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Guide to Writing Strong Introductions for Argumentative Essays
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Have you ever stared at a blank document, the cursor blinking back at you, as your mind races to conjure the perfect starting line for your argumentative essay? If so, you're in good company.
Opening an essay is often the most daunting part for many students. They oscillate between typing out a line and hastily hitting the backspace, feeling the pressure of that first sentence. After all, first impressions matter, right? So, your introduction should be nothing short of spectacular.
But here's the good news - crafting a powerful introduction for your argumentative essay is not as elusive as it seems. In fact, we've got a few tricks up our sleeve to help you out, and trust us, they work!
This blog post is dedicated to anyone who has ever struggled with introducing their argumentative essay - so essentially, every student ever! We're going to break it down, step by step, showing you the do's and don'ts, the tips and tricks, and even providing you with some solid examples.
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And if you're worried about whether you can do it on your own, don't fret! Our expert argumentative essay writers at Writers Per Hour are always ready to help you.
So, let's dive into the art of crafting a compelling introduction for an argumentative essay, shall we?
Understanding the Purpose of an Introduction
Before we get into the nuts and bolts of writing a killer introduction, it's important to understand why it matters so much.
Your introduction, essentially, sets the stage for your argumentative essay. It is your reader's first glimpse into the argument you're about to unfold. An effective introduction grabs your reader's attention, piques their interest, and provides a clear road map for what's to come in the essay.
In simpler words, the purpose of an introduction in an argumentative essay is threefold:
Engage the reader : A well-crafted introduction acts as a hook, capturing the reader's attention and encouraging them to read further.
Provide background information : It sets the context of the argument by offering necessary background details about the topic.
Present the thesis statement : Arguably the most critical part of your introduction - the thesis statement clearly outlines your position on the argument.
REMEMBER : a great introduction is your ticket to a good grade. It is the first impression you make on your reader. So, if it isn't engaging, concise, and clear, you might lose your reader before they even get to the main argument.
The Anatomy of a Good Argumentative Essay Introduction
Now that you understand the purpose of an introduction, let's break down the structure.
An effective introduction to an argumentative essay will generally have three main sections: a hook, background information, and a thesis statement.
The Hook : This is the first sentence of your introduction, and it needs to grab your reader’s attention. An effective hook could be a surprising fact, a rhetorical question, or an intriguing statement that challenges common perceptions. This needs to be relevant to your topic and should provoke curiosity, pushing the reader to continue.
Background Information : Following the hook, provide some context to your argument. Explain the relevance of your topic or problem, its history or evolution, or the common debates surrounding it. This provides a basic understanding for your reader and sets the stage for your argument.
Thesis Statement : This is where you state your position clearly and concisely. The thesis statement is arguably the most important part of your introduction—it is the crux of your argument and should be compelling and thought-provoking. It needs to clearly indicate what your argument is and give a hint of how you plan to approach it.
IMPORTANT : your introduction is not a place to present all your evidence or explain every aspect of your argument—that's what the body of your essay is for. Instead, your introduction should hint at these things, creating a roadmap for the reader.
Dos and Don’ts of Writing an Introduction for an Argumentative Essay
Crafting a strong introduction for your argumentative essay is about adhering to some key dos and don’ts. Let's take a look at some of these:
1. Engage your reader : Your introduction's first job is to engage the reader. You can achieve this with a compelling hook that draws them into your essay. Remember, first impressions matter!
2. Provide relevant background information : Your reader may not be as knowledgeable about your topic as you are, so be sure to provide some context and background information to help them understand your argument.
3. State your thesis clearly : Your thesis statement should be clear, concise, and debatable. The reader should have no doubts about your stance on the issue.
4. Preview your argument : Give your reader a sense of what's to come by previewing your main points or arguments. This prepares them for the rest of your essay.
1. Don't make your introduction too long : Remember, the introduction is just a sneak peek into your essay, not the main event. Keep it concise and to the point.
2. Don't use clichés : Starting your essay with clichéd phrases or overused quotes can make your introduction feel unoriginal. Instead, aim for a fresh and unique opening line that will pique your reader's interest.
3. Don't be vague : Be clear and precise in your introduction. Vague statements can confuse your reader and make your argument seem weak.
4. Don't forget your audience : Always keep your audience in mind while writing. Your language, tone, and the context you provide should be appropriate for your audience.
REMEMBER : your introduction sets the tone for the rest of your essay, so take your time with it.
Step-by-Step Guide on Writing the Introduction
Crafting an engaging introduction for your argumentative essay is like setting the stage for a compelling drama. It should hook your audience, provide context, and present your stance on the issue. But how can you bring all these elements together effectively? Let's break it down step-by-step. Here's your comprehensive guide to writing a riveting introduction for your argumentative essay.
Step 1: Understanding Your Topic
Before you begin writing, ensure that you thoroughly understand the topic and the argument you wish to present. This means going beyond surface-level research and really digging deep into the subject matter.
Step 2: Define Your Stance
Clearly outline your stance on the argument. This will be the foundation of your thesis statement and guide the tone and direction of your essay.
Step 3: Craft a Compelling Hook
Begin your introduction with a hook - an interesting fact, a question, a quote, or a compelling statement that grabs the reader's attention.
Step 4: Provide Background Information
Next, provide some context to your reader about the topic at hand. Remember not to delve too deep into the specifics - just enough information to guide the reader to understand the relevance of your argument.
Step 5: State Your Thesis
Lastly, present your thesis statement - a concise summary of your main argument. This should be clear, precise, and strongly worded. The thesis statement will guide the entirety of your essay, so make sure it's impactful.
Step 6: Preview Your Main Points
Briefly preview the main points that you will elaborate on in the body of your essay. This helps your reader to understand what to expect from the rest of your argumentative essay.
Step 7: Revise and Edit
Always revise and edit your introduction after writing. Look for any grammar mistakes, unclear sentences or ideas, and ensure that your introduction smoothly transitions into the body of your essay.
REMEMBER : the introduction is the first impression your reader gets of your argumentative essay. Make it impactful, clear, and concise, and you'll have set a strong foundation for the rest of your essay. If you're ever in doubt, reach out to our legal essay writing service , and we'll help guide you on your journey to mastering argumentative essays.
Case Study: Good vs. Bad Introduction
Bad Introduction : "The topic I am writing about is the use of social media. It is very popular. People are always on their phones checking their social media accounts. I am going to talk about if it is good or bad."
Analysis : This introduction falls flat for several reasons. It doesn't grab the reader's attention, and the thesis statement is unclear and broad. It doesn't offer any specific viewpoint or direction for the argument to follow.
Good Introduction : "Every minute, approximately 500 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube, 347,222 stories are posted on Instagram, and 2.4 million snaps are created on Snapchat. The rise of social media platforms is more than a trend - it's a global phenomenon. But as these virtual communities continue to grow, a vital question arises: Is the widespread use of social media enhancing human connection or creating deeper isolation? This essay will delve into the multifaceted impacts of social media, arguing that despite its potential for fostering a global network, it often serves as a platform that promotes isolation and disconnection."
Analysis : This introduction starts with an attention-grabbing statistic, clearly showing the extent of social media usage. The background information provided is concise and relevant, offering enough context without overshadowing the argument. The thesis statement is clear, arguable, and offers a specific direction for the essay to take.
By comparing these two examples, you can see how a well-crafted introduction sets the tone for the entire essay, providing a clear, compelling roadmap for the argument to follow.
There you have it! Crafting an engaging introduction for an argumentative essay doesn't have to be an intimidating process. By understanding the crucial elements involved, practicing, and continuously refining your writing, you're well on your way to creating introductions that captivate your audience and set a strong precedent for your arguments.
- Start with a powerful hook.
- Provide necessary background information.
- State your thesis clearly and concisely.
- Set the stage for your main argument.
- And most importantly, revise and refine your introduction.
And there's one more thing to bear in mind: you're not alone in this journey. Writing can be challenging, but help is always within reach.
To further solidify your introduction writing skills and broaden your understanding of argumentative essays, here are some additional resources that are worth diving into:
Posts from Writers Per Hour Blog
- How to Write Conclusion for an Argumentative Essay
- How Significant Are Opposing Points of View in an Argument
- Argumentative Essay Topics Ideas
- Rebuttal in Argumentative Essay
- Purdue Online Writing Lab: Introduction to Argumentative Essays
- University of North Carolina Writing Center: Introductions
- Harvard College Writing Center: How to Write an Essay
Remember, becoming proficient in writing argumentative essays is a journey, not a destination. It takes time, practice, and patience. But don't forget - if you ever find yourself in need of help, our argumentative essay writing service is here for you. Our experienced argumentative writers are adept at crafting essays and can support you in reaching your academic goals.
Last edit at Jul 08 2023
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- How to write an essay introduction | 4 steps & examples
How to Write an Essay Introduction | 4 Steps & Examples
Published on February 4, 2019 by Shona McCombes . Revised on July 23, 2023.
A good introduction paragraph is an essential part of any academic essay . It sets up your argument and tells the reader what to expect.
The main goals of an introduction are to:
- Catch your reader’s attention.
- Give background on your topic.
- Present your thesis statement —the central point of your essay.
This introduction example is taken from our interactive essay example on the history of Braille.
The invention of Braille was a major turning point in the history of disability. The writing system of raised dots used by visually impaired people was developed by Louis Braille in nineteenth-century France. In a society that did not value disabled people in general, blindness was particularly stigmatized, and lack of access to reading and writing was a significant barrier to social participation. The idea of tactile reading was not entirely new, but existing methods based on sighted systems were difficult to learn and use. As the first writing system designed for blind people’s needs, Braille was a groundbreaking new accessibility tool. It not only provided practical benefits, but also helped change the cultural status of blindness. This essay begins by discussing the situation of blind people in nineteenth-century Europe. It then describes the invention of Braille and the gradual process of its acceptance within blind education. Subsequently, it explores the wide-ranging effects of this invention on blind people’s social and cultural lives.
Table of contents
Step 1: hook your reader, step 2: give background information, step 3: present your thesis statement, step 4: map your essay’s structure, step 5: check and revise, more examples of essay introductions, other interesting articles, frequently asked questions about the essay introduction.
Your first sentence sets the tone for the whole essay, so spend some time on writing an effective hook.
Avoid long, dense sentences—start with something clear, concise and catchy that will spark your reader’s curiosity.
The hook should lead the reader into your essay, giving a sense of the topic you’re writing about and why it’s interesting. Avoid overly broad claims or plain statements of fact.
Examples: Writing a good hook
Take a look at these examples of weak hooks and learn how to improve them.
- Braille was an extremely important invention.
- The invention of Braille was a major turning point in the history of disability.
The first sentence is a dry fact; the second sentence is more interesting, making a bold claim about exactly why the topic is important.
- The internet is defined as “a global computer network providing a variety of information and communication facilities.”
- The spread of the internet has had a world-changing effect, not least on the world of education.
Avoid using a dictionary definition as your hook, especially if it’s an obvious term that everyone knows. The improved example here is still broad, but it gives us a much clearer sense of what the essay will be about.
- Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein is a famous book from the nineteenth century.
- Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein is often read as a crude cautionary tale about the dangers of scientific advancement.
Instead of just stating a fact that the reader already knows, the improved hook here tells us about the mainstream interpretation of the book, implying that this essay will offer a different interpretation.
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Next, give your reader the context they need to understand your topic and argument. Depending on the subject of your essay, this might include:
- Historical, geographical, or social context
- An outline of the debate you’re addressing
- A summary of relevant theories or research about the topic
- Definitions of key terms
The information here should be broad but clearly focused and relevant to your argument. Don’t give too much detail—you can mention points that you will return to later, but save your evidence and interpretation for the main body of the essay.
How much space you need for background depends on your topic and the scope of your essay. In our Braille example, we take a few sentences to introduce the topic and sketch the social context that the essay will address:
Now it’s time to narrow your focus and show exactly what you want to say about the topic. This is your thesis statement —a sentence or two that sums up your overall argument.
This is the most important part of your introduction. A good thesis isn’t just a statement of fact, but a claim that requires evidence and explanation.
The goal is to clearly convey your own position in a debate or your central point about a topic.
Particularly in longer essays, it’s helpful to end the introduction by signposting what will be covered in each part. Keep it concise and give your reader a clear sense of the direction your argument will take.
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As you research and write, your argument might change focus or direction as you learn more.
For this reason, it’s often a good idea to wait until later in the writing process before you write the introduction paragraph—it can even be the very last thing you write.
When you’ve finished writing the essay body and conclusion , you should return to the introduction and check that it matches the content of the essay.
It’s especially important to make sure your thesis statement accurately represents what you do in the essay. If your argument has gone in a different direction than planned, tweak your thesis statement to match what you actually say.
To polish your writing, you can use something like a paraphrasing tool .
You can use the checklist below to make sure your introduction does everything it’s supposed to.
Checklist: Essay introduction
My first sentence is engaging and relevant.
I have introduced the topic with necessary background information.
I have defined any important terms.
My thesis statement clearly presents my main point or argument.
Everything in the introduction is relevant to the main body of the essay.
You have a strong introduction - now make sure the rest of your essay is just as good.
- Literary analysis
This introduction to an argumentative essay sets up the debate about the internet and education, and then clearly states the position the essay will argue for.
The spread of the internet has had a world-changing effect, not least on the world of education. The use of the internet in academic contexts is on the rise, and its role in learning is hotly debated. For many teachers who did not grow up with this technology, its effects seem alarming and potentially harmful. This concern, while understandable, is misguided. The negatives of internet use are outweighed by its critical benefits for students and educators—as a uniquely comprehensive and accessible information source; a means of exposure to and engagement with different perspectives; and a highly flexible learning environment.
This introduction to a short expository essay leads into the topic (the invention of the printing press) and states the main point the essay will explain (the effect of this invention on European society).
In many ways, the invention of the printing press marked the end of the Middle Ages. The medieval period in Europe is often remembered as a time of intellectual and political stagnation. Prior to the Renaissance, the average person had very limited access to books and was unlikely to be literate. The invention of the printing press in the 15th century allowed for much less restricted circulation of information in Europe, paving the way for the Reformation.
