Organizing Your information

Before writing, it is important to determine how you plan on arranging the information. Organizing your information depends on your purpose and audience, so it can be arranged in several different ways.

Types of Organization

Chronological provides the information in a sequence of the events, for example, narrating a story of actual events.

Deductive or Simple-to-Complex places the simple aspects of the subject first and then leads into more complex details. For example, simply define stem cell research and then add more details to show the complexity.

Inductive presents all the evidence before arriving at a conclusion.

Spatial explains the area of something. For example, explain how your office is laid out.

Emphatic provides the most impactful information last. For example, arguing the ethics of stem cell research, you would place your most impacting reason last.

A structured outline is typically used to organize your information. An outline consists of a bulleted list of main ideas and sub-points, for example:

  • Introduction
  • Background
  • Thesis
  • Main Point 1
  • Features of Main Point 1
  • Main Point 2
  • Features of Main Point 2
  • Conclusion
  • Rephrase thesis
  • Make concluding remarks

For more details on preparing an outline go to Purdue Online Writing Lab.

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