How to Construct a Solid Argument


Constructing a solid argument is a useful and important skill which everyone should know in order to improve his conversations and debates. Any essay with a solid argument tends to get a better grade than the one with weak argumentation. The world is full of people holding various opinions on different topics. Therefore it is not always simple to leave an impact on the society with your essays. However, the one with a solid argument will definitely leave a long lasting effect on the reader. Following are the few tips to construct a solid argument in your essay.

Keep it simple

Keep your argument simple. Always remember that the readers like simple content which they can easily understand and grasp onto. If your argument is complicated, readers would not be able to connect it easily. All the good argument essays focus on a single point. Avoid putting in a lot of reasons in one essay. Having a single reason will make the essay simpler and stronger. Once you start writing on a specific topic you might get too involved in the topic and manage to make a number of reasons thinking the reader might connect to one or the other. However, from a reader’s perspective any debate with a single reason is a lot more persuasive than the one with a multiple number of reasons. Therefore your essay should circulate around a single reason to make your argument solid and more effective. All the other points should be directed towards that one core point.

Take your opponent seriously

One of the most deceiving things for a reader is when you do not understand your opponent’s point of view. During any argument you should not consider your opponent to be any less sensible and smarter than you. Giving a Strawman Fallacy would only portray you as a weak debater and will cause you immediate disapproval from the readers or audience. For instance, let’s say in a crime situation your opponent suggests shortening the punishment and releasing the culprit earlier and assign him different community tasks to compensate for the remaining punishment. The purpose of your opponent behind this suggestion could be to make the punishment fruitful for the community as a whole too. However, if you suggest that the purpose behind your opponent’s suggestion is merely to favor the criminal then this would be taken as Strawman Fallacy and also weaken your argument. At all times you must understand your opponent’s perspective and then argue accordingly.

Avoid fallacies

Strawman fallacy is the most damaging fallacy however there are a lot of other fallacies as well. They might not be as damaging as Strawman but those surely do play a part in weakening your argument. These fallacies might not be easy to spot or realize but you should always give fallacies a good research before starting any formal argument in order to strengthen it. One of the most common fallacies is the appeal to popularity. In this type of fallacy the debater would argue over a point just because everyone agrees with him so he must be right. However, this is not a strong point to use in an argument and it just weakens the foundation of your argument. These fallacies could easily confuse the debater and often he does not even realize he is using fallacy. Hence, it is always the best to read about fallacies and thoroughly understand them before starting any argument.

Solid foundations

If you think you are right about a certain point and decide to argue over it then you must also have enough relevant evidence regarding the topic. Your argument should always lie on solid foundations ones which sound sensible enough. Lame reasoning and confused thoughts only make the argument weaker and unpersuasive. A reader or the audience is only convinced if the reasoning is strong enough and makes sense through and through. Evidences help to create a stronger impact on the audience hence it is important to have enough evidences to construct a solid argument. If you are unable to find solid evidence for your argument essay, then you must reanalyze it and ponder over whether you are actually right or not. If you find a lot of evidence against your point and next to none in the favor, then the best thing is to change your mind. However, if there are not enough evidences present in either case then it means that the topic is not researched enough and your contribution would make a huge difference. You should work on it and provide assumptions and justifications to prove your point and construct a solid argument.

Audience appropriate evidence

Always make sure to use evidences appropriate for the type of audience you are targeting. If your evidence is not according to your audience then it might not make much of a difference. Use evidences that your audience would like to see or believe in. If your target is older people then use evidences according to the, if the target is youth then evidences according them and similarly like any other set of people. Evidences are important however they only work if they are effective enough for which they need to be appropriate for the kind of audience at target.

Avoid generalization

Make sure you are not generalizing anything in your argument. The reader is not convinced if your argument involves a lot of pointless and meaningless statements. Try to be specific about the things you are discussing in the argument as that attracts the audience and is more effective in persuading them. Being specific about the information you provide will only portray your strong grasp on the topic and the reader will be compelled to read more and might as well agree with you. Generalization only weakens the foundations of your argument. Therefore avoid generalizing your reasoning and statements in order to construct a solid argument.

Understand your opposing point of view

Understand the opposing point of view and why people are disagreeing with you is always the best option in order to construct a solid argument. If you understand the core point of people opposing you, you will be able to focus on that specific reason and with genuine reasoning can convince the audience to agree with you. This could also be used as the strategic way to not sound stupid during your argument and instead talk about something which could actually make a difference and persuade the audience.

Accept the change of opinion

People often change their opinion regarding certain things over the course of time. The reason behind their change of opinion could be anything. However, if the people start ridiculing them for having a different opinion regarding a specific thing then the chances of people changing their opinion and actually admitting it reduces quite a lot. Therefore it is extremely important to sound welcoming to the people changing their opinion and agreeing with your point of view. It encourages them a little more to understand your perspective and even consider it.

Constructing a solid argument takes time however; it is worth it in the end if the audience is convinced. Discussed above are some of the major points to make your argument solid and impactful for the audience. Following these tips would also help you succeed in your debates or essay competitions easily.

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