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The objective of learning the techniques of writing a process essay, is to be able to competently describe to the reader how something is done and the order in which its component steps are undertaken. So, when tasked with writing such an essay, your first step should be to identify the procedure that you will be describing. You need to identify what interest your chosen procedure would have for your readers, so concentrate on who and what would be impacted by the procedure.
In writing a process essay you will need a thorough understanding of the selected mechanism, and the steps within it, in order for you to coherently describe it to your readers. When documenting the process, take time to understand the alternative ways the procedure could be undertaken; there may be more than one way to accomplish it. Select the method that seems most sensible and the one that your readers are most likely to identify with.
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If the subject matter of your selected essay process is complex or of a nature that might require your audience to be knowledgeable in other specific processes or information, accommodate their understanding with an explanatory background narrative. Consider and describe all requirements of the process such as any materials or tools.
As with all introductory paragraphs, the essay process should open by introducing the nature of the process and the reasons that it is worthy of further knowledge and understanding. Following the introduction, outline the process steps in the body paragraphs. Chronological order is a popular choice for setting out process steps. If desired, conclude each descriptive step by summarizing its importance. If a particular step is complex or problematic, consider providing a description of the anticipated difficulty and suggest a remedy to mitigate its severity.
Because a process essay expects the documenting of steps or stages as they occur, or should occur, by necessity it is commonplace to facilitate their occurrence with the use of transitional phrases such as:
- Immediately afterwards,
- Following that,
- After a few minutes,
- At the outset,
- As well as,
- In due course,
- Prior to,
- Before doing this,
- During the,
- At a later stage,
- Last of all,
- In the first, second or third instance,
- Before long, next, soon, following, after
Transitional phrases signify to your audience that your are progressively moving forward, step by step.
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While your audience should fully grasp the concept described in your process essay, it is not necessarily the case that it should give them sufficient detail to repeat or re-use it.
In the tradition of essay writing, bring your process essay to an end with a conclusion paragraph by summarizing the process described in your introductory paragraph and the steps outlined in the body paragraphs. Restate the credible reasons for understanding this process. On completion make sure you re-read (or proofread) your essay to identify and correct spelling, punctuation and grammatical errors. Make sure it has a smooth and logical flow.
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