Updated, March 2, 2017 | We published an updated version of this list, “401 Prompts for Argumentative Writing,” as well as a companion piece, “650 Prompts for Narrative and Personal Writing.” We also now have a PDF of these 200 prompts.
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What issues do you care most about? What topics do you find yourself discussing most passionately, whether online, at the dinner table, in the classroom or with your friends?
Our annual Student Editorial Contest invites you to write an evidence-based persuasive piece on an issue that matters to you. To help jump-start your brainstorming, we have gathered a list of 200 writing prompts from our daily Student Opinion feature that invite you to take a stand.
Though you won’t be limited to these topics for the contest, you’ll see that our list touches on every aspect of modern life, from politics to sports, culture, education and technology. We hope the range inspires you, and we hope the fact that each question links to at least one related Times article gives you a starting point for finding evidence.
So skim the list below to think about the topic you’d most like to take on.
For more information, here are links to our spring 2014 editorial-writing contest, a list of winners from that contest and a related lesson plan on argumentative writing.
- Is Cheating Getting Worse?
- Should Students Be Able to Grade Their Teachers?
- Does Your School Hand Out Too Many A’s?
- Should Middle School Students Be Drug Tested?
- Should Reading and Math Be Taught in Gym Class Too?
- How Seriously Should We Take Standardized Tests?
- How Well Do You Think Standardized Tests Measure Your Abilities?
- Do You Spend Too Much Time Preparing for Standardized Tests?
- Should Schools Offer Cash Bonuses for Good Test Scores?
- Should We Rethink How Long Students Spend in High School?
- Do Schools Provide Students With Enough Opportunities to Be Creative?
- What Are You Really Learning at School?
- How Important Is Arts Education?
- Does Gym Help Students Perform Better in All Their Classes?
- Who Should Be Able to See Students’ Records?
- Are Children of Illegal Immigrants Entitled to a Public Education?
- What Is the Right Amount of Group Work in School?
- Is Your School Day Too Short?
- Do You Think a Longer School Calendar Is a Good Idea?
- Should the Dropout Age Be Raised?
- Should Students Be Allowed to Skip Senior Year of High School?
- How Does Your School Deal With Students Who Misbehave?
- Should Schools Be Allowed to Use Corporal Punishment?
- How Big a Problem Is Bullying or Cyberbullying in Your School or Community?
- How Should Schools Address Bullying?
- Should Schools Put Tracking Devices in Students’ ID Cards?
- What Do You Think of Grouping Students by Ability in Schools?
- Do We Need a New Way to Teach Math?
- Does Class Size Matter?
- Should All Students Get Equal Space in a Yearbook?
- Is Prom Worth It?
- How Important Are Parent-Teacher Conferences?
- Should All Children Be Able to Go to Preschool?
- Should Colleges Use Admissions Criteria Other Than SAT Scores and Grades?
- What Criteria Should Be Used in Awarding Scholarships for College?
- Do You Support Affirmative Action?
- Do College Rankings Matter?
- How Necessary Is a College Education?
- Should Engineers Pay Less for College Than English Majors?
- Are the Web Filters at Your School Too Restrictive?
- Does Technology Make Us More Alone?
- Are You Distracted by Technology?
- Do Apps Help You or Just Waste Your Time?
- Do You Spend Too Much Time on Smart Phones Playing ‘Stupid Games’?
- Has Facebook Lost Its Edge?
- Does Facebook Ever Make You Feel Bad?
- Should What You Say on Facebook Be Grounds for Getting Fired?
- Should People Be Allowed to Obscure Their Identities Online?
- What Should the Punishment Be for Acts of Cyberbullying?
- Is Online Learning as Good as Face-to-Face Learning?
- Do Your Teachers Use Technology Well?
- Should Tablet Computers Become the Primary Way Students Learn in Class?
- Can Cellphones Be Educational Tools?
- Should Computer Games Be Used for Classroom Instruction?
- How Young Is Too Young for an iPhone?
- Should Companies Collect Information About You?
- Would You Trade Your Paper Books for Digital Versions?
- Are Digital Photographs Too Plentiful to Be Meaningful?
- Do You Worry We Are Filming Too Much?
- Would You Want a Pair of Google’s Computer Glasses?
- How Would You Feel About a Computer Grading Your Essays?
