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TEEL, an acronym for Topic-Explanation-Evidence-Link, is a highly effective paragraph structuring technique used across all levels of academic writing. It follows a logical sequence for presenting information and developing an engaging & coherent discourse. The TEEL structure is simple, clear, engaging, and easy to implement. And this entire article is dedicated to discussing the TEEL structuring technique.
Now, what’s all the hullabaloo about paragraph structuring? Why is it so important? Well, the reasons are quite simple!
Paragraphs are how we arrange and present information in any write-up. For them to be able to convey & communicate ideas and information successfully, paragraphs must be structured so that:
The TEEL paragraphing technique provides a highly effective and incredibly intuitive way to present information logically and in an organised manner. Itis an effective framework for elaborating on claims & arguments, analysing facts & observations, implementing persuasive tactics and much more.
The TEEL technique is a derivative of critical thinking in writing as it:
As may be evident, the TEEL paragraph is one of the most simple and logical ways to structure a paragraph to serve its purpose successfully.
So, let’s dig into the nuances of the techniques.
The topic sentence of a paragraph defines the primary point, idea, or argument to be discussed. It informs the audience about the paragraph’s purposes and sets the tone & context for the explanations & narrative discourse.
A good example of clean and concise topic sentences can be as follows:
“Rising population and unsustainable consumption are the primary drivers of climate change and pollution.”
There are some key things to note here à
However, keep in mind that topic sentences need not always be in direct support of the primary argument. Case in point are paragraphs where you are presenting a counter-argument or opposing opinion and then refuting them.
Once the topic sentence is in place, it is time to explain and analyse its significance in the context of the discussion.
Making a claim, stating a point, or presenting an argument without backing does not work. If you make a point, you must have the confidence, understanding, information, and logical acumen to back it up.
Seamless transitioning is important in any paragraph structuring and, resultantly, for an engaging narrative. You must integrate your explanations perfectly with the point or argument in the topic sentence.
Gel everything together into a single unit by:
Here’s an example à
“Rising population and unsustainable consumption are the primary drivers of climate change and pollution. As populations rise, the demand for resources increases at an exponential rate. Every human needs food & water to survive, and today it also needs access to energy sources & other material needs. The correlation between the rising human population in the last few centuries and the rapid, unregulated & unsustainable increase in resource consumption has been highlighted in many studies, including a report by the UN. Resultantly, unsustainable consumption due to massive spikes in population has led to increasing greenhouse emissions, environmental damage & eco-system loss, and rapid depletion of vital resources.”
There are different ways and approaches for explaining something. Just make sure you use logical reasoning, are objective, precise & pertinent, and encapsulate & integrate everything nicely.
Once you are satisfied with your analysis/explanation, it is time to present the evidence necessary to back everything up.
Explanations and evidence refine & substantiate claims. Altogether, they contribute to the main idea of a write-up.
Different kinds of evidence can be added, some more suitable than others under specific circumstances. Statistics, facts, findings from expert studies, practical examples from real life, textual evidence or case studies — there can be a plethora of evidential information; the trick is to use the most pertinent and credible one!
Adding the right kind of evidence is important to:
There are three primary categories of evidence for backing up claims and points. They are:
The strongest form of evidence, facts, can instantly establish a point’s irrefutability instantly. Presenting facts can help you win over your audience. Facts can be quantitative and qualitative and can be presented as textual evidence from books, statistical evidence from formal research papers & case studies, and nominal or ordinal information from expert studies.
Accuracy, correctness, quality and credibility are vital to any factual evidence. Be sure of these aspects before utilising any evidence.
While facts may be powerful persuaders, they alone cannot carry an argument. You have to deliver some judgement on the facts presented and, thereby, integrate them with your explanations. An acute judgement, founded on solid reasoning and sound logic and in line with a clear & precise explanation, can reinforce any argument with conviction.
Testimonies from an expert or an eyewitness are as powerful as cold, hard facts. Both of these lend credibility and validate points being made. Testimonies from eyewitnesses & subjects who have been in the thick of it are irrefutable facts, while those from subject matter experts can be undeniable judgments or scientifically-backed opinions.
Follow the tips below to evaluate & select the most valid pieces of evidence à
Finally, note down the metadata of every information source you use. You will have to use them for citations & references. Jot down key information such as:
Once you are done explaining and presenting evidence, it is time to draw things close by harking back to the topic sentence and linking everything to the primary argument & the subject under discussion.
Linking everything with the discussion and discourse is vital to ensure absolute relevancy.
Again, use keywords from the essay question, the paragraph’s topic, and the primary argument to establish a link in a broader context. Here are some good transition words and phrases for maintaining coherence & a logical flow à
Finally, once you have placed the paragraph in the context of your discussion, wrap it up with a stirring concluding statement.
Leaving an ever-lasting impression on readers is what every writer yearns for. Statements made with conviction, clear, logical, & in-depth explanations, undisputable evidence, and overall contextual cohesion are essential for doing so. But so are touching conclusions.
And that’s how you implement the TEEL paragraphing technique.
The TEEL structure is highly effective as it incorporates critical thinking into the writing structure. Use the TEEL structure to organise ideas, improve cohesivity, develop a seamless narrative, achieve a logical flow of ideas, and turn paragraphs into complete units of irrefutable arguments & insightful information.
TEEL paragraphing keeps the writing focused and is a derivative of critical writing. Through effective use of explanation, evidence, and links, TEEL paragraphs leave no place for any ambiguity, paradox, fallacies, or flaws. It makes for strong and convincing textual discourse on any subject in any domain.
Use the TEEL technique in your write-ups, and you can be sure of scoring great grades & garnering accolades for your writing & researching skills, knowledge, presentation, and way of thinking.