Skip Nav

How to Write an Argument Essay Step by Step

Finding Ideas to Write About

❶I believe as much as it has helped me,so will it help others. This was very helpful.

What is an Argumentative Essay?




Choose something that fits the format. Remember that an argumentative essay will argue in support of a particular view in a debatable issue. As such, it is important that you do not choose a topic that is not arguable.

Pick an issue that is interesting to you. You'll be spending a lot of time researching and writing this paper. So it is important for you to choose a topic that you find interesting from the start. Avoid choosing a topic that has been overdone, or, on the other hand, one that is too obscure since supporting evidence may be more difficult to find.

Find a peer preferably one that holds an oppositional view to discuss your argument with. This process will help you refine your thinking and develop new ideas to support your judgment. Try a debate-style conversation in which you each bring up aspects of the controversy and attempt to explain your view on the topic. Keep your audience in mind. An important aspect of writing an argumentative essay is understanding your audience. Are you writing the paper for a class, in which case your audience is your professor and your classmates?

Or perhaps you are writing it for a presentation to a larger group of people. Regardless, you must think about where your audience is coming from in order to lead them to your desired outcome.

People's backgrounds and experiences often influence how they will react to views different from their own, so it is helpful for you to be knowledgeable about these factors. You also use different language when addressing different groups of people. For example, you would speak to the pastor at your church differently than you might speak in a casual setting with your best friend. It is important to be mindful of these distinctions when considering your audience.

Understand the rhetorical situation. It is essential that you understand all of the factors in the situation surrounding your issue. All rhetorical situations contain five basic elements: That is why rhetoric is important in an argumentative essay. These types of essays aim to convince the reader that the author's view on the subject is the most correct one. Create a catchy title. Developing a creative, original title is a fantastic opportunity to hook your reader into wanting to read more of your paper before they even get to the introduction.

A good title will act as a "preview" for what your paper will be about. Many titles for academic papers come in two parts, separated by a colon. The first part is often a catchy hook that involves a pun on your topic or an impactful quote, and the second part is usually a sentence that sums up or provides details about your argument.

Come up with a thesis statement. Your thesis statement will be a concise idea that sums up your view on the issue. The thesis usually appears at the end of the introduction paragraph.

Having this idea in mind early on in the reading process will help guide your reader through the rest of the paper. A good thesis statement is concise and clear. It tells the reader what the point of the paper is and why it's important. The thesis must make a claim of some sort. Here is an example of a strong thesis statement: Excessive meat consumption in America is the leading cause of pollution today, and, thus, is a significant influence on global warming.

This thesis makes a claim specifically a cause and effect claim about a debatable topic with a narrow enough focus to create an interesting, manageable argumentative essay. Here is an example of a weak thesis statement: Pollution is a problem in the world today. This is not a debatable issue; few people would argue that pollution is not a problem. The topic is also too broad.

You can't write a paper on every single aspect of pollution. Avoid the standard three-part thesis often taught to beginning writers.

This format is constricting and limits the shape your ideas can take to being contained in three basic body paragraphs. Without the three-part thesis statement, your ideas can expand more freely and incorporate ideas that might not fit exactly into the three parts.

An example of a three-part thesis statement might look something like this: Global warming is caused by industrial pollution, automobile exhaust fumes, and waste dumping in the oceans.

In this case, you would expect to find three body paragraphs: Any other causes of pollution would not fit anywhere in this essay, which restricts the meaning and the message of the paper. Changing the thesis to avoid this form will make for a much more functional essay that is written at a more advanced level. A more effective thesis would be something like this: Due to increasing global temperatures and rising ocean levels, global warming has become an issue that needs to be acknowledged by a wider audience in order to begin reversing the effects.

This section should briefly explain the essay topic and include relevant background information to familiarize the reader with the topic. As previously mentioned, your thesis statement should appear at the end of the introduction.

