Some informative essay topics are contemporary examples of racism, the pitfalls of smoking, teenage pregnancy, the psychological make-up of a serial killer and common misconceptions about people with manic depressive disorder. Informative essays explain answers to questions using straightforward facts and are often based on research.
A good informative essay offers new information to the reader about the topic, so choosing a specific topic is important. Narrowing down "death penalty" to "moral conundrums associated with the death penalty" or choosing a specific conundrum and discussing one or both sides of it makes a good informative essay topic that goes beyond the basic definition and piques the reader's interest.
To conceive a specific informative essay topic, use pre-writing exercises, class discussions or discussions with peers to generate pertinent questions about the general topic. Questions about the general topic "legality of marijuana" may beg questions like, "What effect do marijuana sales have on state revenue?" This question translates to the informative topic of "monetary benefits of marijuana legalization for state governments" or "negative consequences of marijuana benefits for state revenue."
Free write short answers to inform different audiences about the topic. This illuminates different ways of looking at the topic and expands understanding of nuances associated with the general topic.