Academic Writing Complete Guide

Argumentative/persuasive essays guide

In an argumentative essay, the writer tries to convince the audience to accept his argument. When writing this type of essay, you must take a stance on a topic and attempt to get the readers to agree with your school of thought. When you are answering tee say question, you must be for or against the topic. When oy are selecting a topic you are your persuasive essay; you have to settle on the one that has to opposing sides. You have to investigate the topic, collect, generate, and evaluate the evidence to establish your position on the topic.

At times, students confuse argumentative essay with the expository essay. It is crucial to note that the two genres of essays are somewhat similar, but they differ in the amount of prewriting and research. An argumentative essay can be assigned as a capstone or final project in first year writing, or it can be an advanced composition that involves lengthy and detailed research. When it comes to expository essays, there is less research and the length is short. Expository essays are used for class writing exercises or tests.

argumentative essay guide

Building blocks of an argumentative essay

To write a good argumentative essay, you must consider the following aspects;

  • Facts that are supported by evidence through research
  • Relevant and verified values that give the audience a good perspective
  • An argument that follows the priority of facts and the level of importance
  • Conclusions inferred throughout the essay and stated at the end
  • Factual persuasion that the audience agree with and the values they share
  • The confidence in effective communication that is persuasive
  • The inclusion of pertinent issues that elicit an emotional response

The structure of the argumentative essay

The structure of your argumentative essay is crucial to the way you lay out specifics and the evidence of your argument. This will allow you to make an effective conclusion. Before you write, ensure that you have narrowed down your thesis statement; you have a working outline and enough facts to back up your argument.

The introduction

As an opening statement in a trial, your introduction should use an interesting opening statement to the audience. The introduction, as is the case with any other essay, is the paragraph that introduces to the audience, the discussion of the essay. The introduction is the one that houses the thesis statement of your essay. When writing your introduction, consider the following aspects:


  • It should provide background information on the topic
  • It should explain your perspective to the audience by highlighting the significance of the topic and the reason why the audience ought to care
  • It should have a well-defined, clear and concise thesis statement that highlights at least two major points
  • It should hook the readers and pique their interest to continue reading the piece
  • It should utilise appropriate transitions to the body paragraphs of your argumentative essay
  • An effective introduction must contain attention-grabbing lead into the argument.

In essence, the introduction reviews the topic in a more general way. Your thesis statement must align with the assignment requirements, and if the student does not master this part of the essay, it will be hard for them to write a concise and effective persuasive essay.

how to write an argumentative essay step by step

Things to avoid when writing your introduction

A good persuasive essay introduction is not supposed to describe an argument or provide an analysis that is supposed to appear in the body paragraphs. It should only set up your point instead of laying evidence to support it. It is the roadmap of your encounter argumentative essay, you should not announce how, and what you are going to argue. For instance, you cannot say, “I want to prove to you that…” This is a wrong start, which does not add any crucial information, and it was, those are just filler words.


The body paragraphs

It must contain the evidence that backs up your position. It should also clearly state the opposing position. When writing your paragraph, consider the following aspects:

  • Stick to one point in each paragraph
    When writing your essay, you are supposed to ensure that each paragraph deals with a single point. As such, every paragraph must have a topic sentence that is to be supported by relevant and strong evidence. Every idea discussed in every paragraph must tie to the central argument, which is your thesis statement. In other words, you have to create a logical connection between the ideas in that paragraph to your thesis statement.
  • Explain to the audience the connections of the thesis to the hos and whys
  • To make your essay effective and all-around, devote at least one paragraph to the opposing view
  • Every point you make in the body of your essay must be supported by relevant and strong evidence
  • Remember that the type of sources that you use provides authority to your position on the topic. As such, ensure that they are cited appropriately within the text.
  • The body paragraphs are supposed to develop your ideas, and as such, you have to refrain from summarising information.
  • The evidence that you use in your thesis statement can be personal anecdotes, facts, logic, or statistics. The evidence shows that your essay is well researched, accurate, detailed, and uses current information to support your argument. When collecting evidence, one must also consider the opposing view. Discuss the points that align with your thesis as well as those that contradict your perspective.

The conclusion

The conclusion restates your thesis statement. You have to synthesise the information you have presented in the body of your essay in light of the available evidence. As a rule of thumb, you are not supposed to include any new information, evidence, or facts in your conclusion. Go through your entire essay and come to a persuasive conclusion. This is your chance to convince the audience that your position matters a lot. As such, you must make it very logical.

Remember that this is the last paragraph that should leave the reader with an immediate impression. If necessary, you can include a short discussion or the research that should be done in light of the topic you have just discussed.

Including the opposing view in your persuasive essay

To make your argumentative essay effective and balanced, you must include the opposing view. It helps the audience to infer the same conclusions that you have. You cannot, in good conscience, expect someone to agree with your position without the understanding of the other opposing view. When you include this opinion in your essay, you must transcend the mere statement of why the position is wrong. Instead, show the audience the reason why the opposing viewpoint does not align with your thesis. The basis of that opposing point can be outdated or based on misinformation.

Objectivity is key when you are present the opposing perspective. It should also be fair and accurate. This will enable the audience to draw necessary conclusions. If you manage to write a strong and convincing argument that is full of logic, the readers are likely to follow with open minds, your point of view.

Once you have written your first draft, it is important that you go through it and revise. This will include proofreading and editing. When proofreading, you can start by reading your essay aloud. This will help you to identify any inconsistencies in sentence structure as well as awkward phrases. Underline them as you go along, once you finish, read again through the essay underlining all the mistakes in grammar, punctuation, and spelling. Once you are through, start correcting these mistakes sentence-by-sentence and paragraph by paragraph.

After you are done, get someone else to go through your essay. They will give you necessary feedback about the entire essay, its flow, and any other mistake that you might have inadvertently overlooked.

Use the feedback to improve the quality of your essay. After you have corrected all the mistakes, prepare the final draft, go through it, and make your submission.

Perhaps you can think of the argumentative essay regarding a conversation or a debate with a fellow student. If for instance, we are discussing the effects of cold way, we could take about its effect on those who lived during that time. The conversation would have a starting point, the middle, and the end. If you end the conversation in the middle of, say, the second point, then the argument would elicit questions that concern the current effects on those who lived during that time. As such, the argumentative essay is supposed to be complete, and logically. It should not leave any shred of doubt in the minds of the audience.

The length of the argumentative essay is determined by the topic that one is discussing. If it is a complex argument, it will need detailed research, and as such, the essay will be long. Remember that persuasion is built with facts that help to infer conclusions. As such, you need to understand what you are talking about and you must have facts too back your arguments.


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