Organizing ideas | English homework help

Read CEL Ch. 17: Organizing Ideas.

Organization, or arrangement, helps writers communicate the most interesting or persuasive aspects of topics efficiently and effectively with audiences. The CEL tells you in Ch. 17 that the well-organized essay can take an audience through an issue “like a coherent journey” — beginning with a sense of direction and proceeding through interesting and challenging terrain before return back to the place of origin with new insights and ideas (p. 519).

As you are pulling together all of your ideas for your final research-based essay on Addressing Issues, this chapter gives you several strategies for writing introductions, organizing the rest of your essay into claims, support, and counterarguments, and concluding. Additional, and more specific suggestions for organization can be found in the chapters that support the type of Addressing Issues essay you are writing (evaluation, proposal, etc.) — see Ch. 9- Ch. 12 for more information. In this activity, you will do some of “invention” writing work to conceptual the structure of your essay. 

quill icon-01.png Assignment:

Write a short response (at least 200 words) in which you plan the “journey” of how your research essay will be organized. Use the notes and questions below to help you develop your response.

If it helps, you can create a drawing or map and attach it to this assignment. If you really want to get creative with your planning, think about the “journey” of your favorite movie, book, or video game as a metaphor (i.e. Rey’s journey in Star Wars; Joel or Ellie’s journey in The Last of Us; Scout’s journey in To Kill a Mockingbird, Binti’s journey in Binti (Links to an external site.), etc.). 

  • Where will your journey begin? Who are the travelers? What do they already know? What do they NOT know? What basic context and concepts should they be familiar with before they start their journey?
  • What is the most challenging “terrain” your audience of travelers will have to cross? What tools do they already have for navigating this terrain? What tools can you provide to help them?
  • Where is your audience of travelers likely to stumble or get stuck in the terrain of claims you provide? How can you anticipate this and provide resources or vehicles to help them?
  • What about the travelers who do not want to take the journey? How can you anticipate their fears or disagreements? What information or concessions can you make to urge them to join you?
  • When will it be time for your travelers / audience to return to the place of origin? What will they have learned by undertaking the challenges you have provided them? What do you want them to think and do when they get back?

You do not have to answer each of these questions word for word in a separate paragraph, but your response overall should show that you are considering all of the questions above. Submit your response to this assignment.

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