101 Great Essay Writing Topics for Students

Before you sit down to write, you need a topic, and these essay writing topics can help you get started.

Writing an essay is an important skill for high school and college students. Essays show a writer’s ability to think through a topic, explore their point of view and persuade or inform others of that. Yet, finding essay writing topics can feel vague. 

This list will help students find the right topic for a descriptive essay or argumentative essay. It outlines a number of hot topics that students can delve into in order to express their opinions and showcase their writing skills. You can use these to practice your essay writing skills or as prompts for you or students.

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Contents

Best Essay Writing Topics for Middle School Students

Great essay writing topics

If you are picking an essay for a 7th or 8th-grade student, the topic needs to be something that students in that age range are interested in. This will help them want to do the research and explore their ideas. This age range will often write expository essays or narrative essays, rather than persuasive ones.

Here are some essay topics to consider:

1. Is Climate Change Real?

Climate change is a hot topic with middle schoolers, and this essay topic idea lets them explore it. This essay topic can work well for a persuasive, informative, or cause-and-effect essay.

2. The Benefits (Or Drawbacks) of Homework 

Few middle school students enjoy homework, but this can be a great way to get them to dig into why the education system relies on homework. Students can give their opinions about the need for homework or why homework should be eliminated.

3. A Funny Childhood Memory

Middle school students who are not ready to write on argumentative essay topics can practice their English essay writing skills by writing about a funny thing that happened as a child. This topic should focus on entertaining, engaging storytelling. 

4. Video Game Addiction

Video game addiction
Ask young students to write about games they live or spend too much time playing

Many young students spend a lot of time playing video games, and this can translate into an essay topic. Exploring the mental health effects of too much video gameplay is a good option. Ask them to write about games they live or spend too much time playing.

5. The Role of Pets in Our Lives

Do you have a pet at home that you can’t imagine not being there when you return? How do you treat it, and do you think of your pet as a best friend? Opt for a cause-and-effect essay on the role of pets in our lives to showcase this bond. Then, include the positive effects of owning a pet. Don’t forget to talk about the responsibilities that come with it.

6. My Summer Vacation

This is a staple choice of teachers everywhere, particularly after the summer break. All younger students can write essays easily enough about how they spent a few weeks off school and where they went. Perhaps it was time with a family member or a best friend? There is a good reason that many elementary and middle school teachers assign this as a writing assignment at the start of school.

7. A Personal Victory or Success

A student could start writing this essay by writing about when they felt like all was lost. Then, they could describe how they picked themselves up off the dirt and achieved a victory.

8. What Will Life Be Like In 2050?

Will we find solutions to the problems we face today, like poverty and homelessness? Will technology enrich our lives further or be the cause of new issues?

Many young students often think about the future, and this topic allows them to let their imaginations run loose.

This way, they can express their ideas on how the world will look like in a few decades. It also gives you insight into the child’s personality. Do they see the positives in everything, or are they a bit more realistic?

9. A Trip To The Museum

As children, we loved going to the museum. Even today, it’s interesting to look at historical art, sculptures, and old vehicles. 

This essay topic works exceptionally well right after a school holiday. Maybe the young student just witnessed some of the best historical pieces. Writing about this topic allows them to reconnect with the emotions they felt.

In this essay, ask students what they liked most about visiting the museum, what important lessons they learned, and how they felt in the moment.

10. Describe Meeting A Famous Person

We all have favorite celebrities that we’d love to meet. This could be an actor, musician, or athlete.

In this essay topic, ask students to describe what it’s like to meet a famous person. How would they feel, what questions would the student ask them, and what activities would they do together?

By asking your student to write the essay as descriptively as possible, they’ll experience the positive emotions associated with meeting their idol.

11. The Impact of Social Media on Tweens

For this prompt, your goal is to explore the balance between the good, the bad, and the unknown in social media platforms. As a middle schooler, you know better than anyone how integral social media is in your daily life. Think about it – how many people your age don’t have a phone connected to the internet?

A cause-and-effect essay on this subject will allow you to investigate how social networking systems influence people. Self-reflect and analyze how social media sites affect your feelings, friendships, and even schoolwork.

