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Making Your Point. Writing an Effective Argumentative Essay. Thesis. Contains a clearly articulated thesis statement that is appropriate for the scope of the paper.   Clearly presents and justifies one view or hypothesis while qualifying or integrating contrary views or interpretations.

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Making Your Point

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Making Your Point

Writing an Effective Argumentative Essay


  • Contains a clearly articulated thesis statement that is appropriate for the scope of the paper.  

  • Clearly presents and justifies one view or hypothesis while qualifying or integrating contrary views or interpretations.

  • Position or hypothesis demonstrates sophisticated, integrative thought and is developed clearly throughout.

  • The thesis is introduced in an effective manner and has been placed appropriately.


  • Contains reasoning that clearly supports the thesis. The lines of support are clearly connected to each in a logical fashion.  The reasons are organized based on the needs and purpose of the argument and may not follow the conventional organization of an argument if the material so demands.

  • Evidence of search, selection, and source evaluation skills; notable identification of uniquely salient resources.  Examines evidence and its source; questions its accuracy, relevance, and completeness.  Demonstrates understanding of how facts shape but may not confirm opinion.  Recognizes bias, including selection bias. Sequence of presentation reflects clear organization of ideas, subordinating for importance and impact.


  • Addresses others’ perspectives and ideologies.

  • Fully integrated perspectives from variety of sources. Integrates own and others’ ideas in a complex process of judgment and justification.  

  • Clearly justifies own view while respecting views of others.  

  • Consideration of other positions is accurate, nuanced, and respectful.


  • Word choice creates a professional, thoughtful tone.

  • Figurative and descriptive language is balanced and integrated with logical reasons. The use of narrative provides a personal connection for the audience without creating a sense of manipulation.

Introduction & Conclusion

  • The intro eases the reader into the argument and provides enough context and information to prepare for the upcoming argument. The opening is engaging and pertinent.

  • The conclusion provides a sense of closure and completeness. Considers the implications and importance of the topic while acknowledging the possibility of further discussion.

Writing Style

  • Language clearly and effectively communicates ideas.

  • May at times be nuanced and eloquent.

  • Errors are minimal.  

  • Style is appropriate for audience.

  • Organization is clear; transitions between ideas enhance presentation.

  • Consistent use of appropriate format.

  • Few problems with other components of presentation.

  • All sources are cited and used correctly, demonstrating understanding of economic, legal and social issues involved with the use of information.

Structure 1

  • introduction & thesis

  • reason 1 (weakest)

  • reason 2

  • reason 3 (strongest)

  • counterargument

  • conclusion

Structure 2

  • introduction & thesis

  • reason 1 (weakest)

  • reason 2

  • counterargument

  • reason 3 (strongest)

  • conclusion

Structure 3

  • introduction & thesis

  • counterargument

  • reason 1 (weakest)

  • reason 2

  • reason 3 (strongest)

  • conclusion

Draft 2.1 due Wednesday,August 3rd

Draft 2.1: Researched Argument Objective: To practice locating and evaluating sources and then integrating those sources into a researched argument. Description: To complete this assignment, write an argument using the strategies and structures described in your textbook and the handbook. The argument should have an identifiable thesis, lines of argument, logical support, ethical and emotional appeals (if applicable), and consideration of alternative views. You should use 6 sources from the TTU library or library databases as specified by your instructor for this assignment. Your essay should be 1500 words in length, not including the list of works cited. Please use MLA format (see Ch. 18 of your handbook) for in-text citations and your list of works cited.

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