Argumentative/Persuasive Essay

Argumentative/Persuasive Essay

What Is An Argumentative/Persuasive Essay?

Persuasive writing, used in an argumentative essay, utilizes logic and reason to show that one idea is more legitimate than another idea. It attempts to persuade a reader to adopt a certain point of view or to take a particular action. The argument must always use sound reasoning and solid evidence by stating facts, giving logical reasons, using examples, and quoting experts.

When Planning a Persuasive Essay, Follow These Steps: 

  1. Choose your position.Which side of the issue or problem are you going to write about, and what solution will you offer? Know the purpose of your essay.
  2. Analyze your audience. Decide if your audience agrees with you, is neutral, or disagrees with your position.
  3. Research your topic. A persuasive essay must provide specific and convincing evidence. Often it is necessary to go beyond your own knowledge and experience. You might need to go to the library or interview people who are experts on your topic.
  4. Structure your essay. Determine what evidence you will include and in what order you will present the evidence. Remember to consider your purpose, your audience, and your topic.

The Following Criteria are Essential to Produce an Effective Argument:

  • Be well informed about your topic. To add to your knowledge of a topic, read thoroughly about it, using legitimate sources. Take notes.
  • Test your thesis. Your thesis, i.e., argument, must have two sides. It must be debatable. If you can write down a thesis statement directly opposing your own, you will ensure that your own argument is debatable.
  • Disprove the opposing argument. Understand the opposite viewpoint of your position and then counter it by providing contrasting evidence or by finding mistakes and inconsistencies in the logic of the opposing argument.
  • Support your position with evidence. Remember that your evidence must appeal to reason. The following are different ways to support your argument:
Facts- A powerful means of convincing, facts can come from your readings, observations, or personal experiences.

Statistics - Be sure your statistics come from responsible sources. Always cite your sources.

Quotations - Direct quotations from leading experts effectively support your position.

Examples - Examples enhance your meaning and make your ideas concrete. They are the proof that backs up your point.

To Evaluate the Effectiveness of an Argument Essay, Ask Two Questions:

  1. Is the opinion based on facts and specific evidence rather than on personal judgments and emotional reactions?
  2. Does the method of presenting the opinion have enough impact to persuade the reader to agree?

Page last updated June 26, 2023.