How to Write a Persuasive Essay: Outline, Examples, and Topics

What is a Persuasive Essay?

A persuasive essay is a piece of writing characterized by arguments presenting two or more sides of an issue intended to convince an audience to appreciate the stance taken by the author.

Also known as an argumentative essay, reason must prevail in a persuasive essay to convince your audience or readers.

It is like a case; to win, you must satisfy the jury beyond any reasonable doubt. You must illustrate specific ideas are better than others. Your readers should get encouraged to act in a particular manner or accept specific viewpoints.

Factual evidence and sound logic must support your argument in a persuasive essay. But many people have no idea on how to write a compelling essay. Luckily, this article will give insight into the format, topics, outline, and benefits of a persuasive essay. Continue reading.

A persuasive essay must be well researched and should portray a solid understanding of the two sides of the topic. As a writer, you should be aware of your readers’ preferences and favorites.  Demonstrate why the opposing side ideology is incorrect.

Persuasive writing is a compilation of the modern life as seen in newspaper editorials, blogs, advertising, and political speeches. Mostly, persuasive essays are about contemporary issues which are the basis of the writing assignment or test prompts. Do you know how to write a persuasive essay? The following steps will enable you to write a perfect essay for your audience.

Step 1: Research and Pre-write

Before you begin to write an excellent piece, you need to look for content. Getting reliable sources to use in your essay requires hard work and dedication for good persuasive essay introduction. Upon collecting all the necessary information, start rewriting. However, before you start researching for content, you need to ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Who is my target audience?
  2. What information do my audience value?
  3. What is the relevant background information to what I am writing?
  4. How many sides do the topic I am writing about have?
  5. Is the side of the argument that I will take to persuade my clients correct?
  6. What are the perfect primary sources for the topic I am to write?

On answering the above pre-writing questions, you now get into a position to choose the approach to use. The plan should present a comfortable argument in your essay and easy to find supporting sources for your viewpoint. Understanding your target audience is imperative at this point. Then begin to research. You should use the following tools to do your research:

  1. Get around 10-20 search terms that vary but relevant to your topic
  2. A variety of the best sources like books, magazines, journals, and newspapers
  3. Suitable citation methods such as Chicago, APA, or MLA
  4. A suitable note-taking method like notecards or sentence outlines

Step 2: Organize Ideas and Illustrations

While conducting the research, organize the ideas you get. Use illustrate ideas to support your thoughts with vivid examples. Your real life experience and Conventional examples work like magic in convincing. Evaluate your research’s purpose.

Then insert it in the relevant paragraph in the essay’s outline. For example, the background information should be placed in the introduction paragraph. This is also common with literary analysis essay definitionrhetorical analysis essay example, and expository essay outline.

Step 3: Create a Persuasive Essay Outline

The overview portrays what you’ve researched and found. It also indicates what is still required. You get to know what to find and add to create a great and strong persuasive essay. It is difficult to discover if the conducted research supports your idea without an outline or structure.

With a draft, your argument flows. Always, paragraphs should get organized from the weakest to the strongest. Also, it’s advisable to use the third paragraph to counterargument.

In this regard, the rationale is better in convincing. Use the following persuasive essay outline:

1)    Topic

2)    Body paragraph 1

Begin your sentence with the either of the following:

  • Firstly
  • To begin with
  • The first reason
  • In the first place

3)    Body paragraph 2

Your sentence should start with either:

  • Secondly
  • Also
  • Next
  • Additionally
  • Pursuing this further
  • Another reason why

4)    Body paragraph 3

Use either of the following at the beginning of the paragraph:

  • Lastly
  • In the same way
  • One last reason why
  • Pursuing this further
  • Yet another reason why
  • Thirdly
  • Also

5)    Conclusion

Begin your conclusion paragraph with either of the following:

  • In conclusion
  • To summarize
  • Finally
  • In the final analysis
  • Therefore
  • To sum it all up
  • To wrap it all up
  • You can see why

6) References

Be sure to credit all the sources or works cited using the preferred citation style which might probably be MLA of APA.

Step 4: Compose the Introduction

Begin each introduction with a hook. With this sentence, ensure that you lure the reader by touching on his/her interests. The following sentences are good examples of a catch/hook:

  1. A quotation
  2. An anecdote
  3. Statistics or facts
  4. A rhetorical question

Unlike other academic essays such cause and effect thesiswriting a reflective essayprocess analysis essay outline, and how to write a term paper, the introductory paragraph in a persuasive essay should get extended.

What makes them long is the fact that all controversial sides must get introduced and defined. Some issues may have more than two sides, making them complex. In such cases, more space is required to discuss, define, and acknowledge them in the paragraph.

A good example is when a student gets asked to illustrate the best kind of government in either history or social studies class. In reality, there are like four forms of government (dictatorship, democracy, monarchy, and theocracy).