- What Role Will Robots Play in Our Future?
- How Many Text Messages Are Too Many?
- How Much Do You Trust Online Reviews?
- Why Do We Like to Watch Rich People on TV and in the Movies?
- Do TV Shows Like ‘16 and Pregnant’ Promote or Discourage Teenage Pregnancy?
- Does TV Capture the Diversity of America Yet?
- Is TV Too White?
- Is TV Stronger Than Ever, or Becoming Obsolete?
- Does Reality TV Promote Dangerous Stereotypes?
- What Current Musicians Do You Think Will Stand the Test of Time?
- What Artists or Bands of Today Are Destined for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame?
- What Musician, Actor or Author Should Be a Superstar, but Hasn’t Quite Made It Yet?
- Will Musical Training Make You More Successful?
- Should Video Games Be Considered a Sport?
- Should Stores Sell Violent Video Games to Minors?
- Can a Video Game Be a Work of Art?
- Do Violent Video Games Make People More Violent in Real Life?
- When Should You Feel Guilty for Killing Zombies?
- What Game Would You Like to Redesign?
- What Were the Best Movies You Saw in the Past Year?
- To What Writer Would You Award a Prize?
- Do You Prefer Your Children’s Book Characters Obedient or Contrary?
- Where Is the Line Between Truth and Fiction?
- Can Graffiti Ever Be Considered Art?
- Do We Need Art in Our Lives?
- What Makes a Good Commercial?
- Why Did a Cheerios Ad Attract So Many Angry Comments Online?
- Does Pop Culture Deserve Serious Study?
- Do Parents Have Different Hopes and Standards for Their Sons Than for Their Daughters?
- Is School Designed More for Girls Than Boys?
- Is There Too Much Pressure on Girls to Have ‘Perfect’ Bodies?
- How Much Pressure Do Boys Face to Have the Perfect Body?
- Do Photoshopped Images Make You Feel Bad About Your Own Looks?
- Is It O.K. for Men and Boys to Comment on Women and Girls on the Street?
- What Should We Do to Fight Sexual Violence Against Young Women?
- How Do You Feel About Rihanna and Chris Brown Getting Back Together?
- Do Fraternities Promote Misogyny?
- Why Aren’t There More Girls in Leadership Roles?
- Why Aren’t More Girls Choosing to Pursue Careers in Math and Science?
- Should Women Be Allowed to Fight on the Front Lines Alongside Men?
- Do You Believe in Equal Rights for Women and Men?
- Are Women Better at Compromising and Collaborating?
- Do Boys Have Less Intense Friendships Than Girls?
- If Football Is So Dangerous to Players, Should We Be Watching It?
- Should Parents Let Their Children Play Football?
- Should College Football Players Get Paid?
- When Do Pranks Cross the Line to Become Bullying?
- Has Baseball Lost Its Cool?
- Are Some Youth Sports Too Intense?
- Is It Offensive for Sports Teams to Use Native American Names and Mascots?
- Where Should Colleges and Sports Teams Draw the Line in Selling Naming Rights?
- Should Colleges Fund Wellness Programs Instead of Sports?
- Is Cheerleading a Sport?
- How Big a Deal Is It That an N.B.A. Player Came Out as Gay?
- Should There Be Stricter Rules About How Coaches Treat Their Players?
- Should Athletes Who Dope Have to Forfeit Their Titles and Medals?
- Should Sports Betting Be Legal Everywhere?
- Should Home-Schoolers Be Allowed to Play Public School Sports?
- Would You Want a Bike Share Program for Your Community?
- What Local Problems Do You Think Your Mayor Should Try to Solve?
- If You Were Governor of Your State, How Would You Spend a Budget Surplus?
- When Is the Use of Military Force Justified?
- What Is More Important: Our Privacy or National Security?
- Should the U.S. Be Spying on Its Friends?
- Do You Trust Your Government?
- What Do You Think of the Police Tactic of Stop-and-Frisk?
- Do Rich People Get Off Easier When They Break the Law?
- Should Rich People Have to Pay More Taxes?
- Do Laws That Ban Offensive Words Make the World a Better Place?
- Is It Principled, or Irresponsible, for Politicians to Threaten a Shutdown?
- Do Leaders Have Moral Obligations?
- Do Great Leaders Have to Be Outgoing?
- How Should We Prevent Future Mass Shootings?
