Issue Analysis/Logical Argument in College Writing

Logical argument uses slightly different terminology for some of the same basic concepts as college writing. The difference between a general college essay and one intended to offer a logical argument essentially occurs in the nature of the support.

hand holding sticky note that reads "On one hand: 1. 2. 3." hand holding sticky note reading: "The other hand: A., B., C.,"
College Writing & Logical Argument
College Writing Logical Argument What It Is What the Difference Is
Thesis Claim, Conclusion the main idea; the assertion or position you want the reader to understand and accept not much—both are assertion or position statements that have a topic and an angle
Support Evidence, Premise, Reasons the details, examples, and sources that relate to, explain, and help prove the main idea Logical argument requires:

  • reasons and evidence from valid, credible sources
  • fair time given to the opposing viewpoint
  • evidence to show that the proposed viewpoint is more valid than the opposing viewpoint
  • real care with the way in which the evidence is presented, so as not to fall into an error of reasoning

Essays and logical arguments also tend to use similar structure, which is often thesis-response (or claim-evidence).  The thesis or claim is presented toward the start, and the response (topic sentences and units of support) or evidence (categories of support) follows, organized into units or groups of support.  Different categories of evidence will most likely be presented with topic sentences and units of support.

Again, the main difference between an essay and a logical argument is in the type of support and the care you need to take generating that support.  For logical arguments, the support always needs to be clear, relevant, verifiable, detailed, and comprehensive, covering any important opposing points of view.