Opinion essays are discursive essays in which we present our personal opinion on a particular topic. They are normally written in a formal style. An opinion essay consists of:
* an introduction in which we introduce the topic and state our opinion clearly. * a main body which consists of two or more paragraphs, each presenting a separate viewpoint supported by reasons/examples. We can include a paragraph giving the opposing viewpoint supported by reasons/examples. * a conclusion in which we restate our opinion using different words.
We start each main-body paragraph with an appropriate topic sentence that states the main idea of the paragraph. Each topic sentence is followed by supporting sentences that further explain the main idea of the paragraph.
We use present tenses in this type of essay. We also use appropriate linking words and phrases to join your ideas.
To list viewpoints: To start with, Firstly, In the first place, In addition, Besides, Furthermore, Moreover, Also, etc.
To introduce supporting sentences (examples): for example, for instance, in particular, such as/like, etc. To introduce opposing ideas: On the other hand, However, etc.
To conclude: All in all, Lastly, Taking everything into account, To sum up, All things considered, etc. Formal style is characterized by:
* formal expressions, advanced vocabulary, longer sentences, e.g.: First-time buyers need to consider their financial circumstances carefully before committing to a mortgage. * Formal linking words/phrases, e.g.: Moreover, steps should be taken to … * No use of short forms, e.g.: There is always something… (NOT: There’s always something…)
* Impersonal tone i.e. use of the passive, e.g.: Tenants are required to contribute towards the upkeep of the garden.