The argumentative essay is a genre of writing that requires the student to investigate a topic; collect, generate, and evaluate evidence; and establish a position on the topic in a concise manner.
Argumentative essay writing is a common assignment for high school and college students. Generally, argumentative essay topics are related to science, technology, politics, and health care.
Argumentative essay assignments generally call for extensive research of literature or previously published material. Argumentative assignments may also require empirical research where the student collects data through interviews, surveys, observations, or experiments.
An argumentative essay format is not that different from other types of essays you encountered in your academic career. However, some students believe that writing an argumentative essay is as easy as simply voicing your opinion.
Argumentative essays should have a straightforward structure so they are easy for readers to follow. The goal of an argumentative essay is to clearly outline a point of view, reasoning, and evidence.
The structure of the argumentative essay is held together by the following.
Introductory paragraph. The first paragraph of your essay should outline the topic, provide background information necessary to understand your argument, outline the evidence you will present and states your thesis.
The thesis statement.
This is part of your first paragraph. It is a concise, one-sentence summary of your main point and claim. In the first paragraph of an argument essay, students should set the context by reviewing the topic in a general way. Next the author should explain why the topic is important (exigence) or why readers should care about the issue. Lastly, students should present the thesis statement.
Body paragraphs. A typical argumentative essay comprises three or more paragraphs that explain the reasons why you support your thesis. Each body paragraph should cover a different idea or piece of evidence and contain a topic sentence that clearly and concisely explains why the reader should agree with your position. Body paragraphs are where you back up your claims with examples, research, statistics, studies, and text citations.
Each paragraph should be limited to the discussion of one general idea. This will allow for clarity and direction throughout the essay.
There are three body paragraphs in a typical argumentative essay, and each of those paragraphs should offer a separate piece of reasons why you believe your argument is the correct one.
Conclusion. One paragraph that restates your thesis and summarizes all of the arguments made in your body paragraphs. Rather than introducing new facts or more arguments, a good conclusion will appeal to a reader’s emotions.
A conclusion that does not simply restate the thesis, but readdresses it in light of the evidence provided. Restate why the topic is important, review the main points, and review your thesis. You may also want to include a short discussion of more research that should be completed in light of your work.
When learning how to write argumentative essay, it’s important to remember that the focus and most vital point of an argumentative essay is the argument itself.
At the final stage of your writing process, it’s a good idea to give your essay a critical look to see what can be changed and improve about your writing to make it easier to prove your point to the audience.
Whether you’re writing an essay as an artistic exercise or trying to get the attention of a top publication, knowing how to correctly structure your point of view is the key to a good argumentative essay.