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Module 3: Structure

3.1 Planning your essay

This unit takes students through the process of planning an essay. It shows them how to interpret the essay question and how to develop a plan for a well-argued and well-structured essay.


  • planning an essay: an overview
  • interpreting the essay question
  • creating a synthesis grid, a way of organising information from sources in order to make clear, well-supported arguments
  • constructing a working thesis
  • organising arguments in essays.

3.2 Structuring paragraphs

This unit looks closely at the structure of individual paragraphs. It explains the purpose of the topic sentence, the concluding sentence and the various other components of a paragraph.


Structuring paragraphs - Elements of a paragraph:

  • the topic sentence
  • sentences that develop and support the point
  • the concluding sentence.

3.3 Introductions and conclusions

This unit looks at the purpose and structure of the introduction and the conclusion of an essay. It gives practice in recognising the components of the introduction and of the conclusion.


  • essay structure: an overview
  • typical components of an introductory paragraph
  • writing an introduction
  • typical components of a concluding paragraph
  • writing a conclusion.