A classification essay uses one of the key skills required not only for writing other essay types but for living life generally: the ability to sort ideas and things into categories. Fortunately, most students already have the skills required to write a classification essay, since almost all students are studying in a field that requires them to sort out concepts. For this reason, a classification essay, once a student has some control of academic writing, should come fairly easily.
There are two steps involved in planning a classification essay. The first step is to decide what kind of thing you want to classify. If you have an open-ended assignment (such as “Write a classification essay about something you encounter every day”), it’s best to pick a topic that you know something about. If you are into computers, write about computers. If you are into art, write about different styles of painting.
The most important thing to remember when choosing a classification essay topic is that it should be representative of a distinct category. For example, computers are types of things that belong in a category of their own. A classification essay about types of technology, meanwhile, would probably be too broad for a typical English class essay.