An excellent student must acknowledge all four types of government in his/her persuasive essay and define them in the introduction. Learn more at online writing tutor and cheap reliable essay writing service.

End your essay introduction with the thesis statement. Let your argumentative nature be apparent in this statement. Illustrate which side you stand on as the best.

Your last introduction sentence should naturally transit into the first paragraph of your essay body. Knowledge on how to a write a compelling thesis statement for a persuasive essay is important.

For example, if you are writing a paper on physical exercise and health, you could frame you thesis statement as,

creating global awareness on the advantages of physical activity and exercise will increase the health outcomes of the global population and reduce inactivity-related health challenges.”

Hints to a Great Persuasive Essay Prompts

  • Ensure that you get to introduce the issue with all its sides
  • The subject should have crucial relevant background information
  • Illustrate the stronger side and explain your reasons

Step 5: Compose the Body

Each body paragraph must get backed up by single evidence. Include facts and references to support your claims. It is always a smart idea to challenge your audience.

Ensure that your persuasive essay has a minimum of three body paragraphs. The paragraphs should flow smoothly from one section to another. The cogent points should be natural and well organized in the paragraphs.

Persuasive Speech Format

Just like other academic essays, a typical format gets used in writing a compelling essay’s body paragraphs. The form includes the following five sentences:

  1. Topic
  2. Background
  3. Quotation from primary sources
  4. Support analysis
  5. Conclusion or transition

Though the sentences are of five types, the paragraph may have more than five sentences. You may have several backgrounds and quotation sentences.

But the analysis section is the paragraph’s important part. In this section, your argument should successfully support or weaken a point.

The practice is also common with research paper topicshow to write a formal lab reporthow to write a response paper in college, and thesis definition essay.  

Counter Arguments

Persuasive essays become weak when counter-arguments are not provided. It is a crucial aspect. Counter-arguments portray the writer’s knowledge of the topic as well as his/her stand. For strong counter arguments, you can use them all as one paragraph or use a persuasive essay graphic organizer.

Tips for Best Body Paragraphs

  • Use concise topic and clear sentences
  • The support should get quoted correctly from primary sources
  • Analyse the support thoroughly to help strengthen your position
  • Use robust persuasive language like:
  1. Clearly
  2. In reality
  3. Obviously
  4. Naturally
  5. The majority
  6. Research proves
  7. Evidently
  8. Polls show
  9. Actually
  10. The experts agree

Step 6: Conclusion

The conclusion paragraph marks the persuasive essay’s end. Are you wondering how to come up with a stellar conclusion? To begin with, never introduce new information. Discuss what is in the paper. Start by restating the thesis and reminding your audience concerning the essay’s purpose and goals.

Then review all main points discussed in the body paragraphs. Finally, present a call to action. If the reader agrees with you, he/she will take action.

Your persuasive easy is now complete. Allow it to sit and take a maximum of two days off. Then read it with fresh eyes and acquaint yourself with other persuasive writing examples. You will then be able to discover if the essay is convincing and logical.

Tips for Writing a Great Conclusion

  • Restate the thesis
  • Review the essay’s strong points
  • End with a robust call to action

Step 7: Revision

After finishing the draft, revise the essay to make it strong and with perfect grammar.

Beneficial Tips

To help you revise, ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Does the essay start with a capturing hook?
  2. b. Are all the topic sides and the background information included in the introduction?
  3. Is the thesis statement available at the end of the introduction paragraph and is it worded?
  4. Is there a specific position taken by the essay regarding the topic?
  5. Are all counter-arguments refuted and stated?
  6. Is the research presented in the body paragraph reliable and sustainable?
  7. Are the main points of the essay reviewed in the conclusion paragraph?
  8. Are all sentences grammatically correct and complete?

The above seven tips will enable you to accomplish an excellent persuasive essay. But remember that writing is not a smooth walk in the park. You need to research and brainstorm. Then draft and revise.

Your final product should be not only well polished but also grammatically flawless. Take advantage of the Writing Centers near you. The format of your persuasive essay creates the first impression.

Therefore, take enough time to check on the headings, spacing, title page, margins, Works Cited page, and fonts before the presentation.

Some good persuasive essay topics for college that you may choose to address include:

  1. Drinking energy drinks is harmful to teenagers
  2. Why body building is dangerous to women
  3. Social media is turning us into antisocial beings
  4. Why the United States needs stricter gun control laws
  5. Why going vegan is good
  6. The government should increase citizen surveillance for the sake of national security
  7. Building the wall across the US-Mexico border will not solve illegal immigration
  8. Global warming and climate change are not related to human activities
  9. Physician assisted suicide should be encouraged
  10. Teachers should be allowed to carry guns into their classrooms
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