Hvad Er Vigtigt I Et Essay Outline

The five-paragraph essay is a format of essay having five paragraphs: one introductory paragraph, three body paragraphs with support and development, and one concluding paragraph. Because of this structure, it is also known as a hamburger essay, one three one, or a three-tier essay.


The five-paragraph essay is a form of essay having five paragraphs:

  • one introductory paragraph,
  • three body paragraphs with support and development, and
  • one concluding paragraph.

The introduction serves to inform the reader of the basic premises, and then to state the author's thesis, or central idea. A thesis can also be used to point out the subject of each body paragraph. When a thesis essay is applied to this format, the first paragraph typically consists of a narrative hook, followed by a sentence that introduces the general theme, then another sentence narrowing the focus of the one previous. (If the author is using this format for a text-based thesis, then a sentence quoting the text, supporting the essay-writer's claim, would typically go here, along with the name of the text and the name of the author. Example: "In the book Night, Elie Wiesel says..."). After this, the author narrows the discussion of the topic by stating or identifying a problem. Often, an organizational sentence is used here to describe the layout of the paper. Finally, the last sentence of the first paragraph of such an essay would state the thesis the author is trying to prove.[1] The thesis is often linked to a "road map" for the essay, which is basically an embedded outline stating precisely what the three body paragraphs will address and giving the items in the order of the presentation. Not to be confused with an organizational sentence, a thesis merely states "The book Night follows Elie Wiesel's journey from innocence to experience," while an organizational sentence directly states the structure and order of the essay. Basically, the thesis statement should be proven throughout the essay. In each of the three body paragraphs one idea (evidence/fact/etc.) that supports thesis statement is discussed. And in the conclusion everything is analyzed and summed up.[2]

Sections of the five-part essay[edit]

The five-part essay is a step up from the five-paragraph essay. Often called the "persuasive" or "argumentative" essay, the five-part essay is more complex and accomplished, and its roots are in classical rhetoric. The main difference is the refinement of the "body" of the simpler five-paragraph essay. The five parts, whose names vary from source to source, are typically represented as:

  1. Introduction
    a thematic overview of the topic, and introduction of the thesis;
  2. Narration
    a review of the background literature to orient the reader to the topic; also, a structural overview of the essay;
  3. Affirmation
    the evidence and arguments in favor of the thesis;
  4. Negation
    the evidence and arguments against the thesis; these also require either "refutation" or "concession";
  5. Conclusion
    summary of the argument, and association of the thesis and argument with larger, connected issues.

In the five-paragraph essay, the "body" is all "affirmation"; the "narration" and "negation" (and its "refutation" or "concession") make the five-part essay less "thesis-driven" and more balanced and fair. Rhetorically, the transition from affirmation to negation (and refutation or concession) is typically indicated by contrastive terms such as "but", "however", and "on the other hand".

The five parts are purely formal and can be created and repeated at any length, from a sentence (though it would be a highly complex one), to the standard paragraphs of a regular essay, to the chapters of a book, and even to separate books themselves (though each book would, of necessity, include the other parts while emphasizing the particular part).

Another form of the 5 part essay consists of

  1. Introduction: Introducing a topic. An important part of this is the three-pronged thesis. This information should be factual, especially for a history paper. Somewhere in the middle of introduction, one presents the 3 main points of the 5 paragraph essay. The introductory paragraph should end with a strong thesis statement that tells readers exactly what an author aims to prove.
  2. Body paragraph 1: Explaining the first part of the three-pronged thesis. The first sentence should transition from the introductory paragraph to the current one. The sentences that follow should provide examples and support, or evidence, for the topic.
  3. Body paragraph 2: Explaining the second part of the three-pronged thesis. As the previous paragraph, it should begin with a transition and a description of the topic you’re about to discuss. Any examples or support provided should be related to the topic at hand.
  4. Body paragraph 3: Explaining the third part of the three-pronged thesis. Like any paragraph, it should have a transition and a topic sentence, and any examples or support should be related and interesting.
  5. Conclusion: Summing up points and restating thesis. It should not present new information, but it should always wrap up the discussion.

In essence, the above method can be seen as following the colloquialism "Tell 'em what you're gonna tell 'em, tell 'em, tell 'em what you told 'em" with the first part referring to the introduction, the second part referring to the body, and the third part referring to the conclusion. The first sentence of every paragraph should be a topic sentence.

The main point of the five-part essay is to demonstrate the opposition and give-and-take of true argument. Dialectic, with its formula of "thesis + antithesis = synthesis", is the foundation of the five-part essay.

