How To Write A 5-Paragraph Essay Outline – 3 Templates

Essays have long been part of writing assignments in schools and are an essential piece of literature. They are written to express one’s opinion and point of view on a certain matter. They can be informative and teach others about particular topics or they can tell a story peppered with life lessons. Several kinds of essays have been made in the past decades. Each kind offers a different approach to writing an essay. One of the most popular formats is the 5-paragraph essay. You may also like general essay outlines.


Given that an essay is a lengthy piece of writing, condensing into a 5-page structure is an effective way to make it comprehensive. The 5-paragraph essay is a common writing assignment in schools and in other English learning institutions. This is a common exam for students taking up subjects like International English Language Testing System (IELTS) and Test of English for International Communication (TOEIC). This format is also being taught in high school. It trains the students to write concisely since it has a limit. It allows the student to answer the question efficiently.

To write the essay, it helps that you have an outline to guide you on what to do. In light of this, here is the structure of a 5-paragraph essay.

First paragraph (Introduction)

  • Hook/Background
  • Thesis Statement

Second paragraph (Point 1)

Topic Sentence

  • Supporting details
  • Additional information

Third paragraph (Point 2)

Topic Sentence

  • Supporting details
  • Additional information

Fourth paragraph (Point 3)

Topic Sentence

  • Supporting details
  • Additional information

Fifth paragraph (Conclusion)

  • Recap on the whole essay
  • Last thoughts on the topic

paragraph essay outline 788x

Writing The Outline

Writing the outline of a 5-page paragraph essay is easier compared to other different kinds of essays. Its structure is simple and straightforward. Follow these steps when writing such essay.

1. Introduction.

The introduction is the bait for the readers to read what you wrote. This should be the most catchy part of the whole essay. There are many ways to do this. You can begin the introduction with a quote, a rhetorical question or an anecdote. Choose the right words when you use these techniques to keep readers interested. Write the thesis statement after the introduction. This serves as the overview of what your essay is about. There is no need to write a lengthy introduction as long as you have the two elements of it in the whole paragraph.

2. Body.

The body is divided into three paragraphs. If you notice, it’s the part that has the most paragraphs. This is to fully explain the sample thesis statement written in the introduction. The body of the essay needs to be well-researched.

Present your best arguments in the first paragraph of the body. Along with it are the details that support the argument. In the second paragraph, you can present the second best argument then back it up with details. The last paragraph of the body should contain the least important arguments. In connecting these, you must use transitional words like first, next, however, in connection to and others. You may also see essay outlines.

The body is the real meat of your essay and it should be written well.

3. Conclusion.

The conclusion gives the whole essay a feeling of closure and completion. This is where you recap the entire essay and give your final thoughts on the whole matter. Some writers end the essay with a shocking twist in the end to surprise the readers. This time, it is another hook that wraps up the essay. You may also like sample blank outlines.

Take a look at these 5-paragraph essay outline templates:

General 5-Paragraph Essay Outline


Graphic Organizer for a Five-Paragraph Essay


Five Paragraph Essay Template

five para 3

Tips on Writing An Essay

An outline is a great tool for writing essays. However, it is just one of the factors in writing a good one. There are several things that make a good essay. You just have to know how to play with words and ideas in your head. Here are some steps in formulating a good essay. You may also like Microsoft word essay templates.

1. Choose a relatable topic.

Take a look around you and see what you could write. Technology, nature, climate, current events are things that usually interest people today. Pick a topic that easily connects you to the readers and something that you are passionate about. It will be easier for you to write if you know what you are writing. Think of all the things you could write about the topic of your choice. You may also see outline templates in a word.

2. Do research.

Once you have your topic, get your hands on a computer and start researching. Since this is about arguments, you have the upper hand if you research every detail related to your topic. This helps you in writing better arguments backed with information. It would not sacrifice the quality of your essay. You may also see outline examples.

3. Write concisely.

Five paragraphs do not seem enough for your string of ideas, but there’s a way out of it. The best way to ace this kind of essay is by writing concisely. Phrase your ideas in shorter sentences that are packed with sense, logic, and information. The shorter your sentence, the easier it is for readers to digest what you want to say. You may also like outline templates in pdf.

4. Have a cohesive flow of ideas.

The thing with writing is you have to stitch your ideas. Maintain a cohesive flow of ideas as you go from one paragraph to another. Put yourself in the shoes of the reader. You would end up ditching a piece of writing when you don’t understand what you’re reading. No one likes to read an essay that jumps from one idea to another without understanding why they are written next to each other. Writing is not just for your own pleasure, but for the readers as well. You may also see sample personal essay templates.

5. Do not forget to edit.

If you have enough time when the essay is given as an assignment, take time to edit it. See if there are spelling and grammar errors that need attention. Rewrite what needs to be rewritten. You don’t have to edit right away. Give yourself a few hours to relax and clear up your mind from writing so much. This saves you from burning out. You may also like best outline examples.

6. Be confident.

At the end of all the writing process, allow yourself to be confident. This is your piece of writing. You poured out a part of yourself in writing this. Own it. Show to the world the product of your brilliant mind. You may also like formal outline templates.

A 5-paragraph essay can be adapted to persuasive, narrative, cause and effect, expository and descriptive essays. Whatever the format is, the drive to write is the major key to finishing the writing process.

More in Business

21+ Outline Templates 10+ Biography Outline Templates
9+ Argumentative Essay Outline Templates 8+ Descriptive Essay Templates
7+ Blank Outline Templates 4+ Essay Outline Templates
3+ General Essay Outline Templates 3+ Analytical Essay Outline Templates