arugment essay


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There are different levels of claims (thesis):

– Absolute Claim- states that something is always true or false, always good or bad, etc.

Moderate Claim- makes less sweeping assertions (easier to prove)


There are different kinds of claims:

Substantiation Claim- States that something exists and it can be supported by evidence

Evaluation Claim- stating that something has a specific quality

Policy Claim- calls for something to be done


Evidence is Proof. The only things that make up evidence are:

Expert Testimony


Choose from three structures:

Classical RefutationProof Pro/Con


I- Intro
II- Background
III- Proposition (Claim)
IV- Proof (3pts.)
1- Proof 1

2- Proof 2
3- Proof 3
V- Refutation- Stating a point from the opposing opinion & saying why it’s wrong
1- Point 1

2- Point 2
VI- Concession- Agreeing, or somewhat agreeing with a point from the opposing opinion
VII- Conclusion









I- Intro
1- Intro Technique
2- Thesis
II- Refutation- Stating a point from the opposing opinion & saying why it’s wrong
1- Point 1

2- Point 2
III- Concession- Agreeing, or somewhat agreeing with a point from the opposing opinion
IV- Proof 1
V- Proof 2
VI- Proof 3
VII- Conclusion








I- Intro

1- Intro Technique
2- Thesis
II- Pro 1
III- Con 1
IV- Pro 2
V- Con 2
VI- Pro 3
VII- Con 3
VIII- (1 more Pro or 1 more Con) 4
IX- Conclusion



Modes of Rhetoric
Logos- an appeal to Logic
Ethos- an appeal to ethics or morality
Pathos- an appeal to the heart or emotion


Logical Fallacies

Non- Sequitur- “It does not follow”

Ad Hominem- refers to a personal attack on an opponent meant to draw attention away from the issues under consideration

Bandwagon- “Everyone’s doing it, you should too”

False Analogy- the assumption that because two things are alike in some ways, they must be alike in others

False Authority- the assumption that an expert in one field can be credible in another

False Cause- the assumption that because one event follows another, the first is the cause of the second

Either/Or- stating that only two alternatives exist when in fact there are more

Hasty Generalization- a conclusion based on too little or biased evidence

Oversimplification- Omits important aspects of an issue in order to imply that there is a simple solution to a complex problem

Slippery Slope- the assumption that if one thing is allowed it will be the first step in a downward spiral

Red Herring- dodging the real issue by drawing attention to an irrelevant issue

Begging the Question- re-states the point just made

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