Write the body of the paper. Carefully present information that supports both your argument and opposition. Acknowledge evidence that supports the opposition, but utilize powerful evidence to assert your claim. There are many different ways to organize your argument, [7] but the most important thing is that you cover all aspects of the issue.

Leaving out information simply because it contradicts your thesis idea is unethical as it does not provide an accurate portrayal of the issue. Be sure to include counterarguments those ideas that are at odds with your own view , but explain to your reader why your own viewpoint is more logical and accurate, perhaps because the opposing view is based on outdated information, etc.

She specializes in helping people write essays faster and easier. Argument essays seek to state a position on an issue and give several reasons, supported by evidence, for agreeing with that position. Argument essay topics can be found everywhere. Check the headlines of a newspaper, or just listen in on a conversation at Starbucks.

Chances are, you will hear someone trying to persuade another person to believe in their claim about:. To make your topic idea into a thesis you need to turn the topic idea into a question first.

Your question often can be the title of your paper, or it can be the last line of the introduction. Your answer to this question is your thesis.

The most important way to make your marriage divorce-proof is to make sure you have carefully prepared for that commitment. You might want to put an introductory phrase in the first part of your thesis to show that you are refuting other ideas about the answer. While some people think there is no way to divorce-proof your marriage, studies have shown that there are fewer divorces when people carefully prepare for that commitment.

An additional way to make a strong thesis is to do a "Roadmap" which tells in just a few words the three or more main points you will cover. While some people think there is no way to divorce-proof your marriage, studies have shown that there are fewer divorces when people carefully prepare for that commitment by taking time to get to know the other person before becoming engaged, spending time with one another's family and friends, talking about hot-button issues like finances, and getting extensive premarital counseling.

Argument essays are fairly straightforward in their organization. In your paper, you will need to do the following. Explain the subject, the controversy, and end with your thesis. Here are some tips:. Explains the reasons your audience should agree with your thesis. Your body needs to also refute objections or other points of view. Make a final point which tells the reader what to think or do. This strategy that you feel strongly about and when you feel you have a good chance of convincing your audience to agree with you.

Your audience may be uninformed, or they may not have a strong opinion. Your job is to make them care about the topic and agree with your position. Here is the basic outline of a classical argument paper:. Rogerian argument strategy attempts to persuade by finding points of compromise and agreement. It is an appropriate technique to use in highly polarized debates, but you must be sincere about willingness to compromise and change your point of view for the reader to take you seriously.

Qualities of this strategy:. Toulmin is another strategy to use in a highly charged debate. Instead of attempting to appeal to commonalities, however, this strategy attempts to use clear logic and careful qualifiers to limit the argument to things that can be agreed upon.

It uses this format:. For instructions and examples on easy ways to write a good thesis statement for an argument essay see: For help in writing excellent topic sentences see: How do I conclude my thesis? My most popular article, Easy Sentence Starters, http: What you need to do is to think about how each sentence relates to the other ideas and choosing the appropriate transition adding, comparing, contrasting, or sequence.

I have been teaching my students how to add headings to all of their essays over the past five years because I think most of their writing for their careers will be in online environments. As anyone who does a Google search knows, being able to scan the headings of an article is very helpful so that you can figure out whether that article answers the question you are asking.

Additionally, scanning headings if they are written correctly allows you to understand the main point of the article quickly and also to find the part you are most interested in reading.

You can make headings by making a short version of your topic sentence in each paragraph. Generally, the shorter, the better. What I have found is that when my students use headings in their papers, it helps them to actually organize and write their information more clearly because making the headings helps them to realize their main points. If you've done a good job on your headings, a person should be able to read the title of your paper and all the headings and have a good grasp on what your article is about.

The easiest way to find a good title is to use a short version of the question. The second way is to make a statement which shows your point of view. If you chose the second one, you might want to make the language more dramatic to showcase your point of view. Here are some samples using the topic of diet and obesity:.