This introduction to a literary analysis essay , about Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein , starts by describing a simplistic popular view of the story, and then states how the author will give a more complex analysis of the text’s literary devices.
Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein is often read as a crude cautionary tale. Arguably the first science fiction novel, its plot can be read as a warning about the dangers of scientific advancement unrestrained by ethical considerations. In this reading, and in popular culture representations of the character as a “mad scientist”, Victor Frankenstein represents the callous, arrogant ambition of modern science. However, far from providing a stable image of the character, Shelley uses shifting narrative perspectives to gradually transform our impression of Frankenstein, portraying him in an increasingly negative light as the novel goes on. While he initially appears to be a naive but sympathetic idealist, after the creature’s narrative Frankenstein begins to resemble—even in his own telling—the thoughtlessly cruel figure the creature represents him as.
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Your essay introduction should include three main things, in this order:
- An opening hook to catch the reader’s attention.
- Relevant background information that the reader needs to know.
- A thesis statement that presents your main point or argument.
The length of each part depends on the length and complexity of your essay .
The “hook” is the first sentence of your essay introduction . It should lead the reader into your essay, giving a sense of why it’s interesting.
To write a good hook, avoid overly broad statements or long, dense sentences. Try to start with something clear, concise and catchy that will spark your reader’s curiosity.
A thesis statement is a sentence that sums up the central point of your paper or essay . Everything else you write should relate to this key idea.
The thesis statement is essential in any academic essay or research paper for two main reasons:
- It gives your writing direction and focus.
- It gives the reader a concise summary of your main point.
Without a clear thesis statement, an essay can end up rambling and unfocused, leaving your reader unsure of exactly what you want to say.
The structure of an essay is divided into an introduction that presents your topic and thesis statement , a body containing your in-depth analysis and arguments, and a conclusion wrapping up your ideas.
The structure of the body is flexible, but you should always spend some time thinking about how you can organize your essay to best serve your ideas.
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What this handout is about.
This handout will explain the functions of introductions, offer strategies for creating effective introductions, and provide some examples of less effective introductions to avoid.
The role of introductions
Introductions and conclusions can be the most difficult parts of papers to write. Usually when you sit down to respond to an assignment, you have at least some sense of what you want to say in the body of your paper. You might have chosen a few examples you want to use or have an idea that will help you answer the main question of your assignment; these sections, therefore, may not be as hard to write. And it’s fine to write them first! But in your final draft, these middle parts of the paper can’t just come out of thin air; they need to be introduced and concluded in a way that makes sense to your reader.
Your introduction and conclusion act as bridges that transport your readers from their own lives into the “place” of your analysis. If your readers pick up your paper about education in the autobiography of Frederick Douglass, for example, they need a transition to help them leave behind the world of Chapel Hill, television, e-mail, and The Daily Tar Heel and to help them temporarily enter the world of nineteenth-century American slavery. By providing an introduction that helps your readers make a transition between their own world and the issues you will be writing about, you give your readers the tools they need to get into your topic and care about what you are saying. Similarly, once you’ve hooked your readers with the introduction and offered evidence to prove your thesis, your conclusion can provide a bridge to help your readers make the transition back to their daily lives. (See our handout on conclusions .)
Note that what constitutes a good introduction may vary widely based on the kind of paper you are writing and the academic discipline in which you are writing it. If you are uncertain what kind of introduction is expected, ask your instructor.
Why bother writing a good introduction?
You never get a second chance to make a first impression. The opening paragraph of your paper will provide your readers with their initial impressions of your argument, your writing style, and the overall quality of your work. A vague, disorganized, error-filled, off-the-wall, or boring introduction will probably create a negative impression. On the other hand, a concise, engaging, and well-written introduction will start your readers off thinking highly of you, your analytical skills, your writing, and your paper.
Your introduction is an important road map for the rest of your paper. Your introduction conveys a lot of information to your readers. You can let them know what your topic is, why it is important, and how you plan to proceed with your discussion. In many academic disciplines, your introduction should contain a thesis that will assert your main argument. Your introduction should also give the reader a sense of the kinds of information you will use to make that argument and the general organization of the paragraphs and pages that will follow. After reading your introduction, your readers should not have any major surprises in store when they read the main body of your paper.
Ideally, your introduction will make your readers want to read your paper. The introduction should capture your readers’ interest, making them want to read the rest of your paper. Opening with a compelling story, an interesting question, or a vivid example can get your readers to see why your topic matters and serve as an invitation for them to join you for an engaging intellectual conversation (remember, though, that these strategies may not be suitable for all papers and disciplines).
Strategies for writing an effective introduction
Start by thinking about the question (or questions) you are trying to answer. Your entire essay will be a response to this question, and your introduction is the first step toward that end. Your direct answer to the assigned question will be your thesis, and your thesis will likely be included in your introduction, so it is a good idea to use the question as a jumping off point. Imagine that you are assigned the following question:
Drawing on the Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass , discuss the relationship between education and slavery in 19th-century America. Consider the following: How did white control of education reinforce slavery? How did Douglass and other enslaved African Americans view education while they endured slavery? And what role did education play in the acquisition of freedom? Most importantly, consider the degree to which education was or was not a major force for social change with regard to slavery.
You will probably refer back to your assignment extensively as you prepare your complete essay, and the prompt itself can also give you some clues about how to approach the introduction. Notice that it starts with a broad statement and then narrows to focus on specific questions from the book. One strategy might be to use a similar model in your own introduction—start off with a big picture sentence or two and then focus in on the details of your argument about Douglass. Of course, a different approach could also be very successful, but looking at the way the professor set up the question can sometimes give you some ideas for how you might answer it. (See our handout on understanding assignments for additional information on the hidden clues in assignments.)
Decide how general or broad your opening should be. Keep in mind that even a “big picture” opening needs to be clearly related to your topic; an opening sentence that said “Human beings, more than any other creatures on earth, are capable of learning” would be too broad for our sample assignment about slavery and education. If you have ever used Google Maps or similar programs, that experience can provide a helpful way of thinking about how broad your opening should be. Imagine that you’re researching Chapel Hill. If what you want to find out is whether Chapel Hill is at roughly the same latitude as Rome, it might make sense to hit that little “minus” sign on the online map until it has zoomed all the way out and you can see the whole globe. If you’re trying to figure out how to get from Chapel Hill to Wrightsville Beach, it might make more sense to zoom in to the level where you can see most of North Carolina (but not the rest of the world, or even the rest of the United States). And if you are looking for the intersection of Ridge Road and Manning Drive so that you can find the Writing Center’s main office, you may need to zoom all the way in. The question you are asking determines how “broad” your view should be. In the sample assignment above, the questions are probably at the “state” or “city” level of generality. When writing, you need to place your ideas in context—but that context doesn’t generally have to be as big as the whole galaxy!
Try writing your introduction last. You may think that you have to write your introduction first, but that isn’t necessarily true, and it isn’t always the most effective way to craft a good introduction. You may find that you don’t know precisely what you are going to argue at the beginning of the writing process. It is perfectly fine to start out thinking that you want to argue a particular point but wind up arguing something slightly or even dramatically different by the time you’ve written most of the paper. The writing process can be an important way to organize your ideas, think through complicated issues, refine your thoughts, and develop a sophisticated argument. However, an introduction written at the beginning of that discovery process will not necessarily reflect what you wind up with at the end. You will need to revise your paper to make sure that the introduction, all of the evidence, and the conclusion reflect the argument you intend. Sometimes it’s easiest to just write up all of your evidence first and then write the introduction last—that way you can be sure that the introduction will match the body of the paper.
Don’t be afraid to write a tentative introduction first and then change it later. Some people find that they need to write some kind of introduction in order to get the writing process started. That’s fine, but if you are one of those people, be sure to return to your initial introduction later and rewrite if necessary.
Open with something that will draw readers in. Consider these options (remembering that they may not be suitable for all kinds of papers):
- an intriguing example —for example, Douglass writes about a mistress who initially teaches him but then ceases her instruction as she learns more about slavery.
- a provocative quotation that is closely related to your argument —for example, Douglass writes that “education and slavery were incompatible with each other.” (Quotes from famous people, inspirational quotes, etc. may not work well for an academic paper; in this example, the quote is from the author himself.)
- a puzzling scenario —for example, Frederick Douglass says of slaves that “[N]othing has been left undone to cripple their intellects, darken their minds, debase their moral nature, obliterate all traces of their relationship to mankind; and yet how wonderfully they have sustained the mighty load of a most frightful bondage, under which they have been groaning for centuries!” Douglass clearly asserts that slave owners went to great lengths to destroy the mental capacities of slaves, yet his own life story proves that these efforts could be unsuccessful.
- a vivid and perhaps unexpected anecdote —for example, “Learning about slavery in the American history course at Frederick Douglass High School, students studied the work slaves did, the impact of slavery on their families, and the rules that governed their lives. We didn’t discuss education, however, until one student, Mary, raised her hand and asked, ‘But when did they go to school?’ That modern high school students could not conceive of an American childhood devoid of formal education speaks volumes about the centrality of education to American youth today and also suggests the significance of the deprivation of education in past generations.”
- a thought-provoking question —for example, given all of the freedoms that were denied enslaved individuals in the American South, why does Frederick Douglass focus his attentions so squarely on education and literacy?
Pay special attention to your first sentence. Start off on the right foot with your readers by making sure that the first sentence actually says something useful and that it does so in an interesting and polished way.
How to evaluate your introduction draft
Ask a friend to read your introduction and then tell you what he or she expects the paper will discuss, what kinds of evidence the paper will use, and what the tone of the paper will be. If your friend is able to predict the rest of your paper accurately, you probably have a good introduction.
Five kinds of less effective introductions
1. The placeholder introduction. When you don’t have much to say on a given topic, it is easy to create this kind of introduction. Essentially, this kind of weaker introduction contains several sentences that are vague and don’t really say much. They exist just to take up the “introduction space” in your paper. If you had something more effective to say, you would probably say it, but in the meantime this paragraph is just a place holder.
Example: Slavery was one of the greatest tragedies in American history. There were many different aspects of slavery. Each created different kinds of problems for enslaved people.
2. The restated question introduction. Restating the question can sometimes be an effective strategy, but it can be easy to stop at JUST restating the question instead of offering a more specific, interesting introduction to your paper. The professor or teaching assistant wrote your question and will be reading many essays in response to it—he or she does not need to read a whole paragraph that simply restates the question.
Example: The Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass discusses the relationship between education and slavery in 19th century America, showing how white control of education reinforced slavery and how Douglass and other enslaved African Americans viewed education while they endured. Moreover, the book discusses the role that education played in the acquisition of freedom. Education was a major force for social change with regard to slavery.
3. The Webster’s Dictionary introduction. This introduction begins by giving the dictionary definition of one or more of the words in the assigned question. Anyone can look a word up in the dictionary and copy down what Webster says. If you want to open with a discussion of an important term, it may be far more interesting for you (and your reader) if you develop your own definition of the term in the specific context of your class and assignment. You may also be able to use a definition from one of the sources you’ve been reading for class. Also recognize that the dictionary is also not a particularly authoritative work—it doesn’t take into account the context of your course and doesn’t offer particularly detailed information. If you feel that you must seek out an authority, try to find one that is very relevant and specific. Perhaps a quotation from a source reading might prove better? Dictionary introductions are also ineffective simply because they are so overused. Instructors may see a great many papers that begin in this way, greatly decreasing the dramatic impact that any one of those papers will have.
Example: Webster’s dictionary defines slavery as “the state of being a slave,” as “the practice of owning slaves,” and as “a condition of hard work and subjection.”
4. The “dawn of man” introduction. This kind of introduction generally makes broad, sweeping statements about the relevance of this topic since the beginning of time, throughout the world, etc. It is usually very general (similar to the placeholder introduction) and fails to connect to the thesis. It may employ cliches—the phrases “the dawn of man” and “throughout human history” are examples, and it’s hard to imagine a time when starting with one of these would work. Instructors often find them extremely annoying.
Example: Since the dawn of man, slavery has been a problem in human history.
5. The book report introduction. This introduction is what you had to do for your elementary school book reports. It gives the name and author of the book you are writing about, tells what the book is about, and offers other basic facts about the book. You might resort to this sort of introduction when you are trying to fill space because it’s a familiar, comfortable format. It is ineffective because it offers details that your reader probably already knows and that are irrelevant to the thesis.
Example: Frederick Douglass wrote his autobiography, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave , in the 1840s. It was published in 1986 by Penguin Books. In it, he tells the story of his life.
And now for the conclusion…
Writing an effective introduction can be tough. Try playing around with several different options and choose the one that ends up sounding best to you!
Just as your introduction helps readers make the transition to your topic, your conclusion needs to help them return to their daily lives–but with a lasting sense of how what they have just read is useful or meaningful. Check out our handout on conclusions for tips on ending your paper as effectively as you began it!
We consulted these works while writing this handout. This is not a comprehensive list of resources on the handout’s topic, and we encourage you to do your own research to find additional publications. Please do not use this list as a model for the format of your own reference list, as it may not match the citation style you are using. For guidance on formatting citations, please see the UNC Libraries citation tutorial . We revise these tips periodically and welcome feedback.
Douglass, Frederick. 1995. Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave, Written by Himself . New York: Dover.
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The introduction to an academic essay will generally present an analytical question or problem and then offer an answer to that question (the thesis).
Your introduction is also your opportunity to explain to your readers what your essay is about and why they should be interested in reading it. You don’t have to “hook” your readers with a dramatic promise (every other discussion of the topic you’re writing about is completely wrong!) or an exciting fact (the moon can reach 127 degrees Celsius!). Instead, you should use your introduction to explain to your readers why your essay is going to be interesting to read. To do this, you’ll need to frame the question or problem that you’re writing about and explain why this question or problem is important. If you make a convincing case for why your question or problem is worth solving, your readers will be interested in reading on.
