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How to Write an Outline For Academic Papers [Detailed Step by Step Guide 2019]

Student's Assignment Help August 19, 2019 170 Views

Before starting the outlined task, the school or college students have first to decide the active topic on which they are going to prepare their paper. After the students are done with the researched subject, then they can continue with the outlining procedure. In creating a paper outline, the college students can use a cause and effect model or a compare and contrast model, which can highlight their knowledge impressively. As the students are structuring a proper outline, so they can also include the full sentences or phrases with the appropriate consistency.

It is essential first to know what outlining a paper means and how it is useful for the presentation of the paper. Once the students have selected the document writing and the way to present it, then no one can stop them from creating a useful outline of the paper. The outline procedure of the paper helps the students of top school or college to arrange the data and content collected in a well-formatted manner.

What is the actual meaning of outlining the academic paper?

Outlining is a vital part while working on any of the academic paper either it is essay writing, research paper or another format of academic writing.  Creating an outline allows the students to map their thoughts into a logical and coherent organization. If the idea of paper writing on a specific purpose or opinion is not working, then a paper outline can help the students to make the project perfect and excellent to represent. The students can collect informative materials, content, and supportive ideas while working on the paper outline procedure.

However, the paper outlines can help the students to find out whether they have included all the essential information in their paper or not.

The things become easy to arrange in a systematic order which can build up the interest among the audience. Writing an essay paper outline is an excellent remedy for the student’s talent as it allows them to express their thoughts briefly and in a flow without getting disturbed over any place. The students can present their paperwork with excellence by working on the outline effectively. It is up to the students whether they want to learn about the framework or not.

Step-by-step guidelines to write a research paper & essay outline

Unless the students are working on a short and simple document, it is essential to create a proper outline. A proper overview of the paper can guide the students for the better representation of the context and terms in front of the readers.

However, it is not simple for the students to work on the outlined task as it requires high concentration and proper knowledge. There are some of the practical steps mentioned below, which can help the students to create an excellent research paper outline:

STEP 1 – Decide whether it is good to write a draft by hand or to type it:  

If the students are working on the paper outline for their understanding, then it is better to choose what suits best to them. The framework provides excellent help to the college or school students by allowing them to arrange the data in a well-formatted manner. When the students start preparing an outline for the paper, then can make sure that things get highlighted impressively. Some of the students think that they can write their ideas better on paper. However, it is worth first to decide that what the students are thinking is correct for a paper presentation or not.

In addition to it, by writing the ideas on the paper help the students to quickly draw the graphs or diagrams. The students need to conceptualize the subject chosen by them for writing a paper. Writing an outline in from of the notes on the paper allow the students to impress the readers. However, writing a framework on the paper can take a longer time of the students, and it might be not too neat for the proper presentation.

Typing an outline can be more comfortable for college students if they have prepared their notes by typing. The students can copy and paste the work into a framework for effectively arranging the sources or data. Copying and pasting make the students creative because they can easily re-arrange the sections of the content where they find it necessary.

However, the difficulty level increases while typing an outline when it comes to drawing the diagrams and graphs. So, each of the methods has its advantages and disadvantages, but it is up to the requirement of the students that which way suits them comfortable.

STEP 2 – Choose an effective topic before starting the outline writing for essay:  

A proper outline of the paper helps the students to organize their ideas, thoughts, or specific research regarding a particular topic. However, the first step of the students before starting the outline is to select a unique and new research topic which can highlight any of the specific issue or problem in front of the audience. Without the proper selection of the item, the paper outline has no purpose. The students can take the ideas from the internet or books and journals to select that which of the topic can tell their ideas impressively. The choice of the problem can depend on assignment paper assigned to the students or can highlight the personal goals.

If the college or school students are working on the creative or innovative projects like novel writing, then they have to first identify the central concept and genre behind choosing it. After that, the students can allow the process of paper outlining to structure their essay. The topic can depend on any of the research work or concept based on which the students can show a useful background about it. The unique and original text is something which can show the readers the central idea of the outlining.

