Monday, February 8, 2010
If writing is a skill, argumentative writing is even more so. There are different types of argumentative assignments that are given out to students of all subjects. This type of assignment forces them to learn the subject thoroughly and learn even more as they are looking around for evidence to support their argument. There are a few things which you should remember while handling an argumentative research paper assignment.
1. Do not think that argumentative assignments are all about arguing. It is not. It is more about ‘proving your argument’. Nobody cares if you want to argue or not. They care only about whether you succeed in convincing them that your argument is genuine and acceptable. And for the purpose of convincing the reader, you need substantial evidence. You also need to use it at the right place and in the right manner to bring out the best of it.
2. It is easy to argue but not so easy to win an argument. Arguing is something most people are capable of. But not everyone can prove their point. In-depth knowledge of the subject and the topic is absolutely necessary for being able to win an argument. It is very difficult to convince someone of what you are thinking. You will find that people resist others’ ideas and opinions on principle. This is the barrier you will have to break through to accomplish the task of writing an effective argumentative research paper.
3. Arguing in writing is completely different from verbal arguments. Casual conversations or even debates are easier than argumentative writing assignments because in both you get the response immediately and you can adjust the level of defense of your argument according to the response. But in argumentative writing, you do not know if your audience or reader agree with your argument or not. You do not know if there would be a counter argument. So your task would be to judge your audience or reader accurately and think of what kind of counter arguments they can come up with and answer it all, in advance.
4. The presentation method is important in argumentative writing. Effective use of words is an important element of a good presentation. Only strong words that reflect confidence and your knowledge of the subject will complement your argumentative presentation.
5. Sources, in argumentative essay or research paper assignments, are to be used to support your arguments. And weak sources will give away when faced with counter arguments. Only the strongest of sources can withstand the pressure of judgment of an argumentative research paper. The factors which make a research paper source strong are its credibility, proximity to the particular aspect of the topic that is being studied and the author’s credentials in the relevant area of research. The author’s fame in the subject area would also add to the credibility of the source. In certain subjects the period in which the source was issued also affects the reliability of the data.
Effective writing is indeed a skill; and the impressiveness of your argumentative research paper is highly dependent on your argumentative writing skills. This should be kept in mind while you are writing out the final draft of your argumentative assignment.
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