In an exam, you should:
By doing this, you can work out your position and your outline structure.
The essay you produce in an exam will probably be deductively-structured, because you will not have enough time to revise or re-organise it.
Exam essays require you to move very quickly into deductive mode.
It is important that the examiner can see your position immediately and where it is leading.
Term essays and assignments are a more realistic test of your abilities.
The topic may be the same as in an exam essay, but you have time to do some research before writing.
But when you start to write, you will probably find new threads or shifts to your position that are not mentioned in your introduction.
This is part of the discovery process of writing.
This does not mean that you have to state your position in the Introduction - it may be a problem- based essay which requires a scheme of analysis rather than a solution or argument.
But if the question clearly requires you to take a position, then you should revise your essay to provide it with a more reader-friendly and deductive opening structure.
See Writing/Revising: a
Go to The Hourglass to see how inductive and deductive approaches can be combined.
complex essay structures
The matrix is a two-dimensional version of an Outline. Outlines are vertical and linear, e.g.:
|UNDERSTANDING CHILD ABUSE
Case study of Sze Lok
Definition of child abuse
The matrix, however, allows variables to be placed along two
axes or dimensions - like a table. Matrices can be used to any purpose - there are no
types of matrix suited more to one type of structure than another. What we offer
below are examples of how we can plan the structure of an argument by using a
2-dimensional matrix or table.
The Organisational matrix
Task: Read through the sample Comparative Expository Essay
and see how it is constructed around a simple 2-by-2 matrix, as follows:
A more common example is the kind we see in Computer magazines, where we get tables comparing several computers across a number of performance features. The same principle can be applied to our writing. Take the following structure: this is taken from a passage from an educational textbook:
Task: Read through the expository text in Approaches to Learning :
Can you see how this matrix reflects the text's organisation
Using a Matrix to plan
The planning function of the matrix is similar to that of the Outline.
It makes clear to the writer what the overall design of the text should be.
It also allows notes to be added within the boxes created by the matrix.
Any well-written expository text can be reduced to some kind of structural matrix or table, revealing the underlying planning or conceptual design behind the text.