How to make an outline for an Essay

Making an outline for an essay is very important. Many students feel that making an outline is only unnecessary work, however if you have written a good outline it will be very helpful when you will sit to write the essay.

Some teachers ask their students to submit the outline along with the essay; therefore it is important to know how to write a good outline because if the outline is not good it will definitely amount to nothing but unnecessary work.

Below are a few guidelines that will help you in writing a good outline.


Give your outline a title. This title does not have to be the topic of your essay. It can be anything. E.g. if writing this essay was your monthly assignment, you can simply name your outline “monthly assignment”.


After you have given the outline a title the next step is to write down your goal. This will include the topic of you essay, what you are trying to achieve by writing this essay and what message are you trying to put forward for others.

Make sections

You know what points you have to include in your essay. Break those points into sections and subsections. Make subheadings and underneath those subheadings write down your points in one line sentences. Before every section, write what you intend to accomplish in that particular section. Keep in mind your thesis statement, the outline of your essay should revolve around it.


Give the outline a proper format, number each section and subsection. E.g. you write [1)] for the first section, then [a)] for the subsection and then [i)] if the subsection is further divided. Follow the same format through out the outline. Once you have written the outline simply put everything together in an order i.e. introduction, body and conclusion.

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