12. Importance of School Uniforms

Have you ever wondered why some schools insist on their students having uniforms? This is despite other schools being more lenient and letting their students wear whatever they want. If you are, then satiate your curiosity via this prompt.

An argumentative essay will help you understand both sides of the debate. You can discuss why schools make uniforms mandatory or optional and investigate how uniforms affect students’ behavior, academic performance, and school pride.

13. Extracurricular Activities: Essential or Optional?

Are you a part of your school’s sports team or another club, or do you prefer to focus your time on academics only? If you have ever wondered what extracurricular activities are for, use this prompt to write an informative essay on the importance of extracurricular activities.

Write about the exact details of the role of extracurricular activities in a student’s overall development. Explore and add the benefits and drawbacks of these activities as well. Through your essay, other students can make informed choices about how they spend their time at school.

14. Favorite Book and Its Impact

Books are all about exploration. When you use books for school, they aim to make you more knowledgeable. But they are also doors to fantasy lands and help you learn more about yourself.

Do you have a favorite book that left a mark on you? For this prompt, write a personal narrative essay sharing that experience. Analyze why the book matters, then add how it has changed or defined you. Your essay might sway others to read your favorite book.

15. The Influence of Celebrities on Youth

Celebrities and influences are everywhere – so much so that you can’t avoid them no matter how hard you try. They’re in the music you listen to, the streets you drive through, and even the boxes of your favorite cereals. For this prompt, write an argumentative essay about these celebrities and their critical influence on younger people.

Focus on celebrities’ sway on youth’s behavior, values, and aspirations. Argue whether they are positive role models or if they set unrealistic expectations. It’s best to choose celebrities everyone knows, like the Kardashians or the Bangtan Boys.

16. The Significance of Recreational Activities

What do you do when you have time off from school? Aside from the instances you attend family events, do you like swimming, biking, or drawing? This prompt is perfect for a descriptive essay where you can detail your favored recreational activity.

Start with how you discovered the activity and why you got hooked on it. Include its significance to your life. Does it help you relax, meet new people, etc.? You can also talk about the skills you gained by doing this recreational activity regularly.

17. If I Were the Principal of My School

Have you ever dreamt of calling the shots at school? What about imagining being the principal? In this essay, share ideas on what parts of your school you want to keep or change. Analyze each critically and propose the improvements the school needs. Via this prompt, you can showcase your leadership skills. Remember to express your thoughts respectfully and constructively, and don’t forget to offer rational explanations for each proposed change. 

Controversial Essay Writing Topics for Older Students

As they enter high school and college, students should start transitioning from informative essays to persuasive ones. Controversial essay topics are a good way to do this. They help students develop their critical thinking skills and learn how to reason an argument. The below topics the bill well:

18. Why the Sale and Production of Tobacco Should Get Banned

Few people would argue about the health benefits of tobacco, yet it remains a top-selling product. This essay will explore the benefits of banning the sale of the product altogether.

19. Should Every Country Have the Death Sentence?

The death sentence is a controversial ethical and social issue. This essay will explore whether or not it is a suitable method of punishment and deterrent for serious crimes and the benefits or drawbacks of adding it to every country across the globe.

20. Is Homeschooling Better or Worse than Public School?

Homeschooling is growing in popularity, and this school essay topic will explore the benefits or drawbacks of this particular school choice. It may be pulled from personal experience if the student is homeschooled. 

21. Is The US Election Process Fair?

Elections are an essential part of our lives. It gives us the power to determine who will govern our country. However, is the election process fair?

In the essay, your student will get an opportunity to voice their ideas, describe what changes they’d like to see, and how those changes will positively impact the nation.

This essay topic requires more research, and students walk away with knowledge that can help them in the long term.

22. How Can We Reduce Climate Change?

Climate change is a serious topic that impacts everyone’s life. Sea levels are rising, which makes it difficult for animals like polar bears to survive.

When writing about this essay topic, students will have to research the effect of climate change, what causes it, and how to reduce its impact.

This requires logical thinking and creativity. It’ll encourage students to come up with a plan of action. Maybe they’ll limit the number of carbon emissions released by companies, promote solar power, or decrease the price of energy-efficient appliances.

