Essays - Sequencing the argument

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Advice Leaflets

Advice leaflets originally produced for the Study Advice Service in the University of Hull, which holds the copyright:

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This means developing a clear line of thought. Your ideas need to be organised into a sequence meaningful to the reader which can be signposted in the introduction. Supporting your argument You may do this by:

  1. • logical reasoning. You might, for example, highlight the consistencies in your view and the inconsistencies in opposing viewpoints, perhaps by extrapolating i.e. continuing a line of thought to a logical conclusion to see where it leads;
  2. • weighing two or more convincing viewpoints and deciding what tips the balance in favour of one;
  3. • providing evidence based on your own experience;
  4. • citing authoritative sources.

Be careful of statements such as: "Experiments have shown that …" What experiments? Or: "There is evidence that …" What evidence? You must be able to back up what you say and to refer the reader to the sources which you say exist.