While some of the conventions for writing an introduction vary by discipline, a strong introduction for any paper will contain some common elements. You can see these common elements in the sample introductions on this page . In general, your introductions should contain the following elements:
- Orienting Information When you’re writing an essay, it’s helpful to think about what your reader needs to know in order to follow your argument. Your introduction should include enough information so that readers can understand the context for your thesis. For example, if you are analyzing someone else’s argument, you will need to identify that argument and possibly summarize its key points. If you are joining a scholarly conversation about education reform, you will need to provide context for this conversation before explaining what your essay adds to the discussion. But you don’t necessarily have to summarize your sources in detail in your introduction; that information may fit in better later in your essay. When you’re deciding how much context or background information to provide, it can be helpful to think about that information in relation to your thesis. You don’t have to tell readers everything they will need to know to understand your entire essay right away. You just need to give them enough information to be able to understand and appreciate your thesis. For some assignments, you’ll be able to assume that your audience has also read the sources you are analyzing. But even in those cases, you should still offer enough information for readers to know which parts of a source you are talking about. When you’re writing a paper based on your own research, you will need to provide more context about the sources you’re going to discuss. If you’re not sure how much you can assume your audience knows, you should consult your instructor.
An explanation of what’s at stake in your essay, or why anyone would need to read an essay that argues this thesis You will know why your essay is worth writing if you are trying to answer a question that doesn’t have an obvious answer; to propose a solution to a problem without one obvious solution; or to point out something that others may not have noticed that changes the way we consider a phenomenon, source, or idea. In all of these cases, you will be trying to understand something that you think is valuable to understand. But it’s not enough that you know why your essay is worth reading; you also need to explain to your readers why they should care about reading an essay that argues your thesis.
- Your thesis This is what you’re arguing in your essay.
Tips for writing introductions
- If you are writing in a new discipline, you should always make sure to ask about conventions and expectations for introductions, just as you would for any other aspect of the essay. For example, while it may be acceptable to write a two-paragraph (or longer) introduction for your papers in some courses, instructors in other disciplines, such as those in some Government courses, may expect a shorter introduction that includes a preview of the argument that will follow .
- In some disciplines (Government, Economics, and others), it’s common to offer an overview in the introduction of what points you will make in your essay. In other disciplines, you will not be expected to provide this overview in your introduction.
- Avoid writing a very general opening sentence. While it may be true that “Since the dawn of time, people have been telling love stories,” it won’t help you explain what’s interesting about your topic.
- Avoid writing a “funnel” introduction in which you begin with a very broad statement about a topic and move to a narrow statement about that topic. Broad generalizations about a topic will not add to your readers’ understanding of your specific essay topic.
- Avoid beginning with a dictionary definition of a term or concept you will be writing about. If the concept is complicated or unfamiliar to your readers, you will need to define it in detail later in your essay. If it’s not complicated, you can assume your readers already know the definition.
- Avoid offering too much detail in your introduction that a reader could better understand later in the paper.
- Tips for Reading an Assignment Prompt
- Asking Analytical Questions
- What Do Introductions Across the Disciplines Have in Common?
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- Tips for Organizing Your Essay
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8 Effective Strategies to Write Argumentative Essays
In a bustling university town, there lived a student named Alex. Popular for creativity and wit, one challenge seemed insurmountable for Alex– the dreaded argumentative essay!
One gloomy afternoon, as the rain tapped against the window pane, Alex sat at his cluttered desk, staring at a blank document on the computer screen. The assignment loomed large: a 350-600-word argumentative essay on a topic of their choice . With a sigh, he decided to seek help of mentor, Professor Mitchell, who was known for his passion for writing.
Entering Professor Mitchell’s office was like stepping into a treasure of knowledge. Bookshelves lined every wall, faint aroma of old manuscripts in the air and sticky notes over the wall. Alex took a deep breath and knocked on his door.
“Ah, Alex,” Professor Mitchell greeted with a warm smile. “What brings you here today?”
Alex confessed his struggles with the argumentative essay. After hearing his concerns, Professor Mitchell said, “Ah, the argumentative essay! Don’t worry, Let’s take a look at it together.” As he guided Alex to the corner shelf, Alex asked,
Table of Contents
“What is an Argumentative Essay?”
The professor replied, “An argumentative essay is a type of academic writing that presents a clear argument or a firm position on a contentious issue. Unlike other forms of essays, such as descriptive or narrative essays, these essays require you to take a stance, present evidence, and convince your audience of the validity of your viewpoint with supporting evidence. A well-crafted argumentative essay relies on concrete facts and supporting evidence rather than merely expressing the author’s personal opinions . Furthermore, these essays demand comprehensive research on the chosen topic and typically follows a structured format consisting of three primary sections: an introductory paragraph, three body paragraphs, and a concluding paragraph.”
He continued, “Argumentative essays are written in a wide range of subject areas, reflecting their applicability across disciplines. They are written in different subject areas like literature and philosophy, history, science and technology, political science, psychology, economics and so on.
“When is an Argumentative Essay Written?”
The professor answered, “Argumentative essays are often assigned in academic settings, but they can also be written for various other purposes, such as editorials, opinion pieces, or blog posts. Some common situations to write argumentative essays include:
1. Academic assignments
In school or college, teachers or professors may assign argumentative essays as part of coursework. These essays help students develop critical thinking and persuasive writing skills .
2. Debates and discussions
Argumentative essays can serve as the basis for debates or discussions in academic or competitive settings. Moreover, they provide a structured way to present and defend your viewpoint.
3. Opinion pieces
Newspapers, magazines, and online publications often feature opinion pieces that present an argument on a current issue or topic. These essays aim to influence public opinion.
4. Policy proposals
In government and policy-related fields, argumentative essays are used to propose and defend specific policy changes or solutions to societal problems.
5. Persuasive speeches
Before delivering a persuasive speech, it’s common to prepare an argumentative essay as a foundation for your presentation.
Regardless of the context, an argumentative essay should present a clear thesis statement , provide evidence and reasoning to support your position, address counterarguments, and conclude with a compelling summary of your main points. The goal is to persuade readers or listeners to accept your viewpoint or at least consider it seriously.”
Handing over a book, the professor continued, “Take a look on the elements or structure of an argumentative essay.”
Elements of an Argumentative Essay
An argumentative essay comprises five essential components:
Claim in argumentative writing is the central argument or viewpoint that the writer aims to establish and defend throughout the essay. A claim must assert your position on an issue and must be arguable. It can guide the entire argument.
Evidence must consist of factual information, data, examples, or expert opinions that support the claim. Also, it lends credibility to the argument by strengthening the writer’s position.
Acknowledging the opposing viewpoint is crucial in an argumentative essay. Presenting a counterclaim demonstrates fairness and awareness of alternative perspectives.
After presenting the counterclaim, the writer refutes it by offering counterarguments or providing evidence that weakens the opposing viewpoint. It shows that the writer has considered multiple perspectives and is prepared to defend their position.
The format of an argumentative essay typically follows the structure to ensure clarity and effectiveness in presenting an argument.
How to Write An Argumentative Essay
Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to write an argumentative essay:
- Begin with a compelling sentence or question to grab the reader’s attention.
- Provide context for the issue, including relevant facts, statistics, or historical background.
- Provide a concise thesis statement to present your position on the topic.
2. Body Paragraphs (usually three or more)
- Start each paragraph with a clear and focused topic sentence that relates to your thesis statement.
- Provide evidence and support for your argument. Explain the facts, statistics, examples, expert opinions, and quotations from credible sources that supports and add relevance to your thesis.
- Use transition sentences to smoothly move from one point to the next.
3. Counterargument and Rebuttal
- Acknowledge opposing viewpoints or potential objections to your argument.
- Address these counterarguments and explain why they do not weaken your position. Provide evidence and reasoning to support your rebuttal.
- Restate your thesis statement in different words to remind the reader of your main argument.
- Summarize the key points you’ve made in the body of the essay.
- Leave the reader with a final thought, call to action, or broader implication related to the topic.
5. Citations and References
- Properly cite all the sources you use in your essay using a consistent citation style.
- Include a bibliography or works cited page at the end of your essay.
6. Formatting and Style
- Follow any specific formatting guidelines provided by your instructor or institution.
- Use a professional and academic tone in your writing.
- and edit your essay for grammar, spelling, and .
Remember that the specific requirements for formatting an argumentative essay may vary depending on your instructor’s guidelines or the citation style you’re using (e.g., APA, MLA, Chicago). Always check the assignment instructions or style guide for any additional requirements or variations in formatting.
Prof. Mitchell continued, “An argumentative essay can adopt various approaches when dealing with opposing perspectives. It may offer a balanced presentation of both sides, providing equal weight to each, or it may advocate more strongly for one side while still acknowledging the existence of opposing views.” Turing the page, the professor continued, “Check this page to know the importance of writing an argumentative essay in developing skills of an individual.”
Importance of an Argumentative Essay
After understanding the benefits, Alex was convinced by the ability of the argumentative essays in advocating one’s beliefs and favor the author’s position. Alex asked,
“How are argumentative essays different from the other types?”
Prof. Mitchell answered, “Argumentative essays differ from other types of essays primarily in their purpose, structure, and approach in presenting information. Unlike expository essays, argumentative essays persuade the reader to adopt a particular point of view or take a specific action on a controversial issue. Furthermore, they differ from descriptive essays by not focusing vividly on describing a topic. Also, they are less engaging through storytelling as compared to the narrative essays.
Alex said, “Given the direct and persuasive nature of argumentative essays, can you suggest some strategies to write an effective argumentative essay?
Turing the pages of the book, Prof. Mitchell replied, “Sure! You can check this infographic to get some tips for writing an argumentative essay.”
Effective Strategies to Write an Argumentative Essay
As days turned into weeks, Alex diligently worked on his essay. He researched, gathered evidence, and refined his thesis. It was a long and challenging journey, filled with countless drafts and revisions.
Finally, the day arrived when Alex submitted their essay. As he clicked the “Submit” button, a sense of accomplishment washed over him. He realized that the argumentative essay, while challenging, had improved his critical thinking and transformed him into a more confident writer. Furthermore, Alex received feedback from his professor, a mix of praise and constructive criticism. It was a humbling experience, a reminder that every journey has its obstacles and opportunities for growth.
Frequently Asked Questions
An argumentative essay can be written as follows- 1. Choose a Topic 2. Research and Collect Evidences 3. Develop a Clear Thesis Statement 4. Outline Your Essay- Introduction, Body Paragraphs and Conclusion 5. Revise and Edit 6. Format and Cite Sources 7. Final Review
One must choose a clear, concise and specific statement as a claim. It must be debatable and establish your position. Avoid using ambiguous or unclear while making a claim. To strengthen your claim, address potential counterarguments or opposing viewpoints. Additionally, use persuasive language and rhetoric to make your claim more compelling
Starting an argument essay effectively is crucial to engage your readers and establish the context for your argument. Here’s how you can start an argument essay are: 1. Begin With an Engaging Hook 2. Provide Background Information 3. Present Your Thesis Statement 4. Briefly Outline Your Main 5. Establish Your Credibility
The key features of an argumentative essay are: 1. Clear and Specific Thesis Statement 2. Credible Evidence 3. Counterarguments 4. Structured Body Paragraph 5. Logical Flow 6. Use of Persuasive Techniques 7. Formal Language
An argumentative essay typically consists of the following main parts or sections: 1. Introduction 2. Body Paragraphs 3. Counterargument and Rebuttal 4. Conclusion 5. References (if applicable)
The main purpose of an argumentative essay is to persuade the reader to accept or agree with a particular viewpoint or position on a controversial or debatable topic. In other words, the primary goal of an argumentative essay is to convince the audience that the author's argument or thesis statement is valid, logical, and well-supported by evidence and reasoning.
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Sat / act prep online guides and tips, 3 strong argumentative essay examples, analyzed.
Need to defend your opinion on an issue? Argumentative essays are one of the most popular types of essays you’ll write in school. They combine persuasive arguments with fact-based research, and, when done well, can be powerful tools for making someone agree with your point of view. If you’re struggling to write an argumentative essay or just want to learn more about them, seeing examples can be a big help.
After giving an overview of this type of essay, we provide three argumentative essay examples. After each essay, we explain in-depth how the essay was structured, what worked, and where the essay could be improved. We end with tips for making your own argumentative essay as strong as possible.
What Is an Argumentative Essay?
An argumentative essay is an essay that uses evidence and facts to support the claim it’s making. Its purpose is to persuade the reader to agree with the argument being made.
A good argumentative essay will use facts and evidence to support the argument, rather than just the author’s thoughts and opinions. For example, say you wanted to write an argumentative essay stating that Charleston, SC is a great destination for families. You couldn’t just say that it’s a great place because you took your family there and enjoyed it. For it to be an argumentative essay, you need to have facts and data to support your argument, such as the number of child-friendly attractions in Charleston, special deals you can get with kids, and surveys of people who visited Charleston as a family and enjoyed it. The first argument is based entirely on feelings, whereas the second is based on evidence that can be proven.
The standard five paragraph format is common, but not required, for argumentative essays. These essays typically follow one of two formats: the Toulmin model or the Rogerian model.
- The Toulmin model is the most common. It begins with an introduction, follows with a thesis/claim, and gives data and evidence to support that claim. This style of essay also includes rebuttals of counterarguments.
- The Rogerian model analyzes two sides of an argument and reaches a conclusion after weighing the strengths and weaknesses of each.
3 Good Argumentative Essay Examples + Analysis
Below are three examples of argumentative essays, written by yours truly in my school days, as well as analysis of what each did well and where it could be improved.
Argumentative Essay Example 1
Proponents of this idea state that it will save local cities and towns money because libraries are expensive to maintain. They also believe it will encourage more people to read because they won’t have to travel to a library to get a book; they can simply click on what they want to read and read it from wherever they are. They could also access more materials because libraries won’t have to buy physical copies of books; they can simply rent out as many digital copies as they need.
However, it would be a serious mistake to replace libraries with tablets. First, digital books and resources are associated with less learning and more problems than print resources. A study done on tablet vs book reading found that people read 20-30% slower on tablets, retain 20% less information, and understand 10% less of what they read compared to people who read the same information in print. Additionally, staring too long at a screen has been shown to cause numerous health problems, including blurred vision, dizziness, dry eyes, headaches, and eye strain, at much higher instances than reading print does. People who use tablets and mobile devices excessively also have a higher incidence of more serious health issues such as fibromyalgia, shoulder and back pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, and muscle strain. I know that whenever I read from my e-reader for too long, my eyes begin to feel tired and my neck hurts. We should not add to these problems by giving people, especially young people, more reasons to look at screens.