23. Your Responsibility in Climate Change

Climate change has always been a controversial topic. There are many protests about it, but despite the protests, there are still no proper solutions. For this prompt, focus on what you, as a student, can do to help stop or slow down climate change. Identify your personal role in this phenomenon. Examine both your positive and negative contributions. As you write this essay, you can also discover sustainable life changes to add to your life. You can even encourage your future readers to follow your example.

24. Are You Politically Influenced by Media?

Keeping up to date with world news is easy because we’re connected to the media 24/7. With this in mind, create a cause-and-effect essay and inspect the power of media in shaping your political views.

For instance, have you sided with a viewpoint because of a convincing social media post? For sure, many have experienced this once or twice. Dig deeper via your essay, analyze the media’s role and motivations, and present your findings.

25. Feminism Then and Now

If you plan to create a compare-and-contrast essay, go for this prompt. Analyze the evolution of feminist movements. Then, examine their origins, goals, and the changes they’ve brought about.

Have you ever wondered how the feminism of your grandma’s era differed from today’s? By researching this topic, you’ll not only increase your knowledge – you’ll also be able to educate others.

26. The Impact of Immigration on Host Countries

Are you looking at writing about globally relevant issues? If so, immigration is a complex subject you can explore—research immigration in the news, books, or even movies. You can even ask your teacher for help if you need to. For this prompt, connect your findings to the issues of the countries receiving immigrants. Make sure to differentiate the legal from illegal immigrants to relay your points better.

27. Are Environmentalist Groups Doing the Wrong Protests?

The environment is a sacred and essential part of our lives. And so it’s easy to understand the movements and the organizations that want to protect it. But do you think their actions will make others appreciate their cause in the long run?

This is why this controversial prompt is perfect for a persuasive essay. Talk about the recent protests. It can be the protestor’s destruction of paintings of legendary artists, glueing their hands on airport runways, or stopping people on the streets. Critique the strategies of environmental activist groups. Are they properly raising awareness? Or are their methods causing more harm than good?

28. Should We Cancel Cancel Culture?

Cancel culture is often based on limited evidence and incites blind hate. As an older student, you’re likely familiar with the term and its implications. In your essay, list cancel culture’s pros and cons and analyze each in depth.

Is cancel culture helpful? Is it only spreading misinformation? Is the hive mentality it encourages good? Share your thoughts on this recent societal development. Then, offer ways on how to better interact with cancel culture. For instance, you can recommend holding off judgment and thoroughly researching the issue first to make up your own mind.

29. Is Artificial Intelligence a Boon or Bane to Society?

Artificial intelligence is here to stay, but how helpful is it? For this prompt, create an expository essay that analyzes how AI is both a boon and a bane. For example, AI can make companies’ systems more efficient. But at the same time, it takes jobs away from writers, artists, and even tech devs.

Cite recent happenings, like the Texas A&M Commerce professor who failed his entire class to show the issue’s relevancy. As a student, you’re pretty familiar with AI developments. You might even have experienced it first-hand. Stop and think about AI’s broader implications via your essay.

30. Is Genetic Engineering Ethical?

Genetic engineering has always been a controversial subject. Since you’re an older student, you’ve probably had debates about this in class or with friends. To better understand the issue, construct a well-researched, argumentative essay on genetic engineering and the ethics that surround it.

31. The Role of Social Movements in Social Change

As a student and a general public member, you are not just an observer of what happens in society. You are an active participant in social dynamics. So, for this prompt, opt for a cause-and-effect essay where you analyze how collective actions and thinking shape societies. Support your thoughts with evidence and share your realizations.

32. Censorship in Media: Necessary or Suppressive?

For this prompt, start by defining freedom of expression and comparing it with censorship. Then, present cases (preferably recent ones) to explain why censorship is necessary or repressive. This will help you create an informative essay that educates your readers.

33. Is Technology Making Education Lazy?

In your essay, answer the question: “Is technology helpful or detrimental to education?” As a student, you’re at the center of this revolution. For instance, online classes are more prevalent now than some years ago. Submitting soft copies of papers online wasn’t even a thing then. Write an expository essay about whether technology aids or hampers your learning process.

34. Are We Supposed to Share Culture?

If you want to write a thought-provoking descriptive essay, consider this prompt: There are unique cultures. But should these cultures remain exclusive? Think about your own culture and what it means to you. Would you like to share your culture? It’s time to share your thoughts and experiences.

