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    How to Write an Argumentative Essay

    Home / Blog / How To Write An Argumentative Essay? - Tips & Examples

    How to Write an Argumentative Essay
     Admin  Published On May 2, 2019 | Updated on Oct 4, 2023  Essay

     A Beginner’s Guide to Writing Argumentative Essays

    Human beings are opinionated creatures. Ask a Harry Potter fan and a Percy Jackson fan which of the two series is the more fitting children's literature, and they'll probably be able to argue about it for hours. But the winner is the one who is able to present logical arguments and articulate them properly. That's the essence of any argumentative essay. So, let’s learn more about this type of paper.

    What is an Argumentative Essay?

     An argumentative essay hinges on presenting an argument in a manner that leaves no room for doubt in the reader’s mind. Once you choose a topic and decide on a stance, you have to investigate it thoroughly to present your arguments. They have to be brimming with logic. Emotion has no place in an argumentative paper. Instead, detailed research takes priority.

    You can collect data through various means. The most common method is to conduct a detailed literature review to figure out what others have written on the topic beforehand. Other valid methods that you can opt for include the following –

    • Surveys
    • Interviews
    • Experiments

    When you dig deeper, you come across different perspectives. Incorporating them in your paper and refuting counterpoints proves that you've thought things through. Writing such a paper might seem like a challenge, but it's easier than it looks. Read the next segments, and you should gain more confidence.

    What are the Main Types of Argumentative Essays?

    Argumentative essays come in many shapes and forms. If you’re just starting out, then it’s best to have a clear idea about the four main types of argumentative papers –

    • Research
    • Personal
    • Analysis
    • Persuasive

    Let's dive into more detail about each type of essay so you can distinguish them from each other. The differences are very subtle. So, make sure you pay close attention.

    1. Research paper

    A research paper also falls under the category of an argumentative paper. You have to rely on external sources to support your main argument. Furthermore, you must maintain a balance. The number of sources you use to support your viewpoint should almost be equal to the number of sources you provide for opposing viewpoints that you refute.

    1. Personal paper

    A personal argumentative essay focuses on the writer’s personal opinion. In addition to research, you can use subjective reasoning to convince the reader to agree with your viewpoint. Develop the argument well and rely on logic to achieve your goal.

    1. Analysis paper

    The analysis argumentative essay analyzes other writers' works. When writing such a paper, you should focus on the writer's persuasive skills, the clarity of their arguments, the quality of the evidence they have used, and their overall presentation.

    1. Persuasive paper

    Persuasive argumentative essays are meant to persuade the reader. First, you establish your stance on the topic. Then, you present different perspectives and persuade the reader why your view is the better choice.

    How to Write an Argumentative Essay: The Writing Process

     The process of writing an argumentative essay is similar to that of writing any academic paper. However, you need to focus more on research for the former. Every student has their own way of writing such an essay. But here’s the recommended method by top academic experts:

    Step 1: Brainstorm ideas

    The brainstorming stage is where you weigh the pros and cons of every shortlisted argumentative topic. Here are some things you can do at this stage:

    • Figure out which topic you want to write on
    • Check if you have enough research materials
    • Ensure you can do justice to the paper
    • Check if you can complete the paper on time

    If you struggle to choose a topic, you can bounce ideas off your friends or professors.

    Step 2: Conduct research

    Research is vital to any argumentative essay. So, make sure you set aside plenty of time for it. You need to check whether you have ample evidence to support your arguments. Your paper won’t be complete until you add counterarguments and refute them. So, you need to research information about that as well. Create an outline while you're at it.

    Step 3: Draft paper

    Once you’ve gathered all the materials you need to give shape to your paper, start drafting it. The initial ones don’t have to be perfect. You can polish it more as you keep writing. Include data and direct quotes from reliable sources during the drafting stage. It’ll help you keep track of them later on.

    Step 4: Edit content

    After you’ve reached your final draft, read through the entire paper again. You might need to restructure some sentences, improve your word choices, and make sure you’ve provided sufficient points to prove your side of the argument.

    Step 5: Proofread the essay

    Proofreading is the final step of the writing process. As you make changes to each draft, you never know when a mistake might have slipped in without you noticing. So, go over the entire essay multiple times. Read it aloud if you must. But make sure you deal with all the issues before submission.

