How-To Essays

“How-to” essays are oftentimes called “process” essays. They can be compared with creating recipes because one should follow specific instructions related to an action or a procedure. In most cases, students are allowed to choose a topic they want to explore in a how-to essay. However, be sure that your topic complies with your professor’s task assignment.

Writing A How-To Essay

What Topics Can Be Addressed in How-To Essays

Some students think that they cannot effectively write how-to essays, which is not true. There are many topics that can be covered in this essay type and you will surely manage to address them in an effective manner. One of the key points is to choose a topic that interests you.

Here is a small list of topics that students adore to explore in how-to essays:

  • How to organize your homework
  • How to bake a cake
  • How to earn one thousand dollars
  • How to write a letter of complaint
  • How to ask somebody out
  • How to organize a road trip.

The Essentials of Creating How to Essays

A how to essay (process essay) is a common academic task that explores the particular process explaining all the steps, one by one. If you take care of your grades and want to know the peculiarities of creating the how to essays, feel free to read our guide and learn a few effective secrets.
Undoubtedly, it is quite difficult to describe a process. First and foremost, every individual applies a different approach to doing something. Second, every process takes a different amount of time for every person.
When you received the task to write a process essay, you have to read the prompt carefully. Pay attention to the required length of the essay since it will define the number of steps you have to describe in your essay. If you have some difficulties with selecting one of the many how to essay topics, feel free to ask your instructor for help and he/she will assist you in choosing the best subject.
Usually, how to essays should follow a classic essay structure that includes writing an introduction, main body, and a conclusion.


In your first paragraph, make sure to introduce the process to your reader. If you have to use some unknown concepts or terms, feel free to explain them. You need to cause genuine interest in your readers so that they want to follow your ideas. As such, write a good attention grabber, the hook, that will engage and intrigue the audience. Though it should go without saying, unfortunately, many writers ignore the importance of the introduction. Nevertheless, it is a critically significant part of your essay that requires many efforts.
When outlining your process, do not forget to mention the approximate timeframe. If the reader wants to reproduce it, he/she should know how much time it will take.

Main Body

In your how to essay, your main body is the field, where you have to describe all steps of the process. Pay attention that each step should be discussed equally well. Even if it takes much time and efforts, do not ignore this task since it is the important step towards reaching your academic success. All the paragraphs should be connected with each other. Moreover, each of them should start with the topic sentence that will be related to the thesis statement. If there are many steps to discuss, systemize them into the groups and put every group into the separate paragraph.
Think about your audience. Perhaps, some steps should be more detailed than others. If you know your process well, it does not mean that it is clear to your audience. Putting yourself in the shoes of your reader, you will understand what steps should be explained better.
Do Not Forget to Mention the Purpose
Once again, you have to consider the requirements of your audience. Your reader needs to understand the purpose of the process described. To achieve this goal, we suggest answering the following questions:

  • What is the final result of the process?
  • What are the essential steps for reaching this goal?
  • Are there some alternative methods?

Since you have to explain the process step by step, you need to use the transition words to make your writing smooth and coherent. As such, introducing the next step, use the words such as next, further, then, now, so that, etc.


Your conclusion is the equally important part of your essay in which you need to restate the main steps, as well as explain the theoretical and practical value of the process. Your conclusion should perform three main functions:
First, it should talk about the result of the process. After doing some process, there should always be a result.
Second, tell what have you learned from this process.
Third, restate the key steps taken to achieve the final outcome.
There are multiple well-written how to essays examples on the web. You may download them and use for training your imagination. We assure you that writing how to essays is not that difficult as it may seem. Follow our suggestions and become a better writer!

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