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Thesaurus Community Involvement Essay

How to organize material for your essay

By now you should have all the material you need to write your essay, but it is a good idea to go back to the question to check that you have covered every key aspect of it before you begin to plan your essay and how to incorporate your research into it.

As you were carrying out your research, you will have been evaluating the issues and arguments involved. You should now think carefully about your approach to the essay question, the main theme or themes that are emerging, what arguments you will use, and the evidence you need to support them.

Outlining the essay

You will doubtless know that essays should have an introductory paragraph, a main section, and a conclusion. You now need to expand this basic format into a specific essay plan. Here is a suggested approach:

  • Identify the main theme or themes of the essay and the key points that you want to make.
  • Use these themes and points as headings in your plan and write brief notes as to what you want to include under each heading. These headings will help you plan out the paragraphs in the main body of the essay.
  • Think about how your material relates to these points and organize your notes and other reference sources accordingly.
  • You might find it helpful to use colour coding or different folders to categorize your notes, and relate these to the headings and points in your essay plan.
  • Once you have drafted an outline or plan, check it again to confirm that you have covered the key points raised by the question, then critically reassess the order in which you have developed your arguments.

Remember that the most effective essays are those which enable the reader to trace your reasoning through structured arguments to the conclusion:

  • The introduction should set out your approach to the question and the key points that you will be considering.
  • The main section should present your arguments and evidence in a rational order.
  • The conclusion should follow logically from the main section.

Read more about essay preparation in:

How to plan time for essay writing

How to understand the essay question

How to do research for an essay

Back toWriting essays.

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  • a. To bear the weight of, especially from below; keep from falling, sinking, or slipping: Pillars support the roof.

    b. To bear or hold up (an amount of weight): The bridge supports 10 tons.

  • a. To keep from weakening or failing; give confidence or comfort to: The letter supported him in his grief.

    b. To keep from falling in value, as by government purchases: a program to support the price of wheat.

  • To provide for or maintain by supplying with money or necessities: The homeless shelter is supported solely by donations.
  • To furnish corroborating evidence for: New facts supported her story.
  • a. To aid the cause, policy, or interests of: supported her in her election campaign.

    b. To argue in favor of; advocate: supported lower taxes.

    c. To have an enthusiastic interest in (a sports team).

  • To endure; tolerate: “At supper there was such a conflux of company that I could scarcely support the tumult” ( Samuel Johnson )
  • To act in a secondary or subordinate role to (a leading performer).
  • To offer help or advice regarding (a product or service).
  • Computers To be compatible with (a program): That operating system does not support most new applications.
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