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Counter Argument Essay Examples, all you Need to Know

Filed in Education by on June 23, 2020

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Counter Argument Essay Examples, all you Need to Know.

Counter Argument: When writing an opinion, an academic essay, or other paper showing two sides of an issue, it involves the inclusion of an argument.

A counterargument is the argument or view of an issue from the other side. Here, I will explain everything you need to know before writing a counterargument.

Counter Argument Essay Examples

Counter Argument Essay: What is a Counterargument?

With any argument or position, there are alternative or opposing positions. These opposing positions are called counterarguments. Think of it this way: if my argument is that dogs are better pets than cats because they are more social, but you argue that cats are better pets because they are more self-sufficient, your position is a counterargument to my position.

Why Includes a Counterargument?

Including a counterargument paragraph when writing an argumentative paper shows your reader you know and understand that other positions exist, you have considered these, and you can respond to them. Doing this gives you credibility and can strengthen your argument.

What is included in a Counterargument Paragraph?

Keep in mind that you must do more than simply identify an opposing position. When writing your counterargument paragraph, you should respond to that other position. In your paragraph:

  1. Identify the opposing argument.
  2. Respond to it by discussing the reasons the argument is incomplete, weak, unsound, or illogical.
  3. Provide examples or evidence to show why the opposing argument is unsound, or provide explanations of how the opposing argument is incomplete or illogical.
  4. Close by stating your argument and why your argument is stronger than the identified counterargument.

Where to Put a Counterargument?

Counterargument can appear anywhere in the essay, but it most commonly appears

  • as part of your introduction—before you propose your thesis—where the existence of a different view is the motive for your essay, the reason it needs writing;
  • as a section or paragraph just after your introduction, in which you lay out the expected reaction or standard position before turning away to develop your own;
  • as a quick move within a paragraph, where you imagine a counterargument, not to your main idea but the sub-idea that the paragraph is arguing or is about to argue;
  • as a section or paragraph just before the conclusion of your essay, in which you imagine what someone might object to what you have argued.

But watch that you don’t overdo it. A turn into counterargument here and there will sharpen and energize your essay, but too many such turns will have the reverse effect by obscuring your main idea or suggesting that you’re ambivalent.

Counter Argument Essay Examples

Sample Essay with Counter Argument in Intro

We live in an increasingly complex world, an Information Age. In this era where knowledge is key to survival, learning facts is very important. It is tempting to say that facts are the currency of the modern world, and that students must learn as many facts as possible. I disagree, and feel it’s more important for students to learn ideas and concepts, so they’ll be able to truly understand and use facts.

Ideas and concepts are especially important in formal education. The classroom style of learning requires certain study skills. These study skills are useful tools for learning facts, but the skills are not necessarily natural. The skills themselves must be learned.

Students must “learn to learn,” learning the ideas and concepts behind education. Without first learning these ideas and concepts, they won’t be able to learn facts very effectively. So learning ideas and concepts is more important. Ideas and concepts are foundational to the learning of facts.

The purpose of school is to prepare students for full participation in society. To hold down jobs and be part of a community, learners need ideas and concepts even more than they need facts. If someone studies to become an airplane pilot for example, it’s not enough to learn where all the controls are in an airplane and what they do.

Airline pilots should have an idea of what it feels like to be in a plane before they can actually be trusted to fly a real airplane. Similarly, for doctors’ concepts such as safety, responsibility, and bedside manner are more important than knowing every single medical fact there is to know.

While facts are important, it is skills and concepts that allow us to use facts. So skills and concepts are the most important thing a student must learn. There is an expression “Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach a man to fish, and he will eat for a lifetime.”

The facts teachers give students are like the fish. The skills and concepts are like the fishing. Students can’t stay in school forever. For life learning, they must be taught the skills and concepts they need to learn, think, and act on their own.

Sample Essay with Counter Argument at the Beginning of the Body

In this modern Information Age when knowledge is power, one could make a strong argument that facts are “king” and that people who know the most facts will do the best in society. After all, most students would say this is the biggest reason they pursue education— to learn facts that can help them understand their world. However, I would argue that learning ideas and concepts is at least slightly more important than learning facts.

Allow me to explain. Ideas and concepts are especially important in formal education. The classroom style of learning requires certain study skills. These study skills are useful tools for learning facts, but the skills are not necessarily natural.

The skills themselves must be learned. Students must “learn to learn,” learning the ideas and concepts behind education. Without first learning these ideas and concepts, they won’t be able to learn facts very effectively. So learning ideas and concepts is more important. Ideas and concepts are foundational to the learning of facts.