In the same essay, you can also mention cultural appreciation versus cultural appropriation. Talk about these ideas’ differences and similarities.

Persuasive Essay Topics for Older Students

Persuasive essays work to convince a reader of the writer’s point of view. These topics lend themselves well to a great essay that focuses on persuasion.

35. Why Soda Should Not Be on Fast Food Kids Meals

Fast food kids meals target young consumers, and soda is often included. Making junk food a way of life contributes to childhood obesity, and this topic could explore alternatives to soda for these kid-centered meals.

36. Illegal Immigrants Should Not Be Jailed

When people enter a country illegally, putting them in jail does not solve the problem. Instead, alternative punishments or even help with attaining legal immigrant status can reduce the strain on an overloaded system while also helping these individuals become part of society. 

37. Breastfeeding in Public Should Be Considered Normal

Babies need breast milk to survive, yet many places in society frown on women feeding their babies in public. This essay will explore why this is an outdated and unhealthy idea.

38. Why Gun Control Is Needed

The best topics for persuasive essays are ones that are a little controversial. Gun control fits the bill well, and it can be a good topic for an essay. Other topics include alcohol, drugs and, in some cases, religion. That said, it depends on the nature of your students and school.

39. A Turning Point In Your Life

All the students can typically point to an occasion or life event when their worldview or concept changed. Ask them to write about a defining life experience.

40. Should Religion Be Taught In Schools?

This essay topic is for older students and adult learners who can take a thoughtful but critical stance on the role of religion in schools today. Should it be taught or removed from schools, and why?

41. Recycling Should Be Compulsory

The average American produces 1,704 pounds of garbage per year. Most of this is thrown in landfills, which can be equally as damaging to the environment as littering. Oceans are also filled with plastic that negatively affects the lives of marine life.

However, if we can recycle all that waste, we won’t damage the environment. This essay topic encourages older students to research recycling and the pros and cons of making it mandatory. 

42. Colleges Are Becoming Business Driven

Getting a tertiary education is essential. It allows you to learn a marketable skill that other people pay you for. 

However, private colleges are becoming more common, leading people to think that these institutions are more focused on making money.

When writing about this topic, students need to research the cost of college tuition, how this high price negatively impacts their adult lives, and how the government can fix it.

43. The Necessity of Art in Education

Through this prompt, explore and express the value of creativity and aesthetics in one’s learning. Explain why art is essential. How does it influence your learning and perception of the world? Consider this: art is a medium of expression and critical thinking. To write this essay effectively, identify, describe, and reflect on different art forms. You can also focus on art forms that you’ve experienced.

44. The Importance of Space Exploration

Have you ever looked at the night sky and wondered what’s out there? Space exploration is all about the curiosity to discover the unknown. In your essay, go beyond rockets or astronauts and highlight man’s thirst for knowledge.

Start with the historical record of space exploration. Mention how it started and how it became possible. You can even include its milestone achievements. Then, move on to experts’ predictions on the future of space exploration. Discuss its benefits to humans, common challenges, and implications for our future.

45. The Future of Renewable Energy

Let’s now jump to another vital global discourse. Are you aware of the environmental and economic connotations of renewable energy? You may be young now, but you’re not a stranger to the problems of this planet. Through this prompt, you can become a part of the solution. In your essay, define and discuss different types of renewable energy. Underscore their potential, pros, and cons versus traditional energy sources.

46. Fast Fashion’s Environmental Impact

Have you ever wondered where your clothes come from and where they end up? Sadly, most of us consume fast fashion. But have you considered fast fashion’s environmental consequences?

In your essay, identify facts about fast fashion. Credible sources should support these facts so readers can realize how detrimental it is to the environment. Review the lifecycle of a typical fast fashion item. Include the environmental cost at each stage. Then, look for ways to promote sustainable fashion choices.

47. Social Media and Its Influence on Body Image

Today, social media dominates our lives. But have you thought about how it affects how you view your body image? This is a sensitive issue, but timely nonetheless.

For this prompt, voice your experiences and insights about social media and the unrealistic body standards it presents. By doing so, you can help others navigate through the maze of internet likes and shares. Talk about how social networking services impact how people view themselves, including their self-esteem. Then, offer ways on how to circumvent these problems.