- Should Guns Be Permitted on College Campuses?
- Would You Feel Safer With Armed Guards Patrolling Your School?
- What Is Your Relationship With Guns?
- Do You Support or Oppose the Death Penalty?
- When Should Juvenile Offenders Receive Life Sentences?
- Do We Give Children Too Many Trophies?
- When Do You Become an Adult?
- When Should You Be Able to Buy Cigarettes, Drink Alcohol, Vote, Drive and Fight in Wars?
- Should the Morning-After Pill Be Sold Over the Counter to People Under 17?
- Should Birth Control Pills Be Available to Teenage Girls Without a Prescription?
- Is Modern Culture Ruining Childhood?
- Are Adults Hurting Young Children by Pushing Them to Achieve?
- How, and by Whom, Should Children Be Taught Appropriate Behavior?
- What Can Older People Learn From Your Generation?
- Do ‘Shame and Blame’ Work to Change Teenage Behavior?
- How Should Children Be Taught About Puberty and Sex?
- Is Dating a Thing of the Past?
- How Should Parents Handle a Bad Report Card?
- Should Children Be Allowed to Wear Whatever They Want?
- How Should Educators and Legislators Deal With Minors Who ‘Sext’?
- Do You Think Child Stars Have It Rough?
- Is Smoking Still a Problem Among Teenagers?
- Are Antismoking Ads Effective?
- Is Drinking and Driving Still a Problem for Teenagers?
- Do You Think a Healthier School Lunch Program Is a Lost Cause?
- How Concerned Are You About Where Your Food Comes From?
- Is It Ethical to Eat Meat?
- Do You Prefer Your Tacos ‘Authentic’ or ‘Appropriated’?
- Should the Government Limit the Size of Sugary Drinks?
- Should Marijuana Be Legal?
- Should Students Be Required to Take Drug Tests?
- Do Bystanders Have a Responsibility to Intervene When There is Trouble?
- Should You Care About the Health and Safety of Those Making Your Clothing?
- Can Money Buy You Happiness?
- Does Buying and Accumulating More and More Stuff Make Us Happier?
- Are We Losing the Art of Listening?
- Do People Complain Too Much?
- Can Kindness Become Cool?
- Which Is More Important: Talent or Hard Work?
- How Important Is Keeping Your Cool?
- When Should You Compromise?
- Is Your Generation More Self-Centered Than Earlier Generations?
- Can You Be Good Without God?
- Have Curse Words Become So Common They Have Lost Their Shock Value?
- What Words or Phrases Should Be Retired in 2014?
- What Words or Phrases Do You Think Are Overused?
- Should Couples Live Together Before Marriage?
- How Important Do You Think It Is to Marry Someone With the Same Religion?
- How Long Is It O.K. to Linger in a Cafe or Restaurant?
- Does Keeping a Messy Desk Make People More Creative?
- How Important Is Keeping a Clean House?
- Should Scientists Try to Help People Beat Old Age So We Can Live Longer Lives?
- Given Unlimited Resources, What Scientific or Medical Problem Would You Investigate?
- When Is It O.K. to Replace Human Limbs With Technology?
- Do You Think Life Exists — or Has Ever Existed — Somewhere Besides Earth?
- Should Fertilized Eggs Be Given Legal ‘Personhood’?
- How Concerned Are You About Climate Change?
- Is It Wrong for a Newspaper to Publish a Front-Page Photo of a Man About to Die?
- What Causes Should Philanthropic Groups Finance?
- Should Charities Focus More on America?
- Should the Private Lives of Famous People Be Off Limits?
- Did a Newspaper Act Irresponsibly by Publishing the Addresses of Gun Owners?
- Would You Rather Work From Home or in an Office?
- What Time Should Black Friday Sales Start?
- Do You Shop at Locally Owned Businesses?
- How Much Does Your Neighborhood Define Who You Are?
Technology and Social Media
Arts and Media: TV, Music, Video Games and Literature
Sports and Athletics
Politics and the Legal System
Parenting and Childhood
Health and Nutrition
Personal Character and Morality Questions
English language classes usually require a lot of writing. When you're a middle school student, you don't feel the pressure. But high school and college students are assigned complex topics. They are rarely free to choose their own idea, so it makes the situation even more complicated. An argumentative essay should be based on three major set of skills of any good student:
- Research skills
- Writing skills
- Analytical skills
If one of these is your weak point, you would probably need online academic writing assistance. Anyway, you should try writing a persuasive paper on one of the chosen topics on your own. This is a good practice for your communication and research skills. Argumentative essays are assigned to train your debating abilities. This assignment has a great influence on how a student will perform or give a public speech later.
