Position Paper Template
Section 1

Grab the reader's attention with a hook and state why your topic is important. Establish your position on the topic or issue by stating your thesis.

Topic Introduction

Use or adapt any of these options to write your hook:

 

Option 1: Renowned researcher/philosopher/expert/politician X once said that “[quotation related to your topic]”

 

Option 2: Did you know that [insert fascinating statistic about your topic e.g.  "Did you know that 9 out 10 teenagers….."].

 

Option 3: A nationwide poll conducted by X revealed that [interesting statistic about topic e.g. "Less than 2% of Americans..."]

 

Use or adapt any of these options to state relevance of your topic:

 

Option 1: [My Topic] is relevant in [culture/society/academics] because of its impact on [paraphrase the importance or impac  of your topic].

 

Option 2: The study of [name branch of study] is incomplete without considering the important role of [my topic].

 

Use or adapt any of these options to state your thesis:

 

Option 1: I o-strong="ly [agree/disagree] with [state claim]. 

 

Option 2: There exists extensive evidence to support that idea that [state claim.]

 

Option 3: It is irrefutable that [claim]. (example: “teenagers should be able to vote.”)

 

Section 2

Introduce a claim in support of your thesis. Present evidence (a quote, a chart, statistic, an equation). Spend the rest of the paragraph tying your claim to the evidence.

Supporting Claim 1

Use or adapt any of these options to support your claim:

 

Option: [Name of expert] supports [my thesis] in his/her publication [name book or article.] There, [name of expert] writes that “[insert quotation that supports your thesis.]”

 

Option: Experts who have studied this issue have found that [summarize evidence in support of your thesis.]

 

Option: In his/her book, __________, X maintains that [summarize evidence in support of your thesis.]

 

Option: As the prominent philosopher/expert/researcher/celebrity X puts it, “[insert quote in support of your thesis.]”

 

Option: A recent study found that [summarize evidence in support of your thesis.]

Section 3

Introduce your second claim. Next present evidence, then tie evidence to claim. 

Supporting Claim 2

Use or adapt any of these options to support your claim:

 

Option: [Name of expert] supports [my thesis] in his/her publication [name book or article.] There, [name of expert] writes that “[insert quotation that supports your thesis.]”

 

Option: Experts who have studied this issue have found that [summarize evidence in support of your thesis.]

 

Option: In his/her book, __________, X maintains that [summarize evidence in support of your thesis.]

 

Option: As the prominent philosopher/expert/researcher/celebrity X puts it, “[insert quote in support of your thesis.]”

 

Option: A recent study found that [summarize evidence in support of your thesis.]

Section 4

Present your third claim. Introduce evidence, a study, a quote, or a proof, then spend the rest of the paragraph tying claim to evidence.

Supporting Claim 3

Use or adapt any of these options to support your thesis:

 

 

Option 1: Further evidence in support of [state claim] includes the example of [describe specific example supporting your claim].

 

Option 2: Another example supporting [state claim] is the fact that [state supporting fact.]

Section 5

Present the counter argument, to strengthen yours. If you are pro, consider those against, or vice-versa. This will broaden and flesh out your own argument to meet these challenges. You can also construct the entire essay on refuting a counter claim.

Counterclaim

Use or adapt any of these options to acknowledge counterclaims to your position:


Option 1: Some people believe that [state opposite of thesis] because [state reason.] This is faulty reasoning because [paraphrase your rebuttal.]

 


Option 2: Another common reason people believe that [state opposite of thesis] is because [state reason.] In this case, they are wrong because they are not considering that [statement in favor of your thesis].

Section 6

Sum up what you've claimed and what you've said. Here you will find your actual main claim, or thesis, in this summary. Tie loose ends, restate your subclaims, and open the discussion a bit wider. No evidence is presented here, nor quotes used here.

Conclusion

Use or adapt any of these options to conclude your paper/essay:

 

Option 1: In light of the claims presented in previous sections, it follows that [restate thesis in different words].

  

Option 2: To sum up, [restate your thesis] because [summarize main points of body paragraphs in 1 or 2 sentences].

 

Option 3: With so much evidence in support of [state thesis], it is unrealistic to believe otherwise.

Related Templates

Help Me Start a Position Paper

Not sure where to start on your position paper? Use this template to walk through the process.