INTRODUCTION (250-300 words)
The Introduction needs to set the context of the essay, explain why the topic is important, and state the thesis (contention) in one or two paragraphs.
· Provide a general orientation to the topic and its importance. Ask yourself, why might sleep be important? In what circumstances does a lack of sleep become a problem?
· Define key terms. Some terms can mean slightly different things depending on the context, so it will be important that you define what you mean here. The same can be said for other terms you will likely use. When you write essays, you want to ensure the reader can follow along with what you’re saying and being clear with your definitions is an important part of that.
· State the aim of the essay
· Explain what information about the nature of sleep is gained by examining evolutionary, cognitive,
and behavioural evidence.
· Describe what types of evidence you are going to present (I.e., a road map/signpost). Your
Introduction should finish by telling the reader where the essay is going.
o For example, “This paper will begin by discussing the evidence for (or against) X…” “Then,
it will be argued that Y…”
MIDDLE SECTION (1000-1200 words)
The middle section, made up of 3-4 paragraphs of about 150-250 words each, is where you provide the evidence for your argument. The purpose is to build points, develop ideas, and support the main contention. Each paragraph should treat one line of evidence (e.g., behavioural studies) and will need to include:
• A topic sentence to succinctly orient the reader to what the paragraph will be about • Description and evaluation of two or more experimental research studies
• In-text citations to acknowledge sources of evidence
• Finish with an explanation/linking sentence
Use the paragraph as a unit of composition. The topic sentence should defines the content of the paragraph. The subsequent sentences should describe the evidence for the point you’re making.
CONCLUSION (100-150 words)
In a single paragraph, concisely summarize your own argument and present an overall conclusion that
answers the essay question.
· Restate the aim of the essay and summarize the content briefly (what evidence did you present?)
· How strong is the evidence and what is your conclusion: is sleep important and why?
To address this question, you will need to present evidence that sleep serves as important function in humans. This evidence should include:
· Evolutionary evidence (e.g., Do many animals sleep? Does sleep serve any purpose to an organism?)
· Behavioural/cognitive evidence (e.g., do people behave differently if they have had more or less sleep? Does the type of sleep disruption (REM or NREM) affect these differences? Are there any tasks demonstrating differences in performance depending on the amount of sleep a person has had?
· Clinical evidence (e.g., Is there any relationship between sleep disruption and neurological/psychiatric disorders?)
INTRODUCTION (250-300 words)