Kelvin Quintyne 2014

FOUN1001: English for Academic Purposes
Outlining

Many students, when asked to produce an outline, may begin with a scratch/informal outline that
looks like the one below:
General Causes of Students’ Success

(Working) Thesis statement: Hard work causes students’ success.

I. Accessing information

II. Engaging in learning activities.

III. Extra effort for exams

While this may serve as a start, developing one’s ideas more in the form of a more detailed
outline can result in a better essay at the drafting stage. Many writers find writing full sentences
at this stage to be a great help, especially if the outline is shown to anyone to gain feedback
before the drafting stage. A more detailed version of the outline may look like this:

General Causes of Students’ Success

Thesis: The success of most students can be attributed to the dedication and hard work that they
put into their studies.

I. Most students make sure that they access the necessary information needed for assessment.

II. Students routinely participate in learning activities to improve their knowledge and skills.

III. Typically, students put extra effort into preparation for assessment exercises such as
coursework and exams.

Conclusion: Students’ willingness to cultivate habits that aid effective learning, in addition to
their execution of required work, can be seen as critical to the level of their success.

Still, if this outline is preparation for a longer essay, developing it further is often advisable. It
could be transformed into a formal two-level outline in which the areas within the body which
are worthy of more detailed development are expanded within the outline.

C.Kelvin Quintyne 2014 FOUN1001: English for Academic Purposes General Causes of Students’ Success Thesis: The success of most students can be attributed to the dedication and hard work that they put into their studies. . C. II. I. Conclusion: Students’ willingness to cultivate habits that aid effective learning. Many students form informal study groups with some of their classmates to help each other understand various courses’ content and complete tasks. B. carry out laboratory experiments. Students routinely participate in learning activities to improve their knowledge and skills. If a supplementary virtual classroom exists. so as to be well prepared for their courses’ final examinations and tasks beyond those exams. to facilitate learning. D. B. students put extra effort into preparation for assessment exercises such as coursework and exams. During class time students participate in activities such as group discussions. role playing exercises. Typically. Most students attend scheduled classes regularly and punctually to ensure they receive the necessary information and guidance from the lecturer/instructor/tutor. Since reading is an important part of academic study. students also routinely participate in online discussions and other online exercises to supplement classroom activities. in addition to their execution of required work. A. Most students make sure that they access the necessary information needed for assessment. Most students ensure that they complete any coursework. along with utilizing a library’s services to supplement what texts they own. the majority of students ensure that they buy the necessary texts that they can afford. whether or not for formal assessment. A. III. among others depending on the course’s subject matter and modes of delivery. can be seen as critical to the level of their success. Students routinely visit their class websites (if any exist) to read and download information that is integral or supplementary to the instruction received during class time.

Kelvin Quintyne 2014 FOUN1001: English for Academic Purposes There are some important points to note concerning the outline above: • The format makes identifying the main divisions from the subdivisions easy. including within subsections. • Not all main points are broken down into subdivisions. • There is a logical sequencing of ideas from the beginning to end. but adds a bit more in light of the entire discussion. • The conclusion does not simply repeat the thesis statement. It is not necessary to have each point broken down into supporting points: only those that merit such development within the paper should have a further breakdown. .