First of all, think about a powerful, eye-catching hook to grab your reader's attention. Sure, it is important to know who your target audience is first.
Writing a controversial essay can be challenging for the writer since the topics usually cover issues that people have strong feeling on. Combining opinions with . Putting together an argumentative essay outline is the perfect way to get started on your argumentative essay assignment—just fill in the.
Different people require different approaches. Let's look at my own example. I used to write an argumentative essay on why there should be a second official language in the United States in addition to English. I have chosen Spanish as my point of view. Based on the primary research, my hook could be,. Don't try to write too much in this part. Simply name a topic and give a hint on what you'll be talking about in your argumentative text.
Briefly explain why the topic is important and who cares about it. Thus, it is important to work on the question of the second national language. This part contains the main argument. Don't pose any questions here - just state your main point of view clearly and without any hesitations. You may look at the additional information on how to write an eye-catching essay introduction with a hook.
As you remember, every claim is supported by the corresponding evidence you found during the research. If you have more information to share, you may include up to five body paragraphs. A strong research question requires you not only to find information but also to put together different pieces of information, interpret and analyze them, and figure out what you think. As you consider potential research questions, ask yourself whether they would be too hard or too easy to answer.
To determine your research question, review the freewriting you completed earlier. Skim through books, articles, and websites and list the questions you have. You may wish to use the 5WH strategy to help you formulate questions. Include simple, factual questions and more complex questions that require analysis and interpretation. Determine your main question—the primary focus of your paper—and several subquestions that you will need to research to answer that main question.
Here are the research questions Jorge will use to focus his research.
Notice that his main research question has no obvious, straightforward answer. Jorge will need to research his subquestions, which address narrower topics, to answer his main question. Using the ideas you came up with in Self — Practice Exercise This is something you will use to help guide you in your writing and to check back with to make sure you are answering that question along the way.
Collaborate with a partner and share your questions. Describe your topic and point of view and ask your partner if that question connects to that topic and point of view. Working with the topic you have identified, use the research skills you learned in previous chapters to locate approximately five potentially useful print or electronic sources of information about the topic.
Organize your list of resources into primary and secondary sources. What makes them either primary or secondary? Pick one primary source and one secondary source and write a sentence or two summarizing the information that each provide s. What type of primary source did you choose?
Who wrote it, and why? Do you think this source provides accurate information, or is it biased in some way? Where did the information in the secondary source come from? Was the author citing an initial study, piece of literature, or work of art?
Of course, if you take time to research the topic and come up with a very detailed plan for your work, you will unlikely need to improvise as you write. You can also use shorter writing phrases which inform the reader about the content. Here is an example of a possible outline that takes an anti-gun approach:. Will get your help again cuz have a tight schedule at work. Need a little more inspiration and want to see what a completed argumentative essay looks like?
Where could you find the primary source? With the topic from Self — Practice Exercise Note that after reading Section How to B e Really Convincing Sometimes it can be very challenging to convince someone of your ideas and that your point of view is valid. If your reader has strong contrary views or has had emotional experiences in the past connected to that topic, your job in persuading will be more challenging.
However, if you consider your audience and tone as discussed in Section It will also help you make recognize how much and what kind of background information you need to provide your reader with context for your discussion. Look back at the two persuasive essay examples in Section With a partner, discuss the strengths and weaknesses of each example. Look at the credibility, tone, appropriateness to audience, and completeness of the ideas presented. Collaboration: W ith your partner, discuss how you could make each of these arguments stronger. As you read in Chapter 10, Section When you do this, you are presenting a well-rounded and complete discussion to your reader that shows you have critically thought about the topic and have been selective in choosing your points.
As a result, there is a higher probably that you will convince your reader. The process of looking at multiple sides of a topic is called dialectics. Dialectics is the act of using logical reasoning to combine, juxtapose, or synthesize opposing ideas to arrive at a strong conclusion. The Components of Dialectics To begin the dialectic process, you first need to come up with an idea of what topic will be discussed; this is the thesis behind the discussion.
Once you have determined your thesis, through various methods the easiest being discussion with someone else , you will explore opposing sides to the topic, eventually discovering at least one antithesis. Combining those two perspectives, you can then make your own conclusions. Maybe this process will result in you standing by the original thesis, or maybe the antithesis is incredibly convincing and you will switch sides of the argument, or maybe you still believe the original thesis but accept there are other conditions that have credibility as well. This end result is called the synthesis : the blending of ideas.
Essentially, the process would look like this:.
Considering both your thesis and the discovered antithetical perspectives will help you to arrive at a wider view of a topic: one that has more credibility. Looking back to the persuasive essay samples you read in Section How did they justify their opinions?
Consider how integrating dialectics into each of those arguments to a greater degree would have strengthened their points of view, ultimately making their arguments more convincing. First complete the side of the table with ideas supporting the point of view you described in question 1. Then, challenge yourself to come up with ideas you may need to do a little bit of research that would support the other side of the discussion.
Collaboration: D iscuss your answers with a partner. Do you both have the same ideas, or can you add to your list based on what your partner has come up with. After coming up with and considering the other perspective, has your point of view changed at all? Do you still stick by your same point of view percent?
Or do you concede that there are valid points from the other perspective? Using both the scratch outline and the working thesis you created in Self — Practice Exercise Once you have created that table with your thesis given, share your table and thesis with a classmate. Collaborate : Conduct a dialectic discussion on your topic and possible for and against the working thesis you presented.
Add any points to your original table. Remember to be aware of the process of synthesis you have gone through. Did your original point of view change at all? Is there anything you can make concessions on being valid?
This may impact your thesis. Using one or two of the opposing ideas your partner helped you come up with, revise your scratch outline from Self — Practice Exercise For this section, you will need to refer back to Section The persuasive essay begins with an engaging introduction that presents the general topic. A careful analysis of your notes will help you re-evaluate your working thesis and determine whether you need to revise it. Remember that your working thesis was the starting point—not necessarily the end point—of your research. You should revise your working thesis if your ideas changed based on what you read.
Even if your sources generally confirmed your preliminary thinking on the topic, it is still a good idea to tweak the wording of your thesis to incorporate the specific details you learned from research.
Jorge realized that his working thesis oversimplified the issues. He still believed that the media was exaggerating the benefits of low-carb diets. However, his research led him to conclude that these diets did have some advantages. Avoid forming a thesis based on a negative claim. That is, the thesis statement should focus on how the hourly minimum wage is low or insufficient. On a sheet of paper, use your working thesis and the revised outline from Self — Practice Exercise Essentially, you are expanding your outline to include more source information. By now, your thinking on your topic is taking shape.
You have a sense of what major ideas to address in your paper, what points you can easily support, and what questions or subtopics might need a little more thought. In short, you have begun the process of synthesizing information—that is, of putting the pieces together into a coherent whole.