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Thesis Statements & Topic Sentences = Flow

Many students struggle with establishing flow in their papers. These students jump around from topic to topic within each of their paragraphs. Flow comes from a clear thesis statement that is supported by all the paragraphs, and each paragraph covers only one main idea. For example, an idea shouldn't appear in paragraphs 3 and be restated in paragraph 5. Cover the idea fully in either 3 or 5. Then make sure you have strong transitions between each paragraph, and your flow will appear!  There are also videos available in the ACE D2L Lounge about avoiding the structure of a college paper.

On Writing Thesis Statements


Flow requires multiple drafts to establish. Overtime, the main idea of each paragraph becomes clear and then you can decide how well it supports your thesis statement. If it doesn't effectively support it, consider deleting the paragraph. Also consider reordering your paragraphs in your drafts. See which order most effectively supports your thesis. 

Many students own a copy of The St. Martin's Handbook - 8th edition because it is required for WRIT 101, 102, and 104. This book has a great deal of information about organizing ideas and developing an effective structure:

  • Section 3c: Drafting a working thesis
  • Section 3e: Organizing verbal and visual information
  • Section 3f: Planning
  • Section 15a: Refining your plans
  • Section 15b: Organizing information
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