What is an argumentative essay? An argumentative essay is one that supports a claim with facts and evidence. Its purpose is convincing the reader to agree with the arguments being made. Before starting to write, find an argumentative research paper topic.

A great argumentative essay will support the argument with facts and evidence, not just author’s opinions. Let us say that Charleston, SC, is a great location for families. You can’t simply say that Charleston is a great destination because you went with your family and had a wonderful time. It must be argumentative. This means you have to provide facts and data that support your argument. These include information about Charleston’s child-friendly attractions, the special deals available for children, and survey results from families who enjoyed Charleston. The first argument relies solely on feelings. The second argument can be supported with evidence.

Argumentative essays are not required to follow the five-paragraph standard format. However, it is quite common. These essays generally follow one of the two formats: The Toulmin or Rogerian models.

  • This is the most commonly used Toulmin model. It starts with an introduction and ends with a thesis/claim. Then it provides data and evidence supporting that claim. This type of essay includes counterarguments rebuttals.
  • After weighing both sides of an argument, the Rogerian model arrives at a conclusion.