48. The Role of Social Media in Interpersonal Relationships

It’s a fact today that most of our relationships start and are maintained online. But does this virtual connection hamper real-life relationships?

Through your essay, explore the link between social media and interpersonal relationships. You can tell it from your perspective. How have your relationships evolved in the age of social media? Review the dynamics of online friendships, mentioning the blurred lines between the virtual and real world. It would be useful to talk to someone you know who remembers a time before mobile phones and social media, which only became prevalent in recent decades.

49. The Consequences of Cyberbullying

Sadly, the rise of social networks also gives bullies more channels to hurt others. Now, they can also hide behind screens. In your essay, define cyberbullying and its effects on the victim’s mental health. You can even include real-life cases for illustration. End your paper by presenting measures to prevent cyberbullying.

50. The Relevance of Standardized Testing Today

The education system needs some updating. If you want to delve into this issue, use a prompt that critiques its current methods. One of the most timely is standardized testing. What’s your take on it? Does it measure intelligence, or is it merely rote learning? List the pros and cons of standardized testing from your perspective as a student. Write as if you want to spark a conversation about educational reform.

51. The Influence of Video Games on Youth Behavior

At your age, you’ve probably experienced the evolution of video games first-hand. If you’re a gamer, have you ever questioned how it influenced your behavior? What about your peers?

For this prompt, focus on the psychological aspects of gaming. Mention the impact of different gaming genres on mental health and behavior. Don’t just talk about the adverse effects. It’s best to also consider the potential benefits of gaming as a learning tool.

Compare and Contrast Essays for Older Students

This type of essay compares two like or unlike things, drawing ways they are the same or different. It’s useful as it provides a structure for aspiring essayists that they can use to outline a longer work. Some ideas include:

52. Homework vs. Class Assignments

Which has more value, homework or assignments completed in class? This essay topic will explore the contrast between these two types of school assignments. For fun, give it to students to complete in class… and then ask them to revise it at home.

53. Social Media Vs. In-Person Interaction

Social media can keep people connected, but the increased push for social media connection can detract from in-person communication. This essay will explore the contrast between the two types of communication.

54. Physical Education Vs. Nutritional Education

Both exercise and diet play a role in health. This essay will explore the impact of both through the education system.

55. Life Before And After The Internet

Older students and adult learners can remember a time before we spend so much time. Is life any better now that we spend so much time connected to the Internet? This essay explores what it means to be constantly connected.

56. Right Side Vs Left Side of the Brian Thinkers

Right side of the brain thinkers are typically more creative and artistic. The left side of the brain thinkers are analytical and mathematical. What’s more valuable in today’s society? What can each type learn from its counterpart? And are you truly one type exclusively?

57. Tea Vs Coffee

Caffeine is a staple for many students and workers. It gives you a boost of energy in the morning, which allows you to get more done. It also helps if you have a test coming up and need to study hard.

However, larger amounts of caffeine are known to cause heart palpitations, anxiety, and increased stress.

In this essay, students look at the benefits and drawbacks of tea and coffee. It empowers them with knowledge on when to limit their consumption.

58. Fashion Today Vs 20 Years Ago

Fashion is constantly changing. What looked cool 20 years ago might look weird today. Older students will also notice how their fashion choices changed from middle school to high school and from high school to college.

In this essay, students talk about what causes this change and how long it takes for the public to accept a specific style.

59. Ebooks vs. Physical Books

You’ve likely used ebooks and physical books for your studies and hobbies. In your essay, use your experience to analyze these different reading mediums. Are you an avid Kindle user? Or do you thrive on the feel of a physical book? Write about relevant aspects like convenience, feel, accessibility, and cost. Always support your arguments with personal anecdotes and factual data.

60. Urban vs. Rural Living

Do you live in the city or the outskirts? Both have pros and cons. If you’ve always been a city student, maybe you’ve wondered what life is like on the other side. If so, then this prompt lets you delve into these contrasting lifestyles.

Feel free to discuss factors such as access to amenities, social interactions, and lifestyle choices. Try to visualize and put yourself in both scenarios to offer an authentic perspective.

