# Classification by maclaren1

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Classiﬁcation
Writing That Sorts Things into Groups

Understand What Classiﬁcation Is       161

Understand What Classiﬁcation Is                                              You Know This
Classiﬁcation is writing that organizes, or sorts, people or items into        classifying various items:
categories.                                                                    • You see how movies in a
video store are arranged.
FOUR BASICS OF GOOD CLASSIFICATION                                       • You group items into
boxes when you move.
1.    It makes sense of a group of people or items by organizing them
• You sort laundry by color
into categories.                                                           before washing it.
2.    It uses a single organizing principle.
3.    It applies useful categories.
4.    It gives examples of what ﬁts into each category.                        ■ IDEA JOURNAL Write
students in this class or the
In the following paragraph, each number corresponds to one of the Four      different kinds of friends you
Basics of Good Classiﬁcation.                                                  have.

1 Since I’ve been working as a cashier at Wal-Mart, I’ve discovered
there are several kinds of 2 customers who drive me crazy. 3 First are
the openly rude ones. 4 They frown and make loud, sarcastic remarks
about how long the line is and how long they’ve been waiting. 4 They
throw their money on the counter and never say hello or acknowledge
me as anything but human scum. I’m embarrassed for myself, but I’m
also embarrassed for them. 3 Second are the silent but obviously impa-
tient customers. 4 Although they don’t say anything, you’ve been aware
of them since the time they got in line. 4 They make faces, roll their
eyes, and look at their watches every ten seconds. What do they expect?
This is Wal-Mart; there are always lines. 3 The third kind is really my
161
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162       Chapter 12 • Classiﬁcation

least favorite: suspicious customers who watch my every move as if my
goal in life is to overcharge them. 4 They turn the monitor so they can
see every price, but that’s not enough. 4 After looking at the price there,
they lean over the counter toward me and look at what price comes up
on the register. 4 Then their heads snap back to look at the monitor.
They clearly don’t trust me and are just waiting for me to make a mis-
take, at which point they will jump all over me. This kind of customer
make me nervous and a lot more likely to mess up. If you are one of
these three kinds of customers, remember me next time you’re at Wal-
Mart; I’m the one just trying to do my job, and you’re driving me crazy!
— Joyce Kenneally

Sometimes when you are writing a classiﬁcation (or reading one), it
helps to think of classiﬁcation in diagram form. Here is a diagram of the pre-
vious paragraph:

TOPIC
CUSTOMERS
AT WAL-MART

customers at Wal-Mart

ORGANIZING PRINCIPLE
Types of customers
who drive me crazy

Openly rude             Silent but            Suspicious
CATEGORIES
impatient

EXAMPLES            Frown               Make faces           Watch monitor

Make sarcastic                                  Lean over
Roll eyes
remarks                                        counter

Throw money            Look at watch         Check register

You use classiﬁcation any time you want to organize people or items.
Consider the following examples:

COLLEGE          In a criminal justice course, you are asked to discuss
the most common types of chronic offenders.
the kinds of products your company produces.
EVERYDAY LIFE    You classify your typical monthly expenses to make a
budget.
PROFILE OF SUCCESS: Classiﬁcation in the Real World:
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Understand What Classiﬁcation Is            163

PROFILE OF SUCCESS: Classiﬁcation in the Real World
The following proﬁle gives more insight into a work application of classi-
ﬁcation. In particular, it provides some information about a director of
human services, including the kinds of writing she does at work and,
speciﬁcally, how she uses classiﬁcation on the job. Following the proﬁle is
an example of classiﬁcation Rosalind has done at work.
BACKGROUND:    At eighteen, I was a complete mess. I was a homeless single
mother living in a shelter for abused women and children. I realized that
things weren’t going to get any better unless I helped myself, so I en-
rolled in a community college, where I met some teachers who encour-
aged me. Going to school was hard because of my situation and location,
but my teachers kept encouraging me. Once I’d taken a few courses, I got
the hang of it and started to do better. I knew it was the only good way
out for me.                                                                        Rosalind Baker
COLLEGE(S)/DEGREES: A.A., Massachusetts Bay Community College; B.S. in             Director of Human Services
history from Suffolk University, with a minor in public policy
EMPLOYER:   City of Marlborough, Massachusetts                                     ■ RESOURCES: For a discus-
sion of how to use the pro-
WRITING AT WORK:   Reports, proposals, summaries, letters, requests for pro-       ﬁles in Part Two, see Practical
posals, memos                                                                      Suggestions.

