Research paper

GUIDE TO FORMAL OUTLINING

I. The outline should be in sentence form.
A. That means that each section of the outline must be a complete sentence
B. Each part may only have one sentence in it.
II. Each Roman numeral should be a main section of the speech.
A. Capital letters are main points of the thesis.
1. Numbers are sub-points under the capital letters.
2. Little letters are sub-points under the numbers.
B. Sub-points need to correspond with the idea it is under.
1. This means that capital letters refer to the idea in roman numerals.
2. This means that numbers refer to the idea in the capital letter.
III. All sub-points should be indented the same.
A. This means that all of the capital letters are indented the same.
B. All numbers are indented the same.
IV. No sub-point stands alone.
A. Every A must have a B.
B. Every 1 must have a 2.
C. You don’t need to have a C or a 3, but you can.
D. There are no exceptions to this rule.
Your speech outline should look something like the one in the sample.
Your outline will also include the full sentence details of your speech, including
source citations.
The number of sub-points will differ in each speech and for each main idea.

FORMAL SENTENCE OUTLINE FORMAT

Student’s Name:
Date:

Topic: Key statement that describes the topic of your speech
General Purpose: To inform OR To persuade
Specific Purpose: Your specific purpose identifies the information you want to
communicate (in an informative speech) or the attitude or behavior
you want to change (in a persuasive speech).

Thesis: The central idea of your speech (should predict, control and obligate).

I. Introduction
A. Attention Getter: Something that grabs the attention of the audience.
Examples of this: startling statistics, stories,
rhetorical questions, quotations, scenarios, etc. This
point should be more than one sentence long.
B. Reason to Listen: Why should the audience listen to your speech,

make it personal to each of them.
C. Thesis Statement: Exact same statement as above.
D. Credibility Statement:
1. What personally connects you to this topic?
2. What type of research have you done to establish credibility?
E. Preview of Main Points:
1. First, I will describe …
2. Second, I will examine …
3. Third, I will discuss…
II. Restate thesis, exact statement as above.
A. Statement of the first main point; you should not use a source in this sentence.

1. Idea of development or support for the first main point
a. Support material (ex: statistics, quotation, etc.- cite source)
b. Support material (ex: statistics, quotation, etc. – cite source)
2. More development or support
a. Support material (ex: statistics, quotation, etc.- cite source)
b. Support material (ex: statistics, quotation, etc. – cite source)
3. More development if needed

Transition: (Required) Statement of movement that looks back (internal summary)

and looks forward (preview).
B. Statement of second main point. Do not use a source in this statement.
1. Idea of development or support for the first main point
a. Support material (ex: statistics, quotation, etc. – cite source)
b. Support material (ex: statistics, quotation, etc. – cite source)
2. More development or support
a. Support material (ex: statistics, quotation, etc. – cite source)
b. Support material (ex: statistics, quotation, etc. – cite source)
3. More development if needed

Transition: (Required) Statement of movement that looks back (internal summary)

and looks forward (preview).
C. Statement of third main point. Do not use a source in this statement.
1. Idea of development or support for the first main point
a. Support material (ex: statistics, quotation, etc. – cite source)
b. Support material (ex: statistics, quotation, etc. – cite source)
2. More development or support

a. Support material (ex: statistics, quotation, etc. – cite source)
b. Support material (ex: statistics, quotation, etc. – cite source)
3. More development if needed

III. Conclusion
A. Review of Main Points:
1. Restate your first main point.
2. Restate your second main point.
3. Restate you third main point.
B. Restate Thesis: Exact same as above.
C. Closure: Develop a creative closing that will give the speech
a sense of ending. This point may be more than one

sentence. You should refer back to your Attention-
Getter.

References
APA format; all references need to be sited in APA format.
Electronic sources must be .edu, .gov, or .org in order to be acceptable.
Be sure to make sure that the references are in Alphabetical order.
Double-Spaced; all references should be double-spaced and indented.
Five source minimum: You must have at least five sources cited in your outline and listed
on your reference page.
Make sure to provide all necessary information in the references.

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