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Step 4-Understanding Counter Arguments

Have you ever been in an argument and found that you’re just not getting very far very fast? This could be because you are failing to see things from the other person’s point of view. Being able to see the “flip side of the coin” can go a long way in proving your point and disarming your opponent’s objections. By showing that you are aware, though perhaps not understanding, of the opposing side you are adding credi­bility to your argument because it is clear that you have viewed the issue from all angles. To write an effective position essay, you must present your knowledge of a counter argument. In other words, you must show that you have considered the other side of the argument. Organize your counter argument this way:

COMPARISON – CONTRAST COUNTER CLAIM (formula 2-1):
Others may think Item B is better than Item A because 1) __________,
2) __________, 3) __________.
(Note that these three points should contrast directly with the three points of your thesis. (see formula 1-1))

CAUSE – EFFECT COUNTER CLAIM (formula 2-2):
Some may feel that __________ would cause __________ based on __________.
(Note that this point should contrast directly with point #1 of your thesis. (see formula 1-2))

DEFINITION (formula 2-3):
By definition some may feel that __________ exhibits or is defined by __________ which could be positive / negative.
(Note that this point should contrast directly with point #1 of your thesis. (see formula 1-3))




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