation; and in the example above, by comparing snow tires to regular tires, and highlighting the features that make it stand out, the reader will have a clear idea, as to what makes the snow tires are different from regular ones.

Things to do:

1. Identify strong transitions to merge different aspects of the essay together

2. Having a unique and distinctive perspective of the definition

Things to avoid:

1. Avoid the word “when” or “where”.

2. Avoid common topics with definite and concrete meaning.

3. Excessive writing should be avoided and the article should be precise and to the point

The definition essay should also have a page outline, that clearly states the outline of the essay structure.

Writing a definition essay

The essay will follow a certain structure; introduction to the word, term or phrase, with the literal meaning from the dictionary. The second part of the introduction should contain the thesis statement. A thesis statement is an actual definition, and also the writer’s point of view on the implied meaning of the word. It should not be longer than one or two sentences, as the rest should contribute to the body of the essay.

The body of the essay will contain most of the matter, with various implied definitions and the actual definition. The body of the essay will contain the analyzation, comparison, and negations if any. Finally, the conclusion will contain a summary of all the points mentioned; the summary should also have a personal understanding of the word, term or phrase in relation to the writer’s experience.

The importance of a definition essay

Definition essays are important for academic tutorials. It is to encourage students to develop concepts in the written form. Writing this type of essay assists the student in developing their skills at analyzation, evaluation, structuring and summarizing the content.

The purpose of a definition essay

The purpose of a definition is to explain not only what is denoted by the word or the term, but also what it connotes. This means in simplified terms, that a word can have a few denotative meanings, like the literal meaning of the word; and also several connotative meanings, which is what is implied by the term or the word. Connotative meanings are an understood emotional or cultural implication of the word or a phrase.

Examples of denotations and connotations

As an example, the term “Wall Street” is literally a road in Lower Manhattan; however, it is synonymous with wealth and power. Similarly, when one says “the dancer glided like a butterfly”, it does not mean that the object or person or thing is actually gliding, rather, it is the movement that is graceful enough to be compared to the butterfly.

Therefore, a definition essay is not only an explanation of a word, term or phrase, it is also the writer’s understanding and experience in relation to the word. A good essay should contain the denotation as well as the connotation of the word, term, or phrase. The writing should have an introduction, split into the definition and the thesis statement; the body will contain the analyzation, comparison, and negations, and lastly, the conclusion will contain a summary of all the notable pointsDefinition Essay, phrased differently. 


Send Comment

Need a custom

We will write it for you.
Order now

Free Essay Examples

Free essays:

