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How to Start an Argumentative Essay

Start With a Hook

❶Try a debate-style conversation in which you each bring up aspects of the controversy and attempt to explain your view on the topic.

What is an Argumentative Essay?

How to Write an Argumentative Essay Step by Step
How to Start an Argumentative Essay Out with a Quote
Finding Ideas to Write About

Though his claim may well have merit, the author presents a poorly reasoned argument, based on several questionable premises and assumptions, and based solely on the evidence the author offers, we cannot accept his argument as valid. I can use that statement for pretty much any argument essay I encounter.

The beginning shows that I see the issue as nuanced, rather than black and white, and I recognize that though the author may have arrived at the correct answer , his reasoning is flawed. I also use "we" but I try to avoid using "I". Take that as you will. Paragraph 2 For me, paragraph two always attacks the premises of the author's argument.

I usually jot down a couple of premises on my board -- these are things that show up in the author's argument, usually without any evidence provided. I usually begin with some version of: The primary issue with the author's reasoning lies in his unsubstantiated premises. I like "primary" and "secondary" as transitional tools because they are more complex than "first" and "second".

Throughout the first paragraph, I show flaws in the author's premises by pointing out his lack of evidentiary support they pretty much always lack evidentiary support and where they are open to holes or alternate explanations.

I usually have two or three, but one would be fine if it it was strong. I generally end with something like: The author's premises, the basis for his argument, lack any legitimate evidentiary support and render his conclusion unacceptable. Paragraph 3 In the third paragraph, I always attack the assumptions - again, I jot down a couple assumptions on my notepad while reading the prompt. Generally, the issue with assumptions is that they need to be clearly explicated - the author is asking the reader to make a jump with them, but the reader may well veer off course if the author doesn't explicitly state his arguments.

I usually begin with some variation of: In addition, the author makes several assumptions that remain unproven. Again, I begin with a transitional phrase that the e-grader can pick up on. As with the premises, I spend this paragraph attacking a couple of the author's assumptions. The easiest way to do this is to find an alternate explanation -- ie, what if the assumption wasn't true?

I usually have two or three, again. My assumption paragraph ends with something like: The author weakens his argument by making assumptions and failing to provide explication of the links between X and Y he assumes exists. Paragraph 4 Paragraph 4 is where I talk about how the author could strengthen his argument -- that is, I go back to my claim that his argument could have some validity, but not as it stands. I usually begin this paragraph with something like: While the author does have several key issues in his argument's premises and assumptions, that is not to say that the entire argument is without base.

Then I provide some concrete ways the author could strengthen his argument. The easiest way to do this is to give examples of what kind of evidence the author could provide, and discuss how he can fill the holes in his assumptions. Though there are several issues with the author's reasoning at present, with research and clarification, he could improve his argument significantly. Paragraph 5 This is my conclusion paragraph. I pretty much always conclude with the same sentence: In sum, the author's illogical argument is based on unsupported premises and unsubstantiated assumptions that render his conclusion invalid.

I usually use "in sum" because it's considered better stylistically than "in conclusion" but signals to the e-grader that you're at your conclusion. I usually add a couple sentences of fluff in between and then I end with: If the author truly hopes to change his readers' minds on the issue, he would have to largely restructure his argument, fix the flaws in his logic, clearly explicate his assumptions, and provide evidentiary support. Without these things, his poorly reasoned argument will likely convince few people.

And that's pretty much it. So the cliff notes: P1- Intro with generic thesis statement that works for P2 - Attack the premises of the argument. P3 - Attack the assumptions of the argument. P4 - Discuss what type of evidence or reasoning would strengthen the argument. Hope that helps someone out there and good luck on your essays!

Thanks for the awesome post. It's really helpful and clearly states what is measured in 'Analysis of argument' questions. Any views on 'Analysis of issue'? Tweetyspeaks Newbie Next Rank: Thanks a lot for your wonderful template. This is so far the best I have seen. It would be very helpful to us if you could please post us your issue template too. This is a brilliant post mate and I reckon will surely help many people..

Now here I am being little greedy here.. Can you please give your insight about Issue Essay.. How to deal with the issue essay if nothing concrete example jumps out to you.. I'm sorry guys -- I really didn't use a template for issue essays!

