Toolbox - Standard Essay

Introductions: provides background information or a roadmap
  • Mystery
  • Controversy
  • Personal Experience
  • Question or Rhetorical Question
    • What if ... question
  • Flashback
  • Staggering Statistic
  • Fascinating Fact
  • Unusual information
  • Character Throwing
  • Well-Known Quote
  • Evoke a Vivid Image
  • Anecdote
  • Comparison
    • Analogy
  • Related Event
  • Definition
  • Scene setting
  • Other Hooks?
Middle/Body:
  • Facts
  • Details
  • Elaborations
  • Descriptions
  • Reasons
  • Proof
  • Supports/Rebuttals/Anticipatory counterarguments
  • Examples/Counter-Examples
  • Events, People, Places
  • Quotes
  • Analogies
  • Logical consequences
Conclusions: summary or wrap-up
  • Start with an echo of your introduction (not a summary or restatement)
  • Focus on the future - Implications/Consequences/Results (good, bad or both) - what might happen because/if ...
  • Lesson Learned - what lesson did the writer learn ...
  • Connect The Dots - Connect the topic to a larger topic, to other related topics, to experiences you've had or things you know, to other resources, to ... (Universalize)
  • Leave the reader … asking, questioning, wondering (genuine questions that the writer is honestly asking work best)
  • Call to action/Challenge your reader - What could/should the reader do after reading your essay?
  • Make an inference – Draw a conclusion or come up with an answer when the answer is not clearly given
  • Linking back to beginning
  • Circle
  • Drawstring
  • Surprise
  • Summary (only for loooong papers)
Organization Schemes:
  • Order of importance (or reverse order)
  • Order of events (chronological)
    • Natural order
    • Climactic order
    • Reverse order
    • Flashback
  • Spatial order
  • Reasons for followed by rebuttal of opposing view
  • Process order
  • Classification order/ Order of generality
  • Causes/Effects
  • Similarities/Differences (Compare/Contrast)
  • Examples to idea
  • Idea to examples
  • Problem to solution

Related Tools


Resources


Ideas borrowed from Mary Cruz and Judy Share

PDF Print Version - Toolbox - Standard Essay