How To Plan An Essay: Guidelines, Tips And Example

Many students need to know how to plan an essay. Such skills help them create better academic papers and complete them fast, and when you have a plan, it is much easier to write the essay sections.
It also helps you to plan your time that you need for writing. Each essay has its own level of difficulty and complexity so many papers are more difficult to write than other essays. By planning your work, you are able to estimate the necessary amount of time for work.
You can’t write the introduction and all other sections if you don’t know the proper structure and format of your paper. When having an outline of your essay, you can fill each of them with the content.
Essay planning lets you understand what actions you need to do to write it well. You may need to spend more time on reading sources, doing a research, making experiments. It is better to know it as early as possible.
The process of essay writing for college students is not very easy and they often make mistakes in their works. If student show their plans to an instructor and they tell them how to change it, it will be much easier to fix mistakes. Do not neglect such help!

Writing An Essay Plan

The procedure of writing starts with defining your topic, its meaning, and your position on it. If you understand what is your point of view and what do you want to show in your paper, you are able to start working on an outline.
Each paper has its question that needs to answered will. Before writing your paper, you should study this question and note your thoughts about it, then you need to study the subject area connected with your topic.
List all the phrases and thoughts that you think should be included in the paper. There can be more different thoughts and directions of research so you also need to define the scope. Look at your ideas and thoughts to find out which of them are the main points.
When you understand the big picture, start writing an outline for your paper, you should read examples of works by other students to understand the proper format of outlines. Move from the main chapters of your essay to sections and their subsections.
It is recommended to write your outline by using Google Docs or other similar services. When writing essay online, you can store it in a convenient form, get access from different devices, and present it your instructor by giving an access to your paper.
You probably know the preferred size of your essay. It helps you to find out how many words each section should include to meet the requirements, it is also a good practice to spend more words on the key sections of your paper.
When the outline is complete, show it to your instructor and other students to find out what they think about it. If you need to make changes to your plan, it is better to make them early, when you haven’t started working on the content for sections.

Some Useful Advices On Essay Planning

Before writing, find an essay writing guide online and read it. Why do you need it? There you may find many useful tips and requirements on how students should write their essays.
When planning the amount of time needed for each section, the number of words is not the main parameter. What does it mean? The small section may need much more time than a bigger section, if it requires doing a complex research. When planning a time for each section, you should pay attention not only to their sizes but also to how much difficult they are and what is needed to write these chapters.
Note that structure can be different, depending on the course and the requirements. That is why you shouldn’t use sample outline if they don’t match with your assignment and don’t contain all needed sections.
Write the name of each chapter clearly, so readers can understand the meaning of a section from its title. The more understandable is your outline, the more attention your paper can grab, especially from other scientists.
Make sure you write all elements in a logical order, and each of your ideas should have its own section and connection with the main thesis. There should be also logical transitions between different chapters.

Example Of An Essay Plan Structure

The Topic

Most of the students don’t associate sports with any material rewards


Many people of our country, even those who are not professional players, take part in sports activities each week. They are not looking for any prizes and trophies, or other rewards for it. They are driven by other kinds of motivation when playing sports.
In this essay, different motivations for people who take part in sporting activities are discussed, including Motivation A, Motivation B, and Motivation C. Participation of our college students in sports activities is used to illustrate this discussion.

Paragraph 1

One of the main motivations for students who play sports is the wish to stay fit. Students become more aware that sports activities can help them stay fit and improve their health. Therefore, they engage in sports themselves. There are many students of our college who go running or go to the gym every day.

Paragraph 2

Students want to gain social benefits by participating in sports events. They meet interesting people, socialize with them. They play in college teams and gain other benefits by taking parts in sports competitions.

Paragraph 3

Personal challenges is also a strong motivation for students. By analyzing interviews with students who play sports each week, it becomes clear that they take challenges to find out how strong they can become.


This research shows that students who attend sports activities are not driven by a wish of material rewards but by other motivations. The list of such motivations is presented in this essay. Interviews with students are used to illustrate the content.


Here you can present the references to interviews and other sources This list should be written in an appropriate style and meet the preferred requirements, make references to each piece of information taken from other sources.

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