STRATEGIES FOR PARAGRAPH REVISION:
Take a break from your writing, if only for five
minutes. This will allow you to approach your paper with a fresh mind.
Read your paragraph s l o w l y from start
Next read it out loud and focus on the following:
Paragraph Topic and Main Idea
Is the subject of the paragraph limited or
qualified in some way? Did you use an adjective like
older children to limit the subject? Or did you use
a quantifier like many or most
before the subject or a frequency adverb like
usually or often before the
verb? Use one of these techniques to avoid overgeneralizations.
You may need to review techniques for writing
Is the main idea you wish to make about your
subject directly stated? If so, write your topic sentence on
a another sheet of paper. If you don't have a clear, directly
stated main idea, write one down.
Does your topic sentence have a strong action
On your fresh piece of paper, list under your
topic sentence the major points that support it. Does each
major detail relate clearly to the topic sentence? If not,
omit the one that doesn't relate.
If you are left with only one major supporting
detail, decide if this one major point is broad enough to expand
the paragraph with enough specific detail (such as an extended
example) or if you need to add a second major supporting point.
Under each major point, list the more specific
details that illustrate, explain, or analyze that particular idea.
Ask yourself if all of the information given relates clearly and
effectively to a particular idea. If it doesn't, strike it out.
Can you think of other information that might relate? If so,
add it to your outline-in-revision. [This is how
revision differs from editing. When you revise you change content
by adding and omitting information to make your writing clear and
Does your paragraph have a clear conclusion that
brings your ideas to closure? On the revision outline you have created by
going through this process, write your concluding sentence.
Does it restate the main idea and/or summarize the major
support? Or would advice, a warning, an opinion, a prediction, or some
other final comment better suit your writing purpose? Based
on your own answer to the question, keep or revise your
Did you use a transitional word or phrase to move
from one major point to the next and into the conclusion? If you
didn't, think of logical transitions or phrases that would
signal the first major point, lead into the second, and clearly
signal the conclusion.
Did you use other coherence devices such as
personal pronouns to replace nouns or demonstrative pronouns to
refer back to a word, phrase, or idea?
Did you use synonyms or another grammatical form
of a key word? If you find you have repeated words or phrases, use
this technique or the previous one to avoid repetition.
REWRITE FROM YOUR REVISION OUTLINE. AFTER YOU
COMPLETE THE REVISION, IT'S TIME TO EDIT.