61. Traditional vs. Digital Art

There’s been a divide between traditional and digital art for a long time. In this prompt, uncover the why. Consider aspects like skill set, accessibility, impact, and audience reach. Then, add your thoughts on the issue. Are you drawn to the authenticity of traditional art? Or do you admire the versatility of digital art? Bring in your observations and experiences to make your essay stand out.

62. Freelance vs. Full-Time Employment

You might still be a student, but you’ve thought about what your job will be like in the future, right? Then, have you ever wondered about the benefits of being your boss versus the security of a full-time job? Explore these contrasting work styles. By the end of your essay, you will also better understand what awaits you after graduation.

Talk about job stability, work-life balance, income potential, and personal growth. You can draw on real-life examples from people you know.

63. Western vs. Eastern Philosophies

For a more intriguing essay, explore different philosophical frameworks. Are you drawn to Western philosophy’s empirical approach? Or do you prefer Eastern thought’s spiritual aspects? Explore themes such as the self, ethics, knowledge, and reality. Then, compare how these philosophies approach these ideas differently. This is your chance to show off your critical thinking skills.

64. Democracy vs. Dictatorship

Another complicated but interesting prompt is analyzing two contrasting political systems, democracy and dictatorship. Inspect how each system impacts citizens’ rights, economic development, social equality, and international relations. Don’t shy away from using historical and current examples to solidify your arguments.

65. Introverts vs. Extroverts

Are you an introvert, extrovert, or something in between? Picking this topic will not only give you an exciting essay. You will also learn more about yourself. This encourages you to delve into the psychological aspects of these personality types.

In your essay, analyze how these traits affect one’s social interactions, career choices, and personal well-being. Be critical of stereotypes and delve into the potential benefits and challenges of both.

66. Working in Your Country vs. Working Abroad

Have you ever dreamed of living and working abroad? Or do you want to stay where you are now, close to home? Here, you can explore the pros and cons of working or leaving your home country. Mention cultural exposure, career opportunities, and personal growth. Contrast it with the challenges of adapting to a new environment.

67. Science Fiction vs. Fantasy

Science fiction and fantasy are both popular, even today. Why not when it opens doors to various imaginations? For your essay, dive into why these genres are favored and highlight their unique characteristics. Include their societal implications and why they appeal to certain readers.

68. Public vs. Private Healthcare

Debate has been raging on the implications of public and private healthcare systems. These debates often concern a country’s economy and its citizens’ lives. When writing this essay, you can use your personal experience or rely on secondary research. Discuss aspects like accessibility, cost, quality of care, and efficiency. For this prompt, add real-world examples and facts to strengthen your arguments.

Narrative Essay Topics for Older Students

Sometimes, an everyday life experience can make great essay material, and writing about your own life means less risk of plagiarism. Here are some ideas:

69. First Day of School Memories

The first day of school in a new school can be the fodder for a number of personal stories about school life and the social aspects of it. Writers can capture those emotions in this type of essay. It’s also a suitable type of essay to write as it can serve as a gateway into other types of writing, like a memoir.

70. A Memorable Act of Kindness

If someone did something for you once that really stood out, transform that into an essay topic. You will enjoy remembering the action while creating your essay.

71. Your Best or Worst Holiday

What you did or didn’t do on your summer vacation as a child can be a great starting point for a narrative essay. Older students can use this essay prompt to write about past experiences and reflect on them beyond simply reporting.

72. An Experience with Peer Pressure

Peer pressure can be positive or negative, but everyone has experienced it. This essay will explore a time when peer pressure made you do something or not do something and what the effect of that decision was.

73. A Surprising Event or Change of Fortune.

Was this change in your life for the best or the worst, and how did you respond? Describe in detail.

74. Your First Teacher

When you first met your mentor, teacher or guide. How did you respond to them, and what did they have to show you? Similarly, a student could also write an essay about a teacher they shunned or turned away from.

75. Your Idea Of The Perfect Day

When waking up in the morning, we all strive to have the perfect day. Ask students what their perfect day will look like, what activities they’d do, and with whom.

By being as descriptive as possible, students picture the perfect day in their minds. This improves students’ storytelling skills and helps them structure events in chronological order.

76. Imagine A Week Without The Internet Or Technology

This fun experiment gives students insight into how reliant they are on technology and how their lives will look without it.