I did those far more on the fly since those were more question-specific than argument essays. I guess a general template would be P1 - Intro and a thesis P2 - Example 1 usually in depth P3 - Example 2 in depth P4 - Exploring the nuances of the question -- ie, why the opposing position is not entirely wrong. This shows I understand that the issue is not black and white.

P5 - Conclusion I'm sorry, I really structured issues essays loosely and didn't go as in depth with them as I did with arguments.

I've attached an issue essay below and hopefully that might help some of you guys? If you have specific questions let me know. Support your viewpoint using reasons and examples from your own experience, observations, or reading. With an increasingly globalized world, and the advent of ever-improving technology that allows people to go as far as to project a holograph of themselves sitting in a chair in Tokyo from their office in San Jose, California, we are starting to reexamine the ways we structure learning.

Toulmin is another strategy to use in a highly charged debate. Instead of attempting to appeal to commonalities, however, this strategy attempts to use clear logic and careful qualifiers to limit the argument to things that can be agreed upon. It uses this format:. For instructions and examples on easy ways to write a good thesis statement for an argument essay see: For help in writing excellent topic sentences see: How do I conclude my thesis?

My most popular article, Easy Sentence Starters, http: What you need to do is to think about how each sentence relates to the other ideas and choosing the appropriate transition adding, comparing, contrasting, or sequence.

I have been teaching my students how to add headings to all of their essays over the past five years because I think most of their writing for their careers will be in online environments. As anyone who does a Google search knows, being able to scan the headings of an article is very helpful so that you can figure out whether that article answers the question you are asking.

Additionally, scanning headings if they are written correctly allows you to understand the main point of the article quickly and also to find the part you are most interested in reading. You can make headings by making a short version of your topic sentence in each paragraph.

Generally, the shorter, the better. What I have found is that when my students use headings in their papers, it helps them to actually organize and write their information more clearly because making the headings helps them to realize their main points. If you've done a good job on your headings, a person should be able to read the title of your paper and all the headings and have a good grasp on what your article is about.

The easiest way to find a good title is to use a short version of the question. The second way is to make a statement which shows your point of view. If you chose the second one, you might want to make the language more dramatic to showcase your point of view. Here are some samples using the topic of diet and obesity:. The best sort of introduction to an emotional issue like abortion is a story. If possible, I suggest a real story, but it could also be a made-up story, which I call a "typical scenario" which would explain the problem and make it vivid for the reader.

In this issue, it could be the story of a woman who finds herself in a crisis pregnancy. End the story with the question of your essay. Here are some possible questions:. You don't actually have to read the book because she writes on her blog about this issue also. What I like about her work is that she takes the issue in a different direction by interviewing many women who have had abortions to find out what they really thought at the time that they were facing this crucial decision and how their decision affected them afterward.

To get facts and statistics, you can go to the U. Department of Education website and look up the information you'd like to know. You can look up information from other countries on the Education sections of their government websites. If you want comparison information, you may need to go to an outside source like a non-profit which compares countries such as the Pew Research Center: Both ways can be appropriate.

What is most important is that you don't just "drop" the quote on the audience and expect them to understand the point and relevance of your quotation. Use the quotation to make a point and explain why you are using it. Argumentative writing is trying to persuade someone about your point of view. It is not really like having an argument or fighting with someone.

Instead, the idea is that you would present your point of view on the subject in a way that makes other people think you are right, or at least that you have good reasons for believing the way you do. Argumentative writing is usually done for the following 5 types of claims:.

Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites. I am so grateful for this work. I believe as much as it has helped me,so will it help others.

This artical was really helpful for me because it shows the whole technique how to write an argumentative essay. In fact, everyone now could write one with such an ease and confidence. This was very helpful. Thank you for this great guide for me. Also for my notes for my writing test. Hi Judith, I'm also a trained academic writer who has become more interested in popular writing.

Some of the instructors that I work with have students write a paper in a particular style, but I prefer to view all of the argumentative techniques as part of our "bag of tricks. Consider what they know and what they believe, including any "false beliefs" that they may hold about your subject.