Second, it is incredibly narrow-minded to assume that the only service libraries offer is book lending. Libraries have a multitude of benefits, and many are only available if the library has a physical location. Some of these benefits include acting as a quiet study space, giving people a way to converse with their neighbors, holding classes on a variety of topics, providing jobs, answering patron questions, and keeping the community connected. One neighborhood found that, after a local library instituted community events such as play times for toddlers and parents, job fairs for teenagers, and meeting spaces for senior citizens, over a third of residents reported feeling more connected to their community. Similarly, a Pew survey conducted in 2015 found that nearly two-thirds of American adults feel that closing their local library would have a major impact on their community. People see libraries as a way to connect with others and get their questions answered, benefits tablets can’t offer nearly as well or as easily.
While replacing libraries with tablets may seem like a simple solution, it would encourage people to spend even more time looking at digital screens, despite the myriad issues surrounding them. It would also end access to many of the benefits of libraries that people have come to rely on. In many areas, libraries are such an important part of the community network that they could never be replaced by a simple object.
The author begins by giving an overview of the counter-argument, then the thesis appears as the first sentence in the third paragraph. The essay then spends the rest of the paper dismantling the counter argument and showing why readers should believe the other side.
What this essay does well:
- Although it’s a bit unusual to have the thesis appear fairly far into the essay, it works because, once the thesis is stated, the rest of the essay focuses on supporting it since the counter-argument has already been discussed earlier in the paper.
- This essay includes numerous facts and cites studies to support its case. By having specific data to rely on, the author’s argument is stronger and readers will be more inclined to agree with it.
- For every argument the other side makes, the author makes sure to refute it and follow up with why her opinion is the stronger one. In order to make a strong argument, it’s important to dismantle the other side, which this essay does this by making the author's view appear stronger.
- This is a shorter paper, and if it needed to be expanded to meet length requirements, it could include more examples and go more into depth with them, such as by explaining specific cases where people benefited from local libraries.
- Additionally, while the paper uses lots of data, the author also mentions their own experience with using tablets. This should be removed since argumentative essays focus on facts and data to support an argument, not the author’s own opinion or experiences. Replacing that with more data on health issues associated with screen time would strengthen the essay.
- Some of the points made aren't completely accurate , particularly the one about digital books being cheaper. It actually often costs a library more money to rent out numerous digital copies of a book compared to buying a single physical copy. Make sure in your own essay you thoroughly research each of the points and rebuttals you make, otherwise you'll look like you don't know the issue that well.
Argumentative Essay Example 2
There are multiple drugs available to treat malaria, and many of them work well and save lives, but malaria eradication programs that focus too much on them and not enough on prevention haven’t seen long-term success in Sub-Saharan Africa. A major program to combat malaria was WHO’s Global Malaria Eradication Programme. Started in 1955, it had a goal of eliminating malaria in Africa within the next ten years. Based upon previously successful programs in Brazil and the United States, the program focused mainly on vector control. This included widely distributing chloroquine and spraying large amounts of DDT. More than one billion dollars was spent trying to abolish malaria. However, the program suffered from many problems and in 1969, WHO was forced to admit that the program had not succeeded in eradicating malaria. The number of people in Sub-Saharan Africa who contracted malaria as well as the number of malaria deaths had actually increased over 10% during the time the program was active.
One of the major reasons for the failure of the project was that it set uniform strategies and policies. By failing to consider variations between governments, geography, and infrastructure, the program was not nearly as successful as it could have been. Sub-Saharan Africa has neither the money nor the infrastructure to support such an elaborate program, and it couldn’t be run the way it was meant to. Most African countries don't have the resources to send all their people to doctors and get shots, nor can they afford to clear wetlands or other malaria prone areas. The continent’s spending per person for eradicating malaria was just a quarter of what Brazil spent. Sub-Saharan Africa simply can’t rely on a plan that requires more money, infrastructure, and expertise than they have to spare.
Additionally, the widespread use of chloroquine has created drug resistant parasites which are now plaguing Sub-Saharan Africa. Because chloroquine was used widely but inconsistently, mosquitoes developed resistance, and chloroquine is now nearly completely ineffective in Sub-Saharan Africa, with over 95% of mosquitoes resistant to it. As a result, newer, more expensive drugs need to be used to prevent and treat malaria, which further drives up the cost of malaria treatment for a region that can ill afford it.
Instead of developing plans to treat malaria after the infection has incurred, programs should focus on preventing infection from occurring in the first place. Not only is this plan cheaper and more effective, reducing the number of people who contract malaria also reduces loss of work/school days which can further bring down the productivity of the region.
One of the cheapest and most effective ways of preventing malaria is to implement insecticide-treated bed nets (ITNs). These nets provide a protective barrier around the person or people using them. While untreated bed nets are still helpful, those treated with insecticides are much more useful because they stop mosquitoes from biting people through the nets, and they help reduce mosquito populations in a community, thus helping people who don’t even own bed nets. Bed nets are also very effective because most mosquito bites occur while the person is sleeping, so bed nets would be able to drastically reduce the number of transmissions during the night. In fact, transmission of malaria can be reduced by as much as 90% in areas where the use of ITNs is widespread. Because money is so scarce in Sub-Saharan Africa, the low cost is a great benefit and a major reason why the program is so successful. Bed nets cost roughly 2 USD to make, last several years, and can protect two adults. Studies have shown that, for every 100-1000 more nets are being used, one less child dies of malaria. With an estimated 300 million people in Africa not being protected by mosquito nets, there’s the potential to save three million lives by spending just a few dollars per person.
Reducing the number of people who contract malaria would also reduce poverty levels in Africa significantly, thus improving other aspects of society like education levels and the economy. Vector control is more effective than treatment strategies because it means fewer people are getting sick. When fewer people get sick, the working population is stronger as a whole because people are not put out of work from malaria, nor are they caring for sick relatives. Malaria-afflicted families can typically only harvest 40% of the crops that healthy families can harvest. Additionally, a family with members who have malaria spends roughly a quarter of its income treatment, not including the loss of work they also must deal with due to the illness. It’s estimated that malaria costs Africa 12 billion USD in lost income every year. A strong working population creates a stronger economy, which Sub-Saharan Africa is in desperate need of.
This essay begins with an introduction, which ends with the thesis (that malaria eradication plans in Sub-Saharan Africa should focus on prevention rather than treatment). The first part of the essay lays out why the counter argument (treatment rather than prevention) is not as effective, and the second part of the essay focuses on why prevention of malaria is the better path to take.
- The thesis appears early, is stated clearly, and is supported throughout the rest of the essay. This makes the argument clear for readers to understand and follow throughout the essay.
- There’s lots of solid research in this essay, including specific programs that were conducted and how successful they were, as well as specific data mentioned throughout. This evidence helps strengthen the author’s argument.
- The author makes a case for using expanding bed net use over waiting until malaria occurs and beginning treatment, but not much of a plan is given for how the bed nets would be distributed or how to ensure they’re being used properly. By going more into detail of what she believes should be done, the author would be making a stronger argument.
- The introduction of the essay does a good job of laying out the seriousness of the problem, but the conclusion is short and abrupt. Expanding it into its own paragraph would give the author a final way to convince readers of her side of the argument.
Argumentative Essay Example 3
There are many ways payments could work. They could be in the form of a free-market approach, where athletes are able to earn whatever the market is willing to pay them, it could be a set amount of money per athlete, or student athletes could earn income from endorsements, autographs, and control of their likeness, similar to the way top Olympians earn money.
Proponents of the idea believe that, because college athletes are the ones who are training, participating in games, and bringing in audiences, they should receive some sort of compensation for their work. If there were no college athletes, the NCAA wouldn’t exist, college coaches wouldn’t receive there (sometimes very high) salaries, and brands like Nike couldn’t profit from college sports. In fact, the NCAA brings in roughly $1 billion in revenue a year, but college athletes don’t receive any of that money in the form of a paycheck. Additionally, people who believe college athletes should be paid state that paying college athletes will actually encourage them to remain in college longer and not turn pro as quickly, either by giving them a way to begin earning money in college or requiring them to sign a contract stating they’ll stay at the university for a certain number of years while making an agreed-upon salary.
Supporters of this idea point to Zion Williamson, the Duke basketball superstar, who, during his freshman year, sustained a serious knee injury. Many argued that, even if he enjoyed playing for Duke, it wasn’t worth risking another injury and ending his professional career before it even began for a program that wasn’t paying him. Williamson seems to have agreed with them and declared his eligibility for the NCAA draft later that year. If he was being paid, he may have stayed at Duke longer. In fact, roughly a third of student athletes surveyed stated that receiving a salary while in college would make them “strongly consider” remaining collegiate athletes longer before turning pro.
Paying athletes could also stop the recruitment scandals that have plagued the NCAA. In 2018, the NCAA stripped the University of Louisville's men's basketball team of its 2013 national championship title because it was discovered coaches were using sex workers to entice recruits to join the team. There have been dozens of other recruitment scandals where college athletes and recruits have been bribed with anything from having their grades changed, to getting free cars, to being straight out bribed. By paying college athletes and putting their salaries out in the open, the NCAA could end the illegal and underhanded ways some schools and coaches try to entice athletes to join.
People who argue against the idea of paying college athletes believe the practice could be disastrous for college sports. By paying athletes, they argue, they’d turn college sports into a bidding war, where only the richest schools could afford top athletes, and the majority of schools would be shut out from developing a talented team (though some argue this already happens because the best players often go to the most established college sports programs, who typically pay their coaches millions of dollars per year). It could also ruin the tight camaraderie of many college teams if players become jealous that certain teammates are making more money than they are.
They also argue that paying college athletes actually means only a small fraction would make significant money. Out of the 350 Division I athletic departments, fewer than a dozen earn any money. Nearly all the money the NCAA makes comes from men’s football and basketball, so paying college athletes would make a small group of men--who likely will be signed to pro teams and begin making millions immediately out of college--rich at the expense of other players.
Those against paying college athletes also believe that the athletes are receiving enough benefits already. The top athletes already receive scholarships that are worth tens of thousands per year, they receive free food/housing/textbooks, have access to top medical care if they are injured, receive top coaching, get travel perks and free gear, and can use their time in college as a way to capture the attention of professional recruiters. No other college students receive anywhere near as much from their schools.
People on this side also point out that, while the NCAA brings in a massive amount of money each year, it is still a non-profit organization. How? Because over 95% of those profits are redistributed to its members’ institutions in the form of scholarships, grants, conferences, support for Division II and Division III teams, and educational programs. Taking away a significant part of that revenue would hurt smaller programs that rely on that money to keep running.
While both sides have good points, it’s clear that the negatives of paying college athletes far outweigh the positives. College athletes spend a significant amount of time and energy playing for their school, but they are compensated for it by the scholarships and perks they receive. Adding a salary to that would result in a college athletic system where only a small handful of athletes (those likely to become millionaires in the professional leagues) are paid by a handful of schools who enter bidding wars to recruit them, while the majority of student athletics and college athletic programs suffer or even shut down for lack of money. Continuing to offer the current level of benefits to student athletes makes it possible for as many people to benefit from and enjoy college sports as possible.
This argumentative essay follows the Rogerian model. It discusses each side, first laying out multiple reasons people believe student athletes should be paid, then discussing reasons why the athletes shouldn’t be paid. It ends by stating that college athletes shouldn’t be paid by arguing that paying them would destroy college athletics programs and cause them to have many of the issues professional sports leagues have.
- Both sides of the argument are well developed, with multiple reasons why people agree with each side. It allows readers to get a full view of the argument and its nuances.
- Certain statements on both sides are directly rebuffed in order to show where the strengths and weaknesses of each side lie and give a more complete and sophisticated look at the argument.
- Using the Rogerian model can be tricky because oftentimes you don’t explicitly state your argument until the end of the paper. Here, the thesis doesn’t appear until the first sentence of the final paragraph. That doesn’t give readers a lot of time to be convinced that your argument is the right one, compared to a paper where the thesis is stated in the beginning and then supported throughout the paper. This paper could be strengthened if the final paragraph was expanded to more fully explain why the author supports the view, or if the paper had made it clearer that paying athletes was the weaker argument throughout.
3 Tips for Writing a Good Argumentative Essay
Now that you’ve seen examples of what good argumentative essay samples look like, follow these three tips when crafting your own essay.
#1: Make Your Thesis Crystal Clear
The thesis is the key to your argumentative essay; if it isn’t clear or readers can’t find it easily, your entire essay will be weak as a result. Always make sure that your thesis statement is easy to find. The typical spot for it is the final sentence of the introduction paragraph, but if it doesn’t fit in that spot for your essay, try to at least put it as the first or last sentence of a different paragraph so it stands out more.
Also make sure that your thesis makes clear what side of the argument you’re on. After you’ve written it, it’s a great idea to show your thesis to a couple different people--classmates are great for this. Just by reading your thesis they should be able to understand what point you’ll be trying to make with the rest of your essay.
#2: Show Why the Other Side Is Weak
When writing your essay, you may be tempted to ignore the other side of the argument and just focus on your side, but don’t do this. The best argumentative essays really tear apart the other side to show why readers shouldn’t believe it. Before you begin writing your essay, research what the other side believes, and what their strongest points are. Then, in your essay, be sure to mention each of these and use evidence to explain why they’re incorrect/weak arguments. That’ll make your essay much more effective than if you only focused on your side of the argument.
#3: Use Evidence to Support Your Side
Remember, an essay can’t be an argumentative essay if it doesn’t support its argument with evidence. For every point you make, make sure you have facts to back it up. Some examples are previous studies done on the topic, surveys of large groups of people, data points, etc. There should be lots of numbers in your argumentative essay that support your side of the argument. This will make your essay much stronger compared to only relying on your own opinions to support your argument.
Summary: Argumentative Essay Sample
Argumentative essays are persuasive essays that use facts and evidence to support their side of the argument. Most argumentative essays follow either the Toulmin model or the Rogerian model. By reading good argumentative essay examples, you can learn how to develop your essay and provide enough support to make readers agree with your opinion. When writing your essay, remember to always make your thesis clear, show where the other side is weak, and back up your opinion with data and evidence.
