The Best Tips For Writing An Opinion Based Essay

As the old adage goes, “the pen is mightier than the sword!” And it’s true, writing is an immensely powerful tool, and when it comes to expressing our views, opinions, and arguments, it becomes even more significant. It doesn’t matter whether you’re preparing for an IELTS test, planning to apply for an English-speaking university, or simply want to enhance your writing skills, mastering the art of opinion-based essays is crucial if you want to be thought of as an engaging writer.

Opinion essays, as the name suggests, provide an opportunity for you to voice your thoughts on a particular topic. They demand clarity, structure, persuasion, and a strong command of the English language. However, writing these essays can often seem daunting, especially for those new to the concept.

So, we’re going to take a look at what any aspiring student of English writing should be taking into consideration when they’re writing an opinion based essay. We will delve into the core basics of writing opinion-based essays, explore their structure, and equip you with effective tips to make your essays more persuasive. You’ll also find valuable advice on conducting research to substantiate your opinions and learn about the integral role of proofreading and revising. This comprehensive guide is designed to help both beginners and intermediate writers sharpen their opinion essay writing skills.

Understanding Opinion Based Essays

As with any kind of writing style, before you can begin putting it into literary practice, you first need to understand exactly what it is – its motives, its uses and ultimately why it is important. An opinion-based essay is a type of academic writing that allows you to express your views on a particular topic. These essays often involve stating an opinion, backing it up with evidence and arguments, and drawing a conclusion based on those arguments.

It’s Purpose

The goal of an opinion essay isn’t just to state what you think about a topic—it’s also to present your views in such a way that your readers can understand, appreciate, empathise with, and hopefully be convinced of your perspective. These essays are an exercise in persuasion, where you aim to convince your readers that your point of view is valid or worth considering. 

Fact-Based vs Opinion Based Essays

There are often people who believe that fact-based essays and opinion based essays are one and the same, but this is not the case. It’s important to distinguish opinion-based essays from fact-based ones. While fact-based essays rely heavily on objective data and information, opinion essays are driven by subjective perspectives. This doesn’t mean that opinion essays are devoid of facts—on the contrary, using factual evidence is a powerful way to validate your opinion. But unlike in fact-based essays, in opinion essays, these facts are used to support your viewpoint, rather than to form the basis of your argument.

Common Opinion Based Essay Misconceptions 

One common misconception about opinion essays is that they are based purely on personal feelings and lack academic credibility. This is far from the truth. While these essays do centre on your viewpoint, a well-crafted opinion essay backed by sound reasoning, substantial evidence, and thorough research will be able to convince a reader of a certain argument in just the same way that a piece of academic research would itself.

The Basics Of Writing Opinion Based Essays

Creating a compelling opinion-based essay is not a simple task of hurriedly jotting down your thoughts on a piece of paper; rather, it’s akin to constructing a well-designed architectural structure. Each word, each sentence, each paragraph contributes to the overall integrity of the piece, much like how every brick and beam matters in a building. The whole process involves careful planning, thoughtful crafting, and strategic structuring. 

First, Choose The Topic

Picking a subject for your opinion essay might sound straightforward, but it’s one of the most crucial steps in the process. Choose a topic that you feel passionate about, as this will allow you to write with more conviction and enthusiasm and these are qualities that any reader will search for when they are reading an opinion piece. Note however, that you should also ensure your topic is also one you can reasonably discuss and argue from various angles. Keep in mind who your audience is and what kind of topics might interest them as well.

Be Sure To Research Well & Thoroughly

Whilst you will hopefully have chosen a topic that you are already knowledgeable on, this does not mean you can ever neglect the research you’re putting into an essay. Even though an opinion essay highlights your viewpoint, supporting your opinion with facts makes your argument more credible. Use reliable sources like academic journals, respected news outlets, and authoritative websites. Don’t forget to keep track of your sources for referencing purposes if this is itself an academic piece of writing.

Make Sure The Format Of The Essay Demonstrates A Clarity Of Thought

Creating a coherent format for your opinion essay is paramount to ensuring your argument flows smoothly and that your thoughts are easily understood. The format you choose is the framework that supports your ideas, much like the skeleton that holds a body upright.

A clear format begins with a well-structured introduction that houses your thesis statement, which is the heart of your opinion. From there, each body paragraph should follow a logical sequence: a topic sentence to introduce the main idea, supportive arguments with evidence, and a concluding sentence that reinforces your opinion and ties the paragraph back to the original thesis statement in your introduction.

Writing An Opinion Based Essay With Persuasion & Using Research

The art of crafting a persuasive and well-researched opinion essay hinges upon the perfect symphony of personal perspectives, evidence-based information, powerful language, and comprehensive research. In this section, we’ll explore how these components harmoniously blend to form a compelling narrative.

The first building block is the language. The words you choose play an integral role in crafting your argument’s persona. An assertive tone can impart clarity and firmness to your viewpoint, whereas the strategic use of rhetorical questions can stimulate thought and engage readers. Emotive language can also be a potent tool, inciting emotions and making your argument more relatable. However, it’s crucial to temper these emotional appeals with logical, reasoned arguments to maintain a balanced and credible narrative.

But a persuasive essay extends beyond compelling language. It requires the sturdy backbone of evidence to lend credibility to your viewpoints. Facts, data, and expert quotes don’t merely decorate your argument; they fortify your standpoint and transform your personal viewpoint into a compelling, substantiated argument.

An opinion essay is essentially a delicate dance between personal perspectives and factual information. While your opinion shapes the soul of the essay, it is the factual evidence that provides the body, grounding your perspective and bolstering its validity in the eyes of your readers.