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Organizing an Academic Essay

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1 Organizing an Academic Essay
Conclusion Introduction Body Paragraphs © 2001 by Ruth Luman

2 Introduction What is an essay ?
An essay is a piece of writing that usually has five or more paragraphs. An essay is written about one topic that has several main points. The main points are introduced in an introductory paragraph and supported in body paragraphs. The conclusion is the last paragraph. Essay Body Paragraph 1 _____________ Body Paragraph 2 Body Paragraph 3 Introduction _____________ Conclusion _____________

3 Parts of an Essay An Introduction
An introductory paragraph is the first paragraph in an essay. It contains two parts. 1. General Statements: a few sentences about your subject that catch the attention of your reader. 2. A Thesis Statement: one sentence that tells your reader the main points of your topic and states the overall “plan” of your essay.

4 Example An Introduction
General Statements “Metropolitan City is full of charm and scenic beauty, so visitors from around the world come to enjoy its famous theaters,museums, countless ethnic restaurants, and scenic wonders. Although Metropolitan City seems like a paradise, it isn’t. The city has several serious problems: poor public transportation, congested streets, and expensive housing” (Hogue, A. & Oshima, A., 1991, p. 92). Thesis Statement

5 Example Body Paragraph
Topic Sentence “The first and most important problem is Metropolitan City’s inadequate public transportation system. Thousands of residents rely on the city’s buses and streetcars to travel throughout this large city, but Metro Transportation System’s daily schedules are totally unreliable. A bus or streetcar that should arrive at 7:45 may not arrive until 8:00 or later. Moreover, it is not unusual for a bus driver to pass up groups of people waiting for the bus, because he wants to make up for lost time. Unfortunately, people often end up going to work late or missing important appointments. In order for people to get to their destinations on time, people must allow for waiting time at the bus and streetcar stops” (Hogue, A. & Oshima, A., 1991, p. 79). Concluding Sentence Supporting Sentences

6 Parts of an Essay Conclusion
The conclusion paragraph is the last paragraph in the essay. It completes the essay by summarizing or repeating the most important ideas. The conclusion can also include an opinion, a prediction, or a solution to a problem. Body Paragraph 1 Introduction Conclusion Body Paragraph 2 Body Paragraph 3

7 Example Conclusion Summary of Main Ideas “In conclusion, Metropolitan City must improve its public transit system, clear up the massive traffic jams caused by slow-moving traffic in the downtown areas, and keep rentals down to affordable levels. In other words, Metropolitan City must improve its image, or it will soon become just another mediocre city due to the lack of administrative responsibility to solve these unfortunate problems” (Hogue, A. & Oshima, A., 1991, p. 79). Prediction

8 Overview of an Essay Introduction
General statements and information about the topic Thesis statement- lists the main ideas in the essay Body Paragraph 1 Body Paragraph 2 Body Paragraph 3 Body Paragraphs Support the main ideas of the thesis statement Begin with topic sentences Conclusion Brief summary of main points of the essay

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