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Argumentative Essay Guide
The Ultimate Guide to Argumentative Essay Writing
18 min read
Published on: Feb 3, 2018
Last updated on: Oct 30, 2023
People also read
250+ Argumentative Essay Topic Ideas To Help You Out
Argumentative Essay Outline: How to Structure Your Argumentative Essay
Argumentative Essay Examples: Samples & Tips
Learn the 3 Different Types of Argument and Multiple Argument Claims
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Are you struggling to write an argumentative essay? Do you want to learn the essential tips and techniques to craft a convincing argument?
Argumentative essay writing needs more than just a personal opinion. It requires you to present evidence and facts to support a claim. But where do you begin?
Look no further! This blog post will provide an in-depth guide on how to write an effective argumentative essay.
Read on to learn how to craft a perfect argumentative essay in this simple step-by-step guide.
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Argumentative Essay Definition
An argumentative essay is a type of essay where the writer takes a strong stance on an issue and presents arguments for it.
These essays are built around a central argument. These arguments must be supported by logical evidence and facts. The primary purpose of an argumentative essay is to persuade readers to accept the writer's point of view on a particular topic.
It is similar to a persuasive essay. The only difference is, it is based on logic and evidence. Whereas, a persuasive essay may use emotional appeals.
Five Types of Argument Claims
There are five types of arguable claims that you can support in your essay. These include factual claims, definition claims, value claims, cause-and-effect claims, and policy claims.
Let's discuss each type in detail:
These claims focus on facts and events that have occurred in the past. They can be supported with evidence such as statistics, examples, or expert opinions.
For instance, you could write an argumentative essay to support the claim that global warming is a man-made phenomenon. You would present evidence such as scientific research findings and expert opinions to back up your argument.
These claims focus on the definition of something or a concept. You can use logic, historical facts, and evidence to support a definition claim.
For example, you could write an argumentative essay to define what “success” means for a person or organization. You would need to back up your definition by providing evidence from experts or historical data.
These claims focus on the value of something and can be supported with facts and expert opinions.
For instance, you could write an argumentative essay to argue that technology has a positive effect on our lives. You would present evidence such as surveys and studies that show how technology has made life easier and more efficient.
Cause and Effect Claims
These claims focus on how one event or action leads to another. They can be supported with evidence such as experimental data.
For example, you could write an argumentative essay to argue that poverty causes crime. You would need to present evidence from experts and other sources to back up your claim.
These claims focus on specific initiatives or policies that people want to implement. They can be supported with evidence from experts and other sources.
For instance, you could write an argumentative essay with the data to support the implementation of a new government policy for healthcare reform. You would need to provide evidence such as reports and studies on the issue to back up your claim.
So, there are five types of arguable claims that you can make in your essay. Each type requires its own unique approach.
Three Argument Structures and How To Use Them
There are three main types of argument structures that may be used in an essay. Let's see how each of them works:
Classical (Aristotelian) Argument
The classical argument structure is the oldest and most common type of argument. This model has its roots in the works of the ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle.
It consists of five parts:
- Your Arguments
- Counter Arguments
To construct a classical argument essay, you would need to:
- Present your position on an issue
- Provide evidence to support it
- Acknowledge opposing views
- Refute those views with evidence
- Conclude by summarizing the main points.
The Rogerian model is used in essays where the main purpose is to find a common ground between opposing sides. It was developed by psychologist Carl Rogers.
It consists of four parts:
- Both Sides Of An Issue
- Common Ground
To construct a Rogerian argument essay, you would need:
- To present your side of the issue
- Acknowledge and present the opposing view
- Find a point of agreement between them
The Toulmin structure is less common than the other two but it has its own unique style. This model was developed by British philosopher Stephen Toulmin. It consists of six parts:
- Rebuttal of opposing arguments
To construct a Toulmin model argument, you have to:
- Present your claim on an issue
- Provide evidence to back it up (grounds)
- Support that evidence with additional information (backing)
- Acknowledge any possible exceptions (qualifier)
- Refute the counter-arguments (rebuttal)
It is important to choose the right structure that best fits the needs of your essay.
Watch this video that explains the three different types in detail:
How to Outline an Argumentative Essay?
When writing an argumentative essay, it is important to create an outline. An outline will help you organize your arguments and keep track of the flow of your essay.
Here is a basic structure for outlining an argumentative essay:
Following this structure will help you organize your essay and ensure that it is easy to read and understand.
Read more about creating an argumentative essay outline and master the art of essay structure.
How To Write An Argumentative Essay?
Argumentative essays are the most common type of essays for High School and College students. These essays require strong critical thinking skills and an ability to analyze a topic at a deeper level.
Here are the steps involved in argumentative essay writing:
Argumentative Essay Introduction
- Argumentative Essay Thesis Statement
- Argumentative Essay Body Paragraphs
- Using Counter Arguments
Argumentative Essay Conclusion
Here is a step by step guide on how to start an argumentative essay:
An argumentative essay introduction clearly states the writer’s claim that he will make in the essay. The introductory paragraph should be logical and intellectual and should be written persuasively.
Here are three steps you can follow to write a very persuasive argumentative essay introduction:
- Start with a hook: Begin your introduction paragraph with a strong hook that gives the reader a hint about your argument.
- Give background information: Provide brief background information necessary to understand the argument and smoothly transition into the thesis statement .
- State the thesis: Lay a solid foundation for your claim by stating your thesis statement.
Argumentative Essay Thesis Statement
The thesis statement is a concise, clear, and one-sentence summary of the whole essay. It is the most important part of an argumentative essay because it establishes a foundation for your claim. It should be informative, engaging, arguable, and valid.
One of the ways of writing an argumentative thesis is to make a question out of your topic. Simply take your essay topic and turn it into a debatable question.
Here is the thesis statement example for an argumentative essay:
Argumentative Essay Body Paragraphs
The body paragraphs involve topic sentences and evidence, either against or supporting a certain point of view.
Here are three simple steps for crafting the body paragraphs:
- Topic sentence: Start each body paragraph with a topic sentence that defines only one specific idea and supports the main claim.
- Provide evidence: Provide as much supporting evidence as required to convince the reader. Remember! The argument has no value if it is not backed with proper and relevant evidence from credible sources.
- Concluding remarks: End the paragraph with a concluding remark and smoothly transition to the next body paragraph.
Using Counter Arguments
This counter-argument paragraph contains the opposing point of view that a reader may pose against your main argument. This paragraph aims to prove that the opposing side is wrong by providing facts and evidence.
Below are the four steps to craft a counter-argument paragraph:
- State the counter-arguments: Present all the counter-arguments one by one.
- State your response: Provide your response towards the counter-arguments.
- Refute the opposing claims: Refute the opposite claims, one by one, with facts and evidence..
- Conclusion: Conclude the paragraph by reasserting your main claim of the essay.
The conclusion needs to be logical and precise that inspire the reader to agree with your claim. It should provide the final stance about the argument, which tells that your side of the argument is right.
Here are the three steps to writing an effective argumentative essay conclusion:
- Summarize the argument: Sum up the entire essay and rewrite the thesis statement
- Stick to the plan: Don’t introduce any new argument here; just synthesize all the information presented in the body paragraph.
- Call to action: End your essay by providing a call to action.
Argumentative Essay Graphic Organizer
Argumentative Essay Format
Writing a compelling argumentative essay involves more than just great content; proper formatting is equally crucial.
Here is the argumentative essay paragraph format example. Follow these guidelines to ensure your essay is well-structured and visually appealing:
- Paper Size and Margins
- Use standard letter-size paper (8.5 x 11 inches) or A4 paper.
- Set margins to 1 inch (2.54 cm) on all sides of the page.
- Font and Spacing
- Choose a legible font such as Times New Roman, Arial, or Calibri.
- Use a 12-point font size for the main text.
- Maintain double spacing throughout the entire essay, including the title, headings, and references.
- Include a title page with your essay title, name, instructor's name, course name/code, and submission date (in the upper left or center).
- Use proper formatting for the title, such as bold or italics.
- Header and Page Numbers
- Insert a header at the top right corner of each page, including your last name and page number.
- Page numbers should be in Arabic numerals (1, 2, 3...) and start on the title page if required by your instructor.
- Create a centered and bolded title for your essay.
- Capitalize the first letter of each major word in the title.
- Avoid underlining or using quotation marks for the title.
- Begin your essay with a clear and engaging introduction.
- Introduce the topic, provide background information, and state your thesis statement.
- Headings and Subheadings
- Use a consistent system for headings (e.g., bold, italics, or underlining).
- Organize your essay with clear headings and subheadings to guide readers through your argument.
- Body Paragraphs
- Start each body paragraph with a topic sentence that relates to your thesis.
- Provide evidence, examples, and analysis to support your argument.
- Use transition words to ensure a smooth flow between paragraphs.
- Address counterarguments within your essay.
- Refute opposing viewpoints logically and with evidence.
- Summarize your main points.
- Reiterate your thesis statement.
- End with a thought-provoking closing statement or call to action.
- Citations and References
- Use proper citation style (e.g., APA, MLA, Chicago) as required by your instructor.
- Include a separate page for references or works cited, listing all sources used in your essay.
By adhering to these formatting guidelines, your argumentative essay will not only convey your ideas effectively but also make a professional and organized impression on your readers.
Argumentative Essay Examples
Sample essays play a vital role in understanding the structure of an essay. So check out these examples below.
Argumentative Essay Template
Argumentative Essay Sample
Argumentative Essay About Gun Control
Argumentative Essay Examples College
Argumentative Essay Example For High School PDF
Argumentative Essay on Pollution Due to Urbanization
Argumentative Essay on Social Media
How To Start An Argumentative Essay Examples
Abortion Argumentative Essay Examples
Here are more argumentative essay examples to help you understand the structure of an argumentative essay.
Good Argumentative Essay Topics
Choosing a topic for an argumentative essay is way more complicated than choosing a topic for any other essay. To get enough material to write about, your topic should be:
To get enough material to write about, here are some easy argumentative essay topics for students:
- Coronavirus is more of a blessing for the earth than a curse.
- Human beings are more dangerous for mother earth than any other creature
- Most of the young people can work from home
- Social media have caused social problems
- Single parents can't do the same upbringing of kids as both parents do.
- The death penalty should be abolished
- Animals shouldn't be kept in captivity
- Climate change is caused by human activity
- Schools should provide mental health education
- Universal basic income should be implemented
If you want to get more unique argumentative essay topic ideas, have a look at our blog with 200+ argumentative essay topics !
Transition Words For Argumentative Essays
Transition words are crucial in argumentative essays to guide readers through your arguments and enhance the coherence and flow of your writing. Here are some essential transition words and phrases to strengthen your argumentative essays:
- On the contrary
- For instance
- In conclusion
Argumentative Essay Writing Tips
Writing an argumentative essay can be a challenging task, especially if you are unsure of how to get started. Here are some tips to help you write a good and persuasive argumentative essay:
- Choose a Debatable Topic: Pick a topic that has two opposing sides and can be debated. It should also be relevant to the course or subject you are writing about.
- Do Your Research: Before you start writing, it is important to do some extensive research on the topic so that you understand both sides of the argument. This will help you make an informed decision when writing your essay.
- Write a Clear Thesis Statement: Your thesis should state the main point of your essay clearly and concisely so that readers know what to expect.
- Develop Your Arguments: Once you have chosen your topic and done your research, you can start developing the arguments that you will use in your essay. Make sure that each argument is supported with evidence from reliable sources.
- Keep it Organized: An outline will help keep your essay organized and focused on the main points that you want to make.
- Be Unbiased: When writing an argumentative essay, it is important to remain impartial and present both sides of the argument in a fair and balanced way.
- Use Proper Formatting: Different styles have different formatting requirements, such as font size and type, margins, and line spacing. Make sure to follow the guidelines for your chosen style.
- Proofread: After you have finished writing your essay, it is important to take time to proofread and make any corrections or revisions that are necessary.
By following these tips, you can write an effective argumentative essay that will help you get the results that you want.
To finish it off,
Argumentative essay writing requires strong research and analysis skills to develop a sound argument. With the right planning and structure, anyone can write an effective argumentative essay.
Now that you have learned about the basics of writing an argumentative essay, it is time to start putting your ideas into practice. Choose a topic that you are passionate about and start writing!
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Frequently Asked Questions
How do you identify an argumentative essay.
In order to identify an argumentative essay, there are three steps:
- First figure out the purpose of a message. Who is trying to convince you? What do they want from you?
- Second, determine what their conclusion might be—what will it take for them to feel that their goal has been accomplished?
- Finally, think about reasons why someone would believe something and consider if any apply here.
Does an argumentative essay have a title?
An argumentative essay should have a title. This should give the reader an idea of what you're writing about.
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Top 10 Argumentative Essay Introduction Examples
When writing an argumentative essay , the introduction might be the most important part of your paper. The introduction to your argumentative essay must grab your readers’ attention and draw them to the topic. There are many points that you need to include in your introduction when writing an argumentative essay.
An attention-getter can set up what will follow throughout the rest of the paper, make the reader see what you are trying to prove, and provide an example to show why your topic is important.
Creating a sense of importance or urgency brings the reader into the essay because they feel they should know more about it. This will allow readers to become engaged in your topic and stay interested throughout the rest of your argumentative essay.
Here are a few examples of good argumentative essay introductions.
Argumentative essay introduction example 1
Gambling, or gambling addiction, is a complex subject to understand. Some people often win, which may lead others to believe that they are lucky rather than skilled. Many people gamble to escape reality for a bit and have fun. Others gamble for the thrill of it because their lives are boring. It is difficult to determine when a person’s behavior turns from a hobby into a problem. It is even more challenging to decide if that something is indeed an addiction. Although gambling may be harmful in specific ways, I believe that the negatives do not outweigh the positives.
Argumentative essay introduction example 2
In today’s society, there are many different opinions about what is right and wrong. From drinking alcohol to smoking, each person has a different set of standards. Where people differ, the most is about morality. Morality is the standard of conduct in society, being considered right or wrong by most people. There are different schools of thought on morality, including classical, evolutionary ethics, and social contract theory. This paper will discuss how these three theories define moral law.