The purpose of school is to prepare students for full participation in society. To hold down jobs and be part of a community, learners need ideas and concepts even more than they need facts. If someone studies to become an airplane pilot for example, it’s not enough to learn where all the controls are in an airplane and what they do.

Airline pilots should have an idea of what it feels like to be in a plane before they can actually be trusted to fly a real airplane. Similarly, for doctors’ concepts such as safety, responsibility, and bedside manner are more
important than knowing every single medical fact there is to know.

While facts are important, it is skills and concepts that allow us to use facts. So skills and concepts are the most important thing a student must learn. There is an expression “Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day.

Teach a man to fish, and he will eat for a lifetime.” The facts teachers give students are like the fish. The skills and concepts are like the fishing. Students can’t stay in school forever. For life learning, they must be taught the skills and concepts they need to learn, think, and act on their own.

Sample Essay with Counter Argument in Conclusion

We live in an increasingly complex world, an Information Age. In this era where knowledge is key to survival, learning facts is very important, as is learning ideas and concepts. I would argue that learning ideas and concepts is at least slightly more important than learning facts.

Ideas and concepts are especially important in formal education. The classroom style of learning requires certain study skills. These study skills are useful tools for learning facts, but the skills are not necessarily natural.

The skills themselves must be learned. Students must “learn to learn,” learning the ideas and concepts behind education. Without first learning these ideas and concepts, they won’t be able to learn facts very effectively. So learning ideas and concepts is more important. Ideas and concepts are foundational to the learning of facts.

The purpose of school is to prepare students for full participation in society. To hold down jobs and be part of a community, learners need ideas and concepts even more than they need facts. If someone studies to become an airplane pilot for example, it’s not enough to learn where all the controls are in an airplane and what they do.

Airline pilots should have an idea of what it feels like to be in a plane before they can actually be trusted to fly a real airplane. Similarly, for doctors’ concepts such as safety, responsibility, and bedside manner are more
important than knowing every single medical fact there is to know.

Certainly, it is also very important to learn facts, which is why some would argue facts are the most important thing to learn. Using the pilot and doctor example again, no one would want a pilot or doctor who learned far fewer facts than their classmates when they were in school. 

But while facts are important, it is skills and concepts that allow us to truly use facts. There is an expression “Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach a man to fish, and he will eat for a lifetime.” The facts teachers give students are like the fish.
The skills and concepts are like the fishing—students need them to eventually leave school
and learn on their own.

Sample Essay with Counter Argument as Full Paragraph at the End of the Essay Body

We live in an increasingly complex world, an Information Age. In this era where knowledge is key to survival, learning facts is very important, as is learning ideas and concepts. I would argue that learning ideas and concepts is at least slightly more important than learning facts.

Ideas and concepts are especially important in formal education. The classroom style of learning requires certain study skills. These study skills are useful tools for learning facts, but the skills are not necessarily natural. The skills themselves must be learned.

Students must “learn to learn,” learning the ideas and concepts behind education. Without first learning these ideas and concepts, they won’t be able to learn facts very effectively. So learning ideas and concepts is more important. Ideas and concepts are foundational to the learning of facts.

The purpose of school is to prepare students for full participation in society. To hold down jobs and be part of a community, learners need ideas and concepts even more than they need facts. If someone studies to become an airplane pilot for example, it’s not enough to learn where all the controls are in an airplane and what they do.

Airline pilots should have an idea of what it feels like to be in a plane before they can actually be trusted to fly a real airplane. Similarly, for doctors’ concepts such as safety, responsibility, and bedside manner are more important than knowing every single medical fact there is to know.

Certainly, it is also very important to learn facts, which is why some would argue facts are the most important thing to learn. Using the pilot and doctor example again, no one would want a pilot or doctor who learned far fewer facts than their classmates when they were in school.

Moreover, if someone has a strong understanding of the idea of airplane safety or the concept medical ethics, they still should not actually be a doctor or pilot unless they also know a lot of facts about these fields.

But while facts are important and necessary, it is skills and concepts that allow us to truly use facts. There is an expression “Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach a man to fish, and he will eat for a lifetime.” The facts teachers give students are like the fish.

The skills and concepts are like the fishing—students need them to eventually leave school and learn on their own. Because you cannot make good use of facts without skills and concepts, it must be held that learning skills and concepts is more important than learning facts, even if
both kinds of learning are very important.

These are the most common ways a counter-argument can be structured and placed within a TOEFL essay. In general, if you use a counter-argument, you’ll want to put it near the beginning of the end of your TOEFL Writing response. Read these examples carefully, and then start writing some counter-arguments of your own as you practice for the TOEFL.

You can always count on CSN on articles of this kind, feel free to also share with your friends.

CSN Team.

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