An argumentative essay is a writing genre in which a student is expected to express and defend their opinion on a given subject using credible evidence. Before writing an argumentative essay, it is important that the student does exhaustive research in order to articulate their perspective on the topic in question comfortably. A good argumentative essay looks at various aspects of the subject before drawing a sound conclusion.
How to Write an Argumentative Essay
An argumentative essay follows the standard format used with most essays. That is:
The opening needs to make the subject of your essay as transparent as possible. It is supposed to be exciting and thought-provoking to motivate the reader go through the entire article. You start the introduction by explaining the topic, why you think it is controversial then finally end by stating your thesis statement.
Make your introduction as powerful as possible. Start with a strong statement, fact, quote, a question or a statistic that naturally elevates the reader’s desire to read the rest of the article. After opening the introduction with your attention-grabbing sentence, provide a brief background on the topic to make the readers better understand it.
Finally, state your thesis statement. This is essentially the essence of your essay. Do not present your thesis in an ambiguous way. Make it as clear as possible. One good sentence is enough to state your thesis.
2. The Body
The first paragraph of the argumentative essay should build on the introduction and present a sub-argument that is pertinent to the subject. The main arguments are usually found in the body of the essay. This is where you explain in details, using logical evidence, why the reader should agree with your opinion or thesis.
Give three or more important arguments or reasons why the reader should subscribe to your particular opinion or stand. These are usually called topic sentences, and each of them begins on a new paragraph. Support your topic sentences with reputable evidence, examples, statistic or anecdotes.
3. Conclusion /Summary
The conclusion should not only make the user buy your opinions but also take some desired action. You should make it clear to the reader what will happen if they adopt the solutions provided in your argument. Tell them how feasible your opinion is and why you think if they accept it, it is going to change their lives in one way or another. Don’t make the reader make their own decisions. Tell them exactly what they need to do, think or believe.
Examples of argumentative essay topics
Topics for High School Students
1. Do you think the minimum driving age should be lowered?
2. Education should be made free to every citizen
3. High school students should be free to choose their classes
Topics for college students
1. Do you think news sources have a biased agenda?
2. Should public services be sacrificed for lower tax brackets?
3. Internet access should solely be limited to students
A great argumentative essay capitalizes on credible research to come up with arguments that are not only believable but actionable. Unlike a persuasive essay, an argumentative essay should not lure readers into buying their opinions by being persuasive but instead using evidence, statistics and examples that present credible and logical arguments.