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Writing papers using Initial Outlines and Detailed Outlines

Because of the COVID19 pandemic, I’ve had more time (and concentration) to write despite my heavy teaching load (which I hope will not repeat itself ever in my entire life). This Fall term (and this past summer 2020) I’ve also taught a metric tonne of workshops and given a number of talks on academic writing. On top of my traditional courses on research methods and research design, I’ve had to think a lot about writing, academic writing and keeping my writing practice alive despite the pandemic.

Desk in my room (Malakoff, France)

I’ve also made my courses a lot more applied by teaching my students in a hands-on way. I’ve taught them to do research, by actually doing it and writing it. One of the concepts I’ve re-emphasized my students is the notion of outlines, specifically Initial Outlines (the ones we prepare at the beginning of the writing process) and Detailed Outlines (which we develop to help us “flesh out” our arguments and write full papers).

This is the process I use to develop my outlines and the one I teach my students.

This blog post is specific to Detailed Outlines, but I’ve also written other posts on Outlines that you might find useful (see below).

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Posted in academia, writing.

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