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How to Write a Persuasive Essay

December 01, 2015 How to Write
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A persuasive essay is one that can convince the about the point that the writer is aiming to put across in the most simplistic and understandable way. The write builds the best and strongest argument that can win over the reader. After reading a persuasive essay, the reader accepts the addressed point or takes the particular action. They are in no doubt that the addressed issues are sufficiently understood and are correct. The form of writing requires an individual to do extensive research about their work of interest, be aware of the possible biases that the reader might have, and a very firm understanding and knowledge of both sides of the issue. It demonstrates both how the ideas of the writer are correct as well as how the antagonizing opinions are not right. An example is an essay on whether to banish the use of mobile phones in schools. The essay writer has the task of writing to the school board with the aim of convincing them to adopt a choice that he makes. If the author’s position is supporting the banishment of the use of cell phones, he should urge the school board to accept his position and also convince them why allowing mobile phone use is not correct.
Therefore, a vast knowledge of the two sides of the issue at hand is required to give a satisfying argument. Achieving this aim thus forces the writers to adopt a meticulous stepwise and structured process that guides their work in a focused and directed manner that communicates their points effectively. The essay discusses in details the key aspects of the writing illustrated with few examples.

Related articles: How to Write an Argumentative Essay, How to Write a Narrative Essay, How to Write a Personal Essay
how to write a persuasive essay guide visualization

Pre-Writing Tips

According to Myers (2006), the first step is the pre-writing stage. It is a very crucial step and forms the backbone of the whole essay writing process. In this step the student will:

  • Choose a position they want to defend. The student deliberates keenly on the issue weighing each side and decides on supporting or arguing against the particular problem.
  • Understanding the audience. The process targets the perspective of the audience and the most likely side it bound to incline or whether they are undecided about the issue. The comprehension of the reader’s perspective enables the student to choose effectively on the side to support unless they are pinned down on the one hand.
  • Do adequate research on the topic before starting to put the pen on the paper. Research forms a critical component of writing this particular type of essays because of the essay relies on evidence that is reliable and convincing. Involve multiple sources including a list from the librarian. Consult teachers and experts in the area. Read and take down short notes. Use the internet and gather enough information as possible that equips you with adequate ideas of the opposing sides.
  • From the readings, research, and consultations select the evidence that is most convincing and the key points of the opposite view. The second step is the organization of the essay by producing the outline and structure and drafting of the essay. The organization aims at building the evidence in a format that presents the strongest argument. Ensure the incorporation of any structure given by the tutor. Typically it will consist of between five and six paragraphs.

Introduction for a Persuasive Essay

The writers Crismore, Markkanen & Steffensen (1993), expressed that the first paragraph is the introduction. At this step attract the reader’s attention through the use of a “hook.” Make them interested in your writing. The opening statement should contain a fact, a quotation, a statistic or an emphatic declaration. For example: “talking on the phone while driving is equivalent to drunk driving.” Then give an overview of the general argument, what it entails, why it is significant. Finish the paragraph with a thesis statement which forms the foundation of the whole essay. The evidence and support details aim at accrediting the thesis statement. Remember the thesis statement should not leave the readers doubting the position you have chosen. For example: “Students should not be allowed to carry their cell phones into classrooms.”

Body of a Persuasive Essay

The next three or four paragraphs are the body. Every paragraph should focus on a piece of evidence followed by a detailed evidence proof in the form of statistics, expert quotations, facts, and real life events. Employ the use of analogies, making comparisons, and contrasting hypothetical circumstance (suppose that…, what if...). One should not assume that the readers have sufficient knowledge of the argument. Be the expert in providing the knowledge. Ensure correct definition of terms and give background information. For instance, “statics show that at least twenty-five percent of students own mobile phones and carry them to their classes. The interruptions created by ring phones in class are imaginable. Suppose more than one phone rings during a class session, the different ringing tones create musical noise, some students get frustrated as their attention is diverted from the teaching, and the teacher is forced to stop the teaching and address the interruption.”
The next paragraph is about the key opposite views. In the one paragraph describe the views clearly. Then refute them appropriately and convincingly. Make the audience understand why these points rank inferior to your proposed points. An example of an opposing key point against not carrying mobile phones to class is the response to an emergency that may occur in a classroom. In response to the point, a student can argue that most schools have an alarm system that on the press of the button the alarm rings and contacts 911.

Conslusion for a Persuasive Essay

The last paragraph is the conclusion. Restate your thesis statement and the strongest reinforcing statements through a summary. It should implore the reader to adopt your way of thinking or take the proposed action. Make the closing in a dramatic style by making the prediction that urgent action inevitable, or a provoking statement that leaves the audience pondering on the seriousness of the matter, or a recommendation suggestion on measures to expedite. An example: “Would you like your child to be in a class that is constantly interrupted by ringing phones and disturbing the conducive learning environment.”
The next step after drafting the essay is the revision of the work. In this stage, the student goes through the work, modifies, and re-arranges it making it as best as possible. The revision is stepwise for all the steps. Ensure that the “hook” is intriguing and keeps the readers interested. They ascertain that they have put forward a compelling argument, supported by relevant facts, statistics, and examples. Each paragraph contains only one support evidence and that the opposing views are clear and convincingly refuted. They ensure the correct use of sentence structure and transition from one paragraph to the next in an understanding manner. Review the conclusion to determine if it conveys your position and does it urge the reader to consider it or take action firmly.
If everything is good, edit the article correcting grammar errors and improve on the style. Use a friend to read through the essay and help edit with a fresh mind. Lastly, publish the essay and obtain feedback that helps better one skill in the subsequent writing works.
In conclusion, to write an excellent persuasive essay demands the acquisition of adequate knowledge about the subject of interested. Thus research and consultations are a significant part of the pre-writing stage. Then remember to organize the essay by outlining its structure in about six paragraphs with the first being introductory followed by three or four body paragraphs with each providing single compelling evidence. A single paragraph of the opposing views that is convincingly refuted and the last paragraph offer a summary and close in a style that suggests action or the proposed stand. After everything is done revise the work, edit it and publish to be read and obtain feedback.

Check out this sample persuasive essay!

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