A pro/con essay is essentially a persuasive essay where the object is for you to convince the reader that your position is more valid by presenting facts to prove the point. In a pros and cons essay, the writer will support the argument through both presenting facts and also “objections”, or counter-arguments, to other elements that are not in support of the argument. Even though a pro/con essay is the author’s attempt to subjectively prove his or her opinion, the bulk of the pro/con essay must be well-researched facts that either prove the argument or disprove the counter-argument. Your success will rise and fall based on how well facts are presented and whether or not your reader comes to a different view of the topic.
How to Write a Pro/Con Essay
The first step is to choose and understand the topic. Sometimes you will be able to choose the topic, and if so, make sure that the topic that is chosen is one with clearly defined viewpoints. Usually, current event topics are excellent for this. Once the topic is chosen, you must decide the side of the issue which you will support. This will help to guide research and writing. A strong thesis statement that makes a claim is also necessary at this point. So before deciding on your stance, make sure you researched both angles of the issue and analyzed all of the arguments. Make the thesis statement clear and able to be defended and promoted. All of the points of a pro/con essay should either prove the thesis or undercut the opposing position. Ensure that your viewpoints have credibility by sticking to the facts when presenting information, even though a pro/con essay will have some subjectivity to it because of the persuasive element. When writing the conclusion, be sure to reiterate the thesis and main points, but do not include any new information. Crisp, clean writing that effectively argues the point will set a great essay apart from a good essay.
- Introduce the topic
- Thesis: Pick a side of the topic to be advocated for through the essay
- Present arguments and evidence supporting the thesis
- Undercut arguments and evidence against the thesis
- Summarize main points
- Reiterate thesis
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