HOW TO SELECT DEBATABLE ARGUMENTATIVE TOPICS TO DISCUSS
You might think that it's better when your teacher assigns a particular argumentative topic to you. Having a right to develop your own idea is always better. When working on the persuasive essay, a student has to collect all valuable and time-tested sources to prove his knowledge of the certain issue. You may be encouraged to use such primary sources as:
- Academic journals
- Scientific magazines
- Official reports
Even if you are an expert in a certain field, don't hesitate to use and cite external sources. It will point to your ability to collect and select only the most relevant sources. Besides, direct and indirect quotes are needed to support your knowledge of academic writing style. If you are not sure in your writing skills, turn to professional writing agency to buy a winning argumentative essay on a variety of topics for cheap.
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BEST ARGUMENTATIVE PAPER TOPICS
Easy argumentative essay topics
- Education should be free for everyone
- Why are the US citizens rapidly becoming more obese?
- Internet access must be limited to students
- Young people must have a right to choose when it comes to military
- Each student must have a right to pick only those disciplines he is interested in
- What are the advantages US educational system offers to international students?
- Which secondary languages are worth studying today?
- Is education too commercialised nowadays?
- Is current academic grading helpful in performance?
- Are tests like SAT and ACT effective?
- Advantages and disadvantages of MBA program.
Sports argumentative essay topics
- What can be done to assist teenagers in maintaining a healthy weight?
- Physical education in the school system.
- Does participation in NCAA negatively influence the academic performance?
- What is the top unbreakable record in sport?
- Is Michael Jordan still a basketball star?
Argumentative essay topics for middle school
- What is the real relationship between food, fitness, and weight?
- What are the negative effects of diets?
- Society should fight with anorexia
- To regulate health issues, people should think about their sleep more
- Is golf still demanded?
- Steroid takers must be banned from team sports activities.
- Is swimming really the best type of sport?
- Hockey and other dangerous sports.
Argumentative essay topics for college
- Production and sales of tobacco must be made illegal
- Death sentence should be activated in every country of the world
- Smoking in public places has to be banned
- Alcohol usage should be controlled
- They should not sell alcohol beverages after 11 P.M.
- Energetic drinks should be banned and made illegal
- Should court proceedings be documented for television?
- The most suitable age to have a right to vote.
- When can citizens start drinking and smoking (specific age)?
- On the whole, is there justice for all?
- Was the Industrial Revolution a Europe-wide phenomenon in the nineteenth century?
Classical argument topics
- It should be forbidden to use species of animals for research purposes and cruel experiments
- Should rainforests destructions be punished?
- To what extent are electric vehicles a solution to global pollution?
- Pros and cons of globalisation.
- Was Roosevelt right about building a Panama Canal?
- Are you on the side of King-Kong or militaries who interrupted his world to study it using violent measures?
- The risks the United States may face in terms of rapidly changing climate conditions.
- Earthquakes and their consequences.
- Tsunami: the death wave.
- Beautiful forests of Amazonia.
- Which species should be included in the Red Book (Liber Novus)?
- How can students add up to the social movement for nature's safety?
Controversial argumentative essay topics
- Third World War should be Prevented by Russian and US Governments
- Existing public school policies must be changed
- Is gun control an effective way to control the crime?
- Government should forbid same-sex marriages
- Society is turning over-regulated
- The countries with the highest levels of corruption.
- Are some political authorities engaged in illegal activities in the US?
- Should people with physical disabilities be accepted by the government?
- To be a politician: art or a born talent.
- Can anyone be above the law?
- Pros and cons of Monarchy.
- Is CIS a better alternative for the USSR?
Argumentative essay on technology
- Violent video games should be prohibited
- Does technology make people feel alone?
- YouTube Owners Should Check and Fix Comments That Involve Filthy Language
- Are people becoming technological zombies?
- Will humanity reach the time when there will be no more technological advancement?
- Influences of mobile phones: pros and cons
- Technology and education
Argumentative essay on social media
- Is technology limiting creativity?
