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How to Structure an Essay: 4 Examples Considered.

Although there are some general demands to the structure of an academic essay and all essays are sure to consist of Introduction, Body, and Conclusion, what is included into the essay and how many paragraphs it has largely depends on the specific requirements. Let’s consider the example, which helped us learn to make a research – a campus carry paper.

1 page, at least one source, personal position, personal experience

Introduction: Present current laws concerning gun carry. Tell what makes it a debatable issue. Finish with a thesis demonstrating your position.

Body paragraphs (preferably one): Present someone’s opinion you support or link the policy to the observed consequences. Describe your personal experience.

Conclusion: Restate your claim and link it to the policy (should it remain the same or there is a need to change it?)

Highlight a debate, about 5 sources

Introduction: Present the general overview of the debate. Finish with a thesis stating that the campus carry “is a matter of heated debates” or “is a debatable issue”.

Body paragraphs (3-4). Here, it is better not to devote each paragraph to each source you have read, but structure the paper according to the arguments in favor and against campus carry. You may include all arguments in favor of campus carry, and then, all arguments against it, or interchange them (first – for, second – against, third – for, forth – against). Make sure you cover both sides in a equally well ( in a comparable word count).

Conclusion: Summarize the arguments of the each party. If permitted/demanded in the instructions, state what argument you find more convincing.

An argumentative paper

Introduction: Present the overview of the existing debate. Finish with a thesis demonstrating your position.

Body paragraphs (ideally – 3; may be more for longer papers): Make sure each body paragraph presents a separate argument supporting your positions (actual reason why campus carry is great if you support it, and why it should be banned if you are against it). One paragraph may contain a description of an opposing argument, necessarily followed by a refutation.

Conclusion: Restate your claim and link it to the policy (should it remain the same or there is a need to change it?)

A paper demanding to use peer-reviewed sources might have important topic limitations, e.g. to evaluate the need in campus carry regulations. In such case, the structure of the paper will be different. For example,

Introduction: Include an overview of the research (not debate!) on the topic. Finish with a thesis showing your informed position, e.g. “Campus carry should/should not be subject to state regulations”.

Body paragraphs (ideally – 3; may be more for longer papers): The actual reasons why campus carry should/should not be regulated, all validated by scholarly research. Here, you can also consider the issues related to the very policy implementations, e.g. a budget, a staff needed, etc.

Conclusion: Restate the thesis. Summarize the claims.

Avoid stating personal experience or giving personal evaluation unless the recommendations explicitly demand it.

If you have any questions about essay writing, feel free to add a question to the forum – I will answer it shortly.

Look through other tips on essay writing.

Refer for professional help to effectively structure your essay. 

 

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