Skip Nav

How to Start an Argumentative Essay

BEST ARGUMENTATIVE PAPER TOPICS

❶Be careful to not give too much away, though. You might think that it's better when your teacher assigns a particular argumentative topic to you.

How to Start an Argumentative Essay Out with a Quote

The Difference Between Argumentative and Persuasive Essays
Writing a Theme Statement
Report Abuse

We all want less crime, stronger families, and fewer dangerous confrontations over drugs. We need to ask ourselves, however, if we're willing to challenge the status quo to get those results. This policy makes us look stupid. It is not based in fact, and the people that believe it are delusional at best, and villains at worst.

Acknowledge, and refute, arguments against you. While the majority of your essay should be kept to your own argument, you'll bullet-proof your case if you can see and disprove the arguments against you. Save this for the second to last paragraph, in general. If they're going to hurt themselves, that is their right. The only obvious solution is to ban guns.

There is no other argument that matters. Read the prompt carefully. In most cases, you will be given a specific assignment for your persuasive essay. Look for language that gives you a clue as to whether you are writing a purely persuasive or an argumentative essay.

If you can, make the time to craft an argument you'll enjoy writing. Allow yourself enough time to brainstorm, write, and edit. Whenever possible, start early. Examine the rhetorical situation. All writing has a rhetorical situation, which has five basic elements: This is when you look at the facts, definition meaning of the issue or the nature of it , quality the level of seriousness of the issue , and policy plan of action for the issue.

To look at the facts, try asking: What are the known facts? How did this issue begin? What can people do to change the situation? To look at the definition, ask: What is the nature of this issue or problem? What type of problem is this? What category or class would this problem fit into best?

To examine the quality, ask: Who is affected by this problem? How serious is it? What might happen if it is not resolved? To examine the policy, ask: Should someone take action? Who should do something and what should they do? Obviously, your instructor is your primary audience, but consider who else might find your argument convincing.

You might target the school administrators, in which case you could make a case about student productivity and healthy food. Pick a topic that appeals to you. Because a persuasive essay often relies heavily on emotional appeals, you should choose to write on something about which you have a real opinion.

Pick a subject about which you feel strongly and can argue convincingly. Look for a topic that has a lot of depth or complexity. You may feel incredibly passionate about pizza, but it may be difficult to write an interesting essay on it. A subject that you're interested in but which has a lot of depth — like animal cruelty or government earmarking — will make for better subject material. Consider opposing viewpoints when thinking about your essay.

If you think it will be hard to come up with arguments against your topic, your opinion might not be controversial enough to make it into a persuasive essay. On the other hand, if there are too many arguments against your opinion that will be hard to debunk, you might choose a topic that is easier to refute.

Make sure you can remain balanced. A good persuasive essay will consider the counterarguments and find ways to convince readers that the opinion presented in your essay is the preferable one.

Keep your focus manageable. Your essay is likely to be fairly short; it may be 5 paragraphs or several pages, but you need to keep a narrow focus so that you can adequately explore your topic.

For example, an essay that attempts to persuade your readers that war is wrong is unlikely to be successful, because that topic is huge. Choosing a smaller bit of that topic -- for example, that drone strikes are wrong -- will give you more time to delve deeply into your evidence. Come up with a thesis statement. Your thesis statement presents your opinion or argument in clear language.

It is usually placed at the end of the introductory paragraph. For example, a thesis statement could look like this: It is important for schools to provide fresh, healthy meals to students, even when they cost more.

You do need to convey exactly what you will argue. Once you have chosen your topic, do as much preparation as you can before you write your essay. This means you need to examine why you have your opinion and what evidence you find most compelling. Start with your central topic and draw a box around it. Then, arrange other ideas you think of in smaller bubbles around it.

Connect the bubbles to reveal patterns and identify how ideas relate. Generating ideas is the most important step here. Once you have your ideas together, you may discover that some of them need research to support them. If you have a librarian available, consult with him or her! Librarians are an excellent resource to help guide you to credible research. Persuasive essays generally have a very clear format, which helps you present your argument in a clear and compelling way.

Here are the elements of persuasive essays: You should also provide your thesis statement, which is a clear statement of what you will argue or attempt to convince the reader of. In other essays, you can have as many paragraphs as you need to make your argument. Regardless of their number, each body paragraph needs to focus on one main idea and provide evidence to support it. Your conclusion is where you tie it all together.

It can include an appeal to emotions, reiterate the most compelling evidence, or expand the relevance of your initial idea to a broader context. Connect your focused topic to the broader world. Come up with your hook.

Your hook is a first sentence that draws the reader in. Your hook can be a question or a quotation, a fact or an anecdote, a definition or a humorous sketch. As long as it makes the reader want to continue reading, or sets the stage, you've done your job.

It also encourages the reader to continue reading to learn why they should imagine this world. Many people believe that your introduction is the most important part of the essay, because it either grabs or loses the reader's attention. A good introduction will tell the reader just enough about your essay to draw them in and make them want to continue reading. Then, proceed to move from general ideas to specific ideas until you have built up to your thesis statement.

Don't slack on your thesis statement. Your thesis statement is a short summary of what you're arguing for. It's usually one sentence, and it's near the end of your introductory paragraph. Make your thesis a combination of your most persuasive arguments, or a single powerful argument, for the best effect. Structure your body paragraphs. At a minimum, write three paragraphs for the body of the essay. Each paragraph should cover a single main point that relates back to a part of your argument.

These body paragraphs are where you justify your opinions and lay out your evidence. Remember that if you don't provide evidence, your argument might not be as persuasive. Make your evidence clear and precise. For example, don't just say: They are widely recognized as being incredibly smart. Multiple studies found that dolphins worked in tandem with humans to catch prey. Very few, if any, species have developed mutually symbiotic relationships with humans.