HOW ROSALIND USES CLASSIFICATION: Many of the grants and proposals I
write classify people, projects, or funding into different categories. Break-
ing things down into categories helps other people understand the whole
project and who it beneﬁts.
COMPUTER SKILLS:   PowerPoint, word processing, and spreadsheet programs
TEAMWORK ON THE JOB:    The Human Services Department is a government
agency, so part of my job is to coordinate programs with other agencies
in the city. Often a program is sponsored by two or more cooperating
organizations, and people in all of them have to band together to imple-
ment a program.
A TYPICAL PROBLEM AT WORK:   Because Human Services is a municipal agency,
there are often other government bureaucracies to work with. Sometimes
it seems to take forever to get through all the red tape in order to create
necessary programs that will help real people.

ROSALIND BAKER’S CLASSIFICATION

This paragraph was part of a grant proposal that Rosalind Baker com-
pleted at her job. The grant application requires the applicant to describe
how the funds will be spent, who will receive the money, and what the
outcome will be. In the paragraph that follows, Rosalind classiﬁes the
population that will be served by the grant program.

The funding from this grant would subsidize training programs and
child-care arrangments for three types of currently unemployed resi-
dents of this city, making it possible for them to become self-supporting.
One group consists of those who were laid off when Johnson Rubber
closed its factory here. Many workers who had been employed at John-
son Rubber for decades have been unable to ﬁnd other work and need
(continued)
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164       Chapter 12 • Classiﬁcation

to learn new skills. Another group consists of recent immigrants to this
country who are eager to work but need instruction in English-language
skills in order to ﬁnd jobs. The third major group targeted for funds
from the grant are single mothers, many of whom are presently on
welfare because they cannot afford child care. Our agency has already
identiﬁed and interviewed many people from each of these three
groups, and they are very eager to do whatever they can to ﬁnd suit-
able jobs in our area.

1. Double-underline the topic sentence.
2. What is the main point? that the grant would help unemployed residents
become self-supporting

3. How many categories are there? three               What are they?
unemployed factory workers, recent immigrants, single mothers

4. Underline the examples of people or items in each category.

Main Point in Classiﬁcation
The explanations, examples, and practices in the next two sections will help
you develop a good main point and support for your classiﬁcation. The
main point in classiﬁcation depends on the system, or organizing prin-
derstand? That will help you decide on the best way to organize (or sort)
complete the following sentences:

My purpose for classifying my topic is . . .
It would make most sense to my readers if I sorted this topic
by . . .

The organizing principle is the single guideline you use to sort the group
of people or items, not the categories into which you group the information.
Imagine the following situation in your college bookstore. The purpose
of sorting textbooks is to help students ﬁnd them. The best way to organize
the books is by subject area or course number. But not in this bookstore . . .

You walk into the bookstore looking for an algebra text and expect
to ﬁnd it in the math textbook area, classiﬁed according to its subject
area. Instead, the books on the shelves aren’t classiﬁed in any way you
can make sense of.
When you ask the sales clerk how to ﬁnd the book, he says, “What
color is it? The right half of the store has them arranged by color: blue
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Understand What Classiﬁcation Is   165

over there, green in the middle, and so on. The left half of the store has
them arranged by author.”

You may never ﬁnd your book. The ﬁrst problem is that books are not
shelved according to a single organizing principle. Instead there are two: by
color and by author. The other problem is that the categories of organiza-
tion (color and author) are not useful for the purpose of helping you to ﬁnd
the text you want. Even if you know the color of the book, you still won’t
know whether you will ﬁnd it in the color section; it might be in the author
section. The following diagram shows how you would expect textbooks to
be classiﬁed.

