national anthology of the best undergraduate writing 2014

How to Write an Argument Essay

How to Write an Argument Essay

An argument essay is writing that requires a view and counterview that are presented with supporting facts and evidence where the writer takes a specific stand on the argument and convinces the reader to view things in their light. Argument essays differ from expository essays in that they require a lot of research and fact-finding. These sources can be interviews, magazines, books, journals and other published materials. So how does one go about writing an argument essay?

Argument essays take the format of normal essays with an introduction, body and conclusion paragraphs. The introduction lays the foundation for the entire argument. The introductory paragraph consists of a captivating or hook statement, background information, and a thesis statement. The captivating statement is meant to entice the reader on what the essay will be about. The background information sheds a little light on what the essay will be based on while not completely exhausting the argument.

The thesis statement is a specific statement on what you intend to present your argument on. It determines the focus of the paper and assists the writer in clarifying their points and ideas. Thesis statements can take the form of a question and answer format or it can be a refutation. A thesis statement gives the reader a summary of what the essay will talk about and opens the stage for the body of the paper.

The body of the paper adds flesh to the skeleton provided for by the introduction. When writing, start with the counterview of the topic you have chosen to write about followed by the view that you support. These points should be supported by factual evidence that can be cited or referenced. The body of argument essays can be three paragraphs long but could be longer depending on the content and information collected and the specifications for the paper.

The concluding paragraph summarizes the entire essay. It is meant to convince the reader on why your point of view is right over the opposing views. One is required to restate their thesis then present an argument or two in order to summarize the paper. A general statement is made which reassesses the thesis statement in light of the evidence provided. Argument essays should be based on logic and not emotions and the topic chosen should be narrow in focus for a strong argument.

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