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  • Include a cover page and references page (in addition to 5 pages of text)
  • Use 80/20 rule (only 20% of paper will come from quotes)
  • Use the APA style template (located in our Open Educational Resources folder)
  • Include at least three in-text citations or quotes
  • Consider using the Rhetorical Acronyms handout (last page)
  • Do not use contractions (don’t, can’t, shouldn’t)

Title page

  • Running head, page number, identification information

Page 1 of text

  • Introduction paragraph includes CRAPT statements (context, readers, angle, purpose, and topic)
  • Begin the paragraph with an attention-seeking question or statement
  • End the introduction paragraph with a three-part thesis statement
  • Remaining paragraphs include the importance of your selected topic
  • Does it affect many people? Is it a new policy?
  • Begin to use your sources from pages 1-5
  • Explain the sources to your readers

Page 2 of text

  • Begin to use CREAD (causation, recommendation, evaluation, analysis, and definition)
  • Causation = cause and effect
  • Recommendation = using topic sentences that align with your thesis
  • Evaluation = discussing criteria used to make a decision
  • Analysis = pathos, ethos, logos, and mythos about your topic
  • Definition = Define what your topic is and what it isn’t
  • Creating paragraphs – PIES method, see Rhetorical Acronym sheet (point, illustration, explain, summarize)


Page 3 of text

  • Continue using CREAD and insert in-text citations
  • Use transitional words for each major topic sentence (furthermore, moreover, in addition to, because of, lastly)
  • Direct quotes need quotation marks and parenthesis followed by a period
  • “The writer cried like a baby” (Jones, 2016, p. 7).
  • Paraphrases only need parenthesis followed by a period
  • The writer wept (Jones, 2016).
  • Summaries only need parenthesis followed by a period
  • The book mentioned writers, their emotions, and intensity of emotions (Jones, 2016).


Page 4 of text

  • Consider using an image for pathos (emotion), ethos (ethics, experience), or logos (graph, data set)
  • Explain the image
  • Continue using CREAD


Page 5 of text

  • Continue using CREAD until the bottom of this page
  • Create a conclusion paragraph that suggests further study and summarizes your paper


References page

  • Use at least three sources
  • Use hanging indentation
  • Sources should be in alpha order by the authors’ last names or first words of government associations


The End

Rhetorical Acronyms handout

Writing Outline

  • Plan – brainstorming. Listing, freewriting, clustering, concept mapping
  • Context – history, setting, necessary clues
  • Readers – audience members
  • Angle – unique approach to the topic
  • Purpose – reason for writing the letter or essay
  • Topic – subject matter

Write (part a) – creating a body paragraph

(In contrast, an introduction paragraph begins with attention-grabbing statement rather than a main point statement or topic sentence)

  • Point – first sentence that makes main claim of the paragraph, topic sentence
  • Illustrate information – give quote, evidence supporting your claim, experiences
  • Explain – or narrate, persuade, evaluate, describe the meaning of information, connects information to the point (comes from writer only)
  • Write (part b) – creating the letter or essay
  • Cause & effects
  • Recommendations – thesis statements and transitional topic sentences
  • 3-steps – many thesis statements offer 3 explanations, reasons, or assertions
  • Problem & solution thesis statement
  • Conflict – the problem
  • Actions – the solution
  • Results – the outcome or benefits
  • Persuasive/argumentative thesis statement
  • Acknowledge – admit that something exists
  • Accommodate – admit the value of something
  • Refute – rebut that the value is enough and make an opposite claim
  • Evaluate – judge by using set criteria
  • Analyze – does the letter fulfill its persuasive purpose
  • Pathos – feelings, emotions, tone
  • Ethos – ethics, credibility, experience, authority
  • Logos – logic, date, statistics, evidence
  • Direct quotes – taken straight from an author
  • Paraphrases – using synonyms to rewrite the quote
  • Summarizing – using bullet points to capture major movements
  • Mythos – myths, constructed belief system
  • Definitions – what does it mean?

Proof – cleaning the paper

  • Organized – order of paragraphs, unity of thesis statement and topic sentences
  • Revise – may have to make major changes
  • Edit – may have to make minor changes