How to Approach an Argumentative Essay
Of most essays you have written in high school or college, must of them are argumentative papers. This reasonably common assignment requires the student to demonstrate an in-depth understanding of a given subject. In the essay, the writer must provide a definitive stance and supporting evidence for their claims. It follows that an argumentative essay requires plenty of research and writing.
Writing a good argumentative essay starts with the topic. In some cases, the instructor will provide the topic they want to be addressed in the paper. The subsequent steps then become relatively straightforward. Typically, the student is expected to come up with their own topic. Like any other form of academic writing, your choice can either make or break your essay.
On the one hand, a student can choose a narrow topic. This might then become restricting when the writer is collecting evidence for their essay. On the other hand, they can choose a topic that is too broad. It leaves them with too much content to cover when time might be a limited resource. It is always prudent to pick a topic you are confident that you can develop in-depth. It would equally be sensible to get a second opinion, mostly from your instructor.
Before Writing Your Argumentative Essay
An argumentative paper can easily get overwhelming. As has been previously mentioned, you will have plenty of literature to read through and just as much writing. Therefore, it would be sensible to break down your work into smaller, more manageable tasks. To achieve this, you must start by creating a practical outline for the essay.
Formulating an outline entails understanding the requirements of the paper thoroughly. Hence, you should ensure that you have a good grip on the requirements of the essay. It guides you on the relevant sections that you require in the text. Subsequently, this provides the basis for you to develop a pertinent framework. Furthermore, it helps you to establish the areas that need research.
The approach is pretty similar when it comes to conducting the research. From your outline, you will have identified the information required for each section. This will guide you in finding the relevant literature for the different elements of your argument. You must then take down notes as your progress. Furthermore, it is essential to write down all the sources you will employ in your paper.
The Writing Process
This part is usually somewhat straightforward. Since you will already have an outline and your research content, it is all about conveying your thoughts and ideas in coherent writing. This builds on the writing skills you have gained over the years. If you were diligent with the preceding steps, articulating your stance will not be too challenging.
Like any other paper you write for school, it is recommended that you should revise your work accordingly before submission. Therefore, you ought to take the time to proofread and edit your essay thoroughly. Ideally, you should submit the best possible version of your argumentative paper.