Then think about what it is that you actually want them to think, do, or believe after reading your work. Then look at the different strategies and decide which ones might work to convince that audience best. I have several different articles on persuasion that you might want to look at for ideas and examples. Sisila-I wish you all the best. I have about articles on Hubpages about writing. I encourage you to keep on learning! English is my second language and struggling with essay writing and an argument essay, I find your advise but time is very short for my assessment test tomorrow.

I will try my best to focus on your advise and see if I can pass on this level for my future study. Many thanks for this very helpful article about argument essay. Miranda--I'm so glad this article has helped you. It really comes from my experience in teaching students to write rather than from a textbook. My students have taught me a lot!

Much luck to you on your courses. Thank you for a really great hub! It's now officially on my 'favourites' bar. I have to do a lot of argument essays at the moment for my course, and I sometimes have a tricky time working out how to structure them - this hub is going to help me so much with making my arguments clearer. Honestly, Dragos--often the best way to get started is just to write down everything you know, then write down questions that occur to you.

If you are doing a research paper, you can then start gathering information based on your questions. I often just start by Googling some of the questions. Often you won't come up with research you can use in your paper, but it can jog you into having some good ideas. In an argument essay, what you really need is:. I pretty much know what has to go in an essay but I'm having a hard time planning my thoughts and writing down ideas on a topic.

I am so happy to see what you have brought to us! I hope everyone who is sittin' around doin' nothin' and complaining about everything will discover these HubPages and join in on what was started during the golden ages of America. Thanks so much for reading! I work hard to try to make the process as easy as possible. Other product and company names shown may be trademarks of their respective owners. HubPages and Hubbers authors may earn revenue on this page based on affiliate relationships and advertisements with partners including Amazon, Google, and others.

To provide a better website experience, owlcation. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so. For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: What is an Argumentative Essay? Finding Ideas to Write About Argument essay topics can be found everywhere.

Chances are, you will hear someone trying to persuade another person to believe in their claim about: How important is it? What should we do about it? Stuck for an idea? Check out my Easy Argument Topics List. Is it true or not? What does it really mean?

What is the cause? What are the effects? How to Write Your Thesis. Does divorce cause serious problems for the children? You can mix and match these ideas for your essay. In your paper, you will need to do the following Interest the reader in the situation and make them think it is worth learning more about.

Explain the controversy or problem clearly. Explain the sides of the debate. Tell them your side. Convince them that your side is the best one to take. Refute any objections they may be thinking about as they read. Urge the reader to adopt our point of view to do, think or believe something. Here are some tips: Use the title to present your point of view. Often the title can be a question.

Think about your audience—what aspects of this issue would most interest or convince them? Check out the introduction and conclusion chart for creative ways to introduce your paper. Make sure you have a clear thesis which answers the question. The thesis should tell your position and is usually the last sentence of your introduction. Reasons and support Usually, you will have three or more reasons why the reader should accept your position.

These will be your topic sentences. Anticipate opposing positions and objections What objections will your readers have? Answer them with argument or evidence. What other positions do people take on this subject? What is your reason for rejecting these positions? Why should the reader adopt your point of view?

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Let’s talk about adding those claims to our argumentative essay outline now. Argumentative Essay Outline Section 2: Developing Your Argument. Now that you have filled in the general points of your topic and outlined your stance in the introduction, it’s time to develop your argument.

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An argument essay, as with all essays, should contain three parts: the introduction, the body, and the conclusion. The length of paragraphs in these parts will vary depending on the length of your essay assignment.

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A good introduction in an argumentative essay acts like a good opening statement in a trial. Just like a lawyer, a writer must present the issue at hand, give background, and put forth the main argument -- all in a logical, intellectual and persuasive way. Sample Argument Essay #5. Click Here to View Essay "Society Begins at Home" (PDF Document) Sample Argument Essay #6. Click Here to View Essay "School Choice: An Unwise Option" (AGAINST) (PDF Document) Sample Argument Essay #7.

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Argumentative essay is a specific type of composition with its specific requirements. In order to understand the essence of this work, it is necessary to look through its goals. Sep 05,  · Argument essays seek to state a position on an issue and give several reasons, supported by evidence, for agreeing with that position. Finding Ideas to Write About Argument essay topics can be found cwmetr.gqs: