During your academic life, you might be asked to write an argumentative essay. However, it is not that easy to complete, if you are not good at writing assignments in general or if you are too busy with your side projects or work and simply do not have enough time to dive into the topic. For these cases, there is always an option to use a professional essay writing service.
Provided you feel able to do it yourself, you will need a guide. We’ve prepared some tips on how to write an argumentative essay below.
First, let us define this type of essay. An argumentative essay is a writing assignment where you need to express your attitude towards some controversial problem. It should convey your strong position and provide evidence or reasons that support this position.
What is also important here is that an author has to convince readers to side with their point of view regarding the issue. Hence, your reasoning should be clear and persuasive.
Argumentative essays are given as a task to train your debating, research, analytical, and, of course, writing skills. So, think of this task as a good practice. Following the steps below might be very helpful.
To begin with, you need to choose the topic. If you were not assigned with any, choose either some controversial, trending topic like global warming or something you care about a lot. Thus, you will enjoy the writing and research process.
As soon as you are all set with the issue you are going to write about, you need to consider your structure and the evidence you use to reinforce your arguments. Therefore, the next step would be to outline the structure.
A typical argumentative essay should have a clear logical structure and be easy to read. The five-paragraph structure helps to reach these goals:
- Introduction. Here you need to introduce your topic, set some background to the issue that will help you immerse readers into the topic. Then provide the evidence you will discuss next. The final sentence of your introduction must have a thesis statement. There you summarize your position on the issue.
- Body. In your argumentative essay, you will need to have three or more paragraphs, depending on the task. Longer essays might even have headings before each paragraph. In body paragraphs, you develop your argument and describe in detail why you stand for the thesis. Each paragraph should introduce a new idea and include a topic sentence. Provide only relevant information and analysis to support your argument. You need to construct these paragraphs in such a way that your readers would take your side in this problem. Reinforce your claims with citations, statistics, and examples. It would be also quite credible if you approach your issue from different sides, contrasting ideas, and give your evidence to prove why you are right.
- Conclusion. It is a typical conclusion paragraph where you summarize all of what you stated in the body paragraphs. Try to make it appealing to your readers. Address their emotions or bring your personal experience with the topic so that readers will see how relatable the issue is. What is more, you must remember to highlight how relevant and important your paper is and state what other topics could be investigated in this matter. Finally, do not introduce any new ideas or evidence.
In general, care about your readers. Always think if they would understand and agree with your ideas. Try to write in a compelling way. Let your introduction be catchy and enticing. Get your readers interested and engaged with the topic. Draw readers’ attention with the very first sentence by including some quotes, statistics, or a rhetorical question. While providing background to the issue, make readers care about its current situation. In conclusion, you may try to call your readers to action and include some pathos in the final sentence.
In order to create a coherent text, always use transition words like hence, therefore, in addition, furthermore, etc. That will help your readers follow your paper more easily.
Besides this common way of writing argumentative essays, there are other approaches. Let us describe the two most popular approaches that are useful in outlining the structure. They are the Toulmin and the Rogerian models.
The Toulmin approach is quite clear and follows four simple steps:
- State your claim.
- Provide evidence you have to reinforce the claim
- Warrant – elaborate on how exactly evidence supports the claim.
- State possible rebuttals, arguments against your claims. That would show that you are aware of other angles of the problem.
This model is common in academic papers. Just use this flow while writing your body paragraphs and that would help you make a well-structured and clear text. Make sure the parts of your argumentative essay are connected smoothly.
For instance, you argue against prison as an institution. You may claim that they do little to prevent crimes. Then include citations to reinforce your idea. Explain how your findings exactly prove the current system does not work. Finally, give two counter-arguments that might disapprove of your statement.
The Rogerian model can also be described in four steps:
- Introduce the issue
- Explain why people might not support your statement. Provide opposing arguments. This will also show that you did some deep research and your words are credible.
- Present your points.
- Support your claims, show why your position is better. You may also suggest here a compromise.
The key point in this approach is to study both sides and find a compromise. It is especially beneficial when the topic is controversial, and there is a common attitude towards it in society. This method will allow you to be less radical in your essay.
For example, your topic is “positive effects of online education”. You can state that nowadays situation makes us switch to online methods of education. Explain why this way is useful now and provide your evidence. Suggest a compromise.
It is not strict that you need to use either of these methods, but you should consider them. Perhaps, they will help you organize your thoughts and ideas.