It is not essential that the students have to select only a short topic. The topic can be broad or vast, but the necessary part is that the students have to remain on the track. When the students are going to start their paper writing task on the broad researched topic, then they have to follow the correct direction and facts to build up the interest among the readers. The well-researched topic selected for giving the proper outline to the paper can clear the ideas and thoughts of the students among the readers.

STEP 3 – Identify the primary purpose behind writing a research paper outline:

It is essential first to understand that whether the students to inform the audience or they want to entertain them with their paper. The actual purpose of the paper outline is essential to understand for creating an impressive overview. Most of the students start their outline task without thinking about any of the statement of purpose. It could take a lot of time and efficient efforts from the students to complete a simple outline of the paper if they had not planned about any of the purposes. The topic chosen by the students can either reflect on the paper or an actual meaning when the students create an efficient framework.

Thinking about the purpose and hope which the students want to accomplish with their essay paper can help to complete their task quickly. It can make the students get assure that whether the essay paper, a book or a speech presented can work for the audience or not. Generally, the purpose of the paper outline could be to either inform the reader or to entertain them, but for it, the students have to do many preparations with the framework. The research paper can highlight the facts and can reflect the best solution to the problem only when the students have prepared an effective outline.

STEP 4 – Consider Audience before writing an Outline

 In most of the cases, students are preparing for the paper outline when they get assigned the task from their professors or teachers. At those times, it becomes the duty of the students to develop a draft to impress the readers.

However, some times, the college students are making for the outlining process to help themselves. As the paper outline on any of the topic help the students to arrange their informative sources and content in an organized form so they can accomplish their academic goals easily. The paper formatting depends on the purpose of the outline chosen by the students.

If the college students are working on the paper outline process for their classwork, then they have to follow the required instructions given by their professors or teachers. It becomes essential for the students to create an impressive format so that the audience can understand the essay paper easily. When the students are not following the writing instructions, then they might lose the interest of the readers towards their essay paper. In addition to it, the audience will not feel attentive if the topic selected by them is not presented effectively.

For working on the school or college assignment work, it is essential to review the paper sheet first and then talk to the instructor. If the outline prepared by the students is for their classwork, then creating a practical framework that already exists for the students can work as a model. However, if nobody is going to see the outline created by the students, then the students can prepare a shorthand outline which works for their welfare.

STEP 5 – Assemble research, supporting ideas, materials, notes: 

In many of the cases, the students start incorporating information or the content which they have gathered through broad research. It becomes essential for the students to search for the crucial writing content based on a specific topic if they want to represent something unique. An impressive statement or a highlighting quote is strong enough to serve a remarkable paper in front of the audience. It is necessary first to review all the sources gathered before starting the paper outline work.

It can be about the historical facts, some quotes, statistics, paraphrased ideas, thoughts, and any of the main concerned which the students want to highlight with their paper. However, the most effective part is to collect all the informative concepts and information about writing an outline of the article.

An overview prepared by the students can make the readers impressed with the paper presented in front of them. If the quotes highlighted by the students in their writing define some meaningful presentation, then the audience can show their interest to go throughout the entire paper comfortably.

STEP 6 – Brainstorm to find main ideas and search the supportive argument:

Before starting writing an essay or research paper outline, it is essential first to brainstorm the writing ideas. Collecting the ideas and sources based on the crucial bits of research work can help the students to create an informative paper outline for better representation. It can be beneficial for the students to write every single information in the context form, which they want to include in their paper. Brainstorming the main ideas can reflect the best solution related to the specific problem effectively.

When the students have collected all the required information in one format, then they can eliminate the useless ideas from it. It is essential first to write the thoughts and the content on the rough paper that comes in the mind of the school or college students. After that, it could be useful if the students start creating a mind map related to the writing procedure of the academic paper. Writing the thoughts and ideas on the index cards can help the students to make an impressive and perfect outline of the article. That is why brainstorming the mind ideas and researched sources are essential to creating a highlighting paper.