- The role of communications in social networks for modern education.
- Are contemporary people too much reliant on technology?
- Are online friends more effective than imaginary?
- Is censorship of Internet necessary?
6th-grade argumentative essay topics
- First aid and medical help, in general, should become free
- People are good at heart (download and use an example now)
- People must spend less time on official work without any effect on their salaries
- Social movements must be financed by governments
- Parents have no right to control the lives of their children above 16
- Cloning must be banned
- Global warming (Just download the sample you need for free!)
- Are abortions legal?
- Cross-cultural marriages add up to racial tolerance
- Is it OK to date a younger male?
- What us incest?
- What should be the role of partners in relationship and family?
- Is online dating safe and productive?
- Will people start marrying their computers soon?
Funny argument topics
- Would Batman be in law in a real world?
- 2D vs. 3D vs. 4D: What's Next?
- Can the chip control the human mind like they do in superhero movies?
- Does Griffins Family correspond to the typical American family?
- Graffiti is an illegal art. How should it be punished?
- Marijuana should be legal.
- Should parents be soft on their children?
Art, Music & Movie Ideas for Papers
- Does art pay?
- Can music and cinematography be called an art too?
- Is gothic art the most preferred and magnificent in history of mankind?
- Can you succeed in life working in the field of art?
- Are today's music tracks educational or meaningful at all?
- Is modern lyrics too explicit for a young audience?
- There is no plot in the majority of up-to-date movies.
- How long should a motion picture last?
DOWNLOAD MORE ARGUMENTATIVE ESSAY SAMPLES
VALUABLE TIPS & SIGNS OF THE GREAT TOPIC IDEAS
If you wish everyone to read your piece with the bated breath, try to:
- Pick a topic that everyone is currently discussing. Pay attention to the rumours.
- Select a question an answer to which is still unknown to many people.
- Choose an audience that does not agree with your point.
- Decide on the problem on which everyone has a specific point of view.
- Choose an issue based on your own interests, but don't go too far!
Here we have shared some of the most effective tips:
- No obvious argumentative paper topics!
- Do not stop on those topics that do not arise any arguments. Topics that state scientific facts proved by centuries do not work.
- A debatable essay must focus on the critical issue which leads to the global conflicts.
- Almost every second problem related to politics is a good choice. You may also write something about your school, college or university policies that annoy you or make students argue with their teachers and principals.
- Skip topics that people tend to agree on.
- At the same time, it is better to pass by argumentative essay topics connected with religion, gender, race, and other sensitive episodes of human life. Otherwise, your subjective opinion may be graded subjectively.
- It is better to write your essay following APA style. You may read how to format academic papers in APA here.
Remember: the world is not black-and-white. There are always two sides of the coin. So, even if you're pretty sure in your claim, and the majority of people tend to support it, consider the arguments of the opposing side. Only then your argumentative paper will be graded respectively high.
As you can see, the procedure is everywhere the same. But the idea is to choose the most exciting argumentative paper topics in order to impress both your audience and your teacher. It's like a competition, where the highest grade is your prize. Whenever you need immediate help with your assignment, turn to the professional writing service which can compose an argumentative essay on any topics in several hours.
A FEW WORDS ABOUT STRUCTURE
Just like any other academic paper, argumentative essay requires such steps as:
- In-depth research
- Gathering of information
- Picking the most credible and up-to-date sources
- Writing a draft
- Writing compare and contrast essay itself
- Revising (at least twice)
Speaking about the organisation and structure of the argumentative essay, we offer a five-paragraph paper outline. Let your original ideas flow in this manner:
A conclusion is, no doubt, the most important part of the argumentative essay as you can either support the good impression or destroy it entirely. If you want to avoid typical mistakes, find valuable recommendations in this article.
It all seems easy: just select, draft, write and revise. You may keep your argumentative essays for your future job portfolio in case they are highly graded. We recommend fixing them a bit once your teacher returns the checked version to you. The next time, the process would seem much easier to you.
If you have no desire to waste time on selecting the best topic and writing the whole argumentative essay from scratch, don't forget that you have a loyal team of professionals by your side. We are always ready to help for affordable prices - just contact us in the case of any questions or need for additional information. Expand your horizons by ordering an outstanding argumentative paper from expert US writers!
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