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Definition Essay Topics: 200 Ideas for Students

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Are you looking for some of the best definition essay topics available? If so, you are in the right place. In this blog post, we have discussed great definition paper topics that can help you complete your assignment. Continue reading to understand the meaning of definition essay topics, explore the best way to select one, and get common tips to help you write a quality essay. Our essay writing services have also provided a list of topic ideas on various subjects to guide your research and writing.

What Are Definition Essay Topics?

A definition essay is a paper that explains the meaning of an idea, word, or term. It can also be described as an intricate dictionary that not only defines a term but also provide in-depth explanation and illustrations. Definition essay topics are the primary subject matters in a definition essay. Writers expound on definitions essay topics to inform readers about concepts or explain a word or term that has an abstract meaning. 

When researching topics for a definition essay, you should explore alternative interpretations from different perspectives. In other words, you can provide both official meaning and your personal interpretation with multiple examples. This type of paper, in many instances, should not be more than 250-500 words long.

Characteristics of Good Definition Essay Topics

Good definition essay topics share some unique characteristics. When selecting a subject matter, you should consider an issue that is simple to write and is interesting to readers. So, what is a good topic for a definition essay? Good definition paper topics should:

  1. Have multiple meanings and interpretations.
  2. Relate to unique word, phrase, or concept that will engage readers.
  3. Discuss a subject that is both interesting and informative.
  4. Relate to subjects that you have many different perspectives on.

How to Choose a Definition Essay Topic?

Topics you select play a key role in determining your success in writing an academic paper. Choosing definition topics can be very challenging. In many cases, instructor will provide you with a list of ideas to pick from. However, in other scenarios, you may be required to research a definition essay topic from scratch. In this section, you will find common tips to guide you in choosing paper topics. Follow the steps below to select a good definition paper topic.

  1. Select good words to write a definition essay on. Avoid words with single meanings.
  2. Pick argumentative phrases and concepts which will enable you to express your writing skills and knowledge on your preferred subject. You should be able to write more than one paragraph on your selected topics.
  3. Check for unique words and phrases that can engage your potential readers.
  4. Develop a list of all possible topics to select from.
  5. Choose a topic you are sure about. Select a topic that you have broad knowledge and points of view on.

It’s always a great idea to consult your professor before commencing a task. But if you need some writing inspiration, take a look below or try our Random Essay Topic Generator.

Best Definition Essay Topics List

Choosing a good topic is your first step towards writing a good academic paper. If you follow tips provided in sections above, you should be able to select some of the best definition essay topics available. Definition essay topic list below outlines great examples that you can choose from.

  1. How can you define fun?
  2. What does affirmative action mean and how is it being used in present-day society?
  3. What is religion?
  4. Define the argument concept.
  5. How do you define social class?
  6. What is artificial intelligence?
  7. Are centralized and decentralized governments any different?
  8. What is a personal understanding of power?
  9. What is cryptocurrency and how does it deviate from the conventional financial system?
  10. What is your understanding of corporate social responsibility?

Definitional Argument Essay Topics

For definition argument essay topics, you need to write about subjects that attract divergent opinions and thus, closely debated. Therefore, rather than having a topic that is straightforward and one-dimensional, definition argument topics should be argumentative in nature. Below are some examples of definitional argument topics in case you don’t know how to title an essay:

  1. Physical activity should be encouraged more in schools.
  2. Explain advantages and disadvantages of capital punishment.
  3. Do high school students benefit from take-away assignments?
  4. Abortion should be a legalized service.
  5. Sex education should be included in school curricula from an early age.
  6. Plastic surgery creates unrealistic beauty standards.
  7. Is working out beneficial to your mental health?
  8. Vaping is more dangerous compared to smoking.
  9. Grading should be abolished in schools.
  10. Genetically modified products are dangerous and should be abolished.
  11. Video games negatively affect children’s social development.
  12. Tertiary education should be free.
  13. Is it ethical to use animals as test subjects?
  14. Euthanizing animals is unethical.
  15. Should vaccination be made mandatory?