STEP 7 – Develop an excellent thesis statement to control the paper outline better:

 A unique thesis statement is something worth, which can make the readers interested to read the entire paperwork. If the students have not mentioned any of the related or exciting announcement at the starting of the paper essay, then the readers might think that the paper is boring to read. In most of the cases, it is the thesis statement which makes the article final as the actual product to get represented in front of the audience. However, it is okay if the students want to search more about the outlining statement on the various sites.

By using a general idea or a controlling thought as a thesis statement is fine if the students want to create something new. As the college or university students have to create sections for the thesis statement so it can help them to guide a perfect outline of the paper. It becomes easy for the students to include useful sections and subsections in the entire essay paperwork by organizing the information correctly. Each of the information or the reason presented by the students in their thesis statement section can point out towards the main idea which they have to include in their paper outline.

STEP 8 – Include an alphanumeric overview, if possible: 

Many of the paper outline forms include the alphanumeric format for creating a perfect summary of the paper. Students have to prepare for the outline of the article by adding either an alphabet or a number. When the students are moving from the central concept section to a subsection, then they can include the roman numerals like I, II, III, and many more. Even the capitalized letters like A, B, C, or an Arabic numeral such as 1, 2, 3, lowercase letters like a, b, c, and many more can help the students to explain correctly about each subsection of the paper.

Sometimes the students can use the decimal outline for highlighting any of the relations between the main ideas. A decimal draft of the paper looks very familiar to the alphanumeric outline chosen by the students. The main point of the difference lies in the fact that the alphanumeric outline might include either alphabetical order or a numeral order, but the decimal outline only involves the numbers. Using a decimal outline can help the students to explain that each of the sublevels is an essential part of the larger argument which they want to demonstrate through their paper outline.

STEP 9 – Think of the students want to write short phrases or single sentences:

 There are many of the paper outlines, which include short phrases commonly known as the topic outlines. When the students are using short phrases to create an overview of the paper, then might skip some of the informative materials to add in it. It can work in against a better explanation because the students will have no other option to create it.

However, if the students are using full sentences in producing an outline of the paper, then the audience can understand the ideas in a better way. Complete statements, including the informative content, can impact on the minds of the readers by presenting something new and unique to them.

It could be useful to use the short phrases for a paper outline when the students want to organize their ideas quickly, or they want to outline a speech. Even when the students are working on an overview for their benefit then also using the short phrases can be helpful for them.

However, using the full and detailed sentences can help the students to create a final paper which can work as a guide for them. The students can fulfil all the requirements of an essay or assignment paper by making the use of detailed information or sentences.

STEP 10 – Starting grouping the main ideas and themes together in a single article: 

When the students begin placing the ideas and items together in a group, then they get a chance to explain the outline better. It is okay if the college or school students have lots of information at the starting of the essay paper.

However, when students realize that many of the concepts are not necessary or are useless, then they can efficiently eliminate them. The large groups can become the reason for the lack of interest among the readers, so it becomes necessary to narrow down your groups into small and informative content.

If the students have prepared a useful mind map for creating a proper outline of the paper, then they can use the different highlighters for a better explanation of the article. The audience could identify quickly that which section describes best content information and which sections belong to the same group.

A proper description of the used and required content in the essay outline can be beneficial for impressing the audience with the paper. Even sometimes the most controversy and detailed explanation can become the part of the proper outlining of the article.

STEP 11 – Put each section in order from vast ideas to a complete section: 

Wide concepts are most likely to spoil the explanation process of the paper outline. If the students are using the great, informative content to include in their paper format, then it can destroy the interest among the audience.

In short, it is necessary to use the specific details and quick references for a better description of the paper outline. Depending on the primary purpose of the paper outline, students can use the supportive points and the sub-points in their essay paper. It could be beneficial if the students are including at least 2 to 3 sub-points or supporting paragraphs in their paper outline.

If the college students are writing about the specific story or presenting any of the historical argument, then they can use the chronological order for preparing an efficient outline. For writing any of the essay paper or a speech, it is essential first to pick out the critical subtopic and support the statement with the sufficient materials.

In addition to the supportive comments, a proper outline of the paper can help the students to lead their argument with an impressive form so that the flow of the discussions will not get disturbed easily. However, using the active sections and statements can make the outline of the paper perfect to represent.

