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Academic structure: it's not a long-form five-paragraph essay

When it comes to structuring writing, many of us are taught some variation of the five-paragraph essay. It goes something like this:

Academic writing is not so simply structured.

But this means it also allows for more flexibility.

And in some ways that makes the writing easier: the five paragraph essay is hard because it makes you start from scratch, like you’re the only one talking. Not so in most academic writing. Scholars usually start their writing by building off what others have said.

Try these approaches make your academic writing more connected

In the beginning

In the middle

Free your paragraphs from the five-paragraph “subpoint” mentality. Instead divide your paragraphs more naturally. Write whole paragraphs devoted to:

Then tie all your body paragraphs together by relating your ideas & points to what the other scholars you quoted have said.

At the end

Feel free to bring up new ideas!