Extended Definition Essay Topics

Contrary to other topic categories, extended definition essay topics take up more pages. A simple elucidation will not suffice. You will need to provide elaborate explanations and illustrations for readers to better understand extended definition topics. Below are some examples of extended definition essay topic ideas that you can use:

  1. What does true friendship mean in modern-day society?
  2. What makes a good partner in marriage?
  3. What does misogyny and bigotry mean in the 21st century?
  4. What are the main characteristics of a good leader?
  5. Religious bigotry in Pakistan.
  6. What is your interpretation of a mature individual?
  7. What makes a person trustworthy?
  8. What is your definition of a happy marriage?
  9. What is the difference between ego and high personal standards?
  10. How can you define common sense?
  11. What is a creative mind?
  12. What is a healthy weight?
  13. Who is a patriotic citizen?
  14. Who is an intelligent person to you?
  15. What are the characteristics of a good person?

Need more ideas? Check our blog with extended essay topics and spot a catchy title.

Controversial Definition Paper Topics

Due to people’s divergent opinions, some subjects are very controversial. You risk offending a certain group of your readers when discussing controversial paper ideas. You should, therefore, pay more attention and be keener when discussing them. Below are examples of controversial topics for definition papers:

  1. Ethical justification of death penalty.
  2. Different ages of consent across different cultures.
  3. Is abortion the murdering of an unborn child?
  4. What is the meaning of gun control?
  5. What is social media addiction?
  6. What is the definition of mental disorder in modern society?
  7. Difference between sex and gender.
  8. What is a physician-assisted suicide?
  9. What is the modern interpretation of feminism?
  10. What is a juvenile correctional system in the US?
  11. What laws regulate immigration in America?
  12. What is freedom of speech in the context of modern society?
  13. What are the residency rights of Palestinian in Israeli-occupied Palestinian territories.
  14. What is considered as explicit content in 21st century society?
  15. What is home-schooling and its benefits?

Good Topics for a Definition Essay

To select good topics for definition essays, you need to have a perfect balance of creativity and intellect to come up with a subject that will intrigue your audience. Also, good definition essay topics should be simple to write and not complex to follow for your readers. Below is a list of some good topics:

  1. What does “peace of mind” mean?
  2. What is your perception of poverty in different social classes?
  3. Define different types of art.
  4. What is your personal understanding of love?
  5. What is reverse racism?
  6. What is global warming and how does it impact climate change?
  7. Difference between respect and admiration.
  8. What is your understanding of the term “natural beauty”?
  9. What is the meaning of good parenting?
  10. Define the concept of the rule of law.
  11. Define the right to privacy in the context of modern-day technology.
  12. What does sportsmanship mean?
  13. Explain peer pressure and its impact on school-going children?
  14. What is online shopping?
  15. What is the meaning of the term “gender neutral”?

Once you spot a perfect idea and realize that the deadline is approaching, remember that you can trust professionals and order an essay online at StudyCrumb.

Creative Definition Essay Topics

You need creative definition essay writing topics if you wish to capture your readers’ attention. When exploring definition topic ideas for your essay, you should ensure that it is not only informative but also intriguing. In this section, you will come across some of the most creative topic ideas that you can use to develop a good essay.

  1. What is love at first sight?
  2. What is a respectable job?
  3. How do you differentiate pleasure from happiness?
  4. What is the difference between risk-taking and stupid decisions?
  5. What is courage?
  6. How does high self-esteem differ from arrogance?
  7. What is the meaning of self-respect?
  8. Define creativity and provide different types of creative works.
  9. What is the meaning of a creative mind?
  10. What is a nuclear family and its composition?
  11. Define the concept of best friends.
  12. How can you discern self-respect from pride?
  13. Are religious people more moral?
  14. Why are the best students less successful in life compared to average students?
  15. How do you define dedication in a relationship?