    How to Outline an Argumentative Essay in 4 Steps

    Coming up with an essay outline during the drafting stage can save you a lot of precious minutes in the future. When you plan everything out, you don’t have to worry about straying off-topic. So, let's take a closer look at the four simple steps involved in this process.

    1. Structuring the introduction

    The introductory paragraph should leave a good impression on the reader. So, make sure you provide enough background information to familiarize the reader with the topic. Include a hook to draw their attention. Figure out what you should include in this section and state your thesis.

    1. Writing the thesis statement

    The thesis is the last sentence of your introductory paragraph. Summarize the main argument that you want to prove here.

    1. Structuring the body

    The body of your argumentative essay can include three or more paragraphs. But each paragraph should tackle a different idea. Try to include as many examples, data, and statistics as you can to emphasize your point. Don't forget to add a topic sentence to each paragraph to explain why the reader should agree with you.

    1. Wrapping up the conclusion

    Repeat your thesis statement to remind the readers of the main objective of the paper. Summarize the main ideas that you’ve already covered in the essay. Under no circumstance should you add new points here. This section is meant to wrap things up neatly.

    100+ Argumentative Essay Topics for You to Browse

    Your argumentative essay topic should be interesting and relevant. You need to present something unique to the readers – a topic that hasn’t been covered a million times already. Go through the list of topics below. Perhaps you might find something that catches your fancy.

    General Argumentative Essay Topics

    1. Should parents have a say in the time their children spend online?
    2. Is it safe to shop online?
    3. Should schools encourage more recreational activities?
    4. Do teachers bear any responsibility if a child in their class is being bullied?
    5. Is becoming a social media influencer a good career choice?
    6. Is traditional grammar important in an age of internet lingo?
    7. Has technology ruined romantic relationships?
    8. Should people who text and walk on the streets be fined?
    9. Do you think access to mobile phones has made it easier for children to engage in cyberbullying?
    10. Do schools have the right to punish students based on their social media posts?
    11. Is education the only answer to tackling racism in countries?
    12. Are ethical concerns enough to stop experimenting with genetic cloning?
    13. Should all countries have a death penalty sentence?
    14. Is it unethical to deny a patient euthanasia?
    15. Are all political parties motivated by selfish desires?
    16. Do you think capitalism will bring about the end of society?
    17. Is it possible for schools to teach children empathy?
    18. Should serial killers be rehabilitated?
    19. Does the law really impart equal justice to all?
    20. Should students worldwide have access to free education?
    21. Is it the State’s responsibility to give jobs to all homeless people?
    22. Should smoking be criminalized?
    23. Is the modern lifestyle responsible for the increase in divorces?
    24. Does the Grammys have a racial bias?
    25. Should students above 13 be allowed to work part-time?

    Argumentative Essay Topics About Politics

    1. Should it be made compulsory to vote?
    2. Does democracy truly express what the public wants?
    3. Is the government responsible for increased obesity in the USA?
    4. Should students actively participate in politics?
    5. Do you think free speech should be banned during political unrest?
    6. Can government officials be penalized for their online behavior?
    7. Is it important for celebrities to participate in politics?
    8. Can the government levy more taxes on corporations?
    9. Is it possible to have no bias in politics?
    10. Can one's upbringing and surrounding society influence their political decision?
    11. Should people in jail be allowed to vote?
    12. Do you think political interest lessens with each new generation?
    13. Should gender have any role to play in the selection of a President?
    14. Does politics across the globe fail to keep older generations in consideration?
    15. Is a two-party system better than a multi-party system?
    16. Does the USA need to have better relations with China?
    17. Should the USA cap the maximum price of medicines?
    18. Do you think Asian-American stereotypes influence political decisions?
    19. Is feminism required in politics?
    20. Is knowing the history of a nation important for its governance?
    21. Will political stability be achieved with the dissolution of the UN?
    22. Would you consider the relation between politics and social media good?
    23. Has the tourism industry affected the Caribbean politics?
    24. Should all political leaders be feared?
    25. Is it ethical to restrict immigration to provide more job opportunities for locals?

