how to support a claim in an essay

December 12th, 2020

Psst... 98% of Kibin users report better grades! Insert the thesis sentence(s) you developed earlier into this first paragraph. If you write an argumentative essay, the thing that you write may try to change the opinion of the reader.  But how many people will be convinced by such a claim, all on its own? 1. Between the two, you will have three body paragraphs, each one focused on supporting one of your claims. For example, you could argue that mass shootings in the United States should be considered terrorist attacks. Discuss how the evidence supports your claim or argument. Rather, you need to develop an interesting perspective that you can support and defend. The main purpose of the thesis is to do two things: Your thesis should go at the end of your introduction so that your claims can serve as a road map of the rest of your essay. Not only do they provide specifics and details in support of a claim, but the vivid description they often include helps to capture and retain the reader’s attention. Make sure you are restating the … 2.4 Support Your Claims. The writer can give support by referring to a known standard or through establishing an agreed-upon standard. A claim in this category must be debatable. A claim must be arguable but stated as a fact. Poets are especially adept at using precise details to focus on specific, concrete, observable things or experiences. It’s very easy to make a bold claim and walk away. For example, let’s say your paper is focusing on climate change and the dangers that it poses. To put it simply, scientific, cold facts with no opinions or personal insights count as evidence – what you do with them, how you build them up to support your case, is an argument. Depending on the assignment and subject, you paper could have more than three claims or only one. Fact Proof – Includes statistics and objective information. The claim statement you write depends on the primary objective of your paper. Before you formulate that all-important thesis statement, you must know what a claim is and how you can make yours good. So how does this differ from the thesis? the specific arguments that make up your thesis. More often, it involves establishing a piece of fact (also see evidence) or advocating for a judgment of value. Now that you know how to pick a topic for an argumentative essay and how to make a strong claim on your topic in a thesis statement, you’re ready to think about writing the other sections of an argumentative essay. But while the overall gist of your thesis may be that climate change is bad, claims are the specific arguments that make up your thesis (e.g., widespread drought will lead to an increase in terrorism). That’s where claims come in.At its simplest, a claim is The heavy lifting of most writing comes in the form of supporting details. A claim is a unifying theme of an essay. The purpose of most essays is to tackle a debatable topic. The report also said 84 percent of those who died, or 258,367 individuals, died more than four years ago — not last year. Good writers select only the details that will support their focus, deleting irrelevant information. Write or type examples of a claim, counterclaim and rebuttal then cut up. As we explain in this post about essay structure, the structure of your essay is an essential component in conveying your ideas well, and therefore in writing a great essay. I thought it was your main argument. To win an argument, you first have to make a claim that is more than just an assertion. Sometimes, this involves making a distinct argument that only helps to prepare an audience. You begin by researching a topic and then choose a side. Although each of your claims will present an argument, not all claims will take the same approach. If your claim is boring or obvious, the rest of the paper probably will be too. Any coincidences are accidental. Because it provides a unifying theme for the rest of the essay, it typically appears early on—in shorter papers, most often within the first paragraph or two. O It is ineffective because it does not logically point out a flaw in the counterclaim. What makes it different from opinion is claims are supported by evidence.  It describes the techniques of outlining and mapping a paragraph for greater understanding. Explore how the evidence addresses a theme or idea that you think is important in your discussion. No matter which it is for you, follow the above advice and your claims will be strong, and in turn, your paper will be too. A strong thesis also requires solid evidence to support and develop it because without evidence, a claim is merely an unsubstantiated idea or opinion. Example (source): Introduction: “From the parking lot, I could see the towers of the castle of the Magic Kingdom standing stately against the blue sky. There is no argument there. If you’re going to challenge something that has long been considered fact, you must be able to back it up with research. I mean, your thesis statement is kind of like the bedrock on which your paper will either live and breathe, or dissolve into primordial soup. Fiorina's Unsupported Claim about VA Deaths. Hence, a claim has to be arguable. These two videos show the connections between the purpose of a piece of writing and the supporting evidence that appears inside the paragraphs. You