Parts of a School Paper

A good school paper must follow logic.

Writing a paper for school can be a daunting task. However, solid writing follows a template of sorts and every paper should have the same flow regardless of subject. If you keep it clear, on-topic, logical and provide appropriate supporting ideas in the beginning, middle and end, your papers can earn top grades.

1 Topic

Every school paper has a topic. If it's a book report, the topic is the literature you read. If it's an essay for history class, it could be an event in time. Some teachers may ask you to incorporate multiple topics into one paper. The topic is the most important piece of the paper, though, because it guides the rest of the sections.

2 Introduction

The introduction is the beginning of your paper, and it sets up the topic. In the introduction, writers posit the thesis, or the main idea, of the paper. For example, if the paper is a book report about horse farms, the main idea might say: "This book explores horse farms." The introduction also sets up the rest of the paper.

3 Points

The paragraphs following the introduction provide depth to the paper and explain to readers different viewpoints or things you learned while researching the paper. In the case of the horse book report, the points might be about the different types of horses discussed in the book. Each point must have information that supports it and is documented.

4 Conclusion

The conclusion is the end to your paper and summarizes what you have discussed in the previous paragraphs.

5 References

In some cases, teachers might want you to provide a separate section that lists where you obtained all your information. Here, you list the names of the books and newspapers you read, websites you visited or people with whom you talked to form the point paragraphs.

Anna Westerman has been a professional reporter for more than seven years, covering local issues for newspapers in four states. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism.