5 Things To Know About The Format Of A Persuasive Essay

  1. Before you start writing
    • Unlike when you are in a conversation and you are trying to persuade them to change their point of view about a topic, the essay gives you just one shot at changing the reader’s opinion.
    • Be decisive, be informed, be convincing. Although you need to give a balanced approach, you not only have to be precise and detailed you also need to be accurate.
  2. Introduction
    • Get your readers attention, right from the start. Give them a head line that will immediately engage them. Use a quote from one of your sources (if you are using some). Launch the topic, establish your stance.
    • Devise a thesis statement that is robust. Get to the point quickly, preferably within 2-3 sentences. Leave your reader in no doubt what you are writing about.
  3. Body
    • Concentrate on the way that you construct the paragraphs. Always start with a topic sentence this is the introduction to the paragraph. Make sure that you paragraphs flow rather than presenting your reader with swamp!
    • The details that you use need to be tangible and material rather than hypothetical. Details can be supported by facts and or quotes. Make sure the information that you give is up to date and that you cite all sources.
    • Don’t just give lip service to the details, give a commentary. Don’t assume that the reader will be able to draw their own conclusions from the details alone. Tell them that “this proves” ….
    • Address any counter argument. You will need to do this in order to defend the stance that you are taking. Provide factual detail as well as your observation and explanation.
  4. Offer a solution
    • In the body of the essay you have provided specific and convincing evidence, but you also have to offer a solution. Ideally the solution should be based on sound evidence.
    • Due to the individualism of your work, you may find it difficult to support your solution with concrete evidence. But this does not mean that you solution is wrong, you just need to be convincing based rational thought.
  5. Conclusion
    • Remind the reader of the key points that you have raised. Relate this back to your original thesis. Refer back to the attention seeking statement that you made in the introduction.
    • Ideally if you have not changed the perspective of your reader, you need to leave them feeling that their views have been tested to the point where they are open to new ideas. Always end on a personal comment or observation

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