How to Plan an Essay like a Pro
Academic essays generally follow a pre-determined organisational framework to assist a writer in expressing their views. Such a format also helps the readers follow the argument thread so that they can comprehend the context better. Since the content and argument of the topic drive its structural framework, every essay is unique.
Understanding the most efficient strategies to format the writing will enable you to plan and organise the material well. This will eventually enhance the readability and quality of the work. Therefore, writers must learn how to plan an essay if they want to end up with a well-written manuscript.
When you arrange your ideas and thoughts into a strategy in advance, you can construct a clearer argument. And when you follow your plan, you can focus completely on the writing process itself. Since you won’t need to focus on the plan, you’ll also save time.
Sound good? Then follow these steps to create an efficient university essay plan:
Step-by-Step Guide on How to Write an Essay Plan
Part One: Understand the Topic
Students often add irrelevant and unnecessary information in their essays despite these write-ups being relatively short. It is crucial they first understand the topic before research and writing. Failing to do that can affect the overall readability of their work. The first part of writing an essay plan involves noting down the vital aspects of the subject, such as:
Strategise for Closed or Open-Ended Question as Topics
If your question is open-ended, research and choose a unique approach. In the opening of your essay, explain your stance, so the reader understands the theme you’ll follow in the content. If it is closed, choose your response and keep your research within its parameters.
Writing professionals from UK Writing Experts advise young writers to religiously follow the practice of noting down keyword(s) from the title and researching them. This is an excellent way to start planning. It ensures you:
- Understand the terminology
- Find the most important facts about the essay question
- Determine what type of essay you need to write (compare and contrast, analysis, discussion, etc.)
Re-Read the Essay Question
Going over the subject multiple times will clarify the main idea. It will also help you view it from various perspectives.
Break it Down into Sub-Categories
Break down the topic in chunks to understand it better. Doing that will also reveal multiple ways through which you can approach and elaborate on the main subject. For example, you can ask questions like:
- How important is factor A (B, C,..) in this topic?
- What is the core question?
- How should I structure the data I will collect?
- What to avoid and what to keep?
This is a great method to determine what pathways meet the main subject and what approach you shouldn’t choose. It can also help improve your research process.
Part Two: Generate Ideas
Usually, when we hear or read a specific phrase or a statement, it conjures up an idea or new thought in our minds. Students experience the same when they get a topic to write an essay on. The thoughts will, at first, be jumbled up, and you will have to entangle them.
While learning how to write an essay plan, individuals should also study how to organise their ideas that develop before and after research.
The Ideas before Research
This is a crucial aspect many people overlook, but it makes planning a lot simpler. Before diving into research, jot down your initial ideas on the subject using a spider diagram or a mind map. The method is referred to as ‘brainstorming’.
Following are some examples to consider when jotting down your thoughts:
- Things you know about the issue already — through lectures, seminars, and general knowledge.
- Things you don’t know about the subject but need to learn in order to respond to the inquiry.
- Your stance on the essay argument—what you believe will be your theme and part of your conclusion.
Ideas after Research
After you’ve finished basic research on a topic, write down all you’ve learned. Putting the essential themes together will help you understand the information gathered. It will also aid you discover the path to go through if you encounter any difficult concepts. In addition, you can also use this material as a quick reference guide later on.
The Final Part: Plan the Essay
Planning will bring coherence to your argument and enable you to work out a logical format and a crisp conclusion before you even begin. Make sure you incorporate all the necessary terms and complex ideas in your essay outline to avoid overlooking anything during the writing process.
Your professors will be searching for evidence of your abilities to select and organise information. So, decide what you want to include and exclude, and put the data in relevant groups.
Create an Outline
An outline will help you place your information into a cohesive flow.
Following are the sections of an outline and what you should do for each:
- Introduction: Shed light on the title and state your approach.
- Body Paragraphs: Develop your argument, categorise information, and write sequentially.
- Conclusion: Create a crisp yet informative ending that provides readers with a recap of everything discussed above.
Some people like to plan after they’ve written anything down since it helps them clarify their thoughts. So, if you’d rather write first, consider summarising your essay’s main point in a few phrases. This offers you a clear path to figuring out how you’ll divide the essay’s focal points and back them with evidence.
To obtain excellent academic plans for your write-ups, you can also get in touch with a good essay writing service and learn the best techniques.
What is the three main part of an essay?
The three main parts of any essay are the introduction (the starting of your essay), the body (the main paragraphs containing information), and the conclusion (the summary).
How many paragraphs is an essay?
An essay usually consists of three paragraphs. Namely, introduction, body, and conclusion. However, the writer can divide the main body into three or four short paragraphs, depending upon the ideas they discuss.
What are the three steps to planning an essay?
The three steps of planning an essay are:
- Understanding the topic of your essay
- Developing ideas
- Creating a plan
How can I make my essay more interesting?
With great ideas come (possibly) great writing skills. For example, you can make an essay interesting by adding an anecdote or a piece of content the readers can relate to. You can also opt for the ‘write my essay‘ service from UK Essay Writers and learn the most useful writing tips from the experts.