What is a Simple Outline?

A simple outline is a formal or informal structure of presenting the main and supporting ideas in a document about a particular subject or topic. It aids our process of writing, helps us organize our ideas, presents our material in a logical form, and constructs a systematic overview of the subject. According to research, outlines help to develop a logical, coherent structure in the paper and making it easier to translate the ideas into detailed words and sentences.

An outline got many uses in the field of education, government, and business. In the field of education, teachers use outlines when it comes to building lesson plans while students make a speech outline, research papers, essays, project plans, and other writing tasks. In the field of government and business, outlines are usually used for project proposals, annual plans, and other business proposals. Basically, outlines can be used in general aspects.

How to Create a Simple Outline

Creating an outline is as simple as it sounds. But you should be aware that in making an outline, you should take note of the following format that is required for you in doing such tasks. For you to be guided, here are the following tips on how to create a simple outline.

1. Identifying the Topic and Establishing the Purpose

Most people struggle to start a paper when it comes to establishing a topic, while some were given a topic but are having a hard time deliberating the topic's purpose. To have a goal in mind, help yourself with some research and read some books or newspapers for you to guided. If the topic is given, have some time researching and reading what the topic is all about. Once you have a goal, it will be easy for you to set the direction and scopes for your content.

2. Create a List of Ideas

In this part, brainstorming with the rest of the members in the group will help you with the whole process. Create a list of essential ideas that you are planning to present in the document. You can list the following resources, discussions to answer a question or instructions. No matter what your topic will be all about, creating a list will give you a chance to get all of your ideas out and corroborate with the other members in the group.

3. Organize the Main Ideas

Now that you have come up with the list of ideas from the previous step, organize and rearrange the list of main ideas in a particular order based on their information. According to a university article, there are many different strategies in organizing ideas such as to cause and effect, classification, chronological and process. Once the ideas are put in order, it will be easier for you to explicate each of the main points of the main ideas.

4. Explicate the Main Points

Add some relevant information to support each main idea you have stated. Elaborate your ideas in the paper to explain your own points. Provide detailed examples, facts, theoretical backgrounds or even quotations. This may be the longest part in making an outline but it will effectively make your document rational and your ideas are in a focal point as you develop your document. As much as possible, keep your outline flexible.

5. Review and Modify

In writing documents, it is important to review and modify the content. Read your whole document once again to check if you have finally achieved your purpose. Revise the things that must be revised when there are missing ideas. Check typographical errors, grammar, formatting laws, and punctuation.

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