Organizing the five-paragraph Essay

In a five-paragraph essay, the thesis statement is placed at the end of the introductory paragraph. Sections Paragraphs Introduction(thesis statement) Paragraph 1 Body (support for thesis statement) Paragraphs 2-4 Conclusion(restatement of thesis statement) Paragraph 5 You may use the same form to organize academic papers, even though your assignments may vary in content, length, or purpose. If you write a longer paper, add paragraphs for each section. Perhaps, for example, in a scientific research paper, you would write something close to the following: Sections Paragraphs Introduction(thesis statement) Paragraphs 1-2 Body (support for thesis statement) Paragraphs 3-18 Conclusion(restatement of thesis statement) Paragraphs 19-20 The second, third, and fourth paragraphs contain support and evidence for your thesis statement. Organizing Techniques Many facilitators require students to organize their essays by creating an outline. Use the following table to create an outline. Sections Paragraphs and Content Introduction 1. Introductory statement________________________________ Thesis statement ____________________________________ Body 2. Statement supporting thesis ___________________________ Evidence__________________________________________ Organizing the Essay… 2 of 2 3/11/10 7:29 PM 3. Statement supporting thesis ___________________________ Evidence__________________________________________ 4. Statement supporting thesis ___________________________ Evidence _________________________________________ Conclusion 5. Concluding statement ________________________________ Restatement of thesis ________________________________ The Center for Writing Excellence provides a sample outline in the Tutorials & Guides section and a Thesis Generator to help you organize supporting ideas into an outline. Different Types of Essay Development You may develop your essay in a number of ways. For most academic courses, you write expository or persuasive essays. In these essays, organize ideas according to the essay’s purpose. Least important to most important: You may begin with the least important reason and end with the most important, building momentum. The reader walks away thinking about the most compelling reasons. Most important to least important: You may begin with the most important information, and end with the least important. News articles are written this way because readers may not read to the end. Chronologically: You may order events chronologically. If you tell a story or describe a process—for example, writing about someone’s life or explaining how to bake a cake—use this order. Logically: Sometimes, information has a logical order. Organize to make the most sense, such as from a problem to a solution or a cause to an effect. If, for example, you were writing about global warming, you might provide background on how it developed, then propose remedies. Once you organize your content with an outline and write your supporting paragraphs, you are on the way to writing an effective essay.

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