Argumentative essay introduction example 3
The purpose of this paper is to examine the role that the media has played in stoking debates about ethnic diversity, multiculturalism, and national identity. I will discuss ways in which print journalism promoted political agendas by using certain news stories as examples. For example, The Globe & Mail’s coverage of ‘ethnic voters’ during the 1993 federal election attempted to explain why the Canadian electorate was leaning toward a change in government. The paper also illustrated the consequences of public opinion on legislation throughout Canada’s history, such as passing anti-Chinese legislation in B.C., and more recently, Quebec’s Bill 101.
Argumentative essay introduction example 4
People often consider athletes to be role models for society. They say that athletes are good, clean-cut people who live out the American dream. People think of them as successful individuals who have earned their money through hard work and determination. They usually leave out that many famous athletes today are just in it for the money and don’t care who they hurt in the process. They will do whatever it takes to make more money and become even more famous, even if it means ruining their reputation and hurting people. Many athletes have had problems with steroids, drinking alcohol underage, drugs, etc., yet fans continue to look up to them because of their athletic abilities.
Argumentative essay introduction example 5
Does the United States need a military draft? Many people think so, and there are many examples of why it would be effective. A military draft has several benefits but is not without its disadvantages. People believe that an all-volunteer army is better than conscription for various reasons, but the cons outweigh the pros. The benefits of compulsory military service are that it would increase the number of troops drastically overnight, solve unemployment problems, and ensure loyalty to America rather than other countries. The disadvantages include low-quality individuals in the armed forces, unfairness towards people who cannot enlist because they have certain health problems or are married with children, and the adverse effects of war on those drafted into service.
Argumentative essay introduction example 6
The first several decades of the twentieth century were marked by peace and tranquillity in North America and Europe. This era was known as the ‘American Dream.’ The world’s economy had never been stronger, and all shared this newfound wealth. The economy improved with the automobile industry, the oil business, the steel industry, and radio broadcasting. What led to this era of prosperity that people were experiencing? Were there policies or circumstances that created economic stability worldwide? There were many reasons for this era of peace, but the leading cause was that most economies were based on gold. People bought and sold goods with real money, rather than government-issued paper or funny money.
Argumentative essay introduction example 7
The use of animals in scientific research is a highly controversial issue. Opponents say it is cruel and immoral to use animals for experiments, whereas proponents argue that developing life-saving drugs and treatments is necessary. It is necessary to use animals in scientific experiments for medical research because humans and animals are similar in complex ways. The brain, heart, lungs, blood vessels, and immune systems of different species are so alike that studying the effects of drugs on non-human subjects is highly beneficial to advancing knowledge about how various substances will affect people.
Argumentative essay introduction example 8
Driving while talking on a cell phone can be very dangerous. If you drive while using your cell phone, you become four times more likely to get into an accident. For this reason, many countries and provinces in Canada have banned the use of hand-held cell phones while driving. Using a headset or speakerphone is an alternative to holding the phone, but it does not eliminate the risk. One of the concerns is that talking on a cell phone slows reaction time and causes people to miss visual cues they would otherwise notice.
Argumentative essay introduction example 9
Does the average person really need to drink eight glasses of water a day? This idea has been passed down, but is it based on scientific facts, or is it a myth? Some people say that drinking eight glasses of water a day is an old wives’ tale, whereas others insist that one should drink at least this amount of water every day. The main point is that the body requires a certain amount of daily fluid intake, and it is important to maintain proper hydration levels for overall health. It is not necessary to drink eight glasses of water each day, but one should drink enough to urinate at least four times per day.
Argumentative essay introduction example 10
Is the U.S. directly responsible for spreading democracy across the world? The United States has been involved in various activities which have led to regime changes in other countries, where democratically elected governments replaced leaders. Countries that have received military training from the U.S., such as El Salvador and Colombia, are flourishing democracies. This has led many people to believe that the U.S.’s interest in spreading democracy across the world is genuine. Still, others are skeptical because it benefits America when other countries join NATO or accept free trade deals.
How to Create a Sense of Importance or Urgency in Your Introduction
Here are some tips for creating a sense of importance or urgency in your introduction:
- Watch your tone. If you want to be urgent, use words like “need,” and if you want it to feel important, use words like “should.”
- Use a relevant quote.
- Make an example out of someone in the past or present that agrees with your opinion.
- Take a stand and let readers know right away your opinion with a command like “don’t believe the hype” or “it’s time we do something about it.”
- Emphasize the benefits of having your opinion with words like, “Imagine if everyone was responsible enough to recycle.”
- Link it back to history. Let readers know that what you’re saying is nothing new with phrases like that, it’s “a tale as old as time.”
- Explain how this is happening in the present with phrases like “the effects of” and “we see a rise in.”
- Use persuasive words. Persuasive essay writing uses words that make your readers feel guilty, like “deserve,” and inspire them to change and take action with words like “must.
What Influences an Excellent Argumentative Essay Introduction?
Several factors come into play when it comes to writing a good introduction. The most important points to consider are:
- Choice of the argumentative essay topic
Picking interesting argumentative essay topics makes it easier to write an interesting introduction. Another set of topics that guarantee good introductions are the controversial argumentative essay topics.
Writing argumentative essays need proper research done. It does not matter if you are writing a basic argumentative essay or an argumentative research paper. You need to do proper research for your introduction to be effective.
You have to choose the audience targeted in your introduction. For instance, use formal language when addressing professors and informal language when speaking with friends. You can also adjust the thought process of your audience by using certain words. Choice of words targeted for middle school students will be different from a postgraduate audience.
Tips for Writing an Effective Argumentative Essay Introduction
Here are some tips you can use when you write an argumentative essay introduction. They include:
Introduce the conflicting ideas with a comparison or analogy.
Give a brief background on the conflicting ideas to show your readers how they came to be. Make a clear and concise statement that sums up both sides of the argument, like “some say X while others say Y.” Make sure it’s something that can be backed up with evidence later on.
End your introduction with a thesis statement that states which side of the argument you’re taking and what type of claim it is, like “I believe we should eliminate homework because doing so will improve students’ test scores.”
Ask readers questions that get them thinking about your idea.
Questions have proven to be an effective way to get readers thinking about what you’re trying to say. You can ask questions that help them relate it back to their lives, like “What would happen if there was no drinking water?” or “What if everyone decided they didn’t want to eat meat anymore?”
Introduce the opposing side.
If you’re going to be arguing against a popular opinion , you’ll need to state what that opinion is briefly. Let readers know how you plan to argue against it with a word like “despite” or “although” that shows you’re aware of the other side.
Describe your audience.
People are more likely to read something if they feel it’s written specifically for them, so mention your audience right away by saying something like “for all students.” You can also mention a specific group of people, like “for all teens.”
Present readers with a thought-provoking quote.
Quotes can be a great way to grab readers’ attention and get them thinking about what you plan to say. You don’t want your quote to sound like something that was copied and pasted from a textbook, so try using one that has creative language or has been taken out of its original context.
Mistakes to Avoid While Writing Introductions for Argumentative Essays
There are many mistakes that writers commonly make while writing introductory paragraphs. These include:
Being too basic.
People are reading your essay to learn more about your argument, so give them what they need with concrete examples. You don’t need to tell readers something they already know if you are not adding any new information or angle.
- Being too wordy.
Writing too much can cause your introduction to be confusing and messy. Readers will stop reading if they feel like their eyes are glazing over, so try not to use five words when one would do the job just as well. If you’re having trouble cutting down on the length of your statements, ask yourself what your main point is and what you’re hoping to accomplish with your introduction.
- Not narrowing down your argument.
Narrowing down your argument is important because it allows readers to focus on the main point of your essay. If you’re having trouble narrowing down your ideas, try listing reasons why one option would be better than the other or what impact it will have if certain things are changed.
- Not strengthening your argument by using evidence.
Your thesis statement should be supported by evidence , so make sure your introductory paragraph flows easily into the body. If you’re struggling with what types of evidence to include, think about what can be seen as common sense, backed up by research or stated by an expert.
- Not using transitional words.
Transitional words help the flow of your writing because they signal an upcoming change in idea or direction. Words like “however,” “for example,” and “despite this” can be used to show readers when the tone of your argument is changing.
- Not using a hook.
A hook draws a reader in by making them curious about what you’re going to say next or how it relates to them, so choosing one that best suits your argument can help improve the effectiveness of your introduction.
Writing a good introduction for an argumentative essay is key to catching your readers’ attention and making them want to learn more. A strong introduction should consist of ideas relevant to your argument, clarify how you plan to form an argument and provide readers with a compelling reason to continue reading. Remember not to include too much information or make mistakes common among new writers, like being wordy or not including evidence.
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Tips on How to Write an Argumentative Essay
- M.Ed., Education Administration, University of Georgia
- B.A., History, Armstrong State University
To be effective, an argumentative essay must contain elements to help persuade the audience to see things from your perspective. These components include a compelling topic, a balanced assessment, strong evidence, and persuasive language.
Find a Good Topic and Point of View
To find a good topic for an argumentative essay, consider several issues and choose a few that spark at least two solid, conflicting points of view. As you look over a list of topics , find one that really piques your interest, as you'll be more successful if you're passionate about your topic.
Once you have selected a topic you feel strongly about, make a list of points for both sides of the argument. When shaping an argument you'll have to explain why your belief is reasonable and logical, so list points you can use as evidence for or against an issue. Ultimately, determine your side of the argument and make sure you can back up your point of view with reasoning and evidence. Work against the opposing point of view and prove why your stance is correct.
One of your essay's first objectives will be to assess both sides of your issue. Consider strong arguments for both your side, as well as the "other" side—in order to shoot their statements down. Provide evidence without drama; sticking to the facts and clear examples that support your stance.
You may look for research that provides statistics on your topic that support your reasoning, as well as examples of how your topic impacts people, animals, or even the Earth. Interviewing experts on your topic can also help you structure a compelling argument.
Write the Essay
Once you've given yourself a solid foundation of information, begin to craft your essay. 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.
As in any essay, the first paragraph of your argument essay should introduce the topic with a brief explanation of your topic, some background information, and a thesis statement . In this case, your thesis is a statement of your position on a specific controversial topic.
Present Both Sides of the Controversy
The body of your essay should contain the meat of your argument. Go into more detail about the two sides of your topic and state the strongest points of the counter-side of your issue.
After describing the "other" side, present your own viewpoint and then provide evidence to show why your position is the correct one. Work to discredit the other side using some of the information you discovered in your research. Choose your strongest evidence and present your points one by one. Use a mix of evidence, from statistics to other studies and anecdotal stories.
A strong conclusion can help summarize your point of view and reinforce with your reader why your stance is the best option. You might consider reserving one overwhelmingly shocking statistic for the conclusion, one that leaves no room for doubt in your reader's mind. At the very least, use this final paragraph or two as an opportunity to restate your position as the most sensible one.
When writing your essay, consider these tips to help craft the most rational and poignant argument for your readers. Avoid emotional language that can sound irrational. Know the difference between a logical conclusion and an emotional point of view.
Don't fabricate evidence and don't use untrustworthy sources for evidence, and be sure to cite your sources .
- 5 Steps to Writing a Position Paper
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- Definition and Examples of Analysis in Composition
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- Persuasive Writing: For and Against
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- What Is Expository Writing?
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How to Write a Good Argumentative Essay Introduction
- College & Higher Education
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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.
Start With a Hook
Start your introduction with a sentence that gets the reader interested in the topic. To pique the reader's interest, you can begin with a quote, a personal story, a surprising statistic or an interesting question. For example, if you are arguing that smoking should be banned from all public places, you can start your introduction by referencing a statistic from a verified source: "Tobacco use kills more than five million people every year -- more than HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria combined, according to the World Health Organization." This strategy grabs the reader's attention while introducing the topic of the essay.
Providing readers with background on the topic allows them to better understand the issue being presented. This information provides context and history that can be crucial to explaining and arguing your point. For example, if you are arguing that there should never be a military draft in the United States, your introduction can include information about the history of the U.S. draft and the events that led to it being abolished.
State Your Thesis
The thesis is the essence of an argumentative essay. In a single, clear sentence, it sums up what point you are trying to make. The thesis statement should assert a position on a particular issue -- one that a reader can potentially argue against. Therefore, the thesis cannot be a fact. For example, if a professor assigns the general topic of war, you can formulate the following thesis statement: "The United Nations must be redesigned because it is currently incapable of preventing wars." The rest of your essay serves to explain and provide evidence in support of your thesis statement.
What to Leave Out
A good introduction should not be describing arguments or providing analysis that belong in the body paragraphs. Your introduction should introduce and set up your point, rather than lay out evidence to support it. Also, while your intro is a road map for the rest of the essay, you shouldn't explicitly announce what and how you will be arguing: "I am going to prove to you that ..." This type of set up does not add any pertinent information and only serves as filler.
- Utah State University Writing Guide: Introduction and Conclusion
- Purdue University: Introductions, Body Paragraphs, and Conclusions for an Argument Paper
Soheila Battaglia is a published and award-winning author and filmmaker. She holds an MA in literary cultures from New York University and a BA in ethnic studies from UC Berkeley. She is a college professor of literature and composition.
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How to Write an Argumentative Essay: 101 Guide [+ Examples]
An argumentative essay is a genre of academic writing that investigates different sides of a particular issue. Its central purpose is to inform the readers rather than expressively persuade them. Thus, it is crucial to differentiate between argumentative and persuasive essays.
While composing an argumentative essay, the students have to demonstrate their research and analytical skills. The secret of a successful paper lies behind strong arguments and counterarguments. So, the writer should focus on facts and data rather than personal values and beliefs.
Besides, a good argumentative essay should be structured appropriately:
- The introduction and conclusion have to create a frame for the entire essay.
- The body paragraphs are supposed to cover the essential points.
- Supporting evidence should make a paper more professional and reputable.
Are you still wondering what an argumentative essay is and how to write it? Check out the sections below prepared by our experts . Here, you can find the most valuable info, helpful tips, and useful examples.
