How To Write A Good Term Paper Outline: Basic Hints
If you want some basic hints on how to write a good term paper outline consider the following:
- - The outline serves as a rudimentary or shortened version of your final copy. It is intended as an organizational tool which allows you to play around with the order of your arguments, to make sure everything has its right place and the right sources, and to get a real feeling for how your final piece is going to look. For the sake of understanding its function better, it shall be referred to as the “organizational chart”.
- - The layout of the organizational chart is really up to you. There is no right or wrong format or layout or structure to use. It should be organized however your brain prefers it be organized. If, for example, you prefer the structure of Roman numerals, so be it. But if instead you enjoy traditional bullet points or letters both lower case and upper case you should know that is fine too.
- - The amount of content you require for your organizational chart is also a decision entirely up to you. Some students work better when they are able to list short, fragmented sentences with very little information but just enough keywords to remind them what they intended to say. For many students this is exactly what they need to look over and go, “oh right, I remember” and then type the night away for each section. But not all students work this way. You might prefer writing out full sentences just in case you forget later, or writing out multiple full sentences so as to provide as much meat to your organizational chart as you can. Of course, the meatier the organizational chart the easier writing your first draft will be because most of the work will be done for you.
- - The organizational chart serves as a visual into the order of your arguments. This is really contingent upon the type of assignment you have. If you have a rigid research based assignment for your final project, then you will not be as flexible in the order of your content compared to someone who is writing a more creative piece. In either case, you can play around with the order of your headings within your parameters until you find a logical presentation that fits your project the best.
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