Writing / January 20, 2024/

How to Write an Essay Outline: Ultimate Guide to Scoring Better in Your Next Assignment

You have just received an email from your professor assigning you an essay on a topic that you’re not particularly familiar with. The thought of writing a whole essay is daunting to you, and you’re not sure where to start.

You are sitting are your desk, staring blankly at your computer screen, unsure of how to proceed, worrying about the looming deadline. Suddenly, a notification pops up on your phone. It’s a message from a friend who is a skilled writer – telling you the secret keys to writing a great essay outline that’ll help you organize your thoughts and ideas. Intrigued to ask them for more details?

We’ve you covered. Consider us as your long-time friend, as our well-versed essay writers take you through some of the most important things that you need to know before starting to work on your essay outline. Let’s dive into it.

Imagine you’re planning a road trip from Norwich to Kings Lynn; you wouldn’t just jump in the car and start driving without a plan, right? You’d need to plot out your route, decide on your stops along the way and make sure you have everything you need for the journey. Similarly, an essay outline is like a roadmap that guides you through your writing journey.

What is an Essay Outline?

An essay outline is the blueprint of your essay. It is the skeletal structure of your essay that outlines all the essential points you need to cover in each section, including the thesis statement.

Similar to how a map is created before constructing a house, an essay outline is crucial in the essay writing process. Although it is possible to write an essay without an outline, doing so may result in overlooking significant details and increase the time spent on writing.

Creating an essay outline ensures that all essential information is well-incorporated, reducing the likelihood of omissions. Moreover, it helps to:

  • Organize and structure your thoughts and ideas.
  • Facilitate understanding of the flow of information.
  • Ensure that no vital information or references are overlooked.
  • Enhance efficiency in completing the work promptly – on time.

But before you embark on crafting an essay outline, it is essential to consider the following points:

The Prewriting Process

Imagine constructing a property without a blueprint or map – it would be chaotic and likely lead to mistakes and missed details. In the same vein, writing an essay without an outline could result in disorganization and overlooking vital information. In fact, some teachers even require you to submit an outline before the actual essay. So, before starting to work on your essay outline, it is essential to consider the preliminary guidelines provided by your instructor.

Here are the pro tips:

  • Before creating an essay outline, carefully review the assignment guidelines.
  • Understand the purpose of your essay and the needs of your targeted audience.
  • Take note of crucial points while researching your topic data.
  • Select a structure for your essay outline, whether it’s bullet points or the decimal system.
  • Ensure that the outline supports the flow of the essay and highlights essential elements.

Format of Essay Outline

Think of an essay outline as the architectural plan for your essay – it provides the structure and direction needed to construct a masterpiece. While it may seem like an unnecessary step, an essay outline is actually one of the most crucial steps in the writing process. Not only does it ensure that your thoughts are organized and presented in a clear and logical manner, but it also serves as a roadmap for the entire writing process. So, what exactly does an essay outline consist of?

Typically, it includes three main components:


The introduction of your essay is like a captivating magic show – it must mesmerize the audience and leave them spellbound. To achieve this, you must employ a writing style that is both intriguing and informative. Think of it as crafting a story that captures your reader’s imagination from the get-go.

You can achieve this by using a dramatic tone that hooks your reader’s attention and keeps them glued to your words. However, ensure that your writing supports your thesis statement and is relevant to your topic.

The introduction should also set the stage by providing relevant background information that prepares the reader for the adventure ahead. With this approach, you’ll be able to create something that is both engaging and informative, leaving your readers begging for more! Keep in mind your introduction will always be lack-lustre without the following things:

  • Hook Statement
  • Thesis Statement

Body Paragraph

The thesis statement serves as the backbone of your essay and is usually found in the introduction. However, it is in the body of the essay where you truly justify and support your thesis statement. Each body paragraph should be carefully crafted to include all the necessary information and evidence to effectively convey your message.

Make sure to explain your topic thoroughly and provide supporting evidence to back up your claims. Using full sentences is essential to ensure that your writing is clear and concise, making it easier for your readers to follow along with your argument.

When writing a persuasive essay, the body paragraphs carry the weight of your argument and are crucial in persuading your audience to agree with your stance. Similarly, in an argumentative essay, the body paragraphs play a pivotal role in presenting evidence and convincing your readers of your point of view.

These paragraphs should be written in a clear and logical manner, with each paragraph building upon the previous one to create a cohesive argument. Whether you’re persuading, narrating, or arguing, your body paragraphs are the meat of your essay and should be crafted with care.

To maintain your reader’s interest, each paragraph of your essay should have a clear topic sentence that conveys the main ideas. It’s important to remember that each paragraph should only contain one central idea to prevent your writing from becoming convoluted or confusing.


Your conclusion is like the grand finale of a firework show. It should pack a punch and leave a lasting impression on your readers. Bear in mind your conclusion is just as important as your introduction and body paragraphs, as it provides closure to your topic and solidifies your arguments.

A strong and persuasive conclusion can leave a lasting impact on your readers, inspiring them to think critically about the topic and consider your arguments. Your conclusion should succinctly restate your thesis statement and the supporting points that you made in your essay while also packing a punch with powerful sentences.

To leave a lasting impact on your readers, it’s a good idea to end your essay by suggesting a course of action or inspiring further thought on the topic.

Paragraph Structure for an Essay Outline


  • Mention the topic.
  • Thesis Statement

Body Paragraph 01

  • Introduction
  • Supporting Evidence
  • Brief Explanation

Body Paragraph 02

  • Introduction
  • Supporting Evidence
  • Brief Explanation

 Body Paragraph 03

  • Introduction
  • Supporting Evidence
  • Brief Explanation


  • Summarize your essay.
  • Restate your thesis statement.

Here’s an example of an encyclopedic essay outline:

Topic: The Benefits of Regular Exercise

  • Introduction

Hook: Everyone knows exercise is good for you, but why?

Background information: According to the World Health Organization, physical inactivity is the fourth leading risk factor for global mortality.

Thesis statement: Regular exercise offers numerous benefits for both physical and mental health, and it is important to incorporate it into daily life.

  • Body Paragraph 1

Topic sentence: Regular exercise helps maintain healthy body weight.

Supporting evidence: The American Heart Association recommends at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise per week to maintain weight.

Explanation: Exercise burns calories and increases metabolism, making it easier to maintain a healthy weight.

  • Body Paragraph 2

Topic sentence: Regular exercise reduces the risk of chronic diseases.

Supporting evidence: Research has shown that regular exercise can lower the risk of heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and certain types of cancer.

Explanation: Exercise improves blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and insulin sensitivity, which all contribute to a lower risk of chronic diseases.

  • Body Paragraph 3

Topic sentence: Regular exercise improves mental health.

Supporting evidence: Studies have shown that exercise can reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression.

Explanation: Exercise releases endorphins, which improve mood and provide a sense of accomplishment and stress relief.

  • Conclusion

Restate thesis: Regular exercise offers numerous benefits for both physical and mental health.

Summarize main points: Exercise helps maintain a healthy weight, reduces the risk of chronic diseases, and improves mental health.

Final thoughts: Incorporating exercise into daily life can be challenging, but the benefits are well worth the effort. Start small and gradually increase activity levels to achieve optimal health.

With this comprehensive guide, you are now equipped with all the needed tools to create a winning essay outline. However, if you’re struggling to craft an effective essay outline, don’t worry – help is available. Consider seeking the expertise of professional academic writing services to assist you in achieving your academic goals. With their specialized knowledge and experience, they can help you craft a top-notch essay outline that’ll impress your professors and earn you the grades that you deserve!