The best sort of introduction to an emotional issue like abortion is a story. If possible, I suggest a real story, but it could also be a made-up story, which I call a "typical scenario" which would explain the problem and make it vivid for the reader. In this issue, it could be the story of a woman who finds herself in a crisis pregnancy. End the story with the question of your essay.

Here are some possible questions:. You don't actually have to read the book because she writes on her blog about this issue also. What I like about her work is that she takes the issue in a different direction by interviewing many women who have had abortions to find out what they really thought at the time that they were facing this crucial decision and how their decision affected them afterward. To get facts and statistics, you can go to the U.

Department of Education website and look up the information you'd like to know. You can look up information from other countries on the Education sections of their government websites. If you want comparison information, you may need to go to an outside source like a non-profit which compares countries such as the Pew Research Center: Both ways can be appropriate.

What is most important is that you don't just "drop" the quote on the audience and expect them to understand the point and relevance of your quotation.

Use the quotation to make a point and explain why you are using it. Argumentative writing is trying to persuade someone about your point of view. It is not really like having an argument or fighting with someone. Instead, the idea is that you would present your point of view on the subject in a way that makes other people think you are right, or at least that you have good reasons for believing the way you do.

Argumentative writing is usually done for the following 5 types of claims:. Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites. I am so grateful for this work. I believe as much as it has helped me,so will it help others. This artical was really helpful for me because it shows the whole technique how to write an argumentative essay.

In fact, everyone now could write one with such an ease and confidence. This was very helpful. Thank you for this great guide for me. Also for my notes for my writing test. Hi Judith, I'm also a trained academic writer who has become more interested in popular writing. Some of the instructors that I work with have students write a paper in a particular style, but I prefer to view all of the argumentative techniques as part of our "bag of tricks.

Consider what they know and what they believe, including any "false beliefs" that they may hold about your subject. Books, articles from scholarly journals, magazine articles, newspaper articles, and trustworthy websites are some sources that you might consider using. These databases provide you with free access to articles and other resources that you cannot usually gain access to by using a search engine.

Evaluate your sources to determine their credibility. Use trustworthy sources only in your argumentative essay, otherwise you will damage your own credibility as an author.

There are several things that you will need to consider in order to determine whether or not a source is trustworthy. The credentials should indicate something about why this person is qualified to speak as an authority on the subject. For example, an article about a medical condition will be more trustworthy if the author is a medical doctor. If you find a source where no author is listed or the author does not have any credentials, then this source may not be trustworthy.

If the author has provided few or no sources, then this source may not be trustworthy. How often does the tone indicate a strong preference for one side of the argument? If these are regular occurrences in the source, then it may not be a good choice.

Noting the publication date is especially important for scientific subjects, since new technologies and techniques have made some earlier findings irrelevant.

If the information that this author presents contradicts one of your trustworthy sources, then it might not be a good source to use in your paper. Once you have gathered all of your sources, you will need to read them. Make sure that you read your sources very carefully and that you stay focused on your topic as you read.

Read the sources multiple times if necessary and make sure that you fully understand what each source is about. You should be able to summarize the source in your own words and generate a response to the source. To be certain that you understand your sources and that you are capable of responding to each of them, try writing a paragraph summary and response after you finish each one.

Some people find keeping notecards on their sources to be a helpful way of organizing their ideas about each one. Give yourself plenty of time to read your sources and understand what they are saying. Take notes while you read your sources. Highlight and underline significant passages so that you can easily come back to them. As you read, you should also pull any significant information from your sources by jotting the information down in a notebook.

Even accidental plagiarism may result in a failing grade on a paper. Begin your essay with an engaging sentence that gets right into your topic. Your introduction should immediately begin discussing your topic.

Think about what you will discuss in your essay to help you determine what you should include in your introduction. Keep in mind that your introduction should identify the main idea of your argumentative essay and act as a preview to your essay. Provide background information to help guide your readers. Providing adequate background information or context will help to guide your readers through your essay.

