Elements of a Well Written Paper

By Bonny Kehm, PhD, RN
Faculty Program Director, BS in Nursing Program

What are the elements of a well written paper?

Begin by taking a look at the assignment and the rubric. Consider your assignment criteria, the sources of information available to you via Excelsior College Library, and constraints such as length, document design, and assignment deadlines.

Open each paper with an introduction that clearly outlines your assignment and the topics discussed within the paper. Include a thesis statement. A thesis statement is usually presented in one sentence that appears at the end of the introduction.

Draft the body of the paper to support the thesis statement. Include evidence-based literature when applicable. Use credible sources to inform and support your thesis, and remember to acknowledge authors with in-text citations and reference pages.

End the paper with a strong conclusion that summarizes the key points made within the paper in a fresh way. Avoid introducing new ideas in the conclusion.

Did you know that Excelsior College provides its students with access to free academic resources, such as online tutoring through Smarthinking? You can submit a paper to the Smarthinking site and then discuss it with an online tutor in real time. You will need to create your own username and password the first time you sign in to use Smarthinking services.