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How to write a persuasive essay on any topic

Persuasive essays are the most commonly assigned essays. Instructors like to assign persuasive essays because they like to see that their students can use their knowledge to prove a point. Students are assigned persuasive essays in courses ranging from math and physics to language arts and photography. This means that students need to have a strong working knowledge of how to write persuasive essays so they can be successful in all of our courses.

Fortunately, every persuasive essay is structured the same way. Once you learn the structure and how to organize at the sentence-level, writing an essay can be as easy as completing a mad lib game. All you need is an interesting argument to prove, a length to meet, and then you fill in the rest.

Introduction: This section can be one paragraph or a handful of paragraphs, depending on what length you need to meet. The first part of the introduction is always the hook. There are several techniques you can use for the hook including the startling statistic, the interesting quote, or the anecdote. Whatever technique you use, you should craft something creative and attention-getting. After the hook, you build a bridge that will eventually connect to the claim. The bridge can include background information or personal experiences. The last sentence of the introduction will be your claim.

Body Paragraphs: Each body paragraph needs to have an introductory or topic sentence that connects back to the claim. Then, the rest of the sentences will help support that topic sentence. Many people will structure their body paragraphs with the purpose of the paragraph, then an example sentence followed by an explanation sentence. You repeat that example and explanation as often as you need to in each paragraph, usually at least three times. Then you close with a link back to the topic sentence and thesis. Each persuasive essay should have at least three body paragraphs.

Conclusion: One of the most effective conclusions will be a paragraph that is written in reverse of the introduction. You begin the conclusion with a reference back to the claim, then write a bridge that restates the main ideas of the paper. Finally, you end with a connection back to the original hook. This brings the essay full circle and the readers are satisfied with the entire essay and hopefully they will agree with the claim you were arguing.

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