DEVELOPING ARGUMENTS

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DEVELOPING ARGUMENTS

The ability to develop arguments is useful both in speaking and writing.

 

Why is it important?

 

When you answer exam questions in speaking or in writing it is not only language (grammar, vocabulary) that is assessed, but also, and sometimes primarily, the content and the ability to develop logical and effective arguments.

 

How to do this?

 

IN WRITING it is all about a paragraph structure. If you follow the following structure, you can be sure your writing will be logical, coherent and easy to follow.

 

PARAGRAPH STRUCTURE

TOPIC SENTENCE

 introduces the subject of the paragraph

BODY SENTENCES

develop the subject by presenting

data

justification

explanation

example

consequence

contrast

 

FINAL SENTENCE

concludes the paragraph by

summarising it

offering a solution/recommendation

offering a warning and/or

leading on to the next paragraph

 

IN SPEAKING the structure of a statement is mostly the same:

 

STRUCTURE OF A SPOKEN ARGUMENT

 

TOPIC SENTENCE 

which summarises the whole statement

SUPPORTING SENTENCES

which develop all the aspects of the topic sentence by mentioning:

data (numbers, statistics, percentage, proportion)

example (for example, for instance)

explanation (it means, namely, I mean, to be more specific)

justification/reason (this is because, it is caused by, it is a result of)

consequences (consequently, therefore, so, due to this fact)

contrast (however, on the other hand, nevertheless, whereas)

 

CONCLUDING SENTENCE

in which you:

sum it all up
give a suggestion
give a recommendation
offer a warning
offer advice

 

 

In the following example sentence (1) is the topic sentence, sentences (2)-(5) develop the idea from the topic sentence and sentences (6) and (7) conclude the paragraph. As an exercise, try to identify how the sentences 2-5 develop the main idea (do they present an example, a consequence?).

Write your answers in the comments below the post ⬇⬇⬇. 

In practice, developing arguments in speaking may prove more challenging than in writing, as we don't have so much time to prepare.

Here's some advice how to deal with this problem. It comes from my book SPEAKING AND WRITING EXPERT https://www.stanagexpert.com/stanag-expert-textbooks/.

If you have any questions or remarks, don't hesitate to leave a comment below the post ⬇⬇⬇