Student Worksheet: Definition and Exemplification

Student Worksheet for Definition and Example Essay

Definition and Example Essay

Length requirement: 2 pages (non-researched) OR 3 pages plus Works Cited (researched)

Point of view (first person or third person): First person (non-researched) or third person (researched)

Due date:

Rhetorical mode and chosen topic:

This essay will incorporate both definition writing and illustration/example writing. In short, your introduction paragraph will define your term, and the body paragraphs will describe specific examples. Each body paragraph should focus on one example. You should include three of the following: (a) a well-known example, (b) a hypothetical example, (c) an example from national news, (d) an example from local news, or (e) an example particular to Louisiana.

Choose from the following topics:


  1. Lagniappe
  2. Laissez les bons temps rouler


  1. Gerrymandering
  2. Gentrification
  3. Cultural Appropriation

Research requirements:

  1. For non-researched topics, draw upon personal experience or class discussions. Do not conduct a web search. No citation required.
  2. For researched topics, you may use sources provided by the instructor. As you conduct your own research, you should use the library’s online databases, NOT Google or the open web. No assumptions or first-hand knowledge should be included. Use signal phrases, direct quotes, paraphrasing, and in-text citations throughout the essay. Include a Works Cited page as the last page.

Thinking ahead:

Essay’s main idea and thesis statement:

Make a point about your chosen term while emphasizing its meaning. Choose specific examples most relevant to your audience.

Basic necessary elements in paper:

Formatting/style, paragraph organization, presence of thesis, elements specific to rhetorical mode

  • MLA format
  • Introduction paragraph: 6-10 sentences to introduce topic, then thesis statement, preview supporting ideas
  • Minimum three focused body paragraphs
  • Short conclusion paragraph
  • Signal phrases and in-text citations (researched option)
  • MLA Works Cited page (researched option)

Questions to ask about the paper (list your questions):


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Writing Rhetorically: Framing First Year Writing Copyright © 2022 by LOUIS: The Louisiana Library Network is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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