How to write an argumentative essay-best practices

May 24, 2018

How to write an argumentative essay-best practices

Argumentative essay writing

This post only explains how will you write an argumentative essay. If you want to learn general tips for essay writing you can read my other post on how to write an essay This post will take you to some best practices for argumentative essay writing. There are types of essays you may want to have a look on. But this post describes argumentative essays. and if you want to learn various types of English compostions please visit my list of post on this topic: How to Write- English Composition Tips

Definition of Argumentative Essay

An argumentative essay is a piece of writing which argues in favor of or against a phenomenon or an object. All argumentative writings may not be assays. You have to write your argumentation in form of an essay. So an argumentative essay includes argumentation in favor of or against anything. This post explains the things you will consider while writing an argumentative essay. Now while you need to write an essay, you must know how to write it in the best way.


Strategies to Write an Argumentative Essay


There are many things you need to know before you sit for writing. There is a checklist too. Here is a list of things you will do for writing an argumentative essay.


1. Take a position- think in favor of or against the given topic


The first thing you have to do is to take a decision. You have to convince your readers that what you think is actually true. You will decide whether you think against the given topic or you think in favor of it. For example, you are asked to write on "Smoking is a bad thing". Think what position will you take- to prove the statement "smoking is a bad thing" true or false. If you take the position to prove it false, you will write against this statement. You will have to prove that "smoking is not a bad thing". This is how you will define what you are going to prove.


2. Prepare for reasoning- find reasons of what you think is true


Next thing to do is to find reasons. Find why and how what you think is true. Which things prove you true. Collect as many reasons as possible. The better strategy is to prove the reasons of your opponents false. Let us take the example of "smoking is a bad thing". If you write to prove that smoking is not a bad thing, you will find the reasons the people give in favor of smoking. For example, they say "tobacco has nicotine which is bad for the respiratory system". So, you will try to prove that nicotine is not bad for the respiratory system. For this, you will need evidence.


3. Collect evidence to support your reasons


Reasons you give are not just words. They must be supported by pieces of evidence. Solid evidence will give both credibility and new thoughtfulness to your essay. You will describe the source of evidence too.The source of evidence may be questionable. So, do not give false evidence. Do not try to prove your point with false reasons. For this, you have to research and organize your data. See the example of 'smoking is a bad thing'. To prove that nicotine is not bad for the respiratory system, you will look into what nicotine actually does with the respiratory system. You will collect information of the respiratory system, its structure, and functions. You will study the effect of nicotine on the respiratory system. You will study the interaction of nicotine with lungs. You will collect facts and figures that support your view.


4. Give counterarguments


Counterarguments refer to the arguments to prove others' arguments wrong. You will investigate the others' arguments. You will write why the arguments of other people are not true. You will find faults with the reasons they give to support their point. Again see the example of 'smoking is a bad thing'. If people give the reason that nicotine is bad for the respiratory system, you will do the following:

1. prove that there is no nicotine is tobacco

2. prove that the nicotine in tobacco is not harmful to respiratory system

3. prove that the benefits of nicotine are much more than its harms

4. prove that the harm caused by nicotine are of ordinary nature. They have no lasting effects on respiratory system

So, counters are of great importance in an argumentative essay.

Now when you have reasons and shreds of evidence and counterarguments. You may proceed to write your essay.


Style / Format of an Argumentative Essay


Now here is the format of writing an argumentative essay. The style and format of an argumentative essay are not much different from a general essay. You can write your essay in general paragraphing style. Let us revise the procedure step by step.


1. Give your essay a reflecting title


Fist important thing is to give your title a good title. The good title means the title that really illustrates the content of your essay. Also, include some phrases to make your topic more attractive. In our example of "smoking is a bad thing," you can write the topic as "Is smoking really kills? A mistaken belief is corrected" OR "Why I believe that smoking is not a bad thing" OR "Smoking is a good thing- A perspective of smokers" etc.

The point which I want to highlight is that topic is the key point of your essay. The more interesting the topic is, the more readers will it attract.


2. Write a summary of your essay


Summarizing your essay to 1/8 of your original essay is a good idea when you are writing an essay with more than 1000 words. A summary is a short description of what you have written in your essay. Do not include examples, repeated concepts, calculations and images in your summary. It should be simple and brief. It should reflect what is inside the essay.


3. Make an outline of your essay


If you are writing a long detailed essay, it is a wise act to make an outline. The outline may be placed right after the summary (if available) of the essay. An outline is a list of important sections of your essay. A sample outline is given.




4. Write your essays in paragraphs

Now start writing your essay in paragraphs. The arrangement of paragraphs should be as under:

1st paragraph: definition and understanding of topic

2nd paragraph: available statistics and information on given topic

3rd paragraph: prevailing beliefs and their grounds (you can include more than one paragraph in this section)

4th paragraph: Tell why you think people are right (or wrong) (you can include more than one paragraph in this section)

5th paragraph. give your reasons and evidence in support of those reasons (you can include more than one paragraph in this section)

6th paragraph: conclusion (conclude your argumentation)

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