How to Write a Process Essay: Detailed Step-by-Step Guide

Hi, students! Ben is online.

I’m here, ready to show you some more tricks and give tips about writing cool essays. So, the most popular assignments an average student frequently gets from their professor are:

  • Argumentative essay
  • Cause and effect essay
  • Compare and contrast essay
  • Process essay

Yes, all of them are essays. But those essays are different. This time, an assignment for me to tear apart and explain is a process essay. Let’s dive deep into the process essay topic and see what the key points of its correct writing are.

Spoiler: crafting an excellent process paper is easier than you might think. So, relax and go on reading.

What is a Process Essay

Of course, before finding out how to write a process essay, a person should reveal what it looks like. Every type of academic assignment has its features and requirements. And it would be best if you keep up with the rules, especially when it is critical to get the highest grade possible.

Process Essay Definition

So, according to the notes that my colleague Brandon showed me, a process essay is a piece of writing that describes a process. Well, I didn’t need his notes to tell you that for real. I just wanted to give credits to my co-author. Let’s hope he’ll appreciate that.

If to simplify everything maximally, this is an explanatory text. It’s exactly that “how-to” guide you regularly see on the web. Yes, the article you are reading right now can serve as one of the great process essay examples.

A top-notch process essay should serve as a valuable source of information, to explain how something should be done, and (or) to show a way they should pass to reach some result. That result can be anything, from explaining how to assemble a PC to illustrating the principles of plane engine functioning or the String theory. Mostly, process essays exist for the audience with little to no knowledge about the topic.

Process Essay Structure

This one is the info you most probably have read quite frequently as a student. Although the phrase “process essay” may sound tricky, it’s still a regular academic assignment for a student. That means the proper structure is the key to craft your paper correctly. Those who wrote at least one essay know all three of its critical parts:

  • Intro
  • Body
  • Conclusion

Now, let’s go deeper and review every element in detail.

The Introduction

Actually, knowledge about how to start a process essay is the main factor of writing it well. Your intro is not just a random set of sentences. It has the goal.

A good introductory paragraph shows the aim of your paper without revealing too many details. It’s a short prelude to the main essay part that provides the audience with basic facts, sets the background, explains the importance of the process described and possibilities it offers when used in real life.

The Body

The essay body is the blank space for your explanations here. The quantity of body paragraphs appearing here depends on how many steps (turns or stages) your described process should have. Take as many of those as you need, one step per paragraph.

Still, keep an eye on the length of the body and the vocabulary you use to explain things. Try not to forget that your readers are not as experienced in the topic as you are. It would be great if you remember that something appearing as obvious to you might be completely missed by the audience.

That’s why details are required. Tools, equipment, gadgets, or any other solutions required to finish the process should be mentioned. Additionally, it would be best if you explain potential difficulties that might happen to the reader on their way to the goal.

The Conclusion

It would be wise if you guard yourself against the probability of disappointing your audience at the very finish by simply knowing how to end a process essay properly. The conclusion part is the least wordy one among all essay chapters. For process essays, a conclusion is where you show the process’s outcomes on top. Additionally, you can sum up the article’s idea and underline the meaning of the process here if needed.

Step by Step Guide to Writing a Process Paper

Understanding the structure of process essays is great, but that knowledge alone is nothing when you have no idea about how to use it to craft a particular paper that is required. What else do you need? Obviously, it’s much better when you’ve got a topical step-by-step instruction explaining what to do while preparing to write, writing, and finalizing that essay.

Luckily, my friend Brandon got your back. And yes, this time, it’s really his contribution to the article. Let’s see what he’s got.

Step 1: Know Your Reader

So, the very first preparation stage is to analyze potential readers of your essay. What’s their intention to read it? What would they prefer to find there? Answers to these questions will help you find out your main address points and a vocabulary you should use to explain the topic properly.