An ultimate guide about biochemical reactions
Analysis methods of Transport through biological membranes
A Comprehensive Introduction to the Mona Lisa
An ultimate guide about Biomaterials
Big data analysis in evolutionary biology
Brain-Computer Interface systems with EEG signals
Biochemistry of neurotransmitter
Bipolar disorder: Symptoms, causes, diagnosis and treatment
Cellular excitability
Characterization of biological tissues, biomaterials
Characteristics of the byzantine architecture
Commonly Confused Words: Part 2
Dynamic Systems Modeling with Machine Learning
Digital Imaging: What Is It?
Different forms of dance you should know about
Data Science: Fundamental tools for data analysis
Entrepreneurship: Conceptual Framework for Evaluating Technology
Entrepreneurship: Opportunity and Design Thinking
Everything you need to know about enzymatic kinetics
Electromagnetic exposure effects on human organs
Funding sources for non-profit organizations
Famous Ballet Forms
Four postulates of natural selection
Famous African American literature authors
How to choose the topic of the senior capstone project
Healthcare technologies that help patients with better self-management
How to write a research project
How to complete your capstone projects effectively?
Importance of online journalism
Importance of 3d Modelling in Architecture
Introduction to Utilitarianism
Identity theft: what to do?
Kinetic models in biology and Related fields
Know about the different forms of traditional African dances
Know about the history of science
Latest technology trends
Mass transport in a biological system
Major themes in ancient Egyptian art
Major healthcare trends
Misconceptions About the Word “Introvert”
Nonlinear Dynamics in Biology & Biomedicine
NLS (Nonlinear System) - Revolutionary system in diagnostic medicine and therapy
Neural networks: what they are and what they are for
Nuclear fusion: What it is and how it works?
Postpartum depression: what is it?
Philosophy of Art: Written Forms as Art
Role of Homeostasis in Human Physiology
Role of a digital artist
Systems biology - An understanding the functioning of biological systems
Self-assembly for biological systems
School of American Ballet
Schizophrenia - a rare psychiatric illness | Essay
The relation between mass media & politics
Top journalism trends to know about
The impact of the technological innovations in medicine
The Defense mechanisms against infections
Understand the importance of investigative journalism
Urban planning in the US
Understanding the sociology of Race & Ethnicity
Various theoretical perspectives of sociology
Women empowerment in modern generation
What Makes a Good Leader
What is biopolymers?
What is the cytoplasm and its function?
4 Facts about Origin of Mathematics!
5 techniques to create an animation
13 Best colleges for political science in the world
3d Model Of Building
All you need to know about the ACA Code of ethics
Architecture and Democracy: An Introduction
Architecture and Democracy: Democratic Values
Architecture and Democracy: Democratic Procedures
All You Need to Know About a Synthesis Essay
An essential guide to understanding Film Theory
Application of Artificial Intelligence in Cyber Security
Applications of electrical engineering
Augmented reality: what it is, how it works, examples
Advantages And Disadvantages Of Social Networking
All you need to know about Cryptography
Applications of astrophysical science
All you need to know about architecture engineering
Applications of geological engineering
Artificial intelligence and medicine: an increasingly close relationship
An insight into Computational Biology
ACA code of conduct
A Rose for Emily
Applications of Mathematics in daily life
Architecture mistakes to avoid
All you need to know about Toxicology
All you need to know about Holistic Medicine
All you need to know about linguistics
An introduction to Linguistics and its subfields
All you need to know about Anxiety disorder
All you need to know about Drones
A Brief Insight into Political Science
Assumptions related to feminism
All you need to know about Byzantine emperors
All you need to know about labour economics
An insight into xenobots -the first-ever robots
An ultimate guide about Biomaterials
A Comprehensive Introduction to the Mona Lisa
Analysis methods of Transport through biological membranes
An ultimate guide about biochemical reactions
How to Write a Personal Essay
Housing Needs in America
How to Write a Description Essay
How to Create an Excellent Scholarship Essay?
How to write a cause and effect essay
How to Hire the Best Essay Writing Service Provider?
How to Write a College Application Essay?
How to get the most out of your English lectures
How to write Expository Essay
How to succeed in your psychology class?
How to Write an Academic Essay in the Shortest Time?
History of Journalism
How Different Sectors are Using Artificial intelligence (AI)
How to write an informative essay
How to deliver persuasive essays?
How to Give a Convincing Presentation
How to write an essay on leadership?
Historical Art Still Around Today
Humanoid robot: what it is, how it works and price
History of Chemistry
Healthcare Advanced Computer Power: Robotics, Medical Imaging, and More
Healthcare AI: Game Changers for Medical Decision-Making and Remote Patient Monitoring
How to understand different types of English
How to Cope with Chronic Pain
How African American choreographers and dancers have influenced American dance
How mobile robot can do in logistics or in production
How To Become a Successful Entrepreneur
History of the Philosophy of Feminism
How is the climate changing?
How to Track Your Content Marketing ROI
How to Gun control In the USA?
Historical and contemporary role of labour in the modern world
How breast cancers are classified?
How the cells of our body communicate?
How the Lymphatic System Works?
How Digestive System Works
How to complete your capstone projects effectively?
How to write a research project
Healthcare technologies that help patients with better self-management
How to choose the topic of the senior capstone project