Argument Writing: Articulate Your Thoughts

argumentwritingWriting a great argument is a very valuable skill to learn and practice. It may not seem like something you will be doing a lot of, but you will find that it pops up all over the place during your life. Argument writing does not have to be long and could be an email to your boss arguing your case for a pay rise or a letter to a newspaper discussing changes in the community. What you do need to do when argument writing is follow some straightforward principles that are outlined here for you. You should get started with this course, A Clear Logical Argument Guaranteed.

When it comes to academic writing, the aim is to express a point of view, and then support it with corresponding evidence. As you can figure out, most of the world’s contemporary knowledge has been debated at one time or another. Imagine trying to convince someone to create an iPhone back in 1975, or telling someone that we would have driver-less cars and 3-D printing.

The better you become at articulating your point of view, the better you can think critically, make choices, weigh evidence and reason with new ideas. Arguments are not as negative as they may originally appear. An argument is a form of communication, and it does not have to involve yelling of any sort.

When someone makes a claim, would you rather believe it outright or question its validity? If someone told you that drinking two gallons of orange juice a day will cause you to lose 10 lbs. per week, would you try it?

Choose a Debatable Topic

There is no point in writing an argument about something that is unequivocal. There needs to be at least two opposing points of view, and in order to argue successfully you have to be firmly on one side or the other. The best types of topics are ones that you have a strong personal opinion about as, although you do not want your writing to be emotional, a strong belief will ensure that you put your points across strongly. You need to have evidence to support your position that will involve some research to make sure there are enough good quality sources to back up what you are saying.

Examine the Issue from Every Angle

The key to a successful argument is to know the other side’s point of view. The best way to do this is to make a list of all of the different perspectives and the points that support each of them. This will help you to focus on the points that you will be using to support your side and the arguments you need to come up with that will invalidate anything that is opposing your argument. It is important at the start of your written argument to present both sides of the issue to show that you are aware there are opposing views. This will give you more credence when you move on later in the argument to show why the other side is wrong.

Do Your Research

Even if you think you know the topic from every angle you will still need to be able to bring in solid, credible evidence. The best way to do this is to look for reputable sources that support your argument. For this you cannot use something you find written on the internet that is in line with your views, you need something respectable. Good sources for this are:

  • Books published by reputable authors.

  • Respected and relevant newspapers or magazines.

  • Official websites such as .org, .gov or .edu.

Make sure you do not just gather evidence for your side but look for evidence the other side will use as you need to be able to refute it.

Preparing Your Argument

This is where all the work you have done up until now will begin to pay off. A well-written argument will have an introduction, the argument itself and a conclusion to reinforce why your viewpoint is the correct one. Since you have already listed all of the relevant points and found the research to go with them, it is now a matter of arranging them into a structure that will flow smoothly throughout your written argument. Writing an outline of your argument document before you begin and then ticking off each point of your research to make sure it is included is a good way to ensure you have covered all the relevant points and provides you with a map to follow when writing.

Writing Your Argument

The introduction should include a description of the topic being discussed, the current relevant opinions to that topic and what your opinion on the topic is. The meat of the document should be your argument and the sources supporting your argument, as opposed to the opinions of opposite side. You need to include here your reasons for dismissing any sources that support the opposing side and that do not support your argument.

Make sure that the language you use is firm and passionate and backed up by facts not merely claims made by others. The summary should bring the whole argument together in a neat, simple package that reiterates why your argument is the only valid one that the reader should consider. Finish with confidence as by the time you have completed writing the argument section, you should be totally convinced in your argument, and that needs to jump off the page to the reader.

By following these guidelines closely and making sure, you spend enough time on each step of the process you will find that argument writing is not that hard. Each part of the process outlined above gives you a piece of the puzzle and all you need to do in the writing stage is put the puzzle pieces in the right place to complete the picture. For additional writing resources, these Udemy courses Business Writing and Quality Paragraph and Essay Writing offer expert guidance. You should also read Real Life Examples of Expository Writing.