📜 Classic Strategy
📋 toulmin strategy, 🗣️ rogerian strategy, ✒️ fill in the blanks, 🔍 edit and proofread, 🔗 references, 📌 argumentative essay in a nutshell.
Are you trying to figure out what an argumentative essay is? It’s a type of academic paper that covers both sides of a given issue. An author can decide whether they aim to present both sides equally or support one side more dynamically.
One of the mistakes among students is the confusion of argumentative and persuasive essays . Do you want to figure out the differences? Take a look at the following table.
Before writing an argument essay, it would be helpful to choose an appropriate model to rely on. There are three strategies to consider: Classical, Toulmin, and Rogerian.
Look at the following sections and choose the most suitable one for you.
Are you wondering how to write an argumentative essay? Consider using the classical approach. It is the most popular way of composing an argumentative paper.
Under the classical strategy, the author has to follow these rules:
- research the issue;
- present both sides;
- express own opinion;
- prove the reader the validity of the conclusion.
It is up to the audience to decide whether your position is right or wrong. Yet, you should try to convince the readers of the effectiveness of your opinion.
Usually, the classical argument paper is structured in the following way:
- Introduction . Use the hook to catch the readers’ attention. State the problem and explain why your topic is relatable to the audience.
- General background. Introduce the general info and several facts about your issue.
- Thesis statement . State your position clearly and concisely.
- The central argument. Provide valid evidence and appropriate examples to support your position. Refer only to reliable sources.
- Rebuttal . Include a counter paragraph in your essay, presenting the opposing arguments. Provide specific examples to make the reader understand your position. Also, explain to the audience why the counterclaims are incorrect.
- Conclusion . Synthesize your arguments and counterarguments. Give the readers a question for further investigation of your problem. To make your essay more impressive, compose a memorable concluding sentence.
Toulmin strategy is the most suitable for the discussion of controversial issues. This model aims to find common ground through clear logic and valid evidence. Besides, the Toulmin strategy eliminates unnecessary things and limits the points to agree upon.
An argumentative essay written by the Toulmin model includes the following elements:
- Claim . A viewpoint that the author aims to prove.
- Evidence . Supportive facts from reliable resources that highlight the significance of the claim.
- Warrant . An element that connects the claim and that evidence.
- Backing . Additional reasoning that underlines the warrant’s validity.
- Rebuttal . Counterarguments that contradict the author’s position.
- Qualifier . An additional element (usually, a word or a short phrase) that narrows the claim’s capacity. Several examples of qualifiers: “typically,” “usually,” “occasionally,” etc.
- Exceptions . Specific limitations that indicate the cases where that claim may not be valid.
Like the Toulmin approach, Rogerian strategy attempts to find common ground between two sides of one issue. However, the technique is slightly different.
The Rogerian model is often used in highly controversial debates when the parties do not accept each other’s position. Thus, the given strategy focuses on finding the agreement by proving the validity of the opposing arguments.
Below, you can find the primary outline for the Rogerian argumentative essay:
- Introduce the problem. Present the issue clearly and explain why it is worth the readers’ attention.
- Summarize and analyze the counterarguments. Take into consideration all the possible counterpoints and look at them from different perspectives. Discuss the cases in which the opposing claims could be valid. Demonstrate your open-mindedness. This will make the opposite party more loyal to you.
- Present your position. After discussing the counterpoints, state your opinion. Convince the audience about the validity of your points.
- Prove the advantages of your position. Explain to the opposite party how the acceptance and adoption of your points will benefit them.
🧐 How to Write an Argumentative Essay
Before working on your essay, carefully read the assignment. Make sure you understand all the instructor’s requirements and the purpose of the paper.
- Pay enough attention to the task. Did your professor assign you a topic? Or do you need to choose it yourself ? Make sure you have an idea that will turn into an outstanding essay.
- Select the strategy you are going to apply. An argumentative essay format will depend on the model you choose to compose your paper. Analyze the issue you will arise and decide what strategy is the most suitable. Is it the Classical model, the Toulmin, or the Rogerian one?
After that, start composing your argumentative essay. Check out the following sections. We have a lot of insightful info to share with you!
📚 Research the Topic
The first step of writing an argumentative paper is an in-depth investigation of the topic. To validate your arguments, you have to refer to credible resources. The essay will look more professional if you use reliable sources in it.
To research like a professional , do the following:
- Use only credible sources. You can refer to the books, research articles, materials from academic databases, or Google Scholar. Webpages registered as governmental or educational institutions (.gov, .edu.) and widely-known news websites (New York Times, BBC, CNBC) are also considered appropriate. Avoid using blog posts, outdated materials, and any other data from unreliable sources. You may get into huge trouble, taking information from random websites, since it may be invalid.
- Pay attention to the publishing date . You may be required to use the sources released no later than five years ago. Yet, it is not always the case, especially when you’re dealing with historical documents. Thus, double-check your instructions regarding recommended sources.
- Keep your topic in mind. Concentrate on what you are writing about and select the sources for your exact issue. Avoid sources that provide too general information and look for more limited ones. If your idea is World War II’s economic consequences, the history book from ancient times to modern days will not be the best option.
- Become an expert. Take enough time to investigate the issue you are writing about. Read numerous articles, compare and contrast the scientists’ opinions. Prove your reader that you are a reliable person who selected the best sources.
📝 Outline Your Essay
The majority of students tend to underestimate the power of outlining. Don’t do this! An argumentative essay outline is a helpful tool for planning, structuring, and composing.
Firstly , a well-developed outline helps the writer to put all their thoughts in an appropriate order. None of the essential points will be lost if the student plans the essay before writing.
Secondly , it lets the writer figure out what evidence suits what argument most. Before writing, draft your essay first. Put examples, facts, etc. in the right parts of the paper. Then, write the entire text.
Thirdly , an outline provides a perfect opportunity to change the essay’s parts without rewriting the paper. Are you unsure of specific details? Not a problem. Change them in the outline without ruining the text.
There are essential elements that your outline should contain. Check out the following section to see them.
How to start an argumentative essay? First and foremost, include an argumentative essay introduction in your outline.
This part should grab the readers’ attention from the first words. Thus, put enough effort into composing a compelling hook . What can it be? An impressive statistic or an exciting fact? Be creative – decide yourself! But make sure that your intro is catchy enough.
After the hook, introduce your topic’s general background . Prove the readers the significance of your issue and gradually come to the thesis statement .
The concept of studying abroad is becoming increasingly popular in both developed and developing countries. Students around the globe strive to explore the world and broaden their minds, and studying in a foreign country is an excellent opportunity to do so. Such experience may be extremely beneficial because meeting new people and discovering foreign cultures help students to gain valuable knowledge and see the world from a new perspective. However, while presenting significant opportunities for personal growth, it may also bring about some challenges.
A thesis is an essential part of your argumentative essay. It should state your position regarding the issue clearly and concisely. Avoid general statements, vague words, and be as specific and possible. Your thesis statement should guide the readers throughout the main points of the paper.
The location of the thesis in the essay plays a crucial role. The most appropriate place for it is the last sentence of the introductory paragraph.
Although students face difficulties such as loneliness while studying abroad, it is a worthy experience to introduce them to new knowledge, people, and culture and promote their independence.
The body of your paper is supposed to develop your position, provide valid evidence and examples. Each paragraph has to focus only on one idea. This will ensure the logical structure of your argumentative essay.
A body paragraph should start from the topic sentence and end with the concluding sentence . Such a frame around every section will make your readers stay concentrated on your ideas and get your opinion.
- The topic sentence is the first sentence of the passage. It should reflect its point and correspond to the thesis statement.
- The concluding sentence aims to wrap up the author’s thoughts. Thus, make sure that the last sentence of a paragraph is insightful enough.
Each body paragraph should include an argument (or a counterargument) with supporting evidence. Get your proof from credible sources and ensure that it directly corresponds to the point.
An example of a topic sentence :
The benefits of education abroad are almost innumerable, prominent examples being gaining new knowledge, making friends with people who have different mindsets, and discovering new cultures.
An example of a concluding sentence:
Participants of student exchange programs usually return more driven and eager to develop both themselves and their country.
A conclusion plays a critical role in understanding the entire paper. It summarizes the body and leaves the final impression. Besides, it may push the readers on further investigation of the issue.
- To make your argumentative essay conclusion powerful, it is not enough just to summarize the arguments. It has to synthesize your ideas and show the connection between them. In other words, your points should be summarized and analyzed.
- Moreover, a conclusion refers to the thesis statement . A mere restatement of the central idea is not the most successful way of finishing your paper. You should try to develop it to demonstrate the reason you’ve written the previous paragraphs.
One more tip:
- Give the audience an incentive to explore the topic more in-depth. Insert the questions for further investigation at the end of your essay. It would play a significant role in making an impressive conclusion.
To sum up, studying abroad is beneficial as it helps a person evolve and perceive a world from new perspectives. It is an opportunity for a participant to explore the world, meet new people, gain valuable knowledge and experience, and broaden their horizons. Education abroad might pose problems like homesickness, loneliness, and trouble with getting accustomed to a new environment. However, all of them can be easily overcome if a student is flexible and eager to become autonomous and independent.
The list of references is a crucial part of any argumentative essay. It should contain all the sources the writer uses in the paper.
Before organizing your reference list , double-check your argumentative essay format. Is it written in MLA, APA, or maybe in Chicago style? How many references does the professor expect you to include? What kind of sources are you required to use?
After figuring out these issues, move to the format requirements of the writing style you use for your paper. The most popular ones are APA (7th edition), MLA, and ChicagoAD (author-date) styles. Below, you can find the examples of a reference for the same book in different formatting styles.
Did you develop a good outline? Congratulations! You are almost done with the essay. Now, you need to fill in the blanks and create a final version of your paper. Here is where you need to demonstrate a high level of your writing skills.
- Make sure your paper has no logical fallacies. Information from an untrustworthy source, a hasty generalization, or a false conclusion may put your reliability as an author under threat. So double-check all the data you include in your essay. Moreover, make sure all your statements are well-developed and supported by valid evidence.
- Check your argumentative essay structure . All the arguments should refer to the thesis statement and must be presented in the logical sequence. The supporting evidence and examples have to be inserted in the text logically, according to the arguments.
- Pay enough attention to the citations. References and in-text citations are incredibly tricky. Always check every detail according to your essay format. If you are unsure of specific issues, refer to a citation guide and make your paper free of formatting mistakes.
- Ensure the coherence of your argumentative essay. Often, the paper’s material seems raw only because it is presented without a logical connection. To ensure a smooth connection between the ideas, use transitions between the paragraphs and linking words inside them. Insert them in the text to connect the points. As a result, you will have a coherent essay with the logical flow of the arguments.
The final step of your writing process is editing and proofreading. Although it is not that energy and time consuming, it still plays a critical role in the work’s success.
While writing your argumentative paper, plan your time accordingly. This will provide you with an opportunity to polish your essay before submitting it. And take a look at our checklist and always use it to improve your papers:
- NO first and second person. Use only the third person in your argumentative essay. It is a general requirement for any kind of academic paper.
- NO slang. The word choice is an essential part of the essay writing process. Ensure you use only formal vocabulary and avoid using informal language (jargon, slang, etc.).
- NO unchecked words. Sometimes, words can raise questions and lead to misunderstandings. If you are unsure whether the term is used appropriately, double-check its meaning or replace it with another.
- NO plagiarism. While proofreading, make sure your citations are either properly paraphrased or taken in quotation marks. You can change the sentence structure to avoid plagiarism.
- NO minor mistakes. Grammar, spelling, punctuation play a crucial role. Want to make your paper look professional? Make sure it is free of minor mistakes then.
Argumentative Essay Topics
- Should student-athletes benefit from sports?
- Do celebrities really have influence on people behavior?
- Will decriminalization of drugs increase drug menace?
- Does social and environmental reporting promote organizations’ financial success?
- Should online learning be promoted?
- Can space exploration resolve human problems?
- Is success really the outcome of hard work?
- Is there discrimination against women in sports?
- Will banning tobacco sales promote public health?
- Is euthanasia a clemency?
- Should college education be free and accessible for every student?
- Should football be banned for being too dangerous?
- Is it time to change social norms ?
- Should public servants’ strikes be prohibited?
- Does media create a negative image of ageing and older people?
- Is capitalism the best economic system?
- Can children under 18 make an appropriate decision on getting tattoo ?
- Should net neutrality be protected?
- Can an improper use of social media provoke a family crisis?
- Is it right to use animals in biomedical research ?
- Does the climate change affect our indoor environment?
- Are children’s crimes a result of poor parenting?
- Should health care be universal?
- Does the increased use of technology hurt students’ efficiency?
- Is transformative education a key to the system modernization?
- Why should patients have access to truthful information?
- How does language barrier affect health care access?
- Would allowing adoption by same-sex couples benefit the country’s child welfare system?
- Is spanking children a proper way to improve their behavior?
- Does gun control law lowers crime rates?
- Will ban on spamming improve users’ internet experience?
- Should behavior be made illegal because it’s immoral?
- Is globalization really a progress?
- Does aid to developing countries bring more harm than good?
- Can parents improve children mental health by restricting internet use ?
- Is trusting our senses the best way to get the truth?
- Why parents should not have the right to choose their children based on genetics.
- Is college education really worth it?
- Will wearing a body camera by police officer enhance public trust?
- Immigration : a benefit or a threat?
- Is it a duty of adult children to take care of their elderly parents?
- Should abortions be legal?
- Are agents an integral part of professional sports?
- Will ban of cellphones while driving decrease the car accident rates?
- Should marijuana be legal for medical use?
- Is veganism diet universally beneficial?
- Should museums return artefacts?
- Is water birth beneficial for women’s health?
- Will paying people to stay healthy benefit the nation in the long-term perspective?
- Is obesity a disease or a choice?
It is up to you to decide how many parts to include in your essay. However, the 5 paragraph structure is the most appropriate model for an argumentative paper. So, write an introduction, a conclusion, and three body paragraphs.
The pronoun “you” is acceptable for informal writing. Yet, in academic papers, avoid using the second person. The same situation is with the first person. Generally, academic papers require the use of the third person.
A hook aims to grab the readers’ attention. Thus, you could start your essay with an interesting fact about your issue. Another way to create a catchy hook is to prove the audience the relatability of your topic. Make the readers want to explore your essay by demonstrating the significance of your issue.
