Using a five-paragraph structure is a great way to write an essay that gives your opinion on a particular subject. Regardless of whether your instructor provides an essay prompt or if you are allowed to choose one of your own, you want to make sure you write an essay that clearly takes on a an issue and that you present thoughtful arguments in support of your thesis. A five-paragraph essay is perfect because it has all of the major components you need to do this.
Opinion essays are assignments meant to prove a specific point. This means that you take a side on a topic or question and offer your argument and support towards a certain side. Your opinion should be clearly stated in the form of a thesis in your introductory paragraph. A well-written thesis statement will let the reader know exactly what they will be reading about and what point you will be making throughout. Never leave your reader guessing. The strength of your opinion essay depends on this one component.
If you take the time to read peer or sample essays your instructor provides you, you’ll see that the better essays all contain a single, clear idea or topic in each paragraph. This is commonly referred to a topic sentence, which is directly supports your opinion or argument. Each topic sentence is usually followed by 3 – 5 sentences of supporting evidence. Your evidence can consist of quotes, facts, figures, and other pieces of information that explain your position in greater detail.
Well-written conclusions will remind your reader of what it is you have just told them. You’ll want to restate your thesis as well as each of your supporting arguments, but do more than just write a summary. Since the conclusion is the last part of your essay that your reader will see, it’s important that you show why you have this particular opinion by connecting all of your evidence and reminding him or her how it all relates. You don’t want to introduce new evidence but you do want to show that you have proven your point. Show the connections and have some confidence that you have expressed your opinion thoroughly and effectively.
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