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Mini-Module: How to Write Good Paragraphs

Pro Tips

Skills for Learning LogoPro Tips Page 5 of 6

On this page you will find the top 10 useful tips to help you avoid some common mistakes and streamline your writing process.



1Decide what the main point of each paragraph is. Sum it up in a few words, and make it into your topic sentence. 


2Try to stick to one point per paragraph. Check that everything in the paragraph relates to the topic. If you’re not sure, circle it, and consider whether it would be better in a different place.


3Is there anything redundant? If so, get rid of it. Good academic writing avoids repetitions or unnecessary extra information. Also, if you can say the same thing using fewer words, it is usually better to do so. 


4Do not write one-sentence paragraphs. These are common on non-academic websites, but are usually not appropriate for academic writing.


5As a general rule of thumb, aim for about three paragraphs per page. If a paragraph is too short, it cant make its point effectively. If it is too long, there is a good chance that the reader will find it difficult to read.


6Think about the order of your paragraphs. It is a good idea to go in a step-by-step logical way. For example, you can go from general to particular, or from earlier to later in time, or arguments against then arguments for and then conclusion. 


7Your reader should be able to read just the topic sentences from each paragraph, and still be able to get a skeleton outline of your argument. 


8You can use topic sentences to plan your whole essay, putting them in a logical order and trying different orders to see which works best, and only then do you need to actually write the full paragraphs.


9Keep your conclusion in mind while you work - it will make it much easier to focus your writing and avoid unnecessary text.


10Try to have a point of view - it really helps if you have something to say about a subject.