    III. Argumentative Essay Topics About Society & Culture

    1. Should TVs ban explicit content from being shown?
    2. Does modern society focus more on individualism?
    3. Do you think adapting someone else’s culture is a betrayal of your own?
    4. Does culture express itself through food?
    5. Is the LGBTQA+ community discriminated against in India?
    6. Does pop culture have an influence in propagating stereotypes?
    7. Has cyberbullying become an intrinsic part of social media culture?
    8. Do you think social awareness about racism has increased in the past few years?
    9. Should technology be allowed to play such a huge role in the functioning of society?
    10. Does the USA have its own culture?
    11. Do immigrants adopt another country's culture completely?
    12. How does America's pop culture affect language?
    13. The influence of hip-hop on music worldwide
    14. Is borrowing trends from other cultures cultural appropriation?
    15. The influence of society in shaping gender expectations
    16. Can media move people to be more conscious about racism?
    17. Is society as a whole dependent on globalization?
    18. Should you judge other cultures' practices based on your own culture?
    19. Cultural hybridism and its influence in the 21stcentury
    20. Should companies hire more human workers than machines?
    21. Is it ethical for parents to make social media content about their children?
    22. Should the legal age for marriage be increased?
    23. Do men and women receive equal opportunities in society?
    24. Has conversion to electronic payment systems eased monetary transactions in society?
    25. Should the government regulate society more?

    Argumentative Essay Topics About History

    1. Would you consider World War II beneficial to America’s journey to becoming a superpower?
    2. Do you think it was wise of America to drop the atomic bomb knowing the consequences?
    3. Is Barack Obama’s election as President a historical moment in the USA?
    4. Would you consider the founding fathers of America to be problematic?
    5. Has slavery influenced the American Economy?
    6. Has the introduction of the railway system in Europe affected its culture?
    7. Would you consider Germany to be the only country responsible for World War I?
    8. How did the Cold War influence the politics of the world?
    9. Discuss the impact of the Industrial Revolution on wars.
    10. Was defeat in World War I the only reason Hitler rose to power?
    11. Do you think women played an important part during the American Revolution?
    12. Has imperialism affected Japan in a positive or negative manner?
    13. Do you think America needed to participate in World War I?
    14. Did colonialism play a role in World War II?
    15. Does Gothic art enjoy more popularity than Modernist paintings?
    16. How important is perspective while writing history?
    17. Should native American descendants receive repercussions for the trauma their ancestors went through?
    18. The impact of the Plague on European history
    19. Racism has always been present in countries around the world – Discuss.
    20. Would you consider the American Civil War a necessity?
    21. Discuss South Korea's relationship with Japan, considering the atrocities Japan inflicted on the country.
    22. Has the World Wars influenced America's foreign policy?
    23. Should America conserve the native American traditions?
    24. Discuss the journey of women to obtain voting rights in Europe.
    25. Would you consider fights for feminist rights a part of human rights?

    Argumentative Essay Topics for Kids in Elementary School

    1. Should schools stop giving homework?
    2. Is it alright for schools to begin early in the morning?
    3. Would it be more beneficial to have mixed online and offline classes?
    4. Is it good for kids to have imaginary friends?
    5. Do you think children should have limited screen time?
    6. Should parents be more involved with students' assignments?
    7. Is it normal to feel jealous of your siblings?
    8. Do you think parents favor one child over the other?
    9. Can video games teach children better than teachers?
    10. Is it normal for students to experience bullying from a young age?
    11. Should parents be held responsible for their child's behavior?
    12. Should students who don't clear their lunches be punished?
    13. Is punishment a good method to teach children right from wrong?
    14. Do you think all schools should start a pet fostering system to teach responsibility?
    15. Is it better to have the same teachers every year?
    16. Do you think it is okay to eat dessert before dinner?
    17. Should parents help children with their homework?
    18. Is it right to force children to participate in events?
    19. Should elementary school kids be allowed to attend sleepovers?
    20. Is a themed birthday party too childish for a 4thgrader?
    21. Should you have to keep being friends with your classmates when they didn't invite you to their birthday party?
    22. Are school fairs an opportunity to bond with classmates?
    23. Should schools teach sign language to students from a young age?
    24. Is it ethical for students who win sports prizes to get concessions on grades?
    25. Do you think learning history is important?