TOPIC                                       TEXTBOOKS

PURPOSE                                 To help students find
TO
textbooks for courses

ORGANIZING PRINCIPLE                   Sorted by subject area

EXAMPLES           Composition                    Algebra        Intro. to Business

Literature                  Calculus          Marketing

PRACTICE 1       USING A SINGLE ORGANIZING PRINCIPLE

For each topic that follows, one of the categories does not ﬁt the same or-
ganizing principle as the rest. Circle the letter of the category that does not
ﬁt, and write the organizing principle the rest follow in the space provided.
EXAMPLE:

TOPIC:   Shoes
CATEGORIES:

a. Running           c. Golf
b. Leather           d. Bowling
ORGANIZING PRINCIPLE:     by type of activity

1.   TOPIC:   Relatives
CATEGORIES:

a. Aunts             c. Sisters
b. Uncles            d. Nieces
ORGANIZING PRINCIPLE:     female relatives
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166         Chapter 12 • Classiﬁcation

■ COMPUTER Have students           2.   TOPIC:   Jobs
type in a topic and write one
example of a category. Then             CATEGORIES:
have them move to the next
computer and write another              a. Weekly          c. Monthly
category that would ﬁt that             b. Hourly          d. Summer
topic. They should keep moving
and adding categories until             ORGANIZING PRINCIPLE:   pay period
each topic has ﬁve categories.
their original computers and       3.   TOPIC:   Animals
see if the categories all follow
one organizing principle. Have          CATEGORIES:
aloud, and let the class decide
a. Dogs            c. Rabbits
whether they ﬁt.                        b. Cats            d. Whales
ORGANIZING PRINCIPLE:   pets; four legs

In classiﬁcation, writers may go right to the categories themselves instead
of stating their organizing principle in a topic sentence or thesis statement.
Read the examples that follow: one that states the organizing principle, one
that states both the organizing principle and the categories, and one that
states only the categories.

Topic                  Organizing principle

Students at this college represent a wide range of races .

Topic                 Organizing principle           Categories

Students at this college represent a wide range of races, including white,

African American, Asian American, and Hispanic American.

Topic                           Categories

This college has a diverse student body composed of white, African
American, Asian American, Hispanic American, and Portuguese Amer-
ican students.

Support in Classiﬁcation
In classiﬁcation, support consists of the categories you sort information
into and the examples of things that ﬁt into each category. First you need to
choose useful categories; then you need to ﬁnd the best examples for these
categories.

Choose Useful Categories
how you are organizing your topic. First, though, you need to ﬁnd useful
categories.
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Understand What Classiﬁcation Is          167

Suppose, for example, that you work in an office and need to sort the
stack of papers on your desk. Before making random piles, you decide on
some useful categories: papers that can be thrown away; memos you need to
take action on; articles you need to read; information that can be passed on
to others; paperwork that you’ve seen and that needs to be ﬁled; and so on.
Deciding on such categories is the ﬁrst step in classiﬁcation.

PRACTICE 2      CHOOSING USEFUL CATEGORIES                                    ■ TEACHING TIP Walk stu-
dents through this step. Use a
simple topic (stores in town or
In the items that follow, you are given a topic and a reason for sorting. For
a local mall, clothing students
each item, list three useful categories. (There are more than three correct         are wearing, courses offered at
categories for each item.)                                                          the college) and demonstrate
how you would classify it. Or
break the class into small
EXAMPLE:
groups and give each group a
topic. Then call on students
TOPIC:   Pieces of paper in my wallet
from each group to tell what
they did.
REASON FOR SORTING:    To get rid of what I don’t need
CATEGORIES:

a. Things I need to keep in my wallet
b. Things I can throw away
c. Things I need to keep, but not in my wallet

1.   TOPIC:   Animals in a pet shop
REASON FOR SORTING:    To decide what kind of pet to get
a. Dogs
b. Birds
c. Fish

2.   TOPIC:   College courses
REASON FOR SORTING:    To decide what I’ll register for
a. English
b. Accounting
c. Math

3.   TOPIC:   Stuff in my notebook
REASON FOR SORTING:    To organize my schoolwork
a. Homework
b. Notes
c. Doodles
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168       Chapter 12 • Classiﬁcation