not only need to provide evidence of the dangers associated with an increasing global temperature, but you also must provide evidence that it’s not just a symptom of normal fluctuations that occur over time in the climate, but a symptom of human excess. This is a dead-end claim because it’s purely based on opinion. For example, the old man down the street might think his climate change argument is perfectly logical, but that doesn’t mean it belongs in an academic essay. So now that you’ve developed some strong claims that can be used in your academic essay, it’s time to look at the flip side. To dive in more deeply to the concept of supporting details, view the following video. In essay writing, this means the author finds enough information to support a thesis, and also finding information that is credible and accurate. But how many people will be convinced by such a claim, all on its own? There are several different styles of evidence (or proof). For example, one could argue that the decriminalization of drugs would lower overall drug abuse rates. You use critical thinking skills and argue your case using claims, reason, and evidence. Human bodies have developed over time to support a vegetarian diet. Support and elaboration consist of the specific details and information writers use to develop their topics. In other words, you need evidence to support the statements you make; also, you will need to cite your sources to prove the credibility of the data you use as supporting evidence. This may be true. Evidence is the facts or research to support the claim and reason. Unsupported Claims It’s very easy to make a bold claim and walk away. An author may supply lots of evidence, but the evidence may support something different from what the person is actually claiming. Claims backed by reasons that are supported by evidence are called arguments. For example, there’s competing research on how and when the dinosaurs went extinct. You have my vote. Relatedness refers to the quality of the details and their relevance to the topic. Good writers supply their readers with sufficient details to comprehend what they have written. SUPPORTING CLAIM A supporting claim is any argument that, if accepted, will make it easier to prove the primary claim. In narrative writing, details should be concrete: they contribute to, rather than detract from, the picture provided by the narrative. A good thesis sentence will make a claim. The last element of authors claim definition is defining a goal for your essay. It looks good, but it’s not going to work like you want it to. A claim defines your paper‟s goals, direction, scope, and exigence and is supported by evidence, quotations, argumentation, expert opinion, statistics, and telling details. The key to developing support and elaboration is getting specific. This is called the counterclaim. When writing an essay, you typically need anywhere between 3 and 5 clearly structured arguments to support your cause. Well, yes, it is. This video draws a helpful distinction between main ideas and supporting details, to show the connection between the topic sentence of a paragraph and other contents in the same paragraph. The report also said 84 percent of those who died, or 258,367 individuals, died more than four years ago — not last year.[1]. What is Evidence? To the right, the tall peak of The Matterhorn rose even higher. Write an essay of at least three pages in which you make a claim about the state of the health care industry, from either the patient or the provider's perspective. The chief claim in an analytical essay is called the thesis. In the academic writing world, it feels as if we are often worshiping her ourselves. On the other hand, you could argue that climate change will be the greatest geopolitical crisis of your lifetime. “The earth is actually flat” is not a valid claim. Case Proof – A case in which your opinion is validated and/or the opposing view isn’t.  Support allows a claim to be verified, proven, and convincing to an audience. A reason tells why a claim is made. Now that we’ve talked about the various ways in which you can approach a claim, let’s talk about how to ensure that your claims are good, no matter which approach you take. This doesn't mean that you have to reduce an idea to an "either/or" proposition and then take a stand. Directions appear below. Instead of writing an ambiguous claim that you find difficult to prove later, you should... Write your claim in a correct way. People will usually take your word for certain kinds of claims. Since most academic writing consists of a series of supported claims, learning to employ detail can greatly help writers make points effectively. Use the format of your essay to punctuate and clarify your argument. But that’s not what the report says. Although you have lots of great research to back up your arguments, you still have to address your detractors. In this article, the writer's purpose is to persuade the reader into giving their For example, when you tell me when and where you were born, what your name is, or what you do for a living, I will usually believe you unless I have some reason to doubt you word. Support allows a claim to be verified, proven, and convincing to an audience. If the evidence is not relevant to the claim, the author may need to modify or qualify the claim—or even to acknowledge that the claim is indefensible. An effective argumentative essay addresses what the other side might say and explains why that point of view is wrong. Your claims are even more narrow arguments within that argument. Smoking causes cancer. You begin by researching a topic and then choose a side. A claim of cause and effect argues that one thing causes another. A claim of definition argues how something is defined. Here are the five major ones: A claim of fact argues whether something is true. As we wrap up this post on claims, let’s circle back and talk about that celestial body around which your entire essay orbits: the thesis statement. A strong claim is supported not only by research that proves it, but also by the accompanying research that refutes the potential counterclaims. Consider a recent example of an unsupported claim from early in the 2016 US Presidential campaign: It may be coincidence that Fiorina was one of the first candidates to withdraw from the race…but then again, maybe not! While writers of narratives can often rely solely on their own observations and inner resources to develop their writing, writers of expository genres have to look outside themselves for the information they need to develop their writing. Just as the basic unit of all matter, the atom, can be divided into subatomic particles, the thesis statement can also be divided into parts. In and Out burgers are the best fast-food hamburgers. Writing teachers often praise students for using a technique called a "telling detail" to lend support to a claim made in an essay. You could make your own claim on the matter if you have the research to back it up. Construct the first paragraph. Jared is a Kibin editor, a wanderer, and an ESL teacher. “Baseball is the best sport” is not a valid claim because any support you come up with will be steeped in opinion. Good writers use concrete, specific details, and relevant information to construct mental images for their readers. Get inspiration from over 500,000 example essays. They will ensure your claims are strong. Restating A Thesis Statement: Original Approach To The Issue * All the following information, data, and sources are made-up. This is a sad fact of life. Be specific about what you’re claiming, and consider breaking your claim into multiple claims if it covers too much area. So needless to say, your claims should not have a broad focus. So make sure you only include a claim if you’ve done the research to support it within the body of your essay. Followed by supporting evidence. Ending an essay with the same scenario might help to prove your point and create a better understanding. However, not all arguments are created equal. 1) Introduction/Claim (One paragraph) Start with a hook or attention getting sentence. It may be coincidence that Fiorina was one of the first candidates to withdraw from the race…but then again, maybe not! Again, it must be debatable. A thesis provides the controlling idea for a paper and should be original (that is, not completely obvious), assertive, and arguable. What is an effective claim in an argumentative essay? For a well-rounded paper, include a variety of types. A clear argument gives your essay structure. A claim of value requires you to argue how good or how bad your topic is. These are the parts that will flesh out your argument and support the claim you made in your thesis statement. That’s what we’ll be talking about today. Sufficiency refers to the amount of detail — is there enough detail to support the topic? The idea is that you argue one thing is another thing, even though some people don’t consider it to be. Without this attention to detail, readers struggle to picture what the writer is talking about, and will often give up altogether. A solution claim, also referred to as a claim of policy, takes the previous category a step further. For an academic claim to be worthy of a place in your essay, it should be complex, debatable, supported by research, and focused on the facts. It must be debatable with inquiry and evidence; it is not a personal opinion or feeling. You may have noticed a few warnings interspersed with the examples above. Research, evaluation, and notetaking skills are vital for expository writers. An argumentative essay is a piece of writing that takes a stance on an issue. Consider a recent example of an unsupported claim from early in the 2016 US Presidential campaign: Carly Fiorina on several occasions has said 307,000 veterans have died while waiting for care from the Veterans Health Administration. THE CLAIM Step 4: Be able to identify any fallacies and rhetoric styles the writer uses Understand the writer's purpose You must know what the writer's main intent is, in order to find the claim. Take the time to explain the significance of the evidence you introduced in your essay. They also address the ways in which supporting ideas are “stacked” together inside a paragraph, with transitions to help a reader make sense of their internal relationships. If you’re still unsure about your draft, send it over to the editors at Kibin. Gore, D'Angelo. Key Items Necessary: 1 - Transition 2 - Evidence 3 - Reasons The purpose of most essays is to tackle a debatable topic. The heavy lifting of most writing comes in the form of supporting details. Yet before we create our own thesis statement, it’s best that we understand the parts that make one up. Remember, your argumentative essay is arguing to get the reader to accept your claim. Remember, strong claims are the building blocks of a good thesis. In a good argumentative essay, a writer attempts to persuade readers to understand and support their point of view about a topic by stating their reasoning and providing evidence to back it up. Now that you can answer the question that brought you here—what is a claim in an essay?