One could also use:

Introduction: Hook (3 sentences), Connector (3 sentences), Thesis Body 1: Topic sentence, Evidence, Analysis (1), Analysis (2), Analysis (3), Transition, Evidence 2, Analysis (1), Analysis (2), Analysis (3), Concluding sentence Body 2: Topic sentence, Evidence, Analysis (1), Analysis (2), Analysis (3), Transition, Evidence 2, Analysis (1), Analysis (2), Analysis (3), Concluding sentence Body 3: Topic sentence, Evidence, Analysis (1), Analysis (2), Analysis (3), Transition, Evidence 2, Analysis (1), Analysis (2), Analysis (3), Concluding sentence

Another type of 5-paragraph essay outline:

Introduction, Hook Statement, Background Information, Thesis Statement, Body Paragraph 1, Topic Sentence, Claim, Evidence, Concluding Statement, Body Paragraph 2, Topic Sentence 2, Claim #2, Evidence, Concluding Statement, Body Paragraph 3, Topic Sentence 3, Claim #3, Evidence, Concluding statement, Conclusion, Restatement of Thesis, Summarization of Main Points, Overall Concluding Statement, Conclusion: Sum up all elements, and make the essay sound finished. (Use about seven sentences similar to the Introduction)


According to Thomas E. Nunnally[3] and Kimberley Wesley,[4] most teachers and professors consider the five-paragraph form ultimately restricting for fully developing an idea. Wesley argues that the form is never appropriate. Nunnally states that the form can be good for developing analytical skills that should then be expanded. Similarly, American educator David F. Labaree claims that "The Rule of Five" is "dysfunctional... off-putting, infantilising and intellectually arid" because demands for the essay's form often obscure its meaning and, therefore, largely automatize creating and reading five-paragraph essays[5].

See also[edit]



  • Corbett, Edward P.J. Classical Rhetoric for the Modern Student. 4th ed. Oxford UP, 1999.
  • Hodges, John C. et al. Harbrace Handbook. 14th ed.

External links[edit]

 Octavius Skriveportal for Viby Gymnasium Stx

Skrivehandlinger i engelsk

Write an essay in which you analyse and interpret …
I de engelske opgaver vil du blive bedt om at udføre en eller flere af følgende skrivehandlinger:

  • To analyse
    Skrivehandlingen analyse (analysere) består i at undersøge teksten nærmere: dens bestanddele, virkemidler, temaer osv.
  • To interpret
    Skrivehandlingen interpret (fortolke) består i at forklare, hvordan de enkelte bestanddele skal forstås i tekstens sammenhæng og dermed at klarlægge tekstens budskab.
  • To account for
    Skrivehandlingen account for (redegøre for) består i at formidle — loyalt og neutralt — hovedsynspunkter i materialet: Hvem siger hvad om hvilket emne? Husk at bruge distancemarkører!
  • To give an outline of
    Skrivehandlingen give an outlineof (give et sammendrag af, sammedrage) består i at man giver et summary af en eller flere tekster med fokus på teksternes synspunkter vedrørende opgavens emne, idet man holder synspunkterne op mod hinanden. Et outline kan struktureres efter teksterne (tekst A siger ..., tekst B siger ..., tekst C siger ...), eller efter emnet (tekst A og tekst B er enige om at ..., mens tekst C mener). Husk at bruge distancemarkører!
  • To characterize
    Skrivehandlingen characterize (karakterisere) består i at samle de karakteristiske træk for en person, en tekst, en skrivestil, et emne, osv, sammen.
  • To comment on
    Skrivehandlingen comment on (kommentere) består i at tage materialets oplysninger op til overvejelse, fx ved at diskutere tekstens påstande eller ved at perspektivere til andre tekster eller sammenhænge.
  • To discuss
    Skrivehandlingen discuss (diskutere) består i at fremdrage holdninger til et emne. Emnet vil fremgå af opgaveformuleringen. En diskussion sammenstiller forskellige og ofte modsatrettede synspunkter med argumentation for disse, og den kan afsluttes med argumenteret personlig stillingtagen.

  • To write an essay
    I engelskfaglig sammenhæng er et essay en analyserende artikel med strukturen: indledning -- hoveddel -- afslutning.
    • Indledningen skal føre læseren ind til emnet
    • Hoveddelen skal behandle emnet; den opdeles ofte i tre underafsnit
    • Afrundingen skal lukke og slukke

     Læs mere om essayet i artiklerne om de forskellige eksamensopgavers Delprøve 2

Hvordan adskiller et essay i engelsk sig fra et i dansk?

I engelsk er et essay en ganske anden ting end i dansk. (Derfor er forskellen nu blevet understreget i opgaverne ved at du i opgaverne fra og med 2014 bliver bedt om at skrive et analytical essay).
I engelsk er essayet/det analytiske essay afgørende forskelligt fra essayet i dansk på følgende punkter:

  • Det er ikke interesseret i dine personlige tanker og overvejelser om emnet
  • Det har en lukket slutning – det bevæger sig altså frem mod en konklusion
  • Teksten er hele tiden i centrum – du skal altså ikke bevæge dig fra analysen af teksten over i betragtninger over dens emne, men afslutte essayet ved at afrunde din analyse og fortolkning.
På denne side kan du finde en oversigt over forskellige typer af skrivehandlinger i Engelsk

Læs også

Hvad er en distancemarkør?
En distancemarkør (redegørelsesmarkør) er et ord eller en vending der tydeliggør at det der siges nu, eller lige er blevet sagt, ikke er udtryk for din mening, men stammer fra teksten. Typiske eksempler kunne være:
  • 'Mary Jenkins says that ...'
  • 'The author claims that ...'
  • 'According to MJ, school is ...'
De er vigtige i alle former for redegørelse, analyse og diskussion.

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