Easy Definition Essay Topics

Complexity of definition essay topics varies depending on students’ academic level or the target reader. For example, a high school student will work on an easy topic for a definition essay compared to a college student. Below are some simple topics for a definition paper:

  1. What is racism?
  2. What does it mean to be a good student?
  3. What is the meaning of term “peer pressure”?
  4. What is the meaning of laziness?
  5. What is greed?
  6. What is the meaning of cyberbullying?
  7. What is classical music?
  8. What is the definition of charisma?
  9. What does it mean to become wealthy?
  10. What exactly is hard work?
  11. How do you keep power?
  12. How can you define the word optimism?
  13. What does the term “agriculture” mean?
  14. What is the meaning of indoor sports?
  15. What is the meaning of teamwork?

Definition Essay Ideas for Students

Sometimes, instructors may require students to write a definition essay. Good topics for definition essay should be relevant to the course content or school curriculum in general. Moreover, ideas for definition essays tend to vary depending on the academic level of students and their majors. This section outlines common definition essay topics across the high school and college levels.

Definition Essay Topics for High School

In this section, we will discuss definition essay topics that are suitable for students in grades 9-12. High school definition topics are simpler. Some definition essay topics often relate to grade-specific information. Some of the best topics are outlined below.

  1. Explain the meaning of trust in the context of friendship.
  2. What is the right age to start dating?
  3. Differentiate between knowledge and wisdom.
  4. Define the term “conspiracy theory”.
  5. Differentiate between marriage and cohabitation.
  6. Define the communism concept.
  7. Define consumerism in present-day society.
  8. Define antisemitism.
  9. Discern intellectual from intelligent.
  10. What is the meaning of positive discrimination and how can it be used for the benefit of society?
  11. Differentiate between nature and nurturing in the development of children.
  12. Meaning of avatar in the metaverse.
  13. What is conflict management?
  14. Define Murphy’s Law and how it can be applied in your life.
  15. Discuss the meaning of birth control.

Definition Essay Topics for College Students

Definition essay topics for college students are more advanced. Unlike at the high school level, where topics are not very complex, college students may be expected to research on topics that have multidimensional points of view. Are you finding trouble coming up with topics for definition paper? You can pick one from options provided below.

  1. What is the meaning of Islamophobia?
  2. Define the 3rd wave of feminism.
  3. Define gene therapy and its role in the medical field.
  4. What is the meaning of materialism and how does it vary in different cultures?
  5. Differentiate between communism and capitalism.
  6. How is male and female gaze used differently in cinema?
  7. Define virtual education.
  8. How have beauty standards evolved since the 20th century to the present-day?
  9. Define Xenophobia in American society.
  10. What is multiculturalism and how does it impact modern society?
  11. How does social media affect attractiveness standards?
  12. Define the concept of utilitarianism.
  13. What is the meaning of a marriage in 21st century society?
  14. Define and discuss effects of digital revolution.
  15. What is green energy?

In case you also need ideas for a descriptive essay, we’ve got a blog with a whole assortment of interesting topics. 

Definition Essay Prompts

Haven’t found ideas for a definition essay that intrigues you from the options above? Do not worry. There are still many prompts for a definition essay that are discussed in this section. There are many prompt options on multiple subjects to choose from. Ideas for definition essays have been filtered and categorized into various subjects to inspire your academic writing. Depending on your interests and preference, you can select the clearly sorted topics from the categories below.

Definition Essay Topics About Love

Love is a complex subject. The meaning of love and how it is illustrated varies from one person to another. At one point in your life, you must have experienced love. Love is a term that has multiple meanings and varied implications, making it a widely discussed definitional essay topics. Below are some of the popular definition ideas about love.

  1. What types of love do you know?
  2. Define various characteristics of love.
  3. Love between human and non-human.
  4. Define the term “love language”.
  5. Is love at first sight a true phenomenon?
  6. Is parental love automatic?
  7. Is there a difference between love and friendship?
  8. What is the meaning of self-love?
  9. Discuss true love.
  10. Does passion affect a person’s mental health?
  11. What is God’s love?
  12. Define same-sex love.
  13. The meaning of love in different cultural setups around the world.
  14. What is your ideal Valentine’s Day date?
  15. Define the term “soul mate”.

