You are to write an essay that is based on your personal opinion about some certain controversial topic, so the opinion essay guide will be your helping hand. The main aim of an opinion essay is to make your audience believe that your very position is correct. To make the debatable problem actual the theme should be carefully chosen and proper research thoroughly conducted. The idea pluralism must be well-supported by your point of view and the opposing position on the selected topic both. Depending on the objective required, your composition can be any length, from a short letter, a medium-sized paper or a long speech that deals even with your personal researches. The only thing that is going to be your rule throughout your opinion essay is that it should contain some basic elements and steps.

Five Main Steps

Step 1: Read the task carefully

Read the task and decide whether it as a compare/contrast, cause and effect, problem and solution or mixture opinion essay. The type will define what ideas to concentrate on.

Step 2: Underline the most important points

Underline the key vocabulary and words that have the same or almost the same meaning. Helping you to avoid repetition of words it will save you a lot of time and show your understanding the main idea of your own essay.

Step 3: Get the main ideas

Decide if you are for or against the idea of your essay. Give both sides (for and against – it would be enough one paragraph for each). Having done that provide your opinion in the conclusion.

Step 4: Decide layout

You should decide on a layout of your essay. The easiest structure 3-7-7-3 (that means 4 separate paragraphs):

  • Introduction (in 3 sentences). A thesis should be obligatory included in the third sentence of the introduction, while the first sentence begins with a topic sentence, which is illustrated and explained in the sentences that follow. A list of opening phrases which are usually used at the very beginning of topic sentences will be your starting point; it is often said / argued that …, it is a fact that …, these days,/nowadays, … it seems that …we are becoming aware of…, in the past, people …, but now …, recently we have all become concerned that … . Expression opinion formulation should be started with: in my opinion,…/in my view,…./to my mind…, personally I believe/think/etc. that…, it is my firm belief that …, i am inclined to believe that …, it strikes me that…, it seems to me that.
  • One side (for the idea – 7 sentences). The other side (against the idea – 7 sentences). Introducing contrasting viewpoints you can use such phrases as It is argued that …, (some) people argue/claim/etc that …, some may argue/claim/etc that …, opponents of this view say …, contrary to what most people believe …, as opposed to the above ideas…, there are people who oppose .. . The following phrases can be useful in dismissing opinions that differ from your own – some people claim that…, despite claims that…, it is a fact that… , it may be true that … but all too often…, while it might be argued that …., what they forget is that… , the truth is that … , although …, it must be remembered that… . “Some experiments on animals are done in the name of medicine. In the overwhelming majority of cases, they aren’t”: Conclusion (3 sentences would be enough, being laconic is highly appreciated here). The main ideas should be summarized and your opinion should be quite clear. Remember – the conclusion mirrors the introduction, but in other words. For example: “ To finish with, I strongly believe   that air travel will always be popular. Its speed and convenience are hard to argue with”.
  • Having written the plan, write your opinion essay, – the introduction, body and conclusion. Check for mistakes, fragments and commas. Using these recommendations it will be an unexpectedly pleasant and enjoyable task for you to write the opinion essay! Be sure it is going to be one of your masterpieces!