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Online Outline Makers

If you choose to use Easybib for your notes, you can use their outline feature.  They go hand in hand.  Just type in your thesis and drag your note cards to the right side of the screen.

Another option is to use Cambridge Rindge and Latin's online outline maker.  Just type in your information and click on Create Outline. Then print immediately! You can't save your outline so if you click out of the page, you lose it. 

Why Make an Outline?

An outline helps you organize your thoughts and makes the actual writing of your paper much easier.  The top of your outline should be your introduction with thesis statement.  The subtopics from your note cards will serve as headings for the body outline.  Remember that all your subtopics need to relate back to your thesis. 

I. Introductory Paragraph with Thesis Statement
Your introductory paragraph should contain the following, in order:
1.    An attention grabber: an example, statistic, interesting historical fact, an anecdote (little story - two sentences or less), or a quote relating to your topic.
2.   A very brief summary of the topic or issue.
3.   The thesis statement.

II. Body of paper

A. Subtopic 1
     1.  Supporting evidence to back up A.
     2.  More supporting evidence to back up A.

B. Subtopic 2
     1.  Supporting evidence to back up B.
     2.  More supporting evidence to back up B.

C. Subtopic 3
     1.  Supporting evidence to back up C.
     2.  More supporting evidence to back up C.

Each paragraph in your body should have the following, in order:

1.      A topic sentence introducing the subtopic.
2.     Sentence(s) that provide evidence to support the subtopic.
3.     A transition sentence to your next paragraph.

III. Conclusion

Because you will write this at the very end, you need not include much in the outline for it, unless you have an idea for a great clincher.  The conclusion should restate your thesis and sum up all your subtopics.  The order is dependent on how you wish to do this, as there isn’t a magic formula for a conclusion.  It may a good idea to mention the significance of your research.   Why was your research important?   Are there any more questions to be answered? 


Example:

I. Introduction with Thesis Statement
In the past, only young women felt the pressure to look a certain way.   The portrayal of thin models and peer pressure has led to widespread eating disorders among girls.  Now due to modern influences in the mass media, boys feel the need to look more muscular, and at the same time, be more competitive on the playing field.  Easily obtainable steroids make this a possibility for high school students.  Although steroids are dangerous and produce lasting harm to growing bodies, there is a perception among many students that they are safe.  Schools and parents have looked the other way.  Because of this high level of competition in sports, changing attitudes in body image, and the perceived safety of steroids, high school students resort to using these illegal drugs.  To combat this problem, schools must educate high school students about body image and the harm in using steroids.

II. Body

A. Statistics of high school students and steroid use
1. Monitoring the Future 2011 study
         a. 1.2% seniors used steroids.
         b. .9% of sophomores used.    
2. Pediatrics Journal study
         a. 6% of middle-high school boys
         b. 38% use protein supplements

B. Causes
1. Increased competition in athletics
         a. self-esteem and larger high schools
         b. scholarships and parental pressure
2. Unrealistic body image
            a. changes from 30 years ago
            b. mass media influence
3. Perceived level of safety
            a. statistics from MTF
            b. sports hero admission
4. Easy availability
            a. statistics from MTF
            b. parental denial

C. Schools

1. What schools have done
            a. letters home to parents
            b. punishments
2. What schools could do
            a. lectures on mass media and body image    
           
b. my own ideas       

II. Conclusion (to be written later – see rough draft)

Outline Organizer

Download this organizer if it helps you to visualize your thoughts.