10 Tips on how to write an Outstanding Nursing Essay Paper: A step by Step Guide
Nursing is indeed a lucrative and promising career that has over the years seen many students enroll for the program. However, in order to successfully graduate from a nursing school, students are required to prove competency and mastery of the course by writing numerous nursing essay papers. Writing is not just about putting pen to paper, but a relay of well thought and organized ideas. In fact, it is for this reason that writing nursing essay papers often turn out to be a dreaded task among students. This post will outline 8 tips on writing an outstanding nursing essay paper.
1. Pick a Nursing Topic
As a nursing student, you may be assigned a nursing topic or asked to pick one of your own. If the paper requires you to choose a subject of interest, then it would be wise to consider nursing essay topics you are well conversant with and which you can easily gather valuable points to include. However, if you have been assigned a particular topic, then the first step would be to familiarize yourself with the nursing essay topic at hand. Either way, the most important point at this stage is to determine whether the paper requires a general overview of the nursing essay subject or a specific analysis. In other words, try as much as possible to narrow down your focus.
2. Define your purpose
The second step is to define the purpose of the nursing essay paper at hand. Is it a persuasive, expository, descriptive or narrative essay? This is indeed important because it will determine the tone and flow of your paper. For instance, writing a nursing persuasive essay entails using scientific proof to convince the reader to accept your position regarding the nursing essay topic at hand. On the other hand, an expository nursing essay paper does not need convincing, but rather reveals fresh information regarding the specific topic at hand. Please read our post on essay writing tips to learn more about the various types of essays.
3. Create an outline of your nursing essay paper
Creating an outline is one of the most important steps to writing a truly outstanding nursing essay paper. Simply put, an outline is like a skeleton of your nursing essay paper. By looking at the outline alone, someone can tell the flow of the paper as well as identify all the important points in the paper and how they are interconnected. More importantly, an outline helps you as a nursing student to plan your ideas in a systematic manner indicating flow of ideas from one paragraph to the next. Imagine writing a fifty page nursing essay paper. Without an outline, writing an outstanding nursing essay paper will be a hard task. So how do you come up with an outline?
There are a number of ways of creating good outlines, but it all depends on whether you are actually required to write an outline or you just want to write one to aid your nursing essay writing task. If the latter is the case, then you can employ the most basic method where you write your topic at the center of the page and draw a few lines branching out. At the end of these lines, write down the main ideas then proceed to draw more lines off the main ideas pointing to related thoughts. If the nursing essay paper requires an outline, then make sure to check if a specific outline has been mentioned or not. If not, consider the following options.
This is the most widely used type of outline by nursing students. Important to note, is that the alphanumeric outline bears specific characters that follow a particular order. These characters are in the order; Roman numerals, capitalized letters, Arabic numerals and lastly, lowercase letters. If the outline requires subdivisions beyond the aforementioned ones, then you’ll be required to use Arabic numerals inside parentheses and then lower case letters inside parentheses.
Full sentence outlines
Full sentence outlines do not vary much from the alphanumeric outlines. In fact, the only notable difference is that employing the full sentence outline format for your nursing essay paper requires use of full sentences at each level of the outline. This type of outline is commonly used when preparing traditional nursing essays.
The decimal outline format is also similar to the alphanumeric outline. However, the added feature is the system of decimal notation that clearly elaborates how each level of the outline relates to the main topic or rather the larger whole.
4. Create a thesis statement
Writing a thesis statement is essential because it tells your reader the exact point of your nursing essay paper. The thesis statement is a reflection of your topic and the main ideas that have been sorted into relevant categories. Ideally, a good thesis statement is divided into two parts. The first part states the main topic of your nursing essay paper and the second part states its point.
5. Write your introduction
Having identified a topic of interest, defined your purpose, organized your thoughts and ideas to form a logical flow and created a succinct thesis statement, it is now time to write your captivating introduction. An outstanding nursing essay paper should have an introduction that attracts the reader’s attention and shows the direction your paper is taking. Examples of attention grabbers include a quote, dialogue, brief story, shocking information or a summary of your topic. Whichever style you choose, ensure it relates to your thesis statement which is usually included as the last sentence of the introduction.
6. Write the body
The body is where you discuss in detail the ideas you listed in your outline. An outstanding nursing essay paper should have a well-organized body that exhibits smooth flow of ideas from one paragraph to another. Each main idea goes into a separate paragraph and must have a topic sentence. Indeed the number of paragraphs varies depending on the number of pages and specific requirements of your nursing essay paper, but the most basic 5 paragraph essay paper ought to have at least three body paragraphs. Most importantly, ensure that information presented is properly cited.
7. Write the Conclusion
The conclusion serves to recap the main ideas presented in the paper and more importantly, to offer a restatement of the thesis. It is wise to sum your nursing essay paper by writing about four to five strong sentences that touch on the important points of your topic in a more conclusive manner.
8. Include bibliography
Academic papers often require citations as an ethical way of acknowledging other people’s works. Ensure you include a well formatted bibliography on a new page. Generally, entries in the bibliography ought to mirror in text citations. In other words, citations that appear in text must appear in the bibliography.
9. Ensure proper format is followed
Check that your paper meets the requirements of the citation style specified. Although nursing essay papers follow the APA format, it’s always wise to check instructions just to be sure. For instance, an APA nursing paper should be double-spaced, must have a running head, and margins of 1 inch all round among other requirements.
10. Preview and proofread your paper
Following the above steps alone is not a guarantee that your paper will be great. In order for your nursing essay paper to be outstanding, you will need to preview your paper once you are done with the actual writing. Your main agenda at this stage is to first and foremost, check that your paper is well formatted according to specified citation style. Secondly, ensure that your paragraphs are in their correct order with first and last paragraphs featuring your strongest points. Thirdly, confirm that your essay answers all instructions if any and lastly, proofread your paper to weed out errors and to ensure that it makes sense when read out loud.
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