Argumentative essay is a literary work (coherent text), written on a controversial topic. In other words, this essay defends a certain thesis, about which it is possible to bring arguments for and against.
Objectives of the argumentative essay:
- To convince the audience in a certain point of view and to persuade it in your side (much attention is paid to the opposite position).
- Clearly formulate why this position is preferable, and not the other one.
The author, during the writing of the essay, conducts a kind of internal dialogue (evaluating statements, evidence and support, assumptions, hidden arguments, and internal contradictions) and comes to the fact that one point of view becomes more preferable than others, while the rest of the people can disagree with it.
Argumentative essays address various topics: from public-political to personal. The main thing is that there are at least two reasonable points of view on this topic.
Best Argumentative Essay Topics
- An open society must have open borders
- Military service must be mandatory
- Unemployment promotes economic development
- Television forms a new type of culture
- The UN should expand the protection of cultural human rights
- Technological progress leads to the death of civilization
- Senior classes must be profile
- Boys and girls should study separately
Understanding the Topic of the Essay
Work on the essay must begin with the understanding of the topic. You do not need to write in all the directions of the topic, select one particular aspect of it, and write it on a separate sheet of paper. Over time, highlight and write down all the keywords or associations that come to your mind on this topic. Try to establish relationships between them and highlight the categories. During all the work, return to this sheet of paper, supplementing it with new ideas and thoughts that arise.
Reading, Necessary for Revealing the Theme of the Essay
Choose something that you will read very carefully. After all, what you have read will tell your professor in which direction you were working and how deeply you studied the topic.
When a teacher recommends books and articles, he or she compiles a list of references of the best authors because they consider them important for studying this topic. He expects that you will read this material. If you read the material not according to the list, you are risking that you read this material alone, and this point of view on the topic may prove to be wrong.
Read the information and constantly check if you understand what you read. Do this, going back to the list of comprehending the topic, supplementing it, and expanding it. You can also check your understanding by making short notes or diagrams on what you have read. Read scientific books. The internet is the main trap for students. It’s possible to get a lot of information, but only a small part of it will make a difference to work. If you want to compose the best argumentative essay, try not to use Wikipedia as a reference. Often, it offers non-scientific information, and sometimes this information is simply wrong.
Getting to Work on the Essay
When you study enough material to understand the main questions on a given topic, try to check yourself. To do this, after closing all entries, on a separate sheet of paper, write down three or four points (theses) relating to the topic of the work.
- If you can do it clearly and consistently, then you are ready to start the writing of your work.
- If you are experiencing difficulties, then you have not comprehended the topic, have not understood what you read, and you need to return to the reading, studying, and comprehending of the material.
Stage Number One
Begin to write an essay from three or four main items as headings (theses) Write with a closed book. Consider the meaning of each item or heading (thesis) for the topic of your work, what role they play.
Imagine that you have to explain these points to someone who does not know anything, so each item should contain information and explain some aspects of the topic of your work. It is good, if there is an opportunity to discuss work at this stage by co-students, relatives, or friends, i.e., with somebody who is not familiar with the topic. If they cannot understand the essence of your topic in a short time, then think about changing the wording or theses.
Remember that writing with a closed book ensures that you understand the material, can state it clearly and reasonably, using your own words. In this way, you will avoid plagiarism and demonstrate to the teacher that you understand the material.
The best argumentative essay should contain real facts, information, and evidence supporting them. Most of them you will find when studying materials on the topic. These are true facts your conclusions should be based on. Each page of the work will have four or five footnotes to prove the validity of your arguments. A statement made without confirmation is useless. In an academic essay, each of your arguments is a fact and its evidence. At this stage, you can have three of the four paragraphs of information on what is done by three or four separate items.
Stage Number Two
Now you need to disclose each of the three or four main points. For this, you need to reopen the material (books, articles, etc.) and study deeper specific information on these issues. Do not copy from the text, but collect the ideas and write them in your own words, with a reference to the materials. Write only on the topic and do not go to other points that do not concern the theme.
At this point, you have the skeleton of your essay – three of the four basic headings (theses) with three or four items for each of the headings. It is important to make sure that your work is logical and that each statement is related in its entirety to the argument. Imagine once again that you are convincing someone on this topic. If you can imagine your arguments without reading the essay, then everything is clear.
Stage Number Three
Now you are ready to write a preamble and conclusion. They are related to each other. The preamble explains briefly your understanding of the topic, its importance, and how you intend to discuss it. You can mention three or four headings that you will use to open your topic. The conclusion sums up what was done and what you wrote, referring to the topic of the essay.
Your best argumentative essay has found its final form. If possible, put it back for 1–2 days, then read the work out loud to make sure that you have used full and correctly constructed sentences to express your thoughts, which are not very long, precise, and to the point. Check if there are unjustified repetitions of words, expressions, or thoughts. Verify the morphological and syntactic literacy. Give someone your paper and ask them to specify on spelling, stylistic and syntactic errors, the misunderstanding during reading. Make all necessary corrections.
Make sure that the work is completed in full compliance with the requirements:
- Format of links and footnotes, and their accuracy
- Format of the headings, paragraphs, and sections
- Format of the title page
The Last Stage
- Be sure to save the necessary copies by correctly titling the corresponding document in the computer.
- Print the work, put all the sheets together, starting from the title, in the left corner and hand it to the professor.
Written works in universities are often held in the form of persuasion (evidence) when you need to persuade others that you have a logically correct opinion on the subject that you are researching. Persuasion is a useful skill that you constantly apply in your everyday life. You convince your brother to clean the room, your parents – to let you drive their car, your friend – to vote in favor of a certain candidate or politician.
Teachers in a number of tasks often require making convincing arguments. You convince the reader in your opinion. This kind of persuasion is called the academic argument and performed in a written form. After a short preamble, you indicate your idea on the subject directly in one sentence, which is the thesis, and it is the conclusion of the statement that you will work on in your paper.
Thesis statements, which are too vague, often do not have strong arguments. If your thesis contains words such as “good” or “successful,” think about whether you can make it more specific. Why is something “good” or what exactly does make it “successful?”
- “My thesis will pass the test. If the first reaction of the reader is: “So what?” – then it needs to be clarified and you need to correctly formulate questions.
- “Does my essay definitely reveal the main idea of the thesis or just express the assumption?” If your thesis has no connection with the main part of your essay, you need to change either it or the essay.