    Argumentative Essay Topics for Middle School

    1. Should schools allow middle school students to dye their hair?
    2. Is it too early for middle school students to study the subjects they want?
    3. Can violent video games have a psychological impact?
    4. Is there such a thing as too much homework?
    5. Should schools allow students to replace homework with other academic activities?
    6. Do you think cramming is the most effective solution for good grades?
    7. Should school hours be reduced?
    8. Should all schools adopt a mixed mode of learning by combining online and offline classes?
    9. Do you think grades are the best way to measure a child’s potential?
    10. Should media literacy classes be mandatory from middle school?
    11. Is a private room necessary for children?
    12. Do you think parents should receive behavioral reports of their children from school?
    13. Are schools monitoring students during an online test breaching privacy?
    14. Should middle school students have regular sessions with the counselor?
    15. Can students be moved to the next grade if they fail the final exam?
    16. Should teachers be more lenient towards assignment submissions?
    17. Do you think schools should introduce uniforms for all grades?
    18. Are good grades the only thing that matters?
    19. Should classrooms adopt new technology?
    20. Do you think classes should be livestreamed for those who can't come to class in person?
    21. Should teachers have the right to censor the school newspaper?
    22. Schools should do away with late-submission library fines – Discuss.
    23. Is recess an important part of the timetable?
    24. Should schools have their own chaperone service?
    25. Should parents have the right to finalize school books every year?

    VII. Argumentative Essay Topics for Music, Literature, and Art

    1. Is art as important as science in society?
    2. Do you think war literature provides an exaggerated depiction of the horrors of war?
    3. Would you consider graffiti art or vandalism?
    4. Are movie theatres still relevant in the age of digital streaming?
    5. Do you think recent music releases are overly focused on becoming viral on social media?
    6. Does having more female superheroes have an impact on feminism?
    7. Is it possible to consider art and the artist as two different entities?
    8. Do you think censorship in literature and music can ever be successful?
    9. “Literature is a mirror of the times” – agree or disagree?
    10. Do you think art and politics should mingle?
    11. Should the concept of trigger warnings be applied to books?
    12. Has technology improved people's access to art?
    13. Do you think there is any benefit to reading non-fiction?
    14. Has music evolved with time?
    15. Should schools have compulsory art classes?
    16. Do you think the various art forms manage to capture the curious nature of human beings?
    17. Does the human body have a psychological reaction to music?
    18. How have the music marketing tactics changed over the years?
    19. Do you think music has any relation to science?
    20. Can books bring about the downfall of a nation?
    21. Would you consider fanfiction a valid piece of literature?
    22. Why do people look down on young adult romance novels targeted towards women?
    23. Is music important in political campaigns? Discuss.
    24. Do you think technology has been a double-edged sword for the music industry?
    25. What does it take to consider a literary work as a classic?

    Frequently Asked Questions

    How to write a hook for an argumentative essay?

    The hook for your argumentative paper will determine whether the readers will feel compelled enough to give your essay a read. Some good methods you can follow are –

    • Using a rhetorical question to intrigue the reader
    • Taking the help of a lesser-known statistic
    • Clearing a common misconception

    These can strengthen your argument and make the reader interested in your paper.

    How to write an argumentative essay introduction?

    The introduction of your argumentative paper should contain the following –

    • Background information/Context about the topic
    • Reasons why the readers should care about it
    • A hook to increase the reader’s interest
    • A simple thesis statement that establishes your stance

    Make sure the introductory paragraph is concise. It’s all about creating a good first impression.

    How do I begin an argumentative essay?

    One of the first steps of writing an argumentative essay is to choose the right topic. You should pick one that you're particularly interested in. Next, start working on the outline. Structure your arguments, figure out which points you'd like to make, and make a note of all the counterarguments. Once you're done, you can begin writing your paper.

    What is the format of an argumentative essay?

    An argumentative essay follows the same format as any essay. In other words, you have to make three sections –

    • Introduction
    • Body
    • Conclusion

    The introductory and concluding paragraphs are only one paragraph long. But your body can contain three paragraphs, so you can maintain the standard five-paragraph rule.

    What is an argumentative essay and examples?

    An argumentative essay is a piece of academic writing where you present your argument about a particular topic. You research it thoroughly and collect data that can prove your point. For example, if you think bread is a healthier meal option than rice, you need to state that bread contains a smaller number of calories and carbohydrates. For more examples, you can check out sample papers on EssayHack.

    What are 3 parts of an argumentative essay?

    The three main parts of an argumentative essay are –

    • The introduction– Reader's introduction to the topic, the background information, a hook, and a thesis statement
    • The body– The main section where you present your arguments and refute counterarguments
    • The conclusion– The final section where you remind the reader of the importance of the topic and wrap everything up

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