Let’s get a little more in-depth with this: The introduction is made up of two main parts: the thesis and the introduction to the supporting points.
This is where you essentially tell your reader exactly what sort of wild ride they’re in for if they read on.
There’s also another key component to this outline example that I haven’t touched on yet: Some people like to write first, and annotate later.
Personally, I like to get my quotes and annotations in right at the start of the writing process.
Once you have a sizable stack of research notes, it’s time to start organizing your paper.
Even if you normally feel confident writing a paper without one, use an outline when you’re working on a research paper.
Take this thesis statement for example: actually prove it with your research, you’re golden. You know exactly what you’re looking for, and you know exactly where you’re going with the paper. That makes the next step a lot easier: So you have your thesis, you know what you’re looking for. By real research, I mean more than a quick internet search or a quick skim through some weak secondary or tertiary sources.
If you’ve chosen a thesis you’re a little unsteady on, a preliminary skim through Google is fine, but make sure you go the extra mile.
Also notice that I haven’t bothered to organize my research too much.
I’ve just dumped all the relevant citations under the headings I think they’ll end up under, so I can put in my quotes from my research document later as they fit into the overall text.