Agreed-upon facts from reliable sources give people something to hold onto. If possible, use facts from different angles to support one argument. This makes a case against the death penalty working as a deterrent. If the death penalty were indeed a deterrent, why wouldn't we see an increase in murders in states without the death penalty?

You want to make sure that your argument feels like it's building, one point upon another, rather than feeling scattered. Use the last sentence of each body paragraph to transition to the next paragraph.

In order to establish flow in your essay, you want there to be a natural transition from the end of one paragraph to the beginning of the next. Here is one example: Add a rebuttal or counterargument.

You might not be required to do this, but it makes your essay stronger. Imagine you have an opponent who's arguing the exact opposite of what you're arguing. Think of one or two of their strongest arguments and come up with a counterargument to rebut it. However, consider the fact that middle schoolers are growing at an incredible rate. Their bodies need energy, and their minds may become fatigued if they go for long periods without eating. Write your conclusion at the very end of your essay.

As a general rule, it's a good idea to restate each of your main points and end the whole paper with a probing thought. If it's something your reader won't easily forget, your essay will have a more lasting impression. Why does this argument or opinion mean something to me? What further questions has my argument raised? What action could readers take after reading my essay?

Give yourself a day or two without looking at the essay. If you've planned ahead, this won't be hard. Then, come back to the essay after a day or two and look it over. The rest will give you a fresh set of eyes and help you spot errors. Any tricky language or ideas that needed time might be revisited then. Read through your draft. A common error with many student writers is not spending enough time revisiting a first draft. Read through your essay from start to finish. Is this position supported throughout with evidence and examples?

Are paragraphs bogged down by extraneous information? Do paragraphs focus on one main idea? Are any counterarguments presented fairly, without misrepresentation? Are they convincingly dismissed? Are the paragraphs in an order that flows logically and builds an argument step-by-step? Revision is more than simple proofreading. You may need to touch up your transitions, move paragraphs around for better flow, or even draft new paragraphs with new, more compelling evidence.

Be willing to make even major changes to improve your essay. You may find it helpful to ask a trusted friend or classmate to look at your essay. Use the spell checker on your computer to check the spellings of the words if applicable. Read through your essay aloud, reading exactly what is on the page. This will help you catch proofreading errors. Instead, you should concentrate on logical arguments and rationalization in a straightforward way. As a rule, the argumentative essay has the same outline as the majority of traditional papers.

It should have an introduction, several body paragraphs as well as a conclusion. Every single part of the essay exerts a particular function in its overall structure. The introductory phase follows the same outline as that of the persuasive essay, as described below:.

The hypothesis assertion must be written at the end of the introduction, as it represents the very essence of your paper. Here are a few important tips to devising the thesis statement:. So, illustrate it as a fact, not as a debatable notion. This sentence ought to constitute a type of categorical assertion. It ought to represent an examined viewpoint devised by the writer for the purpose of demonstrating a certainty, utilizing substantiated research as evidence.

Avoid presenting a straightforward assertion which is evident. The whole argumentative essay needs to be devised with respect to this assertion. The number of body paragraphs depends on the type of argument you want to introduce. It goes without saying that if your argument can be presented and demonstrated in just a few words, your paper should have a shorter size.

In this case, the size of the essay will obviously be longer. Take a look at how we explain the sections of each body paragraph. The conclusion is the final section of your essay. All you need to do here is to reiterate some ideas and offer a general conclusive assertion. Do not talk about feelings! Students often omit this phase, which diminishes their chances of success. A substantiated argument is not powerful enough unless you include a counter argument and show the reason for which your argument is more valid.

Have other people look at your essay: When you edit the essay all by yourself, your ideas will obviously seem reasonable. However, you need to make sure that your readers will instantly comprehend your logic. To this end, you should use peer editing.

Ask another person to verify the coherence of your argument. Argumentative essays must be well-organized. Furthermore, they must establish a powerful claim. The most essential section of your paper is the introduction.

Our team advises you to take your time when writing the initial paragraph. To provide context, you need to examine the subject from a general perspective before expanding on its significance. The reader ought to be stimulated to be as interested in the matter as you are.

Your hypothesis assertion should be written at the end of the introduction.

The Trouble with Argumentative Essays

Main Topics

Privacy Policy

As in any essay, the first paragraph of your argument essay should contain a brief explanation of your topic, some background information, and a thesis statement. In this case, your thesis is a statement of your position on a specific controversial topic.

Privacy FAQs

A good introduction in an argumentative essay acts like a good opening statement in a trial. Just like a lawyer, a writer must present the issue at hand, give background, and put forth the main argument -- all in a logical, intellectual and persuasive way. Start your introduction with a sentence.

About Our Ads

Apr 05,  · It is time to start thinking about literature as having meaning outside of the story itself. It is time to interact with a text in a more personal and worldly way. It Reviews: Then give your thesis statement about what you are going to argue for in this essay. Body of the argumentative essay begins by providing all of the counterpoint’s valid points, arguments, and evidence. After this, reveal your point of view and support it with evidence. Closing of the argumentative essay should wrap up the argument.

Cookie Info

How to Start an Argumentative Essay Out with a Quote In the case of an argumentative essay, it would not be reasonable to start your introduction as well as any other paragraph with a quote. It would be better to use the following scheme of introduction writing. If you need help writing an essay on a book, you have come to the right place. Known also as literary essays, this type of essay can be equated more or less to a modern day book report. Once you get your thoughts organized it can be a really easy task.