By imagining this week in their heads, it’ll give them an idea of what other activities they’ll engage in. This could be working out, socializing, or learning a new skill.

77. A Day You Overcame Rejection

Rejection is something everyone must face at some point. Few things are scarier than rejection. But when you overcome it, you get a feeling of accomplishment and satisfaction.

For example, this could be asking that cute guy or girl out on a date or applying for a job at your dream company.

78. Overcoming My Fear

Are you interested in writing an essay while also self-reflecting? When you use this prompt, you also demonstrate your tenacity to overcome obstacles. Think back to any fear you have had. It doesn’t matter if they’re big or small as long as they shape your character.

Begin your essay by describing the fear you had and why. Then, narrate what you did to overcome it. Remember to discuss the aftermath and the personal growth you experienced.

79. The Day I Lost My First Pet

Losing a pet is a personal experience. How you handled your emotions at that time shows your nature. When you write your essay, paint a vivid picture of your pet by describing quirks and traits. Explain how losing a pet changed you; don’t avoid the pain. Then, talk about your grieving process and eventual acceptance.

80. That Someone Who Influenced Me

Did someone come to mind when you read the prompt? It’s unsurprising if they did, considering that every person has that one person who left a significant impact on their life. 

For your essay, choose and write about that individual who helps you appreciate life. Give specific details, such as when they made you realize something, and then connect them to how their teachings shaped you. This prompt also allows students to reflect on their character description and development. 

81. The Most Embarrassing Moment

For a fun narrative essay, share the moment you felt the most embarrassed. You don’t have to be specific about it; you can instead focus on what you felt then and how you cope during that awkward situation. You can also mention what you think of the memory now that you’re looking back at it. Is it as embarrassing as you’ve thought back then?

82. The Time I Stood Up for What I Believe

Here is a medium to exhibit your ethics and the strength of your convictions. For this prompt, narrate the situation and explain why you must stand up. What were your thoughts during that moment? Talk about your emotions then and the consequences you’ve faced, if any. Mention how the experience shaped your approach to similar situations.

83. The Invention I Wish I Had Thought Of

Is there any invention that made you go, “Ah, I wish I thought of that before!” It can be because of the fame that came with it, the profit, or just the sheer genius of its inventor. Select an invention that fascinates you and explain why it interests you. Think of why you wish you’d come up with it. Talk about its impact on the world and how it aligns with your interests or passions.

84. An Unexpected Friendship

Friendships often form in the most unexpected places and situations. For this prompt, highlight your openness to diverse experiences and people.

In your essay, describe the circumstances that led to this unexpected friendship. Add why you found it so surprising. Speak about the qualities you appreciate in your friend and include how this relationship has affected your life. Your objective is to encourage others to broaden their social circles.

85. The Day That Defined My Future

For this prompt, share a turning point in your life that set your future course. Present a comprehensive account of the event or decision that significantly impacted your future by mentioning factors that influenced it. Add your thoughts and feelings then and how things have unfolded since then.

Informative Essay Topics for Older Students

Sometimes, the goal of an essay is not to persuade but to inform. Informative or expository essay topics need to have a lot of information behind them so students have something to write about. These topics lend themselves well to that:

86. How is Global Warming Changing the Environment

Global warming has many effects, and this essay will explore those thoroughly. The goal is to inform, not persuade or create change.

87. The Causes of World War II

Exploring the causes behind a global war, like World War II, can create a long essay. You can spin this essay topic easily enough by picking other historical events.

88. What Is Racism, and How Are People Sometimes Unaware of It?

Racism is a hot topic today, and this essay will explore how it can often hide in someone’s way of thinking. 

89. Does Free Will Exist?

A popular essay topic in many philosophy and art classes, this is an open-ended subject. A student can use it to explore their personal philosophy and develop their critical thinking skills.

Check out this list for other philosophy questions.

90. What Reading Means to Me

Becoming a better writer means spending a lot of time reading great books. One of the best ways to encourage reading is asking readers and students to reflect on why they love reading what they learned from previous books. It’s good subject matter for an essay too.

91. The Role Of Journalists and the Media

Many people are skeptical and or don’t trust news produced by journalists. But are they right? Surely there is a bar between trustworthy and untrustworthy sources? In this essay, explore how to tell good journalism apart from bad journalism.