STEP 12 – Go through the complete overview to make sure that the purpose is highly achieved: 

Once the students are done with the efficient writing materials, including the introduction, central body, and the conclusion part, then the next step of the students must include the rereading section. The students need to relate the thesis statement with the main idea of the division involved in the outline of the paper. If the students are not able to find any of the supportive comments in the entire essay outline, then it becomes necessary to restate the whole document with the proper materials highlighted.

Proofread the entire paper outline gives an excellent chance to the students to find out if any of the critical section is missing or not. The ideas collected by the students have to get included in the outline for making it efficient to represent in front of the audience. It is one of the best ways to fill gaps left in the presentation of the informative content. If the college students are not able to answer any of the question or areas then after checking the whole essay paper, they can find out the correct solutions to include in the outline.

STEP 13 – Edit the draft if any of the mistakes are present: 

In some of the cases, the college students may require to add some of the information after creating the outline of the research paper. Revising the entire essay offers a chance to the students to make a necessary change in the paper outline if required. Students may want to rewrite the phrases or the sentences already written in the paper outline to make the ideas more transparent, so the editing section is beneficial for the students. However, if the students are preparing an overview for themselves, then there is no need to edit it.

Moreover, after rereading the entire outline, the students might some of the grammar or vocabulary mistakes. It is essential to edit or altogether remove all those mistakes which can disturb the flow of clarity. Editing can help the students to enhance the clarity of the views and ideas which the readers can appreciate. While editing, students have to keep in mind that if any of the duplicate content remains present in their paper, then the readers will not tolerate it at all.

Start a research paper outline with an outstanding introduction

The starting part of the outline section must include some valid point to grab the attention of the readers towards their paper. The students have to search in-depth for collecting the informative materials and content so that the readers can find something new or fresh in their paper outline.

Depending on the topic selected by the students for writing their paper outline, they choose the statement or quote to include in the beginning section of the paper.

It involves the main three parts which the students cannot skip at any cost; namely:

  • Hook
  • General statements about the topic
  • Thesis statement

Even the students can use the controversial comments in the starting part of the essay outline so that the readers can find out something interesting when they will go throughout the entire paper. It can be either a regular statement or a question in the thesis statement, but the main point is to grab the attention of the audience.

Include exclusive body headings in the paper outline

The central body part of the framework can include either 3 or 5 paragraphs depending on the material covered by the students. The outline headings are the main challenge which can make the readers either exciting for the paper reading or can make them boring to go through it. The students can divide their whole paper into the sub-sections so that the audience can get a better explanation about the topic.

  • The roman numerals, alphanumeric outline, or a decimal outline can work for making the excellent body headings of the framework.
  • The sub-points are the second challenge for the students while they are working on the paper outline task.
  • The college students can label the sections or the sub-sections with the proper alphanumeric outline so that the readers can find the work more creative and unique.
  • The students can make use of the layers more than three, which is generally used by other students.
  • By involving the alphanumeric outline or the decimal system, the students can show that they have excellent knowledge about the paper outline plus they can support their ideas perfectly.

Though it depends on the primary purpose of the paper writing outline, still the students can include as many sub-points as they can. However, if the students are preparing for the draft for themselves, then there is no need to include high sub-sections.

End the outline with a useful conclusion part

When the students are done with the introduction and the central part of the framework, then the final step is to end the paperwork with an impressive ending section. It will not be valid if the students include the new points in their paperwork, which they have not mentioned in the entire paper.

However, the students have to add the following three points while ending the paper outline work:

  • Restate the thesis statement again while writing the conclusion part
  • Write down at least one to two summarizing sentences
  • Finally, involve the impressive concluding statement

Get Instant Help in Creating an Essay outline by expert Writers

An outline of the paper can be a new concept for college students pursuing their higher education degrees. It cannot be simple for the students to work on the outline quickly, but once they gather proper information about it, they can prepare it adequately. The team of expert writers offered by the Students Assignment Help is always ready to help the students with their paper writing task.

Moreover, by taking the online writing help from the professional writers, the students can create a perfect and excellent outline for their academic paper.


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