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How to Start an Argumentative Essay

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❶To get facts and statistics, you can go to the U. You should have a couple of sentences that explain the attention getter and its relevance to the topic.

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Preview your main points so the reader has a map to your essay; this also serves to transition the reader to your specific point. The final sentence of your introduction is the thesis statement. The first text your reader encounters is the hook or attention grabber. You therefore want a strong hook. One option is to pose a puzzle that you resolve in the body of the essay.

Other options include a quotation that relates to your argument, a provocative rhetorical question or a startling statement. Your entire essay centers around your thesis statement. For an argumentative essay, your thesis statement will be one of three types of claims.

In a claim of definition, you challenge the accepted truth of a fact. A cause-and-effect claim proposes that one action or event caused another.

Another option is to propose a solution to a problem. The thesis statement is one sentence that must be debatable, but narrow enough in scope to prove within the constraints of the essay. Your thesis statement may evolve as you're writing, so check during the revision process to ensure it still relates to your arguments.

Start by proving your credibility. Mention your research from the beginning, which shows your knowledge on the topic. Quote someone who is not universally famous. Use a well-known quote but contradict it. Knowing the context in which the quotation was originally used is important to using it accurately.

It will also help you determine whether the quote is an appropriate means of introducing your essay. The effectiveness of the quotation you use will be determined by the audience of your paper. Determine whether the audience will be familiar with the person who you are quoting. If it is someone obscure or you think they will not be familiar, consider providing additional brief details. Do not use a quote that could be offensive to the audience unless you plan to contradict the quotation.

Strike a balance between assuming your audience knows everything and assuming they know nothing. You should be clear and informative but not insulting to the intelligence of your reader. The well-executed quotation is one way to draw your reader in to your essay. Ensure that the quotation contributes to your essay. A snappy quotation that doesn't help to set up your topic, or that is unrelated to the rest of your essay, will distract from the essay's focus.

Introduce the quotation appropriately. Quotes should not stand alone in your paper. Your words should introduce the quotation, usually coming before the quote though after may be okay. Several options for introducing the quotation are available to you: Use the quote as a sentence predicate. Use your own grammatically correct sentence to preview or paraphrase what the quote will say, then insert a colon or comma, then the grammatically correct sentence-length quotation.

If you begin with the quote, be sure to place a comma after the quote and then provide a verb and attribute the quotation to the source. Punctuate the quote appropriately. Quotations should always appear with quotation marks around them. Failing to use quotation marks may result in plagiarism. In American usage, end punctuation should be placed inside the quotation marks. Attribute the quote correctly.

Not all sources of information are legitimate, so looking at an academic source rather than an internet source may be more accurate. Starting your paper with a glaring mistake will set a bad precedent for the rest of your ideas.

Be particularly aware of quotations found on social media such as Pinterest, or on quote aggregators such as Brainyquote. These sources are notorious for mis-attributing and even making up famous quotes.

Be true to the meaning and context of the quote. This is tied to academic honesty. Do not manipulate a quotation to fit your purposes by leaving out words or misleading the audience about the context of the quotation. Use a fragment of a long quote. If the quotation is long, or you only need part of it to make your point, you can leave sections out by using an ellipses …. If you need to substitute a word, place square brackets around the word to indicate that you made a change.

Changes should be made only to preserve clarity or to change length, not to manipulate the content of the quotation. The quotation needs to be introduced in your own words. This can come either before or after the quote itself. You should identify the speaker of the quotation. Provide context for the quotation.

Particularly if your quote is the first sentence in your paper, be sure to provide sentences of explanation and context. There should be a clear sense of why you are choosing to use the quotation and why it is important to the rest of your paper.

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The best way to start an argumentative essay is to have a strong thesis already in mind. A thesis will state your point clearly and simply. Then you can do a clever hook related to your thesis. One of my favorite ways to start an argumentative essay is to tell a little story or quote a shocking statistic.

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My first argumentative point would be that the attitude that Rhodes shows in this quote is completely immoral and indefensible. In this quote, Rhodes is arguing for naked imperialism. He is saying that Europeans should simply exploit people from other races.

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In the case of an argumentative essay, it would not be reasonable to start your introduction as well as any other paragraph with a quote. It would be better to use the following scheme of introduction writing: Hook sentence→ Topic sentence →Quotation →Thesis Statement. Topics for an Argumentative Essay. An argumentative essay . A good introduction in an argumentative essay acts like a good opening statement in a trial. Just like a lawyer, a writer must present the issue at hand, give background, and put forth the main argument -- all in a logical, intellectual and persuasive way.

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The introduction of an argumentative essay sets the stage for your entire piece. You must grab your reader from the first moments, and this is especially important in an argumentative essay. A persuasive essay uses reason to demonstrate that certain ideas are more valid than others in academic writing. The purpose of such an essay is to encourage readers to accept a particular viewpoint or act in a particular way.