Effective informative essays require planning, research and source citation. The length and format of an informative paper varies, depending on the topic and the requirements from your teacher. When researching and writing your essay, be sure to cite your sources properly and write in an original style to avoid plagiarism. In most circumstances, you should avoid writing your essay in the first person. Your informative essay should contain an introduction, body paragraphs, a conclusion and a resources page.

Step 1

Choose a topic, if your teacher hasn't assigned one already. Pick one that interests you. Check with your instructor to make sure the topic you choose is acceptable.

Step 2

Research your topic. Select books, newspapers, journal articles and websites relevant to your paper. Ask your teacher or librarian for help with research.

Step 3

Write a thesis statement and outline. A thesis statement is one sentence that summarizes what will be covered in your essay and the information you will present to your reader. An outline is composed of short notes for each paragraph of your essay to help you organize your research, ideas and main points of your paper.

Step 4

Begin your paper with an introduction. Choose an interesting fact to grab your reader's attention in the first sentence. Your introduction should succinctly inform your reader of the overall content of the paper. Be sure to include your thesis statement in the introduction.