Family Definition Topics

Family is another multidimensional subject that has a wide spectrum of meanings. You can approach the issue from different angles, including family values, members of a family, and other related aspects. Definition paper topics about family should be written in a manner that will make it feel personal to attain optimum reaction from readers. Below is a list of ideas for a definition essay.

  1. What is the structure of a 21st century family?
  2. Effect of teenage pregnancy on families.
  3. Explain child marriage.
  4. How does the concept of family vary across different cultures around the world?
  5. What is the meaning of a nuclear family in present-day society?
  6. Differentiate between an immediate and a chosen family.
  7. How does the increased rate of divorce affect families?
  8. Compare the traditional understanding of family to the modern meaning.
  9. Define family values in today’s society.
  10. How has the internet and technology affected the institution of family?
  11. Differentiate joint families from private families.
  12. How does foster families impact child development?
  13. Define the primary role of a family in your life.
  14. Define the elements of a strong family.
  15. How do financial problems affect the stability of families?

Friendship Definition Essay Prompt Ideas

Friendship is another subject that is very close to many people’s hearts. Most of us have at least one person we call a friend. Relationship dynamics between different friends vary. It is understandable for people to have diverse opinions and strong feelings about the subject. As a result, there are many definition essay prompts on friendship for you to choose from. Some of the definition papers topics include:

  1. Explain the meaning of a true friendship.
  2. How much commitment does true friendship need?
  3. Discuss the concept of “friends with benefit”.
  4. Can you discern friendship from love?
  5. Are friends closer to you than family?
  6. What are the impacts of friends on your personality?
  7. Differentiate between online friends and physical friends.
  8. Define the concept of “best friends forever”.
  9. Is a dog a man’s best friend?
  10. How can you elaborate “friendship zone”?
  11. Define a platonic relationship.
  12. Can family members be friends?
  13. What is the ultimate test of true friendship?
  14. Can you have more than one best friend?
  15. What is your understanding of the phrase “loyal friend”?

Hero Definition Essay Topics

A person’s idea of heroes and their qualities varies from one time to another. Besides, there is no universal standard for categorizing individuals as heroes. You can easily come up with many hero definition topic ideas due to these divergent opinions. Examples of definitive essay topics on this subject include:

  1. Who is a hero?
  2. Explain visual presentation of heroes in the past versus present-day society.
  3. What are some characteristics of a hero?
  4. Discuss the stereotyping of heroes in Hollywood.
  5. Are heroes supposed to perform heroic actions?
  6. Origin of super human abilities as a stereotypical characteristic of a hero.
  7. Mythological versus modern-day heroes.
  8. Differentiate between role models and heroes.
  9. How can heroes inspire you?
  10. Define different types of heroes.
  11. Define the term “anti-hero”.
  12. What is a hero in real life?
  13. Explain how the concept of hero varies from one culture to another.
  14. Is possessing superpowers a mandatory requirement to be a hero?
  15. Define heroes as portrayed in Ancient Greek mythology.

Definition Essay Topics by Subject

Ideas for definition essays can fall into different categories depending on intention or the nature of the paper. We have grouped topics for a definition essay into six categories to simplify the process of selecting your preferred topic. Rather than looking through all definition topics, you can easily focus on the subject that aligns to your academic writing interests.

Business Definition Essay Topics

Below are good topics for a definition essay related to business:

  1. Define economic depression.
  2. What is the meaning of e-commerce?
  3. What is social media marketing?
  4. Define the term “start-up”.
  5. What is the meaning of acquisition, merger?
  6. Define international trade.
  7. What is corporate social responsibility?
  8. What is a business?
  9. Important roles of statistics in business.
  10. What does small and mid-size enterprise mean?

Definition Essay Topics on History

Learning about history is pivotal in ensuring that you are prepared for future events. Some of the best definition essay ideas include:

  1. What is history?
  2. Define the abolitionist movement.
  3. What is the American Civil War?
  4. Define the Arab Spring.
  5. What is independence?
  6. What is colonization?
  7. What was the Civil Rights Movement?
  8. What is a war?
  9. Discuss the Vietnam War.
  10. Define the concept of revolution.

