Her working outline isn't very formal, but it fulfills the functions of a good outline. In other words, do your ideas fall into one of the conventional approaches to thinking about an issue: cause-effect, problem-solution, comparison-contrast, definition, classification?
* Introduction - theories are simpler than real life - theories are tools * Three Political Theories - Neo-Marxism - power to minority - importance of economic control - Pluralism - power to interest groups - interest groups form coalitions - Elitism - power to elite - how elite is defined * Compare analysis of United States - Neo-Marxist - Pluralist - Elitist Your job as the writer is to think through the relationship between your ideas. You can use these standard approaches to help you think through your ideas and come up with a logical plan. While drafting, you can make a draft or descriptive outline--an outline that is based on your draft.
She decided to put the pluralist analysis of the U. and the weaknesses of the analysis together in paragraph 6, the elitist analysis and its weaknesses into a paragraph together, and then devote two paragraphs to the neo-Marxist analysis and its strengths and weaknesses.
Finally, you may also be required to write a formal outline--an outline that serves as a guide to your paper for your reader.
Many writers use an outline to help them think through the various stages of the writing process.
An outline is a kind of graphic scheme of the organization of your paper.The student who wrote the tentative outline above also wrote the one below before beginning her essay. She wanted to describe the three political theories and then compare them by using each to analyze the government of a particular country, arguing that neo-Marxism is the most useful theory. Do two points represent different categories of a larger idea? Have I discussed similar ideas in the same section or do I seem to jump around? This is a draft outline the above-mentioned student made after writing the first draft of her paper. Paragraph 8 -- Strengths of neo-Marxist analysis, Weaknesses of neo-Marxism and Pluralism Paragraph 9 -- Weaknesses of elitism Paragraph 10 -- Conclusion She noticed that the descriptions of neo-Marxism and elitism were each in a single paragraph, but the description of pluralism took two paragraphs. For shorter, less complex papers, a few informal notes jotted down may be enough. Remember, depending on how your research or writing is going, you may need to make use of any or all of the outlines described in this article.But longer papers are too big to organize mentally; you generally need a more systematic plan to organize the various parts of the paper. Regardless of the degree of formality, however, the function of an outline is to help you consider the most effective way to say what you want to say. Conclusion Notice in a formal outline, whenever a point is subdivided, there are at least two subpoints.Outlines usually grow out of working plans for papers. Logic and convention state that when you divide a point, you can divide it into no fewer than two subpoints.If you haven't already been making formal outlines, this outline will be a formal version of your previous notes; it lays out your main points and subpoints for your reader. Generally, this kind of outline uses conventions of formal outlining: Roman numerals, letters and indentations.