There are different essays that all students need to write, and a persuasive paper is one of them. It explains a particular subject and tries to persuade readers that a personal stance is the most informed, valid, and logical perspective on it. This essay is often written out of class and it requires your extensive research that involves such sources as:
- Non-scholarly and scholarly books;
- Statistical analyses;
- Technical and scholarly journal articles;
- Articles from top-quality non-scholarly journals or magazines;
- Surveys and interviews with experts;
- Government agency sites.
Basic persuasive writing questions and answers
What is a persuasive essay? It’s the first question that you may ask after being assigned to write it. This paper aims at investigating a particular matter, taking a stand on it, generative useful ideas, and evaluating available facts in a logical manner to support your personal stance. This type of writing is meant to persuade others to think the same way, so you need to convince the audience to agree with a personal point of view. Your central argument should be reasoned, detailed, specific, and supported with logic.
What is the key goal of persuasive essays?
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Persuasive essays use your research to supply the evidence necessary to support the chosen stance and educate readers about a given topic. What is the main purpose of this type of writing? You write this paper to persuade others (even if they disagree with you) that your personal point of view is the most compelling. To achieve this goal, show that you’re well-informed about a particular subject.
What are basic persuasive writing elements?
Persuasive writing has these specific baseline guidelines and they’re standard to almost every essay type:
- A controlling idea or a clear thesis that both sustains and established your opinion;
- The opening section that introduces it;
- Body paragraphs that use strong research evidence to illustrate your argumentative and informative points;
- Logical transition that connect the main ideas of adjoining essay sections in interesting ways;
- Counterarguments to refute and summarize opposing views on your subject;
- The conclusion that emphasizes a central argument without sounding repetitive.
How should you write persuasive essays?
The use of five paragraphs is a rule of thumb for this type of writing. If you aren’t familiar with persuasive essays, use this standard method to get started because it’s quite straightforward and popular. Your essay should incorporate all important elements in the following structure:
- The introduction with a concise thesis;
- 3 body paragraphs with your analysis and evidence;
- The conclusion that summarizes your essay by reevaluating your thesis in the light of given proofs.
Although the above-mentioned structure provides you with a useful formula to work with, there are other valid solutions. Besides, its sustainability is based on different facts, such as the complexity and length of your paper. If it’s 3 or 4 pages long, you need to use more than 5 paragraphs, but its structure is quite similar because all paragraphs serve the same purposes. The main difference is that their number and length increase.
A process guide on writing persuasive essays
The process of writing your persuasive essay starts with taking certain preliminary steps. First, read assignment prompts carefully and ensure that you understand them fully. Find the subject that fits given prompts and narrow it down to be directly relevant to your assignment. However, your topic shouldn’t be so narrow that it lacks the necessary significance. Look for the one that you’re interested in because it will make the entire process more enjoyable and result in its higher quality.
Before you start your research, create a special list of fact and write down everything you know about a particular subject. Your list can be either short or long based on the level of knowledge that you have. Create another list that includes your relevant views and ideas. Start with the strongest ones and list them based on your level of conviction. Determine why you have specific opinions and clarify your personal views on the chosen topic to avoid getting overwhelmed with expert points when doing your persuasive paper research.
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Stay open to changing your views if evidence and logic warrant the necessary changes. Come up with a debatable and original perspective on a given subject to write a tentative thesis and reflect your opinion concisely. In this case, being original means that you shouldn’t use bland, general, and clear idea that many people readily agree with,
Steps to doing your in-depth research
Get familiar with available resources, including online databases, periodicals, books, and others. For example, you can describe your ideas to librarians and ask them for any recommendation on where to find the necessary sources of information. The key purpose of your research is to become well-informed about a given subject, so get immerse in relevant information and acquaint yourself with the most compelling and prominent views on major issues.
Search for the sources that share unusual aspects and unconventional perspectives on your subject because they can provide you with surprising and interesting angles to approach a major argument. Read them critically, determine what informs different perspectives on a given topic, and answer relevant questions, including:
- Which sources use the best logic?
- Which ones are well-informed?
- Which sources are guided more by assumptions and ideology instead of credible facts?
Take notes when reading sources and summarize their parts relevant to a thesis. In addition to your summary, include your ideas on the opinions and facts stated by the chosen sources. Feel free to critique the ones you disagree with to process the necessary research materials and develop your unique perspective on a particular matter.
