Academic Writing Solutions: A Free Sample Outline For A Research Paper
When you’re asked to write a research paper, it can seem overwhelming. One tool that writers have been using for a long time to make their papers more structured and readable is an outline. But what is an outline, anyway? Here is a free sample of what an academic outline looks like, and how to create one of your own.
- Each paragraph of your paper should get a Roman numeral. Your thesis statement will go here, at Roman numeral “I”. Your thesis statement should encapsulate all the major points in your paper in one easy sentence. For example, a thesis statement could look like this: “Factory farms can afford to operate on a massive scale because they practice cruelty to animals by making livestock sick, confining livestock to small areas, and using hormones that lead to painful and debilitating growth.”
- A topic sentence will go here. A topic sentence is like a mini thesis statement that only applies to the paragraph you’re writing. So a topic sentence might look like this: “Factory farms create unhealthy conditions for animals, leading to unnecessary and painful illnesses among cattle, poultry, and swine.”
- Now, you can talk about each of those points specifically. For example, your first piece of evidence that supports this topic sentence could be something like: “Factory farms generally feed corn, which is cheap and plentiful, to cows and steers; however, since bovine stomachs cannot digest corn, this leads to gastrointestinal distress among cattle.”
- Now you can begin listing any quotes, statistics, or raw data that you have collected to support this point.
- And you would list your evidence here.
- Just like the last paragraph, you would then go on to break down the evidence and facts behind your topic sentence.
- Each sentence in your essay should connect to the other sentences in some way.
- You don’t have to follow these rules exactly, but they are generally the best way to create a cohesive, well-structured outline.
- If you dislike roman numerals, you can use bullet points, letters, or regular numbers instead.