Argumentation
Pre-Writing Exercise

The best argumentative papers are written by individuals who know both sides of an issue equally well. That way, they are able to more effectively counter the examples used by their opponents. Sometimes, a writer will even nicely say, "Although people who disagree with me might argue such-and-such, they are wrong becauseā€¦"

One pre-writing strategy you might use for an argumentative assignment is to fold a piece of paper in half. On the left half of the paper, you should write down all of the examples you can think of in favor of your topic. On the right side of the paper, you should write down all of the examples you can think of that oppose your position. As you do your research, add to the list.

When you are ready to write your argument paper, look at the list. Ask yourself, "If I gave someone this list, would they be able to tell which side of the issue I am on?"

  • If the answer is "No," you have a balanced list and can begin to write your paper.

  • If the answer is "Yes," do more research until you have a balanced list.

Arguments in Favor
of my Position
Arguments Opposed to
of my Position

1.

1.

2.

2.

3.

3.

4.

4.

5.

5.



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Photo Credit: Students for Liberty


Students for Liberty's "mission is to provide a unified, student-driven forum of support for students and student organizations dedicated to liberty." As you prepare a persuasive assignment, I would recommend you read which covers issues of argumentation as well as knowing your audience.