Writing and revising persuasive essays
Once your comprehensive research is done, revise your thesis based on your new knowledge to determine whether you can make it more original and specific. Consider it as an opening statement in debates with people with opposing views. Look at your research sources and notes for strong examples that can be used to illustrate your personal views and discuss conflicting opinions. Each of them must have a clear connection to a central argument. Devote a separate body paragraph to every major idea and example. Start your outline with writing a catchy topic sentence about every major example. Since this sentence is a part of a paragraph transition, it must make a logical and clear connection between a thesis and the evidence discussed.
Complete your essay outline by any meaningful and interesting way to end your writing. This paragraph should summarize central arguments without repeating everything said in your paper. Suggest a larger implication of everything analyzed and discussed in it. Providing readers with a concise review of everything covered in addition to reasonable recommendations or forecasts for the future is an effective way to do that. Experiment with body paragraph before writing any introduction. Their details of analysis can help you determine how to work a strong thesis and surrounding sentences more precisely. Your persuasive paper should perform the following tasks that merge and overlap smoothly with each other:
- Defining key terms and ideas;
- Evaluating and summarizing contrasting views on the chosen topic;
- Analyzing and describing different examples of your subject;
- Connecting examples to a central arguments and each other;
- Comparing and contrasting them and their relation to a thesis.
Use enough quotes and paraphrase all sources to support your arguments and analysis. Integrate quotes into the sentences that you write to let discussions be read more smoothly. Cite the necessary information taken from reliable sources and use the required format according to assignment prompts. Finally, polish your persuasive essay through revising it to make all parts interesting, original, and artful. Avoid using any obvious examples and clichéd language in your paper because you want readers to learn something compelling and interesting, whether it’s a novel perspective on a given subject or an unusual fact.
Persuasive writing do’s and don’ts
After using the above-mentioned tricks, you’re well-equipped for writing the next persuasive essay. However, learning more proves to be helpful to increase your chances to submit a perfect paper, so look at the following do’s and don’ts of this type of writing.
Persuasive essay do’s
Follow the necessary guidelines given by instructors or professors because many students compromise the quality of their persuasive essays only because they fail to do that. Pay close attention to the required referencing format. References play a big role in persuasive writing because they help you prove the authenticity of arguments. Add them to your paper while keeping the right format in mind. One of the main things that should be done when writing any persuasive essay is to organize it correctly. Write it in the way that allows the flow of important information to be interesting without sounding repetitive.
Make readers feel that you’re on the same side by avoiding using the first person in your persuasive writing. Support all arguments with strong opinions, updated information, and facts. For example, opinions provide readers with specific beliefs and feelings, so the use of expert opinions is strong support. Use a gook to grab their interest at once, including a powerful statistic or incident, to start your essay. Consider your readers because this knowledge can help you determine what should be told them in persuasive writing.
Include enough examples and details because they help the audience relate to a given matter in a personal way. Think about people with opposing views and try to guess their possible objections to address them effectively. Organize your persuasive essay correctly by starting with the weakest argument and finishing with the strongest one. Moreover, you can start with the ideas that readers agree with and move to the ones they oppose. Write a final section that ends with a strong emotional appeal.
Don’ts of persuasive writing
Don’t use any phrase to preface a thesis statement because it only shows that you aren’t sure about what you write and other people won’t feel interested in your argument. Signposting is an effective tool for speech classes, but it’s not appropriate for persuasive writing. Avoid using it and be sure to write only what you wish to say in a paragraph. The conclusion shouldn’t sound abruptly because it’s read by the audience to get an opinion about your entire essay. This is where you summarize everything to convince readers to agree with your personal view, so making a closing section clear and compelling is a must.
Avoid being negative when stating a thesis and making your personal position clear. People may not want to read the rest of your paper if you sound too negative. Don’t threaten the audience because it’s not a good way to persuade anyone. Besides, when you force readers to choose between extremes, you ignore all in-between choices. Don’t distract them from real matters by tossing in other ideas. The bandwagon persuasion means doing what others are doing, and writers often used it to force readers to think that something is good only because others are doing it. However, this writing technique isn’t suitable for persuasive essays. Include the audience in your thinking without using the first person. Avoid using vague terms because they’ll only confuse readers.
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