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  • Writing Skill: Unity

    Now that your planning stage is complete, you can begin writing your draft. Your writing should be organized, developed, accurate, and original.

    Unity

    Writing has unity when the supporting sentences all work together to support the topic sentences. Paragraphs that lack unity are confusing to the reader because some ideas do not seem to belong.

    Compare the examples below. The first paragraph has poor unity because there are sentences that do not support the topic sentence. The topic sentence is about the various places in Utah where there are hiking trails for people to enjoy nature.

    Example: Body Paragraph (Poor Unity)

           Hikers all over Utah can access hiking trails and enjoy nature. Hiking is a good way to get exercise. In southern Utah, hikers enjoy the scenic trails in Zion’s National Park. In northern Utah, trails have been made to showcase the beauties of nature like Waterfall Canyon. Waterfalls all over the world are beautiful. There are hiking paths in Utah’s Rocky Mountains as well that provide beautiful views. But you don’t have to go up to the mountains or drive up the canyon to access hiking trails in Utah. Many cities in Utah have created hiking trails in city parks for people to use that are closer to home. If you like to spend time hiking in nature, there are many hiking trails you can access in Utah.

    Example: Body Paragraph Revised for Unity

           Hikers all over Utah can access hiking trails and enjoy nature. Hiking is a good way to get exercise. In southern Utah, hikers enjoy the scenic trails in Zion’s National Park. In northern Utah, trails have been made to showcase the beauties of nature like Waterfall Canyon. Waterfalls all over the world are beautiful. There are hiking paths in Utah’s Rocky Mountains as well that provide beautiful views. But you don’t have to go up to the mountains or drive up the canyon to access hiking trails in Utah. Many cities in Utah have created hiking trails in city parks for people to use that are closer to home. If you like to spend time hiking in nature, there are many hiking trails you can access in Utah.

    You can revise a paragraph that lacks unity by removing any sentences that do not support the topic sentence.

    Exercises

    Exercise 1: Write a body paragraph

    Remember that a body paragraph has three types of sentences: topic sentences, supporting sentences, and concluding sentences. All of the sentences below belong to a paragraph about applying to a university in the U.S. First label each type of sentence (TS, SS, CS) on the first line provided. Then, put them in a logical sequence by writing a number on the second line provided. 

    _____ _____ A. In your investigation, there are many questions you need to ask. 

    _____ _____ B. First, you need to make a list of universities that you would like to attend. 

    _____ _____ C. Of the universities left on the list, consider which university you like the best 

    based on any other personal reasons (location, atmosphere, etc.). 

    _____ _____ D. For example, you need to find out what programs they offer, how much they 

    cost, and what the entrance requirements are. 

    _____ _____ E. Deciding which university you want to apply to is simple, but not easy. 

    _____ _____ F. After you have all of the information you need, then cross off any universities 

    that don’t match your goals or fit with your situation. 

    _____ _____ G. Then, investigate each university on the list. 

    _____ _____ H. If you follow these steps, deciding on a university is a simple step in the 

    process of applying to a university in the U.S. 

    Exercise 2: Write a body paragraph

    Choose one of the topic sentences below. On a piece of paper, write a body paragraph using that topic sentence.

    1. Breaking a bad habit starts with identifying the habit that you want to break.
    2. First, you need to decide how much money you want to spend on your vacation.
    3. In order to choose the right diet for you, you need to know what foods you typically eat.

    Exercise 3: Complete an introduction paragraph

    Use the hook and thesis statement to finish an introduction paragraph. Write your complete paragraph on a piece of paper.

    Hook: Cars are a modern convenience that allow for greater independence.

    Thesis: Learning how to drive requires practice, learning the driving rules, and knowing how to operate a car.

    Exercise 4: Revise for unity

    Read the paragraphs. Cross out sentences that are not connected to the topic sentence. 

    1. It is dangerous to preserve old buildings. According to some engineers, every building has a lifetime, and after the building reaches its lifetime, it is dangerous to keep those buildings. It also becomes more expensive. In addition, if the city is in a seismically active area, the problems that old buildings create will become worse because those buildings will not resist an earthquake. Some people say that old buildings can be used as tourist places and people enjoy visiting a historic location. It is clear that old buildings are not very safe. 
    2. There are many varieties of English spoken today in the world. American English British English, Indian English, and Australian English are just a few of these varieties, and they are all a little distinct. Pronunciation is one obvious difference, but other things vary as well, like vocabulary and even grammar. The word shiela is the Australian word for girl. English may be a global language, but it isn’t exactly the same all over the world. 
    3. The environment is something that can affect students positively or negatively. For example, if classmates are sleeping or talking during classes, that environment can make it difficult for students to concentrate. A noisy, dirty, or distracting environment can have a similar impact. Some roommates never help clean the apartment. On the contrary, an environment that is clean and has no distractions will make it much easier to focus on homework. It is important to recognize the impact that the environment can have on students. 
    4. Students like to listen to music in many different situations. Students listen to different types of music. Many students listen to music while they are studying because it helps them concentrate. Some people like to be quiet while they study. Some students listen to music while they work. Some enjoy listening to music while they walk to work or school. There are many different places where students enjoy listening to music.


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