92. Animal Testing Should Be Banned

When testing products to see if it’s safe for humans, scientists will run tests on animals. However, this testing isn’t only cruel but ineffective. Animals don’t get certain diseases that humans do. This includes HIV, Parkinson’s disease, schizophrenia, and certain types of cancers.

In this essay, students must conduct research and present a case for why animal testing is unethical.

93. Why Do Teenagers Commit Suicide?

Suicide is the second leading cause of death for those between the ages of 10 to 24. This is a complex topic since there could be several different factors at play. Some of these include bullying, abuse, and traumatic stress.

When writing this essay, students will be encouraged to dig deeper into the main reasons why teenagers commit suicide and how we can help them as a community. This spreads awareness and gets people to take positive action.

94. The Role of the United Nations

How much do you know about the United Nations? This prompt will test your knowledge of international relations and politics as you have to pen a paper that’s easy to understand. Include the intricacies of global leadership and peacekeeping by explaining the critical functions of the UN. Then, add how it helps society and how its efforts benefit you as a student.

95. The History and Impact of The Internet

Where did the internet come from? How did it develop to be what it is today? In your essay, recall the history of the World Wide Web and its profound impact on our daily lives. As an older student, you’ve lived through some of the internet’s transformative phases. How has that shaped the way you live, work, or study? Answer all of these in your paper.

96. Why is Financial Literacy Crucial Today?

Many people still get confused about handling their incomes, budgets, and expenses. In your essay, explain why many fumble their finances. Include how understanding one’s finances matters now more than ever.

For a more relatable paper, you can narrate your personal journey towards financial literacy. You can also analyze current financial trends and their implications for the average person.

97. The Importance of Technology in Healthcare

Technology has revolutionized healthcare, so it’ll always be a timely topic. For this prompt, delve into the impact of technological advancements on health and medicine. It’s a brilliant way to explore subjects like telemedicine or electronic health records. You can even include the role of AI in disease diagnosis.

98. The Rise of Electric Vehicles

Have you noticed more electric vehicles on the road recently? In your essay, analyze the surge in popularity of electric vehicles. Add their environmental impact and the technological advances that have made them viable. Don’t forget to include your thoughts on a future dominated by electric vehicles.

99. An Analysis of a Popular TV Show

If you have a TV show you’re fond of, then you can talk about it in your essay. Explore the show’s central themes, character developments, and narrative techniques. It might even give you an excuse to rewatch your favorite series!

100. The Value of Learning a Second Language

Parlez-vous Français? If you have a second language or are interested in learning one someday, this prompt is for you. Remember to focus your essay on the benefits of bilingualism or multilingualism. If you have any, include your memories of learning a new language. You can also ask others who speak more than one language about their experiences. Add the challenges, triumphs, and doors it has opened for you.

101. The Stigma Around Mental Health

Today, there is the question of whether we’re doing enough to address mental health. In your paper, be open and talk about the stigma around mental health issues. You can opt to share your personal experiences or observations. Then, don’t forget to add the consequences of ignoring mental health. It’s a powerful way to raise awareness and promote empathy.

A Final Word on the Best Essay Writing Topics

Whether you are a high school student writing an essay for homework or you are sitting down to write a college essay as you apply for school, procrastination often occurs because you do not know what to write about. Having a list of topics handy will help. 

To choose a topic, first, decide what type of essay you need to write. Then, browse this list of writing topics to find one that is interesting to you, or use the list to think of a different, similar topic. Soon, you will have an essay that is engaging and informative and can showcase your writing abilities well. 

If you need more inspiration, check out our guide to the 101+ best writing prompts.

FAQs About the Best Essay Writing Topics

What are some topics for a persuasive essay?

Persuasive essays require a controversial topic in order to give the writer the freedom to write in a persuasive manner. Some good topics for these essays include:
Soda in fast food meals
Breastfeeding in public
Using jail to deter illegal immigrants
Banning cell phones for young children

What are some good topics for an essay?

Some good topics for an essay include:
Gun control
Social media
Personal experiences
Health
Social issues
A life event

  • Maria Caballero is a freelance writer who has been writing since high school. She believes that to be a writer doesn't only refer to excellent syntax and semantics but also knowing how to weave words together to communicate to any reader effectively.

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