Outlining your paper

An outline is a plan for the paper that will help you organize and structure your ideas in a way that effectively communicates them to your reader and supports your thesis statement. You’ll want to work on an outline after you’ve completed some of the other exercises, since having an idea of what you’ll say in the paper will make it much easier to write. An outline can be very informal; you might simply jot down your thesis statement, what the introduction will discuss, what you’ll say in the body of the paper, and what you want to include in the conclusion.

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Remember that all writing — even academic writing — needs to tell a story: the introduction often describes what has already happened (the background or history of your topic), the body paragraphs might explain what is currently happening and what needs to happen (this often involves discussing a problem, the need for a solution, and possible solutions), and the conclusion usually looks to the future by focusing on what is likely to happen (what might happen next, and whether a solution is likely). If you work on telling a story in the paper, it will help you to structure it in a way that the reader can easily follow and understand. (Text adopted from https://www.umuc.edu/writingcenter/writingresources/prewriting_outlining.cfm (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.)

Here’s what to do for this assignment:

Review all the information on proper outlining at the OWL at Purdue site:
(Note: you may need to copy and paste the following URL into your browser)

https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/general_writing/the_writing_process/developing_an_outline/how_to_outline.html (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.

That material includes “Outline Components,” “How to Outline,” and “Types of Outlines.” You should also read the “Reverse Outlining” section.

Next, use what you learned and draft a detailed Alphanumeric Outline for your work on our Research Project. Remember: you are still working on this project, so you don’t need worry about your outline being a “final” version. Outlines can change as your work progresses!

Your outline should be uploaded as an attachment to this Discussion area.