A Simple Guide: How To Write An Essay Outline

what is essay outline

To fill your essay with good information and make it structured, easy to read, you need an outline. It is thanks to the plan that you can build your essay correctly, without missing anything important. Not sure how to write an essay outline? Do not despair! We have collected all the secrets and tips that teachers do not tell you about.

Essay Outline – What Is This?

An essay outline is a guide for both the reader and you. The outline allows you to formulate small sketches of ideas that you want to translate into paragraphs of an essay. A plan is needed for all essays: persuasive essays, argumentative essays, expository essays, compare-and-contrast essays, etc. Research papers also require plans. Even the usual narrative essays that you tell stories about need a plan as well. When you create a winning structure, your text will sparkle with new colours, and you will consistently express your thoughts without repeating the same information.

Therefore, as soon as you want to create any paper, start by writing a plan. An outline will allow you to solidify the essay’s general idea and fill the paragraph with only relevant data. This idea is not yet called the thesis, which forms the tone of the essay. Most often, the outline contains an introduction. Then it is necessary to form several main paragraphs, in which you will reveal the essence of the topic, and the final section is the conclusion. In this way, you prepare the reader for the topic, tell the idea, and give information on which the reader ponders.

Essay Outline Key Benefits

With a plan, you can organize your thoughts. Knowing the structure, you will concentrate on the topic and not be distracted by searching for unnecessary information. However, these are not the only benefits of the essay outline. Let’s take a look at the key ones:

  1. A plan helps organize the writing and research process. The essay writing process always starts with finding reputable sources. You can simplify the writing process if you know what to look for. The plan will help you sort the resources, information and tell you where to insert these quotes. Plus, good arguments can strengthen a thesis, so knowing you have evidence can help you build an ideal structure. If you find that each paragraph contains evidence, you have done an excellent job and selected the best sources. If there is no such result, reconsider your plan and make sure that the thesis is valid.
  2. The plan keeps the logical flow of thoughts. Most lists contain points or numbers. However, sometimes digital schemes can be combined with point ones. For example, your central part may consist of one main idea and several subparts. These subparagraphs are necessary to express thoughts and not combine them into one paragraph consistently. Note that the essay should have at least 2-3 sections covering the topic well, excluding the introduction and conclusion.
  3. A plan makes you flexible. In your plan, you can express thoughts either in full sentences or in short sentences. The plan is your draft. A plan is a tool that allows you to develop ideas, write creatively, search for logical order. Therefore, in the plan, you build a structure that you cannot write in the essay.

How To Build A Good Essay Outline?

Do you think writing plans is hard work? Are you one of those students for whom the plan is boring and unnecessary? Read our simple guide to learn how to create the best essays that your teacher will grade at A+.

Remember that without preparation, no process will be smooth. So don’t skip the outline step. The more time you spend creating the outline, the less time it will take you to write your essay.

The outline below is perfect for all types of essays, including college and university papers. Students can also use the plan to write research papers, term papers, and case studies. Read the outline carefully and write your essay according to it.


The introduction is the part of the essay that should grab attention. The first paragraph should be sharp and arouse interest in the following sections. In the introduction, you should introduce the reader to the topic and provide all the background information to understand what will be discussed.

You can make the introduction dramatic, intriguing, historical, but remember that all information must go well with the thesis statement. It would help if you prepared the reader for the main idea for which you wrote the essay.

If you want to grab the reader’s attention from the first lines, we recommend using a hook sentence technique. You can create the hook in the form of statistics, quotes, aphorisms, rhetorical questions, anecdotes – anything that can arouse interest and motivate the reader to learn more information. Remember that the hook depends on the topic of your essay. If it is a dramatic essay, the anecdote will be out of place.

Thesis Statement

Place the thesis statement at the end of the first paragraph. First, it makes sense. Secondly, you will be able to develop the message in the main paragraphs. A thesis statement is the most important statement on which all essays are based. In one sentence, you must state the purpose of the paper.

Write clearly and clearly so that the reader understands what you are aiming for. If your goal is too vague, the reader may stop studying the essay. The thesis statement contains the whole essence of the paper.

