Activity time: 20 minutes
Types of media: Handout/s, Webpage, Helpsheet
Unknown Author (Unknown Institution)
This resource highlights the importance of planning work, and how this may improve essay coherence and structure. According to personal preference, the resource offers the linear, cornell or mindmapping approach to planning as guidance for achieving higher grades.
(This resource can be freely repurposed and reused)
This information/resource was last updated in June 2021.
This post was originally added to LearnHigher on: January 9, 2012
About this resource
Planning your work is important in order that you are able to produce a coherent and well structured piece of writing. This information sheet demonstrates how writing a plan can help you to get your ideas down on paper and to structure your thoughts. The process may feel a little uncomfortable initially, because you may be unclear about what you actually think at this stage, but remember that the longer you spend planning and thinking about your written assignment, the better your final draft will be.
The following table will give you an idea of how you should go about dividing up the task according to the assessment criteria:
You should ensure that you have attended all of the lectures, prepared full notes on the topic and completed relevant reading.
Below is a sample essay title with brief examples of how you may start to plan your essay:
Critically evaluate the use of rats as a solution to landmine detection
|Critically evaluate the use of rats as a solution to landmine detection|
Benefits of using rats to detect landmines
|Identify problems associated with landmines||Innocent victims
Loss of limbs
|Identify possible solutions including use of rats||Use of:
|Identify pros and cons of use of rats||Pros:
|Training Rats –
Apopo HeroRats 
Rats – Why use rats?
|‹——-||Operations in Mozambique – evidence|
The planning layout that you use is very much dependent on personal preference; however, effective planning will help you to produce a coherent and well structured argument or case.
Failure to plan your work effectively may result in a weak structure or poor line of argument.
Now you’ve read the guide, we suggest that you have a go at the Planning your Work worksheet.