Answered By: Paul Lai
Last Updated: Jul 17, 2023     Views: 99336

The MEAL plan is a way to organize your paragraphs as you write; it helps writers create strong, thorough paragraphs. The letters, "M-E-A-L," form an acronym that stands for the following:

  • E—Evidence: Once your readers are clear what the main topic of your paragraph is, you can use source material as evidence to discuss your topic and promote your academic argument. The word "evidence" is another way to say source citations.
  • A—Analysis: After giving the evidence, you’ll want to explain, incorporate, and integrate that evidence by providing some analysis. Analysis is where you can compare, contrast, and provide explanations for the source material, why it is important, and how it relates to your main idea.
  • L—Lead out: The lead-out sentence or sentences are where you will sum up what the paragraph discussed and then preview what is coming in the next paragraph so that the reader can smoothly move from one idea to the next.


Duke University Thompson Writing Program. (n.d.). Paragraphing: The MEAL plan.


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