Think about what your readers will need to know in order to understand the rest of your essay and provide this information in your first paragraph.

This information will vary depending on your argument topic. Tell your readers about this problem in more detail so that they will begin to see why something needs to change. Keep in mind that your background information in the first paragraph should lead up to your thesis statement. Explain everything the reader needs to know to understand what your topic is about, then narrow it down until you reach the topic itself. Provide your thesis statement at the end of your first paragraph.

After you have given your readers some information on the topic and captured their interest, you should provide your thesis. Providing your thesis at the end of your first paragraph will help to guide your readers through the rest of your essay. Make sure that you state your thesis is a very direct manner, so there is no mistaking that this is your position. Use your body paragraphs to discuss specific parts of your argument. Rather than trying to talk about multiple aspects of your argument in a single paragraph, make sure that each body paragraph focuses on a single aspect of your text.

Your discussion of each of these aspects should contribute to proving your thesis. For example, you could provide statistics on teen drinking in other countries where the drinking age is lower, or you could summarize an interview with an authority of the subject, or cite an article that explains the psychological basis of this phenomenon.

Whatever source s you choose, make sure that they are relevant that they offer convincing support for your claim. Develop a conclusion for your essay. Concluding an essay is the hardest part of writing for many people, but it may make more sense if you understand the purpose of the conclusion. Your conclusion should emphasize what you have attempted to convince your readers about your topic and either frame or reframe the stakes of your argument.

Before you write your conclusion, spend some time reflecting on what you have written so far and try to determine the best way to end your essay.

There are several good options for ending an argumentative essay that might help you decide how to format your conclusion. For example, you might: Rephrase it so that it sounds different but has the same meaning.

Summarize some of the most important evidence you have offered in your essay and say remind readers of how that evidence has contributed to supporting your thesis.

Synthesize what you have discussed. Put everything together for your readers and explain what other lessons might be gained from your argument. How might this discussion change the way others view your subject? Explain why your topic matters. Help your readers to see why this topic deserve their attention. How does this topic affect your readers? What are the broader implications of this topic? Why does your topic matter?

Return to your opening discussion. If you offered an anecdote or a quote early in your paper, it might be helpful to revisit that opening discussion and explore how the information you have gathered implicates that discussion. Make sure that you have cited all of your sources. Before you finish working on your essay, you will need to make sure that you have cited all of your sources using the proper format.

Not citing your sources using in-text citations or a works cited page may be considered plagiarism by your professor and lead to failure of the assignment or even the course.


Main Topics

Privacy Policy

An argument essay, as with all essays, should contain three parts: the introduction, the body, and the conclusion. The length of paragraphs in these parts will vary depending on .

Privacy FAQs

Putting together an argumentative essay outline is the perfect way to turn your blank document into a ready-to-use template. All you have to do is fill in the blanks! In this blog post, I’m going to share with you how to create an argumentative essay outline.

About Our Ads

Sample Argument Essay #5. Click Here to View Essay "Society Begins at Home" (PDF Document) Sample Argument Essay #6. Click Here to View Essay "School Choice: An Unwise Option" (AGAINST) (PDF Document) Sample Argument Essay #7. Sep 05,  · Argument essays are fairly straightforward in their organization. In your paper, you will need to do the following. Interest the reader in the situation and make them think it is worth learning more about. Explain the controversy or problem clearly. Explain the sides of the debate. Tell them your side. Convince them that your side is the best one to edupdf.gas:

Cookie Info

Nov 19,  · To write an argumentative research paper, choose a topic that can be argued from one or more perspectives, then pick a side. Start your paper with a thesis statement summing up your position, then support your statement with facts and arguments gathered from reputable sources%(11). Writing an argumentative essay is a common task that most high school, college, and higher education students face, whether they know it or not. It is commonly assigned on standardized tests such as the SAT, ACT, IELTS, and TOEFL.