What is argument and analysis?
Often, you will use argument and or analysis to develop your papers. In argumentative writing, you are trying to persuade your audience to accept your claims on the basis of your evidence, reasoning, credibility and appeals to your reader’s emotions, interests, values and beliefs. Whenever you write an essay in which you try to prove a thesis, you are making an argument. When you write a paper to show how your experience addresses a competence, you are making an argument.
Analysis is when you attempt to understand or communicate how something works by taking it apart. This taking apart can be similar to looking at the steps of a process, like how to fly a plane or how to write an essay. Analysis can mean considering the elements in something such as the electric and exhaust systems in a car or the colors, textures, and shapes in a painting. It can also be the sorting of elements of a system, like the classifying of types of plants by their leaf shapes. In academic writing, this taking apart is usually done in the service of a putting back to together that offers a new interpretation or makes an argument for a new way of doing or understanding something.
For more on argument and analysis, see this page from Purdue’s OWL.
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