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How to Write an Argumentative Essay

write an argumentative essay

Usually, they start teaching students how to write an effective argumentative essay back in middle school within the English course, so the format should be relatively familiar to you. However, if you wish to brush up your knowledge on the subject, our cheap paper writing have prepared this guide with every step explained in detail.

An argumentative analysis essay is an essay where you must have a position with regard to a topic and then defend it or challenge it. Your stance is important and should be clear from the start, unlike in other types of essays, for example, a synthesis essay, where your position is tentative and your goal is to consider the factors or evaluate the implications of a decision as objectively as you can.

How to Write an Argumentative Essay Outline

Writing an argumentative essay takes a bit of planning because you want to argue your point with precision, so your reader’s opinion will be swayed by your logic. That means you must tailor the structure to suit your purpose. By the way, organization and structure are among the rubrics that decide the grade you will receive for your essay, so outlining your essay before you write is crucial.

The classical way to write argumentative essays is a 5-paragraph or a “hamburger” structure. Your outline should reflect it:

  1. Introduction
  2. Paragraph 1
  3. Paragraph 2
  4. Paragraph 3
  5. Conclusion

Before you start jotting down your outline, here is what you should do:

  1. First of all, read the prompt carefully to understand your topic and the kind of argument you are going to make. Pay attention to the word count – it will decide the scope of your essay. It is important to stay within limits because your instructor is going to read many essays and they don’t like to read more than they have to.
  2. Decide on your stand about the question. Formulate the main claim for an argumentative essay – this will be your working thesis statement.
  3. Now brainstorm the ideas. Write the prompt question and think of as many reasons “for” and “against” as you can. Organize them in a spider chart, a mind map or in a table with two columns.
  4. If you need to, research to learn more about the topic or verify the facts you are going to use for your argument.
  5. Select your strongest arguments “for” and “against” and write them down. They will be the basis you are going to build your essay on, so choose something you have the most to say about.

The tree body paragraphs represent three arguments: two of them for and one against. Why include the “against” argument? It shows that you have considered the question from all perspectives and you are aware of both sides of the argument.

As a rule, the first body paragraph gives the “against” argument. It gives the impression of fairness and objectively. Only then, you progress to the part where you really make your argument and prove your point with the two other paragraphs.

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How to Write an Introduction for an Argumentative Essay

The best advice on how to write an argumentative essay introduction is to wait until you’ve made your argument and only then return to writing your introduction paragraph. Although the introduction is the first part of your essay that your reader will see, it does not have to be written first. An intro is like an ad for the rest of the essay – it must “sell” it to the reader, make them want to continue. You cannot create a good ad until your product is finished, right?

The introduction should outline the topic, justify its significance, and provide some background information necessary for the understanding of your argument. It also must include your thesis statement and a brief overview of the evidence you are going to present: not spoilers, just methods or material you are going to use.

If you want to make your introduction even more engaging, write a good hook sentence to start it off. A hook can be a surprising fact, a rhetorical question, a personal anecdote, or a relevant quote that captures the attention of your reader. This is just a little magnet to help you lure your reader in, it should be relevant, but it doesn’t have be solid evidence yet.

How to Write a Thesis for an Argumentative Essay

As we have already mentioned, you have to write a thesis statement as early as the outlining stage, otherwise, your essay is going nowhere. However, you can tweak and narrow down your thesis statement after you’ve finished the essay – as long as your arguments work to support it.

Coming up with a good thesis might be a bit trickier than you think. It should be something that can be argued about. If it’s something that everyone agrees with, it’s a truism and doesn’t make a good thesis statement. For example, “People often keep cats as pets”. If it’s something that cannot be supported by facts, it’s an opinion and doesn’t make a suitable thesis statement either. For example, “Only lazy people keep cats as pets”. You need something not immediately evident, but provable. For example, “Introverted and individualistic people tend to choose cats for their pets.”

How to Write a Body Paragraph for an Argumentative Essay

Paragraphs are the building blocks of your essay. They all have a similar structure and inner logic. Each of them should only include one idea, statement of fact, or claim.

This main idea for each of your body paragraphs put in a short and clear sentence makes a topic sentence. It should start every paragraph and introduce its main point to your reader. The following sentences will give more specific information about this point:

  • the evidence/examples to support the topic sentence and to link your claim with facts
  • the explanation of the examples
  • the closing to summarize the main point.

This structure may seem a bit monotonous, and for other genres, it rather is. Yet it is suitable for an argumentative essay because uniformity reassures and gives the impression of stability and trustworthiness.

How to Write a Conclusion for an Argumentative Essay

You write a conclusion paragraph to bring your argument to a close. Here, you summarize all your points and restate once again why your thesis statement is true and well-founded. You should not give any new evidence in the conclusion – only sum up what has already been said.

A good conclusion leaves your readers with a lasting impression. Therefore, you can afford to use persuasive language, challenge reader’s views, call them to action or ask them to reconsider their position based on the evidence you’ve provided. You can also use a personal anecdote to explain why this topic is meaningful to you or suggest how it will be significant in the future.

Writing Argumentative Essays is Not Your Jam?

That happens more often than you think. Many students have difficult relationships with a written text or just have too little time to devote their full attention to crafting perfectly measured arguments. Luckily, you can get a good grade without wasting hours on doing what you hate.

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