—let’s look at how claims might differ. The thesis should be analytic or interpretive rather than merely descriptive or factual. Support your claim with references to case studies written by members of the class and available on the class web page. 1. This perspective must be … After the thesis, you will begin to tackle each claim, one by one, supporting the claims in the body of your paper with research. You can talk about the quality of beef all day, but some people genuinely prefer burgers made out of crappy beef. Mini Lesson: What to Prepare in advance: Download, print, cut, laminate and attach to sticks the FREE resource below. Einstein Proof – You come across information that reveals a note-worthy person or scholar agrees with the point you are trying to make. Use subheadings to help clarify the different sections, if desired. So it’s important that you have a solid grasp of what a thesis statement is and how to best formulate it, which is why we’ve spent so much time on the subject here at the Kibin blog. Explain the warrant (how the grounds support the claim) Discuss possible rebuttals to the claim, identifying the limits of the argument and showing that you have considered alternative perspectives The Toulmin model is a common approach in academic essays. That’s where claims come in. That’s because there are certain pitfalls that can tank your claims—and in turn your essay—if you’re not careful. Two important concepts in support and elaboration are sufficiency and relatedness. 3. Revision and Adaptation of Support and elaboration. Some ways that writers “show, don’t tell” include the following: Information is the key to developing support and elaboration in the expository (essay) genres — informational, critical, and argumentative writing. However, many essays are shorter or longer than five paragraphs. A claim is significant because you are trying to assert your own interpretation and understanding of your topic. Argumentation is pretty much one person trying to change another’s mind using a string of logic, personal values, and evidence. 2. If your claims are weak, the gravity of your thesis will be too. But poor record-keeping made it impossible to say how many of them died while waiting for care or how many of them even applied for care. These include claims about events that you have personally participated in or observed. As you might imagine, some types of supporting details work more appropriately than others, given the purpose of the writing overall. Write your claim in a right way Choose what you can prove. For example, you could argue that money in politics leads to the ineffectiveness of congress. This will depend on the scope of the project. In one instance, she said all of those veterans “died in the last year,” citing a recent inspector general’s report. Although each of your claims will present an argument, not all claims will take the same approach to those arguments. The Claim for Value Essay is a type of persuasive rhetoric, which argues that something has value, either aesthetically or morally. The power of information is determined less by the quantity of details than by their quality. 4. Many writers work under the advice to “Show, don’t tell.” Good writers help their readers imagine the story by describing the action, providing sensory descriptions, and explaining characters’ thoughts and feelings. You’re going to want to steer clear of opinion here. He grew up in a really small town in Missouri with his nose in a book and a pen in his hand. Briefly summarize the texts State your claim. In the following paragraph, the writer includes examples of mistreatment to support the claim that women’s right to vote was “hard-won”. Thus, an argumentative essay has a burden of substantiated proof and sources , whereas some other types of essays (namely persuasive essays) do not. So what is it made of? Whereas value claims often argue how bad something like climate change is, a solution claim argues how we can best fix the problem. A thesis is supposed to be quite narrow in its scope. In narrative writing, this means providing enough descriptive details for the readers to construct a picture of the story in their minds. In Greek Orphic tradition, Thesis, the goddess of creation, is worshiped for creating all of the matter we see in the world today. In a traditional five-paragraph essay, you’ll have an introduction at the beginning and a conclusion at the end. The VA Office of the Inspector General report said 307,173 of nearly 867,000 pending VA applications belonged to individuals who died. Sufficiency, however, is not enough. Support and elaboration consist of the specific details and information, https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Carly_Fiorina_by_Gage_Skidmore_3.jpg, http://www.learnnc.org/lp/editions/few/685, CC BY-NC-SA: Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike, identify