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How to Structure an Essay Paragraph – Steps with Examples

Published by at January 19th, 2022 , Revised On January 31, 2024

The essay body paragraph is where you present evidence, quotes, phrases, facts, and other information to back your main argument. You must make a logical and relevant point in each of your essay’s paragraphs.

If you organise your ideas, it will help you divide your argument into paragraphs in a clear and concise manner.

Each paragraph of your essay should be relevant to the subject matter, logically organised and link to other paragraphs in the main body.

In this article, we will guide you through the process of composing essay paragraphs.

The primary purpose of writing an essay is to

  • Discuss
  • Persuade
  • Describe
  • Explain
  • Interpret/analyse a particular topic.

Step # 1 – Determine the Intent of the Paragraph

You should clearly know the key point your new essay paragraph is going to introduce. You may already have a clear idea of what each paragraph would seek if you have already drawn up a plan or summary of your essay’s whole framework.

You can start by writing a phrase that summarises your point and presents the subject of the paragraph. This is also known as a subject phrase. It should be precise but broad enough to spend more sentences on creating a single paragraph.

Also read: Cursive writing

Step # 2 – Write Introduction Paragraph

Usually, an introductory paragraph is about 10% of the overall essay’s word count. Some students find it easier to compose the introduction first, while others type it after completing their body paragraphs. Your audience first reads an introduction, so it must be straightforward, concise, and attractive.

Step # 3 – Write Body Paragraphs

It is essential to know how to write a body paragraph. You explain your thoughts in depth in the body of your essay. It usually accounts for about 80% of the essay.

Do not forget that the evidence you provide strengthens and supports the arguments you make in the essay. The following points will help you know about the body paragraph outline and start a body paragraph.

  • Format your body pages starting with a theme word – that is your paragraph’s topic.
  • Provide supporting evidence with quotes, and cite the academic sources used for paraphrased quotes or sentences.
  • Each column needs to have its review and comment. This may include comparing and comparing other concepts, queries, more explanations, or assumptions based on your analysis.
  • The concluding sentence should provide a summary of the paragraph text.
  • You should ensure a smooth transition from one paragraph to the next without losing the framework.
  • Remember to be systematic, analytical, and prudent in your writing.
  1. Topic Sentences

Each main body paragraph should start with a strong opening phrase that outlines the paragraph’s principal aim. The sentence reflects what has been said in the thesis statement and discusses future reasons. Appropriate subject phrases are another way to indicate without saying so directly the form of your essay.

  1. Justification of data

When you apply your topic sentence, it is necessary to explain with reasons or provide relevant data depending on your essay’s intent. You must ensure that each element is related to the paragraph’s primary subject. This approach helps maintain a cohesive and concise document that is the very purpose of your essay.

Also read: How to write a rhetorical analysis essay?

Step # 4 – Demonstrate the Value of the Paragraph

The thesis statement demonstrates the significance of the thesis subject. You should clarify and build on the statement if the purpose and meaning are not evident from your first sentence.

Provide Proof

You need to provide evidence in the following forms to support your argument.

  • The evidence could be literary quotations, interviews, and other primary sources.
  • Secondary sources to find existing information relating to your essay argument.
  • Use qualitative or quantitative evidence from current studies.
  • Use examples of works, incidents, or encounters.

You need to ensure all the references are quoted correctly.

Explain the evidence

You must now show the reader how this evidence adds to your argument. How you do this depends on the kind of evidence you used. You should explain your interpretation of the quotation if you quoted a passage. It would be best to inform the reader how the statistics you presented relate to your argument.

Steps 3 and 4 can be replicated several times before you fully develop the argument.

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Step # 5 – Write Conclusion

Finally, finish the paragraph by returning to your key argument by demonstrating the cumulative effect of the facts you have reviewed.

You can also use the following words and phrases in your concluding sentence.

Concluding phrases (followed by a comma) Concluding sentences (not followed by a comma)
Finally, The evidence suggests that…
In brief, There is no doubt that…
In short, These examples suggest that…
In conclusion, Based on the recent studies…
In summary, We can see that…
To sum up,

Step # 6 – Read the Whole Essay

Read, read and read. Make sure each sentence of the paragraph links back to the last sentence seamlessly and logically and brings together a cohesive whole.

Depending on the intent of your essay, you could:

  • Bring together instances that seem to be somewhat different but share a central point.
  • Have only one primary proof (such as quotations or statistics) and examine it systematically over many words.
  • Break a definition or category into many pieces to help the reader understand it.

When to Begin a New Section?

You should start a new paragraph to address a new proposal, statement, or question. Ask yourself to decide if your paragraph is complete:

  • Do all the phrases apply to the subject phrase?
  • Can any phrase make logical sense with the previous phrase?
  • Did you have sufficient proof or explanations to prove that?
  • Is it obvious why and what does each piece of evidence mean?
  • Is all proof working together and telling a consistent story?

Never consider paragraphs as separate units – they are part of a more significant statement that can flow from one point to the next logically.

Frequently Asked Questions

Structure paragraphs in an essay by introducing a clear topic sentence that relates to the thesis statement. Provide supporting evidence, examples, or analysis to strengthen the main idea. Use transitional words or phrases for coherence and logical flow. Conclude the paragraph by summarizing key points or transitioning to the next paragraph.

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