How to Write an Argumentative Essay: Four Helpful Tips

Some essays use logical and factual data to sustain their claims. They are known as argumentative essays and form a significant proportion of all essays written by scholars and students during their academic tenure. This article demonstrates how to write an argumentative essay by dividing the writing process into four detailed steps. Hence, readers looking to augment the plausibility of their argumentative texts should ensure to abide by them.

27.04.2022

How to Write an Argumentative Essay: Four Helpful Tips

Essays are one of the many essential documents that place themselves under the canopy of academic writing. Shorter than dissertations and research papers, they primarily delineate the arguments of their authors with sufficient supporting evidence. In some essays, this supporting evidence is emotional or opinionated. Academics call them persuasive essays.

Some essays use logical and factual data to sustain their claims. They are known as argumentative essays and form a significant proportion of all essays written by scholars and students during their academic tenure.

This article demonstrates how to write an argumentative essay by dividing the writing process into four detailed steps. Hence, readers looking to augment the plausibility of their argumentative texts should ensure to abide by them.

How to write an argumentative essay: Four practical tips

Argumentative essays are one of the most common types of essays in academia. Yet, many academics find it difficult to set forth their arguments convincingly when writing one.

The steps mentioned below address this impediment by arranging the procedure of essay composition such that writers can equally focus on each aspect of the essay.

1. Develop a strong thesis statement

A thesis statement is essentially the crux of an essay. It is a sentence that clarifies the argument the author is posing, offering readers a perspective they can discern with ease when reading the document. Therefore, the thesis statement should be well constructed and portray the author's argument(s) firmly, leaving little room for vagueness.

To curate a strong thesis statement, writers should first create a rough draft and set it aside. Then, as the essay takes shape, they should simultaneously polish the statement to coincide it with the essay’s essence.

2. Determine and uphold the essay structure

Like every other academic document, an essay follows a set layout to make it easy for readers to grasp its contents. However, unlike the complex and rigid structures of longer academic documents, the structure of an essay is quite straightforward. Typically, all writers follow the five-paragraph layout unless stated otherwise.

The first paragraph houses the introduction, the following three comprise the expositions, refutal, and corroboration, and the final one summarizes the essay. Apart from this visible essay structure, there exist three more theoretical structures that academics use to develop their arguments.

a. Aristotelian argument

The Aristotelian style of argument structuring is the most prevalent among all argumentative essays owing to its uncomplicated nature. It places the cogency of an argument on three factors - ethos, pathos, and logos. In other words, writers need to cater to the logical and emotional sides of the readers while maintaining the essay's overall credibility.

The Aristotelian argument suggests that writers need to

  • present their argument(s)

  • explain the basis behind them

  • refute the opposition

  • offer rational evidence

  • conclude the essay.

b. Toulmin argument model

The Toulmin argument model becomes applicable when an argument has no concrete basis or does not refer to any definite truth. Writers need to split their essays into the following six parts:

  • Claim: Putting forth an argument

  • Grounds: The rationale behind the argument, including the relevant facts and quotes

  • Warrant: The line of communication between the claim and the grounds

  • Backing: ancillary evidence for the claim

  • Qualifier: the frontiers of an argument that signify its subjectivity

  • Rebuttal: critiquing opposing stances to the argument

These six elements construct the essay around the analysis of the argument(s), giving the readers a convincing outlook.

c. Rogerian argument

Structuring essays using the Rogerian argument style entails the authors arriving at a middle ground between the proposed arguments and the audience's biases.

It first involves the author presenting the claim(s) to the readers and then recognizing the opposing perspective. The author then needs to reacknowledge their stance without outrightly refuting the other side.

Finally, the author should encroach on the neutral/middle ground and initiate a negotiation with the readers.

3. Pen a captivating introduction

Like the thesis statement, an essay needs a strong introduction for the audience to read it till the end.

Therefore, when writing the introductory paragraph, writers should ensure that it is catchy, has a hook, and properly accommodates the thesis statement.

4. Benefit from editing and proofreading services

Editing and proofreading are two mandatory subsets of the essay writing process. They ensure that an essay is free of grammatical, contextual, tonal, and factual mistakes that can downplay its persuasion. Thus, writers should not undermine the relevance of editing and proofreading and set aside ample time for their execution. Failing to do so can drastically reduce the impact of an essay, undermining all the efforts the writer has put into it.

How to write an argumentative essay: Synopsis

Like most other essays, argumentative essays serve the purpose of convincing the readers of their stand. However, the method of persuasion in argumentative pieces is more objective owing to the inclusion of logical data. Also, due to the immense research required, argumentative essays demand proper citations to avoid instances of plagiarism.

Therefore, scholars ascertaining how to write an argumentative essay should implement the above steps to ensure their essays are persuasive and in line with the accepted standards.

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How to write an argumentative essay

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