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Creating An Effective Expository Essay Outline: Fundamental Tips

An essay outline is important because it gives you the basic structure of how will frame your work. It is always advisable to have an outline before you begin actually writing the paper so that you do not have to worry about the danger of your writing going astray. You will find that by following the initial outline of your paper, you have a better constructed and structured paper that makes logical sense.

Tips on creating a good outline

  • For an expository paper, your first task is to make sure that you have all the data that you need in order to prove your thesis statement - but before you do this, it is beneficial also to have a good outline for your work so that you know exactly what kind of information you should be collecting.
  • Think of how a Table of Contents for a book looks, this is pretty much how an outline should appear so that you have all the major points numbered chronologically.
  • Using a numbered system for listing out the points of discussion is a good idea as it will allow you to give yourself a logical flow of information; you can also in fact switch the position of these points around if required or rename them.
  • Start organizing your outline in a way that makes most logical sense to you; however don’t be surprised if you need to edit it later on when you actually begin to write the paper. However, having this kind of a structural outline for reference will keep reminding you what should come next or the points that you will be mentioning in the future.
  • As mentioned before, once you have this outline worked out you will have a better idea of what you need to research and study. Writing this outline will also give way to new ideas that you might have for the paper and give you a more focused view on the subject.
  • Remember that you should format the essay correctly and this outline will help you with the same. You should create the outline in such a way that it suits the format requirements of an expository paper, with the right sections on evidence, reference and arguments for the thesis statement.

Some teachers also ask their students to submit their outlines as a way to look into how the student went about collecting information and writing the paper.