Appeals to logic or reason

Argumentative Essays
ENC 1101

Takes a stand
Uses supporting evidence
Urges people to join your perspective or at least acknowledge its validity

Argument vs Persuasion

Appeals to logic or reason
Does not try to move an audience
Demonstrates that certain ideas are valid and others are not
Appeals to emotion
May use the reputation of the writer as an appeal

Choosing a topic

Something you have a stake in
Something you are willing to consider all sides on
An issue narrow enough to complete in your paper
What do you want your argument to achieve?
“The government should pay for everyone to have their own car.”

Something that at least some people will object to
“Parents who are caught speeding should have their children taken from them”
“The main language in Brazil is Portuguese because Portugal colonized the region in the 1500’s.”
Thesis: Education is the best way to address the problem of increased drug use among teenagers.
Antithesis: Education is not the best way to address the problem of increased drug use among teenagers.


Provide examples, but do not focus too much on a single example
Represents the full range of opinions about your subject.
Education/Drugs – Should not only use teachers
Includes enough facts, opinions, examples to support your thesis

The Opposition

What is the most obvious objection to your position?
Address this position, then explain why it is unfair, unsound, or not accurate
OR you can concede admit that it is a strong argument, but maintain that the sum of your agruments outweighs it
Be objective

Deductive Reasoning

Deductive Reasoning (Major premise, minor premise, conlcusion)
All professors must have at least a masters degree
Brian is a professor
Brian has at least a masters degree
Follows logical progression
All dogs are animals
All cats are animals
Therefore, all dogs are cats

Inductive Reasoning
Decide on a question to be answered
Gather evidence that is relevant to the question
Move from your evidence to your conclusion based on inference
Question: Why was Mike late to class?
Mike lives on the second ring
Mike drives to school everyday
There was a protest on San Martin today
Mike got stuck on his way to class because of a protest.

Sample Outline

What is the issue?
Thesis Statement
Body 1
Topic Sentence
Body 2
Topic Sentence
Body 3
Topic Sentence
Body 4
Identify the most common argument against your side

Choose one of the following topics
Should the death penalty be abolished?
Should recreational marijuana be legal?
Should children under 12 have a cell phone?
Create a list of “for” and “against” arguments
Based on your list, which side would you argue?
What is the other side’s best argument and how would you refute it?

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