Chapter 4: From Thesis to Essay

The Three-Storey Thesis as a Roadmap

Animated treasure map.
Using a “map” in essay-writing will keep you from getting lost and having to backtrack. From Pixabay.

Congratulations! Now you are ready to begin structuring your essay. Good news: you already have a logical blueprint in hand in the form of your three-storey thesis.

The next step in the pre-writing phase is creating a roadmap or outline for your essay. Taking the time to review your  thesis statement and imagine paragraph-by-paragraph how your essay will flow before you start writing it will help in your revision process in that it will prevent you from writing parts of your essay and then having to delete them because they do not fit logically. You will also find that having a roadmap ahead of time will make the actual writing of your essay faster as you will know what is in each paragraph ahead of time.

A paragraph is a full and complete unit of thought within your essay. When you begin a new paragraph, you are signalling that you’ve completed that idea or point and are moving on to a new idea or point . The simplest way to create an essay outline is to look at your thesis statement, break it into its components, and then give each component its own paragraph by walking through each of the three storeys in sequence. Keep in mind that some components of an argument are more complex than others and may need two (or three or five) paragraphs to complete. But for now we’ll keep it simple and break our thesis into its basic parts. Let’s begin with our previous thesis statement, and then go storey by storey.


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Write Here, Right Now: An Interactive Introduction to Academic Writing and Research Copyright © 2018 by Ryerson University is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.