Yes, you can. A question might become a compelling hook. Just make sure that it is profound, thought-provocative, and concise. A too broad or complicated question will only confuse your readers.
A title is an essential part of the essay since it causes the first impression. While selecting a heading, take into consideration the following points:
1. The title must be catchy.
2. It has to be not too long (5-12 words).
3. The title has to reflect the topic of the paper.
4. It should not be too complicated: the simpler – the better.
Thank you for visiting our page! We hope the information was helpful and insightful. Do you have friends who seek help with writing an argumentative essay? Share our article with them. And don’t forget to leave your comments!
- Sample Argument Essays: Mesa Community College
- Argument: The Writing Center, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
- Tips on How to Write an Argumentative Essay: Grace Fleming, ThoughtCo
- Tips for Organizing an Argumentative Essay: Judith L., Beumer Writing Center, Valparaiso University
- Argumentative Essay: Oya Ozagac, Bogazici University, Online Writing Lab
- Argumentative Essays: Purdue Online Writing Lab, College of Liberal Arts, Purdue University
- How to Write an Argumentative Essay Step by Step: Virginia Kearney, Owlcation
- Counterargument: Gordon Harvey for the Writing Center at Harvard University
- Basic Steps in the Research Process: North Hennepin Community College, Minnesota
- How to Recognize Plagiarism, Overview: School of Education, Indiana University Bloomington
- 15 Steps to Good Research: Georgetown University Library
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How to Write a Good Argumentative Essay Introduction
When your professor assigned it to you, you may have had the urge to debate on the intricacies of an argumentative essay. What is it? Why do you need to write it? And how are you going to accomplish it?
What Is an Argumentative Essay?
First of all, you will need to know what an argumentative essay is. It is a genre of writing that requires you to do considerable research on a topic, collect evidence and data, evaluate your findings, and defend the resolution to your whole argumentative essay within the paper itself.
Sometimes people confuse an argumentative essay with an expository essay, possibly because the two involves research. The only difference is that argumentative essay prompts requires more time and effort to produce, since it is usually the last project assigned in a subject during a non-graduating class semester. The best part is that you can also use argumentative essays tips to write a scholarship essay, a convincing pitch at work, and many others.
What Is In an Argumentative Essay?
It must have a strong introduction.
Any writing work requires an impeccable introduction in order to transition to the succeeding parts of the paper. Without it, there is no paper. And without a paper, you have no grade at all. To give you a better idea on how impactful an introduction is, this is considered as your winning statement. This is where you summarize the issue, the research performed, the facts collected, and the findings that you’ve made. Still, it has to be short enough to leave more room for discussion in the succeeding parts of your essay.
It contains a thesis statement located in the first paragraph of the essay, preferably the first sentence.
This is essentially the log line of your argumentative essay. The professor who assigned your argumentative essay prompt wants to know what the essay is about at first glance and not have to read through a lengthy introduction that does not contain anything useful. Your thesis statement is your logline and it will be the basis of your argument essay prompts’ introduction.
The transitions between the introduction, body, and conclusion are clean and understandable.
You can’t just jump from one topic to another. You have to smoothly slide in your next discussion with a strong connection to the previous paragraph. This is done by using proper writing skills and grammar usage.
There is a clear emphasis on the data and facts you used.
You cannot just list down the sources and numbers you used to create your argumentative essay. You need to properly explain how you found it, where you found it, and how you used it. Even if it is more of a qualitative essay, you still have to emphasize the origin of your quotes and the development of your ideas.
A simple, yet impactful conclusion.
This is what you need to close it all down. You cannot leave your professor – or anyone else reading your argumentative essay – hanging. They need to know how it all ends and why they ended up there in the first place. More importantly, your conclusion has to prove that your argumentative essay is leaning heavily in your favor.
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What Is the Most Important Part of an Argumentative Essay?
Your whole essay is important, but the keystone for your argumentative essay is your introduction. It is the first thing people will see and it is what they will continuously return to as they read through your whole essay. If you are not 100% sure in this part, it is better to request “help me with rewriting my essay ” service.
Your introduction is where you will explain why you chose the topic and how you came up with the conclusion. It is essentially a condensed version of your essay, but with little mention of what really went on. That part is discussed in the body. As for your results, you may mention the final verdict, but the conclusion can elaborate on that more.
Without the introduction, you cannot hope to keep the reader hooked through the body, let alone until the conclusion of your essay. Aside from that you need to write down an introduction that prepares the reader for what they are about to expect. It has to be enticing enough in order for them to want to prove your wrong or find out whether you’ve outdone yourself and proved a thesis statement completely.
Argumentative Essay Tips on Introduction Writing
Writing a good introduction requires you to be prepared with facts and argumentative statements that have bearing. Once you are ready to start, here are some tips that will help you along the way.
- Explain what your topic is. In order for this to work, the reader must know what they are about to look at. A simple sentence or two will do. You can write a brief explanation as well, in case people are not familiar with the idea you proposed. This way, even if they are not interested, they might find out something new.
- Defend your topic. Make the reader see why it is important to read about your essay. You need to have creative and interesting ideas for an argumentative essay that resonates with people. Even if it is a shallow topic, the reader must be interested in it enough to know the answer to the question you posed.
- Explain why some people may disagree with your topic. Obviously, you cannot choose a topic that everyone adheres to, especially since there is no such thing as a one-sided discussion between two entities. You must elaborate on why your essay is a sore point for some people, so that the audience will understand why you feel the need to defend your idea.
- Give the readers a play by play on what is about to happen – or what they are about read. The introduction also poses how the whole paper will flow. This way the readers know what to expect at every turn and where they can go to when they are looking for a particular piece of information. We are not talking about a table of contents – just a simplified enumeration of what the paper is about and how it is structured.
- Lastly, write a stimulating thesis sentence that will leave the readers wanting more. Although the point of a thesis statement is to put all your thoughts in one line, it must also serve as the log line that will urge the reader to want to know more about what you have come up with. Do not choose a thesis statement that you cannot defend – especially one that is inarguable. This is an argumentative essay, is it not? If you are still having difficulty with composing a good introduction, why not check some argumentative essay introduction examples as well?
There are many argumentative essay tips, but simplicity is the true key. If you need help, you can always find someone who provides essay writing service online . If you do it yourself, you can still write your essay and get the upper hand in your subject!
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My inclination to be socially conscious led me to lots of community outreach and volunteering during my college years, especially in the areas of educational and housing improvement for the poor and a number of environmental crusades. My passion for philosophy and travel have now taken over, and I am enthralled with the widely varied value systems of all cultures in which I can immerse myself, if only temporarily. My life as a freelance writer allows a freedom I never want to sacrifice for a stuffy office!
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The Best Tips to Prepare Wonderful Introduction of Argumentative Essay
First and foremost, one needs to know what an argumentative essay is. This genre of writing requires a person to research thoroughly on a topic, collect data and evidence, evaluate the findings and then defend the resolutions of the whole essay within the paper. To create a compelling argumentative essay, it must contain some elements that are persuasive to the audience so that they can view things from your perspective. Thus, a balanced assessment, a compelling topic, strong language and evidence are all critical.
What Should Be in an Argumentative Essay?
1. It should have an introduction that is strong.
Any written work requires an introduction that is impeccable so that transitions to the other parts of the paper have a good flow. The opening is considered as the winning part of the paper. This part summarizes the issue, research done, facts collected and all the findings that one has made. Make it short to leave room for more discussion in the other parts of the essay.
2. Argumentative essay should contain a thesis statement in the first paragraph.
This is mainly the login of your essay. A thesis statement acts as the basis of your argument in your thesis. In a clear single sentence, it should sum up the point you are trying to make. It should also state the position of a particular issue that the reader will be able to argue against.
3. The transition between introduction, body, and outcome should be clean and understandable.
You should not jump from one point to another. There needs to be a good flow from one paragraph to the next with a seamless connection of the paragraphs. This is achieved by using proper grammar and good writing skills.
4. Definite emphasis on facts and data used.
You should not just list down numbers and sources used to create the argumentative essay. You must carefully explain how you got it, how you have used it and where you got it. You still have to emphasize the origin of the quotes and development of the ideas.
5. A simple and impactful conclusion.
You need an impactful and simple conclusion. You should not leave your essay hanging; it should end adequately. Most importantly, the conclusion needs to show that the essay and the findings you have are in your favor. Reinforce your points as the most sensible in your conclusion.
An introduction that is good should not describe arguments or provide analysis that belongs to body paragraphs. The introduction should introduce and set up the point, rather than laying out evidence in its support. Even though the introduction is a road map to the rest of the thesis, do not give all the details that you are going to be arguing out.
Follow These Simple Guidelines:
- Desist from emotional language as it sounds irrational.
- Differentiate between an emotional point and logical conclusion.
- Making up evidence and using untrustworthy sources of information is wrong.
- Give your sources correctly.
- Have an outline.
- Prepare to defend your points by knowing your opponent’s strongest arguments. You may be challenged by another student or the professor, thus the need to be prepared.
Even though a thesis statement is meant to put your thoughts into one line, it also needs to serve as the log line that urges the reader to learn more about what you have written. Avoid selecting a thesis statement that you are unable to defend, particularly one which is inarguable. If you still have issues crating a good argumentative essay introduction, feel free to look at some argumentative essay introduction examples .
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Author: Patricia Jenkins
Patricia Jenkins is the senior writing advisor at FastEssay blog for international students that seek quick paper assistance. In her blog, Patricia shares useful tips on productivity, writing, research, references. Sometimes Patricia goes off topic by sharing her personal experience peppered with lively humor and healthy irony. View all posts by Patricia Jenkins
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How To Write An Argumentative Essay Introduction
Introduction is the first and most important paragraph of an essay. An introduction in an argumentative essay functions as a good opening statement in a trial. As a lawyer, a writer must present the problem at hand, give history, and put forth the primary argument — in a sensible, intelligent, and persuasive way.
Writing a stunning introduction for your argumentative essay needs a lot of research because this is the first impression we put on the reader’s mind.
We are here to give you all the information just follow our instructions for how to write an argumentative essay introduction. Getting people’s attention should be your goal if you want to know the answer to argumentative essay introduction writing.
You should be looking for topics for which people want to know. In order to seek the topic which people want to know about is to search for a trending topic. study about different recent topics & study current affairs.
To know “how to write an argumentative essay introduction” we have assembled all the information for providing you the quick answer to this problem.
Just read the detailed strategies discussed in the article and you are ready for writing your argumentative essay introduction.
Table of Contents
Argumentative Essay Introduction Writing
Start with a hook.
Writing a start with a hook to get the reader interest is important. Begin your introduction with an order that makes the reader interested in the topic. To enhance the reader’s curiosity, you can begin with a quotation, a personal narrative, a surprising statistic, or an interesting question.
You can write an introduction related to some trending topic but writing about a trending topic is time-consuming. You should not write baselessly anything you know on the subject.
For instance, if you’re asserting that smoking ought to be banned from all public places, you can start your introduction by referencing a statistic from a confirmed source: “Tobacco use kills over five million people each year — more than HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria combined, according to the World Health Organization.” This strategy catches the reader’s attention while introducing the topic of the essay.
Presenting readers with background on the subject permits them to understand the problem being presented. This information offers context and experience, which could be critical to describing and arguing your point. By way of instance, if you’re asserting that there must be no military draft in the USA, your introduction may incorporate details regarding the background of this U.S. draft as well as the events which led to it being contested.
Present your thesis at the end of introduction paragraph
Your thesis statement should clear the main idea behind the essay. Everything in the essay will depend on this idea. You can start your thesis by presenting a question.
Provide background to the statement you put in the trailer
- Proper background information provides the reader with a better understanding of the issue discussed in the introduction.
- Better depth information will give better resolution to the topic of discussion which will eventually justify the trailer or introduction of the essay.
If you argue about democracy, then include information about the history of democracy relevancy with today’s time.
Now Write Your Thesis
The thesis is the core of your argumentative essay — this is where you will write all the information related to the topic precisely. Here you will sum up all the points you are trying to make. The rest part of your argumentative essay helps to explain and give evidence in support of your thesis statement.
Some tips for how to write an argumentative essay introduction
The entire essay is important but the introduction part will decide how interesting your essay is gonna be to a reader.
Don’t hesitate to ask for help. Go directly to the instructor. Get all the instructions.
Give an idea of what they are about to read just like a trailer of the film. Then people will be aware of the argument’s topic
Make the essay for the reader to identify different transitions in the essay. Make your essay identifiable.
Write about why people may disagree with the argument. Everyone will never agree with your argument all the time. So you should explain why your argument is sore for some people that way you can grab the attention of those people too.
Inform your reader what is about to come. Guide them about the information so the flow of information is maintained.
Write a sentence with the argument briefly making sense for the entire thesis statement.
See examples for an argumentative essay.
Understand the different types of Argumentative claims
Argumentative claims usually fall under these different types categories.you will find your topic falling under these categories.
- Argument claims about facts & definition
- Argument claims about cause & Effects
- Claims about solution & policies
- Argument claims about the value
Structure of an argumentative essay introduction
A typical structure of the Argumentative essay is given below. The writer needs to understand these structures. This understanding will give you more ideas. It is made of only four parts.
In an argumentative essay, a good introduction acts like a good opening in a trial. An attractive introduction is always a requirement for argumentative essay writing. This is the first impression of your argumentative essay.
The argument for essay writing should contradict or have to be a proper statement.
Counterargument & rebuttal:
Maybe everyone is not agreed with the argument you provide or maybe there is a counter-argument for your statement. Address them directly.
The final words you want to put on the topic conclude the summary of the essay at the conclusion.
The reason we are discussing the structure of argumentative essay introduction because the structure is also an important aspect like all other aspect related to an argumentative essay
A good argumentative essay introduction should not be elaborating on argument or providing analysis that should be in the body paragraph.
your introduction should provide the reader interesting topic to engage his mind in the argument rather than providing evidence to support the argument. We hope, you have the answer to “how to write an argumentative essay introduction” from this article. If you still don’t understand how to write an introduction for an argumentative essay then you can buy our essay writing service .
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