4.   TOPIC:   Wedding guests
REASON FOR SORTING:      To arrange seating at tables
a. Family members
b. Neighbors
c. Friends

5.   TOPIC:   Clothing
REASON FOR SORTING:      To get rid of some clothes
a. Out of style
b. Don’t fit
c. Good

Give Examples of People or Items That Fit in the Categories
Your readers need speciﬁc examples of things that ﬁt into each category.
After you ﬁnd useful categories, look for examples.You will also need to add
To ﬁnd examples and details, you might want to use some of the prewriting
strategies discussed in Chapter 2.

PRACTICE 3     GIVING EXAMPLES

In the spaces provided for each topic, give at least two examples of people or
items that ﬁt into each category.Then add a fact or detail about one example.

EXAMPLE:

TOPIC:   Pieces of paper in my wallet
REASON FOR SORTING (PURPOSE):    To get rid of what I don’t need
a.   CATEGORY:    Things I need to keep in my wallet

FACT OR DETAIL:   I always keep at least ten dollars in my wallet.
b.   CATEGORY:    Things I can throw away
EXAMPLES:    ticket stubs, old receipts, old grocery lists

FACT OR DETAIL:   Sometimes I find ticket stubs from movies I can’t even

remember.
c.   CATEGORY:    Things I need to keep, but not in my wallet
EXAMPLES:    bank receipts, addresses on slips of paper

the slips away.
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Understand What Classiﬁcation Is   169

1.   TOPIC:   Animals in a pet shop
REASON FOR SORTING:      To decide what kind of pet to get
a.   CATEGORY:   Dogs

FACT OR DETAIL:

b.   CATEGORY:   Birds
EXAMPLES:

FACT OR DETAIL:

c.   CATEGORY:   Fish
EXAMPLES:

FACT OR DETAIL:

2.   TOPIC:   College courses
REASON FOR SORTING:    To decide what I’ll register for
a.   CATEGORY:   English
EXAMPLES:

FACT OR DETAIL:

b.   CATEGORY:   Accounting
EXAMPLES:

FACT OR DETAIL:

c.   CATEGORY:   Math
EXAMPLES:

FACT OR DETAIL:

3.   TOPIC:   Stuff in my notebook
REASON FOR SORTING:  To organize my schoolwork
a.   CATEGORY:   Homework
EXAMPLES:

FACT OR DETAIL:
b.   CATEGORY:   Notes
EXAMPLES:

FACT OR DETAIL:

c.   CATEGORY:   Doodles
EXAMPLES:

FACT OR DETAIL:
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170           Chapter 12 • Classiﬁcation

■ READING SELECTIONS                Reading examples of classiﬁcation and analyzing their structure will help
For further examples of and         you understand what good classiﬁcation looks like before you write your
activities for classiﬁcation, see
Chapter 44.                         own. The ﬁrst example is paragraph-length, and the second is essay-length.
both of these.

Classiﬁcation: Paragraph
Test questions generally fall into two categories, depending on how
they are answered: objective and subjective. The ﬁrst kind, [objective
]
questions, have deﬁnite right and wrong answers. Multiple-choice,
matching, and ﬁll-in-the-blank questions are objective. Although objec-
tive questions can be tricky because of their wording, most students
prefer such questions, particularly multiple choice and matching. The
answers are already there, and the student just has to choose the right
ones. The questions in the second category are tougher.[Subjective test
]
items, such as short-answer and essay questions, have no single correct
answer. There is a range of possible responses. Students have to know
the information in order to answer each question, and they have to pre-
sent it in their own words. For most people, the more concrete, objec-
tive questions are less intimidating than the subjective ones. You can
make a lucky guess on an objective question, but a subjective question
doesn’t offer much hope for a student relying on dumb luck.

