Argumentative Essay

Description of Assignment:

An argument paper seeks to change the ideas or actions of an audience through a systematic explanation of reasons why an idea or plan is more valid or practical than the current generally accepted system of thought or behavior.  The key to a good argument is persuasion.  Keep in mind the following:

  • Know your audience.  All persuasion begins on common ground. The goal is to move your audience from one place to another, not to vent your position.
  • Back up your points.  Ethos, logos and pathos are important.  Use a variety of types of evidence to move the widest number of people with your argument.
  • Refute the other side.  It is not enough to make good points.  Once you have established your case you must address detractors and show why the opposition’s points are faulty.

The thesis statement for this paper will focus on what it is that you want to see changed and perhaps how that change should come about. An argument thesis statement may look like this: “By ending farm subsidies, America will better be able to feed the world,” or, “Walmart, if allowed to expand unchecked, will destroy the American middle class.”  The only requirement is that the topic is controversial, that is, there is more than one side to the argument and each side could be argued equally well. Value terms (better, greatest, most, should, ought to, etc.) are often found in argument thesis statements.

Organization:

This paper will be organized logically; please refer to the sample outline for the exact structure of the paper.

Requirements:

· The first paragraph must have a thesis statement and introduce the reader to the topic.

· Use transitions in between paragraphs.

· The last paragraph needs to summarize your main points and give your audience a vision of a world where your ideas have been adopted.

Remember unity, coherence and adequate development.  Make sure you are proving a topic sentence with each example, make sure the points are easy to understand and make sure you have written enough so your audience is not left with questions.

Technical Details:

  • The paper must be 3  pages in length (approximately 1000 words)
  • Use 12-point font, Times New Roman,  double-spaced.
  • MLA formatted with at least three sources.

Persuasion Outline

Intro (Fact, question, bold statement, quote, short story, definition, background on the subject):

Thesis Statement (Claim):

Body:

Paragraph 1-Supporting point #1 (ethos, logos or pathos?):

Paragraph 2-Supporting point #2 (ethos, logos or pathos?):

Paragraph 3-Supporting point #3 (ethos, logos or pathos?):

Paragraph 4-An argument from the opposition:

Your rebuttal for that argument:

Conclusion (restate your thesis, illustrate with a short story, rename your main points, give a recommendation for next steps, challenge, use a quotation):

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