There is the great number of types of essays used in colleges and schools today. All of them have their specific particular purpose and reason. The most popular kinds of essays are:
Descriptive‚ an essay that provides point-by-point details of an object, event, feeling etc.
Definition essay defines and tries to explain the purpose, meaning or importance of something. It answers the questions: Why? Who? What? How?
Cause and effect essay is a deep analysis of an event or an object that starts with the reason and ends with the final outcomes this reason resulted in.
Argumentative essay attempts to persuade the reader of a controversial issue. The writer's aim is to make readers believe in what he believes. This goal is reached by means of providing and defending an argument.
Narrative essay is a short story about any kind of event.
Critical essay is a strengths/weaknesses analysis of someone's work. It is used to evaluate how well the author did his or her work.
Compare/contrast is an essay which involves finding similarities and/or differences between two or more things that have something in common.
Process essay is an instruction for something to be accomplished. It involves the steps made and the result achieved.
Expository essay is an essay in which the writer provides the information on a subject and therefore makes the reader familiar with particular topic which teaches him.
Summary‚ restates the main ideas and thesis of a book, movie or an article using writer's own words.