Organization is the internal structure of a piece of writing, the thread of central meaning, the pattern, so long as it fits the central idea. Organizational structure can be based on comparison-contrast, deductive logic, point-by-point analysis, development of a central theme, chronological history of an event, or any of a dozen other identifiable patterns. When the organization is strong, the piece begins meaningfully and creates in the writer a sense of anticipation that is, ultimately, systematically fulfilled. Events proceed logically; information is given to the reader in the right doses at the right times so that the reader never loses interest. Connections are strong, which is another way of saying that bridges from one idea to the next hold up. The piece closes with a sense of resolution, tying up loose ends, bringing things to closure, answering important questions while still leaving the reader something to think about.

Questions to ask when trying to improve Organization…

How can I . . .

  • Rearrange the order of the ideas and their supporting evidence to provide a stronger foundation for the argument I am making?
  • Make sure each section of the paper does what it is meant to do? Is the introduction inviting? Does it state the issue clearly? Does the conclusion pull together the whole piece? Does it end with some power?
  • Pace the flow of the paper so that it slows down and speeds up at the right times?
  • Build smoother and clearer transitions and bridges between sections of the paper as well as between the ideas being explored?

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