An argument is an attempt to persuade another person of something, to make him share your opinion. Similarly, an argumentative essay is an attempt to convince your reader that your point of view is correct by means of facts and other evidence.
According to the rules of regular essay writing, this paper should consist of three parts, namely the introduction, main body, and the conclusion.
An introduction should enlighten your reader on the area you are about to explore and also present a thesis – the main statement you will support. The thesis should include not only your opinion itself, but also explain the reason why it is important. In other words, at the very beginning you should give an answer to a dreaded question ‘So what?’
Make sure your thesis is really controversial. ‘Drugs are bad for you’ is not something one can argue about. But ‘Legal sale of marijuana will lead to a decrease in its abuse’ gives food for thought and room for fighting.
After your opinion and importance of the topic have been formulated, move to the body paragraphs. No matter what kind of paper you are working on – essays, dissertations or term papers – in the main part you have to produce evidence and prove that your statement was correct. Identify the key points you want to make and assign them to separate paragraphs. Weigh up any counterarguments and use facts and reasoning to prove them wrong. You have to be cold and impersonal. Otherwise, your emotions might take over your reasonable thinking and thus turn an essay into a blog post. Only facts and figures are to be used. Always check reliability of sources and give credit to someone else’s work.
When the time comes to write a conclusion, your reader must have no doubts left (You had an entire body part to persuade him!) Wrap up your elaborations and reformulate your thesis.
Don’t avoid the opportunities of essay writing – it is great training for the future. When shifting to large formats like dissertation writing, you will thank yourself for the skills you developed at early stages.
What you have ALWAYS bear in mind is that argumentative essays should be based on ample evidence. You can’t win a reader with sophisticated language and colorful metaphors. You also can’t say that you feel your opinion is right. Instead, you have to prove it. Do not be afraid to use plenty of figures and facts, statistics and other things that would bore a person to death in case of a narrative term paper. This kind of assignment is designed to persuade, and nothing persuades better than the cold truth.
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