Politics Definition Essay Topics

There are many different political systems in the world. In addition, political leaders have diverse political ideologies. As a result, people approach political science topics from different points of view. Commonly discussed topics for a definition essay include:

  1. What is democracy?
  2. Define federal versus state government.
  3. What is a monarchy?
  4. Define anarchism.
  5. Define the term “whistleblowing”.
  6. What does the term “witch hunt” mean?
  7. Define the Fifth Amendment and efforts to enact it.
  8. What is a totalitarian regime?
  9. What is a political party?
  10. What is a trade union?

Philosophy Definition Essay Topics

Philosophers in the past have been credited for the development of present-day society, government, and the education system. As a result, many philosophical things have been discussed over the years. Below is a list of some common definition topic ideas:

  1. Define devotion.
  2. What is utilitarianism?
  3. What is freedom?
  4. Define humanity.
  5. How do you define justice?
  6. Define beauty.
  7. Define conflict of interest.
  8. How can you explain the term “aura”?
  9. Retribution versus rehabilitation.
  10. Define consciousness.

Definition Essay Topics on Psychology

The study and practice of psychological concepts have increased significantly in the recent past. Below is a list of good definition essay topics related to the subject in case you are also interested:

  1. Define attachment theory.
  2. What does absolute threshold mean?
  3. Explain the placebo effect?
  4. What is a mental disorder?
  5. Define avoidance learning.
  6. What is a conditional reflex?
  7. Define PTSD.
  8. What is emotional intelligence?
  9. Is gender dysphoria a mental disorder?
  10. Define depression.

Technology & Science Definition Essay Topics

With advancements in technology, many people have increased interest in technology and science. The list below outlines definition essay topics that you can use for your paper. Check these ideas or browse these technology research topics if you need more suggestions.

  1. What is clean energy?
  2. Define fossil fuel.
  3. Explain the term “augmented intelligence”.
  4. Define identity theft.
  5. Define virtual assistance software.
  6. Define right to privacy in the current digital era.
  7. What does the technological term “cookies” mean?
  8. What is cloud computing?
  9. What is technology?
  10. Define targeted marketing.

Liked the ideas? We have more blogs dedicated to different title ideas such as expository essay topics, analysis essay topics, satirical essy topics etc. Browse through our articles to find a fitting topic for any assignment.

Bottom Line on Definition Essay Topics

In sum, a definition essay is a common type of an academic paper that requires you to define a word, term, or concept. As a student, you should be able to select good topics for a definition paper. This article provides you with excellent tips to help you in the process of identifying great definition essay topic ideas. In addition, the blog post has many examples of definition essay ideas on various subjects to simplify the writing process for you. This post should increase your chances of success in writing a definition paper.

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FAQ About Definition Paper Topics

1. What are some good definition speech topics?

Not all definition essay topics are suitable for public speech. You should choose a topic that will capture the attention of your audience. Popular definition speech ideas include:

  1. What is the meaning of discipline?
  2. What is the modern-day standard of success?
  3. What are the benefits of electric vehicles?
  4. What is the value of time?

3. What are some great definition essay topic ideas?

This list outlines some great topic for definition essay that you can use for your definition paper.

  1. What is industrialization and how does it affect today’s society?
  2. What is grief?
  3. What does liberalism mean as a political movement?
  4. Define religion and its role in society.
  5. Discuss roles of religion in promoting radicalization.

2. What are popular argumentative definition essay topics?

Good definitional argument topics ideas are characterized by divergent opinions. Example of these topics include:

  1. Define pro-life versus pro-choice.
  2. Define same-sex marriage?
  3. Define patriotism in the context of American society.
  4. Define overpopulation and its danger to earth’s ecosystem.
  5. Define economic disparity across different ethnicities.
Article posted on:Jan 23, 2023
Article updated on:May 13, 2024


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