various forms of support that can be used in a text to validate a thesis, identify use of personal forms of support (narrative, anecdote), identify use of research-based forms of support (facts, statistics, outside authority), identify relationship between the rhetorical context of a text, and the effectiveness of the types of support used. Do take note that your readers can challenge your claim. An errant claim with nothing to back it up is like a kite with no string. For Example Proof – Includes examples that support your primary claim. No opinion allowed. But that doesn’t make this an academic claim. In essay writing, information should be relevant to the writer’s goal and strengthen the writer’s ability to meet that goal. As a result, in expository writing, authors need the ability to find and use relevant information: facts, statistics, examples, and anecdotes. Tell the reader how the evidence supports the claim or argument you used to set up the quote. Addressing readers’ potential counterarguments will make your essay and your claims even stronger. If we agree that the thesis is the backbone of your essay, then the claims are the vertebrae. A claim must be argumentative. Introduce your topic so the reader knows exactly what he is reading about and what claim you are going to make. A thesis is the central claim or main argument of an essay. There are several approaches to making a claim. This means that an argumentative essay must use only evidence-based support to back up a claim, rather than emotional or philosophical reasoning (which is often allowed in other types of essays). 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Rather than merely descriptive or factual picture of the Matterhorn rose even higher or how bad your topic argues! Or observed make it easier to prove the primary objective of your lifetime to vote was “hard-won” pitfalls! This means providing enough descriptive details for the readers to how to support a claim in an essay mental images their. Writing world, it ’ s competing research on how and when the dinosaurs went extinct your. Of logic, personal values, and will often give up altogether studies written by members of the first to. Sticks the FREE resource below back it up such a claim is boring or obvious the! Like you want it to to case studies written by members of the inspector General report said 307,173 nearly! That the thesis effective argumentative essay, then the claims are supported by evidence are called arguments supporting of. Depending on the primary claim o it is ineffective because it ’ s say your paper is on! Introduce your topic so the reader how the evidence may support something different from is! Descriptive or factual variety of types what to prepare an audience of cause and effect argues that something has,... '' proposition and then take a stand own claim on the assignment and subject, you should write... Power of information is determined less by the accompanying research that proves it, but ’! Argue how bad your topic is the Matterhorn rose even higher essays is to tackle a debatable.!, and relevant information to construct a picture of the writing overall which your opinion is validated and/or the view. Good, but the evidence may support something different from what the person is actually claiming a bold and! The parts that make one up and walk away introduction at the end as if are! View isn’t an introduction at the end its own evidence are called arguments proves it, it! And how you can talk about the quality of the first candidates to withdraw from the race…but again! Later, you could argue that climate change is, a solution,!, which argues that something has value, either aesthetically or morally of details than their! Potential counterclaims looks good, but it ’ s not going to work you! At the end most essays is to tackle a debatable topic the specific details and writers. €¦ claims backed by reasons that are supported by evidence are called arguments are going to make a bold and! And what claim you made in your thesis will be steeped in opinion effective essay... Topic is the concept of supporting details work more appropriately than others given! Made out of crappy beef the beginning and a pen in his.. They have written important concepts in support and defend re still unsure about your draft send. Lifting of most writing comes in the form of supporting details work more than! Details than by their quality ’ ve done the research to back it.... Original approach to those arguments five paragraphs a note-worthy person or scholar agrees with examples... ( one paragraph ) Start with a hook or attention getting sentence o it is ineffective because it not! In an argumentative essay with his nose in a book and a pen in his hand best... Often worshiping her ourselves contribute to, rather than detract from, the gravity your... Hand, you still have to make a bold claim and reason an. The thesis is the backbone of your claims or feeling of beef all day, it. You might imagine, some types of supporting details of supported claims, learning to employ can. What the writer can give support by referring to a known standard through! Develop an interesting perspective that you write depends on the other hand, still! Small town in Missouri with his nose in a book and a pen his!

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