Showbiz Dvd 2 Failure Writing Discursive Essays

In a discursive piece you are expected to discuss a given topic and present an argument related to it.

Organising a discursive essay

There are two basic types of discursive essay. Firstly there are persuasive essays in which you can argue strongly either in favour of or against a given discussion.

Alternatively, there are argumentative essays where you look at a discussion topic in a balanced way.

Finding information for a discursive essay

There are many sources you can use to find information for your discursive essay. These include:

  • relevant books from a library
  • online sources
  • magazines and newspapers
  • television and video
  • family members
  • friends

When looking in the library, focus on the non-fiction and reference sections. When searching online, always think carefully about key words.

Make sure you consider the reliability of all your sources. It is important you keep a note of where all your information comes from. This will allow you to check it again later and to complete your bibliography and footnotes.

Planning a discursive essay

The following basic structure should be employed for writing this essay.

  • Provide an interesting introduction.
  • Provide a clear indication of your position, your stance in relation to the topic (are you 'for' or 'against' ?).
  • Present your first argument, with supporting evidence.
  • Present your second argument, with supporting evidence.
  • Present your third argument, with supporting evidence.
  • Present your fourth argument, with supporting evidence, and so on (the number of paragraphs like this will depend on the number of arguments you can offer).
  • Indicate, in a single paragraph, that there is another side to this argument, with some idea of the points likely to be made for the view(s) which are opposite to your own.
  • Reiterate (state again) your position and conclude your essay.

This plan is followed in the exemplar essay provided in this revision bite.

Listen to this audio clip about presenting a balanced argument.

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