In the case of academic writing, evidence comes directly out of textbooks and other academic sources in the given topic of any particular paper. This evidence is used to prove or disprove a statement within the thesis. Evidence is extremely important in proving the argument. According to research, “The strength of your evidence, and your use of it, can make or break your argument,” (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 2007). The type of evidence used within an academic paper depends highly on the subject matter being discussed in the paper itself.
In many cases, good writing will also address the counter argument, or the arguments that might possibly be made against the main argument of the paper. Counter arguments are usually addressed first, and are later discredited further on in the paper. The discrediting of counter arguments must be based concretely within the available evidence in the subject area (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 2007).
The other popular form of writing commonly used today is the professional style. Also known as a formal writing style, it also aims to prove an argument, but does so mostly through persuasion than production of facts and prior research. In more formalized writing, one would write that way one would speak. The audience within a formal document is ones professional peers and colleagues (Bednar 2002). Therefore, it is important for a professional, yet similar style to how one would speak.
This then helps in the persuasion element of the good formal writing project. Its main intent is to persuade, or convince colleagues or other professional equals of some need within an organization or professional field. Much unlike academic writing, most professional styles are much less accessible. They are for specific purposes, and can be restricted or limited in publication and purpose. However, the style still needs to prove an argument. Like academic writing, “formal writing needs to be clear, unambiguous, literal, and well structured,” (Bednar 2002). Therefore, persuasive writing does need to lean on some major facts or commonly held assumptions.
Although there are some differences between the two styles, it is clear that their basic purpose is to convince the reader of some argument, opinion, or that an action is necessary. With this commonly shared emphasis on persuasion, the two writing styles depend on a clearly stated and direct thesis statement, which makes up the basic argument of the entire writing sample. Without this argument, which ties the entire writing together, writing can turn into simple strings of words, with no power of persuasion.
Bednar, James a. (2002). Tips for formal writing. Teaching. Retrieved March 12, 2010 from http://homepages.inf.ed.ac.uk/jbednar/writingtips.html
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. (2007). Argument. Handouts and Links. Retrieved March 12, 2010 from http://www.unc.edu/depts/wcweb/handouts/argument.html.