Writing an essay is possible, there is no denying that. However, that’s only if you are okay with a low-grade essay. If your ambition goes beyond a passing grade, you need to learn how to outline an essay the right way.
So, let’s dive into the fine art of writing an essay outline.
How to Write an Essay Outline
Even though there are many types of college essays, many follow the same five-paragraph form. That’s an introduction paragraph, three body paragraphs (arguments, evidence, examples), and a conclusion paragraph.
If needed you can add more paragraphs in the body, but the introduction and the conclusion remain single paragraphs.
So, keep that in mind when writing your outline.
In general, your outline will look like this:
You open with your thesis statement. That’s your foundation upon which you will build your entire essay.
Every paragraph within the body will need to have a topic sentence followed by an argument and supporting evidence. Add all raw data, examples, facts, and whatever evidence in your body paragraph. You can sort it out later when you will start writing the paragraph.
Restate your thesis and wrap things up. The conclusion is where you summarize the purpose of your essay.
The Process of Outlining
If you are an experienced essay writer, the process of creating an outline will be pretty straightforward. On the other hand, the lack of experience can only extend the process of writing an outline. Here you will find some core points about writing an outline. That way the writing of an outline will be much faster and easier.
Preparation & Research
Before you write your first words, you need to research the given topic, assemble all the facts, supporting evidence, and so on. Furthermore, you must not forget to study your guidelines carefully, so that you don’t miss the point of the essay and stay focused on what matters most.
Find Your Purpose
It is very easy to drift away from the purpose of your assignment. That’s because once you get in the flow, you can forget about the true purpose of the essay and explore new areas. The point is to be aware of your purpose beforehand.
Write for Your Audience
Remember, you are not your audience, someone else is. Your audience can be your professor, colleagues, businessman, classmates, or maybe even the general population. Whatever your audience is, base your writing on their knowledge on the given topic, what affects them most, and in a style that is close to them.
Compile a Thesis Statement
If you have completed your research, you know your purpose, you know your audience, then it is much easier to write your thesis statement which is essential in the process of writing an essay, not just the outline. A well-written thesis statement will inform the reader what your essay is about and the purpose you want to achieve.
Practical Tips for Writing the Perfect Essay
The following tips are praised as very helpful by professional writers when they were starting their careers as essay writers.
Beginner or a seasoned writer, it doesn’t matter, you need to take notes. Write down quotes, historical facts, statistics, pretty much anything that catches your attention. All that can be later filtered and you can use the things that help your cause the most. This is a great way to make your essay sound very informative
Prepare a Mind Map
Again, this is something about staying on your path and not drifting in other, less relevant areas. This can help you jot down thoughts as they come.
Split Ideas Into Groups
It is much easier to find some ideas later and go through all of your material. This is a practical, time-saving tip. By keeping everything in different groups is way more accessible and easier to find.
That’s pretty much we had on how to outline an essay. Of course, that doesn’t mean there isn’t more on writing an outline. There is a lot more to be added, but that’s on the specific essay genres. The tips and guidelines here are generalistic, they can be applied in any type of essay. That means stop wasting time and get to work.