Michigan should/should not decriminalize marijuana.

 

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Essay 4: Persuasive Essay

For Essay 4, the final essay of the semester, you will be writing a persuasive essay. Authors write persuasive essays when they need to convince a person or a group of people that their way of viewing things is the best way. For example, speech writers for presidential candidates often use persuasion when they are trying to convince voters to vote for a specific candidate. As you can imagine, persuasion can be a very powerful tool if used effectively.

For this essay, you will be examining social networking and trying to persuade your audience whether social networking has a positive or negative effect on people. However, writing an effective persuasive essay can be a little tricky! Here are some strategies you can use in your writing to make yourself as persuasive as possible:
1. Appeal to your audience’s logic. Use facts to support your logic, but limit overgeneralizations (see page 268 of G&B). Having sources (and citing them) to support your facts will make your audience trust your logic even more.
2. Be a trustworthy writer. Examine all sides of an issue, even what your opposition has to say (see page 279 of G&B). Use support from other authors (by citing them) to show that you aren’t the only person to have your ideas – other people, like published authors, have your ideas, too!
3. Try to engage your audience’s emotions. This can be accomplished in many ways. Your book suggests is using modals to express what might happen in the future, either something good or bad that could cause your reader to have an emotional reaction (see page 288 of G&B). You could also use a personal story to engage your readers’ emotions.

¤ The most persuasive writers and speakers use all three of these strategies when trying to convince their audiences to believe them. Therefore, you’ll be required to use each of these strategies at least once in your essay.

This essay will be your largest project of this semester! The length requirement is 4-6 pages (1,500-2,500 words) and you’ll be responding to rather lengthy articles. You are required to have at least 4 sources and use APA citation style.

At this point, you’re probably wondering what your reading for this assignment is. Don’t worry – that is coming. For now, please read and comprehend this handout.
Organizing Your Persuasive Essay:
These are the two most common ways of structuring and organizing a persuasive essay. When you plan your essay, choose one and stick with it!

Topical Organization:
I. Introduction
a. Explanation of the issue
b. Thesis statement that states your position and why you believe it
II. Body Paragraph 1: Your first argument
a. Topic sentence
b. Support – cited details from the article or (only rarely) your life.
i. Make sure you use one of the three strategies on page 1 of this handout.
c. Concluding/transition sentence
III. Body Paragraph 2: Your second argument
a. Topic sentence
b. Support – cited details from the article or (only rarely) your life.
i. Make sure you use one of the three strategies on page 1 of this handout.
c. Concluding/transition sentence
IV. Body Paragraph 3: Your third argument
a. Topic sentence
b. Support – cited details from the article or (only rarely) your life.
i. Make sure you use one of the three strategies on page 1 of this handout.
c. Concluding/transition sentence
V. Body Paragraph 4: Address the rebuttals (opposing views) to your argument
a. Topic sentence
b. Summarize the other side’s arguments
c. Rebuttal to the first argument
d. Rebuttal to the second argument
e. ….. (however many rebuttals you need)
VI. Conclusion

Point-by-Point Pattern:
I. Introduction
a. Explanation of the issue, including a summary of the other side’s arguments
b. Thesis statement that states your position and why you believe it
II. Body Paragraph 1:
a. Topic sentence.
b. Statement of the other side’s first argument
c. Rebuttal with your own counterargument
d. Concluding/transition sentence
III. Body Paragraph 2:
a. Topic sentence.
b. Statement of the other side’s second argument
c. Rebuttal with your own counterargument
d. Concluding/transition sentence
IV. Body Paragraph 3:
a. Topic sentence.
b. Statement of the other side’s third argument
c. Rebuttal with your own counterargument
d. Concluding/transition sentence
V. Conclusion
a. May include a summary of your point of view.
b. May include a suggested course of action for the future
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