Here are some additional questions to narrow things down:

  • Is the reader familiar with the topic, or they require background mentioned and explained?
  • Will the basic info be enough? How critical is it to proceed with more complicated points for advanced readers?
  • What is the most suitable language? Should it be as simple as possible? Or can you use specific topical acronyms, terms, and definitions?

Step 2: Determine Tools or Materials Required

As the focal point of the process essay is to show how something is done, particular tools or materials will be required to reach the final point. So, the list of instruments is something a reader would like to see first for sure.

Step 3: Process Essay Outline

Make sure you have notes with the key points of your research: those are critical for you to know what to include in the paper’s content. Most probably, crafting an outstanding process essay is possible only when its writer goes all the way through on his or her own.

That’s how the author knows for sure what steps are required. Try not to count on your default memory too much here: text notes are more reliable to keep any information. Then, it would be best if you use the noted key points to craft a short but detailed outline.

Step 4: Go Write It

The main essay structure should be kept strictly here: an intro, body, and conclusion are the elements shaping every essay. But here are several tips from your favorite blog writer Ben that could improve your essay’s effectiveness and influence your final grade positively as a result:

  • Hook them up

There is no need to be in a hurry. Before you start explaining and revealing things, try to relax and let your creativity flow. Think over an intro so it could interest your reader from the very first paragraph.

  • Set the stage

Simply put, try to leave a couple of clues to the audience describing how complex and time-taking the entire process is going to be. Say about smaller details as well.

  • Proceed gradually

Interconnecting steps would be great to make your process essay more understandable. That’s how you guide the reader through while letting them distinguish steps by tracing text sections.

  • Details matter

Most probably, people reading an essay are not familiar with the task or process. Keep in mind that you should give them a detailed description so they could understand everything clearly and completely.

  • The result showcase

A process essay should let the reader know the process’s outcome or visualize the product. Do your best to help them imagine the result and its usefulness or meaning.

  • Conclude correctly

Here is how to conclude a process essay properly: its final paragraph includes everything mentioned and reached throughout the described process. It might be challenging regarding the size of a concluding paragraph. However, the key is to remember you do not repeat the info there but sum it up.

  • Proofread as many times as required

It’s the point when you pay attention to that outline once more. While proofreading the paper, it is better to have a plan and a draft nearby to make sure you didn’t miss anything. Take your time and check the language used, orthography, grammar, punctuation, overall readability, etc. Try not to quit the process until the result satisfies you entirely.

  • Ask for assistance

When it comes to writing, it’s quite possible that a process essay will require some help from aside. For example, I was regularly asking Brandon for consultation and suggestions while writing this guide. Maybe, your paper requires a friend’s attention to become perfect. If you feel that to be true, don’t hesitate too much and ask people familiar with the topic to assist you.

tips on how to write a process essay

What Are the Various Types of Process Essays?

Fortunately, there are not too many process essay types to reveal. Actually, there are only two of them. The types might sound the same, but there is a fundamental difference between them. So, you better stay concentrated.

How It is Done

It might seem obvious. However, the essence here is in making your audience able to keep up with the map you draw to complete some task step by step. So, try to divide the entire process into short steps looking clear to the reader. You show them how to do something, and too broad explanatory elements may confuse people here.

How it Works

This type is different because it is focused on explaining a particular process and not showing the reader how to do something. In a “how it works” process essay, you explain the key thing about some happening in simple words. You do not offer a person to try going through the process on their own.

Finding Examples of Process Essays Online

There are multiple samples of process essays available to read on the web. Some were written by professionals. Others belong to students and are still worth attention. The article you are reading is one of those guides. I sincerely hope it will be able to give you the knowledge required to get the wanted grade as a result.


So, to craft a worthy process essay, a writer should understand that this paper explains to people how a particular thing is working or done. The key is to keep up with the structure, to shape the process, so it looks clear and understandable by explaining the details shortly and showing the final result of the described actions. Also, keeping the language simple is key to make your paper clear and effective for the broadest audience.