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Statement, Explanation, Evidence

Read this article to understand how to use the Statement, Example, Evidence format to substantiate a point.
Our example of substantiating a point. The same text is written in the  article below.
© FrankCapability Limited

To keep the narrative streamlined, each paragraph should follow this basic format: statement, explanation, evidence.

Statement
The first sentence of the paragraph is a strong statement.

Explanation
The next step is to expand upon that statement with an explanation of why it is relevant and significant. Think about your reader – how much explanation do you need to add to ensure they understand the situation, and the point?

Evidence
Support your explanation with enough evidence to substantiate the initial statement. If there’s a lot of information, it may require more than one paragraph; this is ok! Your structure will evolve as you work the substantive content into your narrative framework.

Here is an example of substantiating a point for our policy issue:

SUBHEADING: Stock grazing near rivers causes E.coli contamination.

SUBSTANTIATING THE POINT: E.coli develops in the guts of animals and can enter river water through animal faeces. Allowing stock to graze upstream from bathing sites increases the likelihood of E.coli contaminating river water. More than half of monitored rivers with too high E.coli levels have stock grazing upstream.

Top tip #1:
Each subheading needs two to three ideas. Each paragraph unpacks one of those ideas.

Top tip #2:
If your subheadings and statements are the same, this probably indicates that your subheadings are not general enough, i.e. you need another idea.

Top tip #3:
Make sure you don’t rush over the explanation. We commonly see learners jump straight from the statement to the evidence, missing out the crucial explanation.

© FrankCapability Limited
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Compelling Narratives for Complex Decisions: Policy Analyst Fundamentals

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