How to Structure your Outline

Picking a structure for your outline is very instrumental to pitching your ideas perfectly during writing.

Create an alphabetical/numerical outline

Most outlines use an alphanumeric structure, even though you might not be familiar with the name. Your points will be divided into levels, each denoted by a letter or number. Below is an example of how an alphabetical outline is structured, going from primary points to subpoints.

  • Capitalized Alphabets – A, B, C
  • Lowercase Letters – a, b, c
  • Arabic Numbers – 1, 2, 3

Use Uppercase Alphabet for Primary/Major points. While the lowercase alphabet for Subpoints.

To emphasize the connections between ideas, use a decimal outline

The appearance of an alphanumeric and a decimal outline is fairly similar. Nevertheless, a decimal outline solely employs numbers, and decimals in this case denote each sublevel. You can use this to show how each sublevel is a component of a larger argument. This is how it might appear.

  • 1.0 Choose Desired College
  • 1.1 Visit and evaluate college campuses
  • 1.2 Visit and evaluate college websites

Choose whether you want to compose complete sentences or brief phrases

The majority of outlines contain concise phrases, often known as topic outlines. Yet, utilizing complete sentences can make it easier for you to grasp what you’re saying. Whole sentences will offer you a head start on your final work if you’re writing a paper based on your outline.

  • You can use short phrases to quickly organize your ideas, outline a speech, or create a personal outline.
  • You might use full sentences to help you write a final paper, create a good study guide, or meet the requirements of an assignment.
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