The thesis sets the thought movement trajectory: if you want to get points for the logic of presentation and semantic integrity, your thought must develop sequentially. If there is no thesis in the essay, then, in fact, you have nothing to prove. Without a precise statement, the entire text is a collection of phrases gleaned from their authoritative sources or incoherent reasoning.

Body Paragraphs

When you write a compelling thesis statement, body paragraphs should be a continuation of it. In the main paragraphs, you prove your point and reveal the topic.

For example, if you are writing a persuasive essay, your body should contain as much helpful information as possible for the reader to accept your position. If you are writing an argumentative essay, you should fill the main paragraphs with some evidence in favour of the thesis. You can choose arguments from authoritative sources, write quotes, bring real-life examples.

Remember to start each paragraph with a topic sentence that will remind readers of the essay’s main idea. Sometimes the reader may think about other things, and you will shake him up and return to the topic. You can only disclose one proof and idea in a paragraph. Otherwise, you will get a pun of thoughts.


As soon as you finish leading the evidence and fully cover the topic, write a conclusion. In the final paragraph, you should influence the reader’s thoughts and call for action. The conclusion will let the reader know that your essay is complete. Writing a strong conclusion is just as important as an introduction.

Reframe and summarize all ideas, proofs, examples written in the introduction and main body. Do not enter new information. The conclusion must contain the facts that you indicated earlier.

The conclusion should match the size of the introduction. In conclusion, repeat your thesis statement, but do not copy the same phrase. This will show that you cannot think creatively. Keep it short but persuasive. Invite the reader to reflect on the topic and, if appropriate, thank him for reading.

Essay Outline Example

To give you a better understanding of how the plan should look, we have compiled an example. The topic of our essay is “What is Love?” Here’s what we got:

  1. Introduction: What is love?
  2. The Body, Part 1: An Example of Love from Shakespeare’s Plays Romeo and Juliet.
  3. The Body, Part 2: An Example of Love from Stephen Rosebloom’s Film Love and Other Drugs.
  4. The Body, Part 3: My Relationship to Love.
  5. Conclusion: Love is work.

Based on this plan, we have compiled an essay and are ready to share it with you:

Love is the most unpredictable, strong, mysterious feeling that a person can experience. It is love that influences our actions, makes us stronger or weaker. Happy relationships allow a person to enjoy life and do good. However, love is not just a nice word. Love is hard work: daily, persistent.

I recently read a Shakespeare play, “Romeo and Juliet.” This is a fantastic story about real, complex, sincere love. The price for such love is life. The heroes chose to die always to remain close to each other. They did not see any other way out, although they worked hard for the sake of relationships. It seemed to them that love is the only thing for the sake of which it is worth going through all the tests. They fought for happiness and gained immortality in their pursuit of love.

In Stephen Rosebloom’s “Love and Other Drugs,” there is also the idea that love is a lot of work. The main character of the film is struggling with severe Parkinson’s disease. She wants her boyfriend to be happy with her and not feel pity. Therefore, she tries her best to feel cheerful. James, in turn, did a lot of work to cope with the difficulties. His actions prove that he is ready for anything for love.

I believe that you can build strong relationships if you work hard. Bricks are components that you need to learn to build and use daily. A relationship can be truly lasting if both partners work hard to create it. Without difficulty, love turns into a habit, and partners separate from each other.

Love never arises out of nothing. She always grows out of a tiny sprout – from falling in love, affection, pleasant moments. Love is cultivated by both – getting to know each other, getting used to each other. Only a conversation will help to overcome obstacles, mistrust, doubts. If you quit doing it halfway, you won’t be able to build a strong relationship. Work on your feelings, put meaning in them, and then you will find true love.


As you may understand, essay outline will make the whole writing process easier. You can try to write an essay without the outline, but it may lead to missing some important facts. 

Nonetheless, you may always ask for help if you can’t stand the writing process. Just place an order on our website. We will create the appropriate outline and write an essay following all of your requirements.