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Writing your plan

Learn how to write an academic essay plan in this article from A Beginner's Guide to Writing in English for University Study.
You now need to write a plan for your essay based on the diagram, or mind map, you have drawn. We suggest that your essay should have two or three paragraphs, depending on how many main points you have.

You can use this model to help you plan your essay:

  • Introduction: background and thesis statement
  • Paragraph 1: paragraph leader and main body
  • Paragraph 2: paragraph leader and main body
  • Paragraph 3: paragraph leader and main body
  • Conclusion: summary and future advice/prediction

Example essay plan

Look at the plan Chaohua wrote for her essay:


Background: English – most preferred international language. Used in many fields. Children learn English in primary schools and kindergartens.

Thesis statement: This essay – main reasons for popularity.

Paragraph 1

Paragraph leader: English – official language for majority.

Main body: Examples: business, science, arts etc. Do well in English to get a good job.

Paragraph 2

Paragraph leader: Young children better at studying languages than adults.

Main body: Children living in different countries – learn 3 or 4 languages, so more young children learn English in kindergartens.

Paragraph 3

Paragraph leader: Parents care for their children’s future.

Main body: To be successful, need to study hard and learn English early in kindergarten.


Summary: English: widely spoken. Children learn early and good at English.

Prediction: More people study English.

Now you have seen Chaohua’s plan we would like you to:

  • Write a plan for your own essay using the model at the top of this page (you can download and use the editable PDF under ‘Downloads’ at the bottom of this Step). You will use your plan later this week to write your first draft.

Remember that your essay will be about 350 words.

© University of Reading
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A Beginner's Guide to Writing in English for University Study

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