Paragraph Structure – Quick Guide

What Is a Paragraph?

A paragraph refers to a group of related sentences that support a central idea. A typical paragraph structure consists of 3 parts; they include, the topic sentence, the body sentences, and finally, the conclusion or bridge sentence that links the present paragraph to the next paragraph or section. Paragraphs play an important role in your research because they reveal where the subdivisions of a research paper start and end. They also go on to help the reader show the organization of the researcher and grasp his/her main points.

Importance of Constructing a Good Paragraph

Think of paragraphs as building blocks of papers. Having well-written paragraphs in your research helps your ideas or findings to flow logically in a way that informs and help support the central idea and findings being investigated. A disorganized string of paragraphs will not give any credibility to your research or findings, and you will probably receive a terrible grade.

Suggestions for Developing Paragraph Structure

  1. The Paragraph Has no Controlling Idea

What do I mean by this? When writing your research paper, remember that a paragraph has three general layers of text. Generally, most of the content or the core of the contents is contained in the middle. That includes all the evidence from your research. Nevertheless, this evidence needs to be introduced by a topic sentence in a way your reader will understand what you are talking about. If not, you risk losing your reader half-way.

The start of the paragraph should explain the central idea of the paragraph. Therefore, the beginning of a paragraph gives insight into the main purpose or idea of the paragraph. The last paragraph, on the other hand, explains how the paragraph relates to the broader paragraph argument. It will also provide a transition to the next idea.

When you’ve mastered how you to use topic sentences, you can now decide if the topic sentence can go at the beginning, middle or end of a paragraph. As long as the topic sentence is there to inform the reader about the central idea of the paragraph and its relation to the broader thesis of your paper, it doesn’t matter where you place it.

  1. When the Paragraph Has More Than One Controlling Idea

That is the reason why you write or find some long paragraphs.  A paragraph that’s a more than a page long is usually because it contains more than one controlling idea. To avoid this, make sure you don’t have more than one idea in a single paragraph and if you do, try eliminating sentences that relate to the second idea. (Is there a rule for the paragraph length?)

  1. Transitions Are Needed within the Paragraph Structure

Transitions are helpful in and between paragraphs because they help to establish a relationship between ideas. They also help to create a logical sequence of those ideas in paragraphs.

Paragraph Structure and Writing Style

  1. General Structure

Introduction: This is the very first section of a paragraph. It includes the topic sentence and other sentences at the beginning of the sentence that provides background information.

Body: Naturally, the body follows the introduction. It discusses the central idea using facts, analysis, arguments, examples, and other information.

Conclusion: this is the final section of a paragraph. It summarizes all the information discussed in the body of the paragraph. For long paragraphs, it might possess a bridge sentence that connects that paragraph to the next. There are instances that bridge sentences are written in form of a question.

  1. Development and Organization

Before you can begin to determine how your paragraph will look, you must first answer this vital question; what is the most significant idea you’re trying convey to your reader? (The art of attracting your reader)

This is the central idea from which you must compose the remainder of the paragraph. What this means is that your paragraphs should remind your reader of the recurrent relationship between your central idea and the information in each paragraph.

Before writing down your paragraph, you must first think about how you want to pursue the research problem thoroughly. That is what will serve as a blueprint for developing your set of paragraphs.

After considering all these factors, your paragraphs should be:

  • Unified: every sentence in your paragraph must share a connection to the central idea, which is often expressed in the topic sentence of the paragraph.
  • The sentences should coherent and follow a defined plan fir development.
  • Every paragraph should be well-developed, satisfactorily explained and supported with facts and details that work together to explain the central idea.

Consider all these important steps when developing or writing paragraphs for your research papers.

Scientific Editing blog

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