English Composition

This week you must submit your paper outline.

Please use the attached worksheet to complete your paper outline: OutlineWorksheet.docx

How to write an Outline for a Paper

What is an outline? 

An outline can be defined as an organizational plan to help you draft a paper.  Writing an outline before beginning a paper is the most effective way to organize your thoughts.  An outline breaks down the parts of your thesis in a clear, hierarchical manner to help you see the overall format of your paper.

Remember: The three parts of a paper included in your outline are: an INTRODUCTION, a BODY, and a CONCLUSION.

INTRODUCTION‐ State your thesis and the purpose of your research paper clearly.  What is the chief reason you are writing the paper?  State also how you plan to approach your topic.  Is this a factual report, a book review, a comparison, or an analysis of a problem? Explain briefly the major points you plan to cover in your paper and why readers should be interested in your topic.

BODY‐ This is where you present your arguments to support your thesis statement.   Remember the Rule of 3, i.e., find 3 supporting arguments for each position you take. Begin with a strong argument, then use a stronger one, and end with strongest argument for your final point.

CONCLUSION– Restate or reword your thesis.  Summarize your arguments. Explain why you have come to this particular conclusion.

What is a thesis statement? 

A thesis statement declares what you believe and what you intend to prove.  A good thesis statement makes the difference between a thoughtful research project and a simple retelling of facts. A good tentative thesis will help you focus your search for information. Remember, your reader will be looking for your thesis.  Make it clear, strong, and easy to find. Sample idea for creating an outline for a paper I will create an outline that focuses on the life of Senator Barack Obama.