Development of Body Paragraphs

English 102 Week 6

Paper 2: Development of Body Paragraphs, Part 2: Key Words and Signal Phrases


This week you will be practicing strategies in writing to introduce multiple pieces of evidence into a paragraph. You will develop your body paragraphs for Paper 2 by using these strategies to include body evidence that creates a conversation about the subject. You will do this by working through comparison and contrast into a discussion that also includes your point of view.

You will also be considering and practicing techniques that allow you to set up a solid written argument based upon your evidence: moving from the statement of a claim (a thesis), into providing the evidence of that claim, and finally explaining how the evidence supports the claim.


After composing working theses and outlines, we now move to the body paragraphs for the second essay.  Below are some pointers for this week’s discussions and their work:

  • The material in the Content area has some nice rhetorical guidelines on making an informed argument.  Please review them.
  • Please revise your thesis and outline prior to working on our body paragraphs.
  • Try to have one quote per story per support paragraph.  Keep quotes to one sentence each so that your comparison/contrast argument is the focus.
  • On that note, I have pasted my drafting pointers from week five below:

Composing Comparison or Contrast Paragraphs:

Comparison or contrast paragraphs should follow this organizational pattern:

1st Sentence: State the point of comparison or contrast, how it relates to your so-what question, and use a transition to show how this point ties into order of importance

Next few sentences: Talk about first story (pick the one that would logically go first) in relation to this point.  A quote goes in this section. Next sentence: Compare or contrast the second story with what you wrote about the first story in relation to the theme.

Next few sentences: Talk about the second story in detail, using a quote to support your point.

Last sentence: Tie the two examples back to your point of comparison or contrast in your topic sentence.

Feel free to seek my feedback as you compose, and feedback to each other will also be productive as it mirrors peer review in a face-to-face class.


Using your outline, develop your body paragraphs for Paper 2. You will want to practice different ways of developing your paragraphs, like providing a variety of ways to introduce material. You should include directly quoted material and paraphrased material. Both of these types of evidence need to be correctly introduced and documented.

Try to incorporate the evidence in your paragraphs using signal phrases from the previous commentary. Use at least one of the signal phrases to introduce the direct quotation or paraphrased material. The material you bring into the paragraph should be punctuated and documented correctly, for example, by providing quotation marks (for directly quoted material) and the parenthetical reference to show the source of the material.

Post one of your paragraphs. It will also be helpful for you to post the thesis of your paper.

Then, in a separate paragraph, note the following. If you’d rather, you could color code the paragraph, using the following color codes:

  • The paragraph’s topic sentence
  • At least one signal phrase for evidence that includes one of the templates from the commentary on signal phrases
  • At least one area where you bring in your own commentary (such as your explanation or analysis of the evidence)
  • Identify at least one key word that is present in the paragraph and you use elsewhere in the paper to provide unity

Remember—even though you are posting only one paragraph, you can use the feedback you receive on that paragraph to develop your other paragraphs.

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