1. The topic sentence of a classiﬁcation paragraph usually includes the
topic being classiﬁed and how it is being classiﬁed — the organizing
principle. Sometimes the categories themselves are named. Remem-
ber: In classiﬁcation, the organizing principle is usually (but not al-
ways) the main point.

Topic             +          How classiﬁed             +

Courses are classiﬁed according to the reason for taking them:

Categories (sometimes)            =          Topic sentence

basic requirements, concentrators’ requirements, and electives.
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Double-underline the topic sentence in the example paragraph.

2. The support in a classiﬁcation paragraph consists of the categories
used and the examples of items in each category. In the sample para-
graph, what examples does the writer give of each category? Put brack-
ets around the [categories] and underline the examples.

3. Writers of classiﬁcation paragraphs can use time, space, or importance
order. They use transitions to guide the reader from one category to
another.

COMMON CLASSIFICATION TRANSITIONS

another               the   ﬁrst type            the third group
the ﬁnal              the   second group         the third kind
the ﬁrst group        the   second kind          the third type
the ﬁrst kind         the   second type

Circle the transitions used in the sample paragraph.

4. Does the paragraph have the Four Basics of Good Classiﬁcation (see
p. 161)? Why or why not?
Yes. Specific answers will vary, but students should be able to give examples of the

Four Basics.

Classiﬁcation: Essay
Blood Type and Personality
Danny Fitzgerald
In Japan, the question “What’s your blood type?” is as common as                   ■ TEAMWORK If most stu-
dents know their blood type,
“What’s your sign?” in the United States. Some Japanese researchers                    form groups according to blood
type and have students deter-
claim that people’s personalities can be classiﬁed by their blood types.               mine if they have the traits dis-
cussed in the essay. They could
You may be skeptical about this method of classiﬁcation, but don’t judge               then write a classiﬁcation essay
on their own blood type’s char-
its validity before you read the descriptions the researchers have put                 acteristics.

together. Do you see yourself ?
If you have blood type O, you are a leader. When you see something
you want, you strive to achieve your goal. You are passionate, loyal, and
self-conﬁdent, and you are often a trendsetter.Your enthusiasm for proj-
want something, you may be ruthless about getting it or blind to how
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172       Chapter 12 • Classiﬁcation

Another blood type, A, is a social, “people” person. You like people
and work well with them.You are sensitive, patient, compassionate, and
affectionate. You are a good peacekeeper because you want everyone to
be happy. In a team situation, you resolve conﬂicts and keep things on a
smooth course. Sometimes type A’s are stubborn and ﬁnd it difficult to
relax. They may also ﬁnd it uncomfortable to do things alone.
People with type B blood are usually individualists who like to do
things on their own.You may be creative and adaptable, and you usually
say exactly what you mean. Although you can adapt to situations, you
may not choose to do so because of your strong independent streak.You
may prefer working on your own to being part of a team.
The ﬁnal blood type is type AB. If you have AB blood, you are a
natural entertainer. You draw people to you because of your charm and
easygoing nature. AB’s are usually calm and controlled, tactful and
fair. On the downside, though, they may take too long to make deci-
sions. And they may procrastinate, putting off tasks until the last
minute.
Classifying people’s personalities by blood type seems very unusual
until you examine what researchers have found. Most people ﬁnd the
descriptions fairly accurate. When you think about it, classiﬁcation by
blood type isn’t any more far-fetched than classiﬁcation by horoscope
sign. What will they think of next? Classiﬁcation by hair color?

1. The thesis statement of a classiﬁcation essay usually includes the
topic being classiﬁed and how it is being classiﬁed — the organizing
principle. Sometimes the categories themselves are named.

Categories           Thesis
Topic   +   How classiﬁed   +     (sometimes)   =     statement

The kinds of music that I like best are rap, reggae, and jazz.

Double-underline the thesis statement in the example essay.

2. In a classiﬁcation essay, the categories are usually presented in the
topic sentences. Underline the topic sentence for each paragraph.
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3. The support in a classiﬁcation essay consists of the categories used
and the examples of items in each category. In the sample essay, what
examples does the writer give of each category?
type O: leader, trendsetter; type A: peacekeeper; type B: individualist; type AB:

entertainer

4. Writers of classiﬁcation essays can use time, space, or importance
order. They use transitions and transitional sentences to guide the
reader from one category to another. (For a list of common classiﬁca-
tion transitions, see p 171.)

