Putting the Ys in Order
There are three general rules regarding the order of the Ys.
1. Put them in a logical order:
- Big to Small
- First to Last
- Spatial Logic
Big to Small
Think of the Ys as organized ideas. They need to be in some kind of order so readers can understand them easily. Listing them in order of importance means putting the most important idea first.
First to Last
When we write about a process or a chronology, we list the Ys from how they occur in time. What happened first? Then what happened? Then what? And so on.
Spatial logic refers to organizing descriptions so that someone who isn’t them can visualize the scene. Rather than jumping around, we start at one point and list everything in a logical way.
2. Put them in the same order that you will cover them in the paper.
It does not matter which comes first, Old information or New information in the What Statement. The Why Statement, however, must always be in the same order as it will appear in the main part of the paper.
3. If possible, arrange them from the shortest to the longest.
If it does not matter which of the Ys is first, second, and so on, then arrange them from the shortest to the longest. The What Statement will read more smoothly.
If you must arrange the Ys with a short Y coming last, the What Statement will sound awkward. In that case, repeat because.
You sometimes will need to repeat because before each Y. That occurs—
- When you have a short Y after a long one, OR
- When your Ys are long.
Use and because before the last Y.
For example (written by a college athlete):
Left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH) adversely affects an athlete’s performance level because aortic regurgitation lessens oxygenated blood flow and LVH increases heart pressure.
Left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH) adversely affects an athlete’s performance level because aortic regurgitation lessens oxygenated blood flow and because LVH increases heart pressure.
Small Group or Class Activity
Individual or Small Group Activity
Complete the exercise: Yukon