My teacher was going to give us a rubric for what needs to be in the paper, she didn't. So my question is what should I put in the outline for now?My paper is on France. This is a working outline...

My teacher was going to give us a rubric for what needs to be in the paper, she didn't.

So my question is what should I put in the outline for now?

My paper is on France.

This is a working outline so i can change it along the way bu ti just need a few ideas to get started.

Expert Answers
Lorraine Caplan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Since I am not sure what kind of class this is for, I am going to share some different kinds of ideas.  A paper like this might be for a French class, a history class, a geography class, or a world cultures class.  Which class you are preparing your paper for would require a different kind of focus. 

An outline is easy.  Microsoft Word practically does your work for you!  Once you start typing in Roman numerals, the software will guide you.  So all we need to do is talk about the "shape" of the outline.  You will need to begin with a Roman Numeral for your first paragraph, which should be an introduction.  The points you need to list are your main idea, what you want the reader to "get" when he or she is done, some general information about France, just to get the reader "situated," and a kind of preview statement that will tell the reader the points you plan on making. So, if this paper is for a history class, for example, the points you make might be about medieval France, the French Revolution, and modern France.  There are plenty of other topics to cover, so remember, these are just examples. 

Your next Roman numeral should be the first point you cover.  Then below that belong the details that support that topic. Each Roman numeral that follows should cover one topic, with supporting details. 

Finally, your last Roman numeral should be the conclusion.  What you want to list in that section is a restatement of your main idea and a reminder of the points you have made in the previous Roman numerals. 

Some teachers require students to write complete sentences in outlines, but others do not. This is something you will have to check with your teacher about.

Now, we have talked already about the kinds of topics that would make sense for a history class.  If this paper is for a French class, some possible topics might be French literature and countries where French is spoken.  A geography paper might focus on the physical geography of France, things like mountains, rivers, etc. and on topics like natural resources and population.  A world cultures class paper could include art, music, architecture, food, and so on. 

I hope this is of some use to you.  Good luck!

James Kelley eNotes educator| Certified Educator

"France" is a pretty big topic. Just to get a sense of how big, you might review that entry in an encyclopedia (whether print or online; I've included two below) to see the range of subjects. They're likely to include everything from geography to history to arts to economy to industries to a number of other subjects.

Depending on what the assignment is, you may very well want to narrow your topic to just one aspect of France. Something I find interesting about France that might interest you, too, is that the country's current struggles with issues of racial diversity in some ways mirror the United States in the 1960s. For example, you may remember the riots by Arab youth in Paris or you may have heard the charges of racism against the blockbuster film The Fabulous Destiny of Amelie (Le fabuleux destin d'Amerlie 2001). You could write a paper on just that topic.

In the end, as most of the other posters have already comments, you'll want to review the assignment and communicate with the instructor.

Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I would think about potential areas of study within which your class has engaged.  At the same time, I would also open a dialogue with your teacher or instructor about topics that should be included in your paper.  With this in mind, I would think including elements of culture that are within France, as well as history of the nation would help.  At the same time, I think you might want to address important aspects of national development such as economic growth in the nation, presence of imports and exports, as well as current challenges within the nation.  I think that you might also want to pay attention to the current government and what challenges face it.  In the final analysis, speaking with your teacher is going to be a critical part in gaining the answers you wish to derive.

readerofbooks eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Even if your teacher did not give you a guide to write the paper, there are a few elements that should be in your paper. First, you would need a strong thesis for the paper. In short, this is the argument or the main point of your paper. Second, you should should have some sort of logic or structure for the paper. For example, if you are going to look at the history of France, then your would structure the paper chronologically. If you are making more of an argumentative point, then you would need good reason for why you think your thesis is a good one. If you start with these things, then you will be able to streamline your thoughts.