Circle the transitions used in the sample essay.

5. Does the essay have the Four Basics of Good Classiﬁcation (see p. 161)?
Why or why not?
Yes. Specific answers will vary, but students should be able to give examples of the
Four Basics.

■ TIP Look back at your idea-
Write Your Own Classiﬁcation                                                               journal entry (p. 161) for ideas.

In this section, you will write your own classiﬁcation paragraph or essay

1. Review the Four Basics of Good Classiﬁcation (p. 161).
3. Read the Critical Thinking box on page 175.
4. If you are asked to complete Assignment 3, read Using Problem Solv-
ing and Teamwork in Writing (Chapter 8, pp. 109–11).
5. Write your classiﬁcation using the Checklist: How to Write Classiﬁca-
tion (pp. 175–76).

ASSIGNMENT 1 WRITING ABOUT COLLEGE, WORK,                                             ■ TIP If you use the Writing
AND EVERYDAY LIFE                                                                     Guide Software with this book,
you’ll ﬁnd step-by-step guid-
ance for writing classiﬁcation
Write a classiﬁcation on one of the following topics.                                       paragraphs and essays.

COLLEGE

PARAGRAPH                                   ESSAY

Types of                                    Types of
• Teachers                                  • Courses offered
• Students in your class                    • Degree/certiﬁcate programs
• Assignments                               • Resources in a college library
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174          Chapter 12 • Classiﬁcation

■ TEACHING TIP Suggest to               WORK
students that they make jour-
nal entries on some of the top-         PARAGRAPH                             ESSAY
ics that they don’t write about
for this assignment.                    Types of                              Types of
• Bosses                              • Positions at your company
■ ESL Suggest to students
that they write about some-             • Work you like                       • Work beneﬁts
thing unique to their native
cultures: foods, holidays, stores,
• Skills needed to do your last job   • Workers/employees
vacation spots, housing, and so
on.                                     EVERYDAY LIFE

PARAGRAPH                             ESSAY

Types of                              Types of
• Monthly expenses                    • Drivers
• Fast food restaurants               • Friends
• Cars                                • Responsibilities you have

Write either a paragraph or an essay about what is being classiﬁed in the
series of photos and what the categories are.

ASSIGNMENT 3     WRITING IN THE REAL WORLD/SOLVING A PROBLEM

PROBLEM: Every month you ﬁnd yourself short on money, and you realize
that as a ﬁrst step you need to manage your ﬁnances better. You decide to
make a monthly budget that categorizes the kinds of expenses you have.
■ TEAMWORK For more de-                  ASSIGNMENT: Working with a group or on your own, break your monthly
tailed guidance on group work,       expenses into categories, thinking of everything that you spend money on.
see Practical Suggestions.
Then review the expenses carefully to see which ones might be reduced.
Next write a classiﬁcation paragraph or essay that classiﬁes your monthly
expenses, with examples, and end with suggestions about how you might re-
duce your monthly spending.You may want to refer to the problem-solving
steps on p. 110.
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Before writing, read the Critical Thinking box that follows.               ■ TEACHING TIP Walk stu-
dents through the Critical
Thinking guide, explaining the
CRITICAL THINKING: WRITING CLASSIFICATION                                   importance of asking and an-
swering the questions.
FOCUS
Think about what you want to classify and the categories you could
use.
• What is my purpose? What do I want to help my readers under-
stand?
• How should I sort my topic according to my purpose and my
readers’ needs? What is my organizing principle?
• What categories will help my readers understand my topic?
• What people or items will ﬁt into each category?
WRITE
Write a classiﬁcation that demonstrates your main point by sorting
items into useful categories and giving detailed examples.                  ■ RESOURCES All chapters in
Part Two have writing check-
lists, which are reproduced in
photocopy and distribute them
if you want students to hand in
Check off the steps as you complete them. If you need help completing a        the checklists with their assign-
step, read the information in the right-hand column.                           ments.

