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How to Properly Organize Persuasive Paragraphs?

Persuasive Paragraphs Organization and Development

Each and every sentence must have a particular objective or role in the persuasive paragraph. However, the number of its roles is limited. If you try to remember the objectives and roles of the persuasive statement, you will succeed in correct developing of body paragraphs. Parts of a persuasive essayshould perform the one of the below provided roles:

  • serve as the topic sentence, which should present a particular claim;
  • provide a particular fact or facts to support the evidence;
  • explain the way facts can support the claims provided in the persuasive sentence starters;
  • play role of a transitional sentence to the next paragraph.

In case your next paragraph is conclusion, there is no need to add transitional sentence to the previous paragraph.

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Facts and Claims

It is vital to comprehend the difference between facts and claims. Understanding the definition of persuasive writing helps to provide high quality persuasive paragraphs.

Claim and Its Definition

Usually claims represent the position, which can be arguable. As a result, claims reflect one’s opinion, belief or interpretation. For instance, it is considered to be claim when one says that the cat in a short story “Cat in the Rain” written by Ernest Hemingway is a symbolic image of a woman. This idea is not clearly stated anywhere in the mentioned short story. If it would have been stated, it would be considered a fact. As a result, this idea is a conclusion that a reader may draw from the facts presented in the story. 

Therefore, the objective of a claim is to reflect a conclusion one has made. When you need to write a persuasive paragraph, you should start from your own conclusion and provide certain facts that can support your conclusion.

Please note that claim differs from point of view. Individual point of view reflects person’s preferences. For instance, I have a point of view that milk chocolate tastes better than dark chocolate. It is just an opinion or point of view. It cannot be argued and supported by the facts. That is why claims presented in an academic essay should have arguable position. Claims should be argued over their validity. 

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Fact and Its Definition

Generally, it is easy to define a fact since it has a persuasive purpose. Facts are considered to be true by definition. Nobody can argue over the fact. For instance, it is considered to be a fact that the couple stays in the hotel located in Italy in a short story “Cat in the Rain” written by Hemingway. In addition, it is a fact that a male character in the story sees a cat outside and tries to find it as she walks out of the hotel while a man stays in bed. The above-mentioned sentences are facts that cannot be argued. In case facts are utilized in order to prove a particular argument, these facts can be considered as support or evidence.   

It is necessary to use facts in order to support writer’s claims in persuasive paragraphs. They have persuasive meaning. It is the correct way of supporting and developing one’s interpretation or argument.

Definition of Secondary Claims

There is no doubt that there are some variations on the pattern of organization provided above. You will probably want to follow one of such patterns in case your paragraphs are long enough. It will work absolutely well for you. The use of primary claim in the topic sentence is considered to be the most common one. It follows the secondary claims in the body. After that, secondary claims should be supported with particular facts so that secondary claims could be considered the evidence and prove the primary claim provided in the previous paragraph. However, one is not able to make a strong interpretation or argument solely on claims. Each strong interpretation and/ or argument should be supported with certain facts. However, one can develop a so called secondary claim so that it could help prove the primary claim.    

If you want to check out the examples of the usage of both primary and secondary claims or claims and supporting facts, you may see the online handout called “Effectively Developing a Persuasive Paragraph. Persuasive words to use.”    

Common Mistakes that Should be Avoided

Properly supported and developed arguments and interpretations can be written only when you understand the difference between facts and claims. In many cases students are tend to make common mistakes while organizing and developing persuasive paragraphs. Some of such mistakes are described below.  

Paragraphs Overloaded with Claims and Not Supported with Facts

Writer fails to properly develop argument or interpretation and includes too many claims instead. In addition, he/she fails to provide enough facts in order to support the claims. As a result, writers who make such a mistake write short paragraphs and cannot expand the paragraphs to the needed length.

You can see the example of such mistake in online handout Bad Paragraph / Good Paragraph: Effectively Developing a Persuasive Paragraph.

In order to avoid such mistake, you should remember that your task is to prove your claim. That is why you need to present a few facts that can support your claims. Avoid presenting to many claims in one paragraph. You can include only one claim in the topic sentence or a few related claims and focus on proving those claims in the body of your paragraph. So, remember that most paragraphs should contain facts and clear explanation on how these facts can support the claims.

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Paragraphs Overloaded with Facts that Cannot Provide Support to Claims

Such mistake is often made when a writer starts a paragraph by introducing facts or a fact and fails to present a claim. He/she presents one fact, then another one and so on. As a result, writer presents facts only without any explanation on how they can support a claim.

It is possible to avoid such mistake if you do not forget to start your body paragraphs with a certain claim. Please present your claim in a topic sentence and remember to support your claim with facts. In addition, you have to ask yourself why you decided to provide this specific fact. Will it be able to support your claim? Moreover, your task is to provide an explanation on how exactly this fact can support your claim. 

When a writer makes the above mentioned mistake, he/she begins providing a story summary instead of analyzing and interpreting it. Use persuasive sentence to write correct persuasive paragraphs.

Persuasive Paragraphs Development: Expert Tips and Hints

The constituent parts of persuasive essays are persuasive paragraphs. If you find a sample of persuasive essay writing online, you will find out that the essay has a standard structure:

  • An introductory paragraph, where you provide background information on the topic, introduce the information, and formulate your thesis statement;
  • The main body comprising of body paragraphs, where you provide your claims and arguments, provide supporting facts, as well as justify your claims with examples and illustrations as well as expert opinion. In persuasive writing body paragraphs, you should also pay attention to examining the contrary arguments and then provide a rebuttal;
  • A conclusive paragraph is an important one of the persuasive paragraphs since here you sum up all the points and key findings and show logical summation of your discussion.

Writing Introduction for a Persuasive Essay

Despite the fact that it is complicated for many students to develop the main body persuasive paragraphs, some students find it inexplicably hard to write a good introduction. Actually, the whole process of writing becomes easier when you have an outline. Still, when you start developing the introductory paragraph, make sure you have decided what focus your essay will have and how you will formulate the thesis statement. After you have written a strong thesis statement, the whole process of writing will become easier and faster. In the introduction, you should pinpoint what direction your essay will take and how you will hook readers’ attention. You should definitely come up with a fact that will grab attention of your audience and maintain it throughout the whole paper.


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