Write a formal outline for your research paper

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Why Outline? For research papers, a formal outline can help you keep track of large amounts of information. Example Thesis: Federal regulations need to foster laws that will help protect wetlands, restore those that have been destroyed, and take measures to improve the damange from overdevelopment. Lost ability to prevent floods, clean water and store water II. Floodplain overflow III. Water purification IV. How to Create an Outline To create an outline: Place your thesis statement at the beginning. List the major points that support your thesis. List supporting ideas or arguments for each major point.

Label them in capital letters A, B, C, etc.


If applicable, continue to sub-divide each supporting idea until your outline is fully developed. Finally, even smaller points under these might correspond to individual paragraphs in the final draft. First make sure which are main and which are supporting points. For example, you may find that what you thought was a main point is really part of proving another main point.

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Or, what you first listed under a main point may need its own section. This may change as you continue to work on the outline and draft the paper. Now you can decide what order you want to present your ideas in.

Again, label them with letters or numbers to indicate the sequence. Try out at least two different sequences.


How to Make a Research Paper Outline

You may find that your thesis suddenly snaps into focus, or that points that seemed unrelated in fact belong together, or that what you thought was a main idea is actually a supporting idea for another point. You can do this at every stage of the writing process, and especially at the organization stage. Remember to include a thesis statement at the start of the outline, and cite and list your sources. In addition to the elements of a formal outline, please also: Include a thesis statement at the start.

Cite your sources: list all authors used in each section in parentheses at the end of that section Attach a list of sources that includes all the sources used for the outline and no others. This list may differ from the one you submitted for the Preliminary Bibliography, if you have added new sources or eliminated old ones. The method described below will produce a sentence outline.

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It also outlined the benefits of a republican government, which would go on to influence the ideas of the Founding Fathers as they created a new government for their new country. The debate in the American Colonies shifted from that of reconciliation with England to that of independence. It was read by an unprecedented number of colonists and united a great majority of them behind independence.

How to create an outline for your research paper

It inspired American intellectuals with its call for independence, leading to the composition of the Declaration of Independence a mere six months later. It permanently cemented the idea of a republican, non-hereditary government into the heads of Americans.

Welcome to the Purdue OWL

Support for your major points, indicated by capital Arabic numerals i. Introduction A. Thesis B. Douglass as Lecturer A.

How to Write an Outline for a Research Paper - iResearchNet

Garrison set-back and significance D. Douglass as Politician A.

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Key trait for success B. Goal of political activism C. Black soldier enlistment crusade E.

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Conclusion A. Introduction a. Describe The Federalist Papers are and when they started b. Background a. Argument for the benefit of a Union a. A Union would guard against external dangers b. A Union would guard against internal dangers A. Argument of the problem with complete separation of powers a.

Anti-federalists wanted a complete separation of the judicial, executive, and legislative branches b. Montesquieu c.

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The branches need some limited power of the other branches to protect themselves from encroachment of the other branches Federalist 51 A. Argument for a single executive, and against a plural executive a. Argument in favor of judicial review and terms of good behavior for judges a.