CHECKLIST: HOW TO WRITE CLASSIFICATION

STEPS IN CLASSIFICATION         HOW TO DO THE STEPS

1. Narrow and explore           ❑ Narrow the topic to one that you are familiar with and can
your topic (see Chapter        break into groups.
2).                          ❑ Jot down a few ideas about the possible categories and things
that might ﬁt into the categories.

2. Write a topic sentence       ❑ The main point of a classiﬁcation usually (but not always)
(for a paragraph) or a         includes the organizing principle.
thesis statement (for an     ❑ Use one of the following structures for your topic sentence or
essay) (see Chapter 3).        thesis statement:
topic + organizing principle
topic + organizing principle + categories
topic + categories

3. Support your main            ❑ Use a prewriting technique (see Chapter 2) to ﬁnd possible
point by choosing use-         categories and detailed examples of items.
ful categories and giv-      ❑ Review your categories to make sure they all follow the same
ing detailed examples          organizing principle.
of items that ﬁt into
❑ Find examples of people or items that ﬁt into each category
those categories (see
Chapter 4).
items as you do.
(continued)
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WRITING DIFFERENT KINDS OF PARAGRAPHS AND ESSAYS
176       Chapter 12 • Classiﬁcation

STEPS IN CLASSIFICATION             HOW TO DO THE STEPS

4. Make a plan (see                 ❑ Arrange the categories in the order you think will best explain

5. Write a draft (see               FOR A PARAGRAPH:
Chapter 6).                     ❑ Write a paragraph using complete sentences, including your
topic sentence, the categories you are using, and examples of
those categories.
main point and makes an observation based on what you have
written.
❑ Write a title that previews your main point but doesn’t repeat

FOR AN ESSAY:

❑ Write topic sentences for each of the categories.
❑ Write paragraphs that explain each category in detail.
❑ Consider using one of the introductory techniques described in
Chapter 6 (pp. 71–73) for your introductory paragraph.
❑ Write a conclusion (see Chapter 6, pp. 73–75) that reminds
based on what you have written.
❑ Write a title that previews your main point but doesn’t repeat

6. Revise your draft,               ❑ Get feedback from others if possible (see Chapter 7, pp. 81–82).
making at least                 ❑ Review for unity: Ensure that the categories all follow a single
four changes (see                 organizing principle.
Chapter 7).
❑ Review for support: Ensure that you provide enough speciﬁc de-
❑ Review for coherence: Make sure that the categories are arranged
logically and that transitions help the reader understand when
you are moving from one category to another. Consider repeat-
ing a key word.
related, speciﬁc, and ﬁrm.

7. Edit your revised draft          ❑ Find and correct problems with grammar, spelling, word use,
(see Parts Four                   or punctuation.
through Seven).                 ❑ Print out a clean copy.

8. Ask yourself:                    ❑ Does my paper include the Four Basics of Good Classiﬁcation
(p. 161)?
❑ Is this the best I can do?
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Chapter Review: Classiﬁcation            177

Chapter Review: Classiﬁcation
1. Classiﬁcation is writing that organizes/sorts people or items into categories.       ■ IDEA JOURNAL Reread
2. The organizing principle is how you sort the group of people or items.               on the kinds of students in
this class or the kinds of friends
you have. Make another entry
3. The topic sentence in a classiﬁcation paragraph or the thesis statement              on the same topic, using what
in a classiﬁcation essay can include what elements? The topic being                 cation.

classified and how the topic is being classified.
■ RESOURCES A blank dia-
gram of a classiﬁcation (big
4. What are the Four Basics of Good Classiﬁcation?                                      enough to write in) is in Addi-
tional Resources. You may want
It makes sense of a group of people or items by organizing them into categories.    to copy it and give it to stu-
dents to plan their writing.
It uses useful categories.

It uses a single organizing principle.
It gives examples of what fits into each category.

What Will You Use?
List some situations in college, work, or in everyday life where you will use
classiﬁcation.

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