SAT Essay

Top 4 SAT Essay Examples to Make you Succeed

Introduction

The SAT essay examples presented in this article belong to real students. These prompts test your ability to read and analyze various types of texts, focusing on how an author’s use of language affects their meaning.

To answer these questions, you need to know what makes text good or bad, such as;

  • The function words that determine sentence structure;
  • The rhetorical devices authors use to persuade or entertain their audience.
  • How context and tone affect meaning.

If you can answer these questions, then the SAT essay won’t be a problem.

The SAT essay is a challenge for many students, but it’s not impossible. The best way to prepare yourself is by learning about what the test expects you to know as well as practicing these skills in your own time. We have compiled a list of some top SAT essay examples that show how important the use of language can be and how you can use it to your advantage.

However, in case you wish to skip this guide due to reasons such as a busy schedule, our top writers are ready to cover you by ensuring that your SAT essay is written to the highest standards. All you need to do is place an order with us!

Top SAT Essay Examples as Provided by the College Board

These examples are real students’ responses to a sat essay with real scores and explanations.

Prompt

As you read the passage below, consider how Paul Bogard uses

  • Evidence, such as facts or examples, to support claims.
  • Reasoning to develop ideas and to connect claims and evidence.
  • Stylistic or persuasive elements, such as word choice or appeals to emotion, to add power to the ideas expressed.

Adapted from Paul Bogard, “Let There Be Dark.” ©2012 by Los Angeles Times. Originally published December 21, 2012.

At my family’s cabin on a Minnesota lake, I knew woods so dark that my hands disappeared before my eyes. I knew night skies in which meteors left smoky trails across sugary spreads of stars. But now, when 8 of 10 children born in the United States will never know a sky dark enough for the Milky Way, I worry we are rapidly losing night’s natural darkness before realizing its worth. This winter solstice, as we cheer the days’ gradual movement back toward light, let us also remember the irreplaceable value of darkness.

All life evolved to the steady rhythm of bright days and dark nights. Today, though, when we feel the closeness of nightfall, we reach quickly for a light switch. And too little darkness, meaning too much artificial light at night, spells trouble for all.

Already the World Health Organization classifies working the night shift as a probable human carcinogen, and the American Medical Association has voiced its unanimous support for “light pollution reduction efforts and glare reduction efforts at both the national and state levels.” Our bodies need darkness to produce the hormone melatonin, which keeps certain cancers from developing, and our bodies need darkness for sleep. Sleep disorders have been linked to diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular disease and depression, and recent research suggests one main cause of “short sleep” is “long light.” Whether we work at night or simply take our tablets, notebooks and smartphones to bed, there isn’t a place for this much artificial light in our lives.

The rest of the world depends on darkness as well, including nocturnal and crepuscular species of birds, insects, mammals, fish and reptiles. Some examples are well known—the 400 species of birds that migrate at night in North America, the sea turtles that come ashore to lay their eggs—and some are not, such as the bats that save American farmers billions in pest control and the moths that pollinate 80% of the world’s flora. Ecological light pollution is like the bulldozer of the night, wrecking habitat and disrupting ecosystems several billion years in the making. Simply put, without darkness, Earth’s ecology would collapse…

In today’s crowded, louder, more fast-paced world, night’s darkness can provide solitude, quiet and stillness, qualities increasingly in short supply. Every religious tradition has considered darkness invaluable for a soulful life, and the chance to witness the universe has inspired artists, philosophers and everyday stargazers since time began. In a world awash with electric light…how would Van Gogh have given the world his “Starry Night”? Who knows what this vision of the night sky might inspire in each of us, in our children or grandchildren?

Yet all over the world, our nights are growing brighter. In the United States and Western Europe, the amount of light in the sky increases an average of about 6% every year. Computer images of the United States at night, based on NASA photographs, show that what was a very dark country as recently as the 1950s is now nearly covered with a blanket of light. Much of this light is wasted energy, which means wasted dollars. Those of us over 35 are perhaps among the last generation to have known truly dark nights. Even the northern lake where I was lucky to spend my summers has seen its darkness diminish.

It doesn’t have to be this way. Light pollution is readily within our ability to solve, using new lighting technologies and shielding existing lights. Already, many cities and towns across North America and Europe are changing to LED streetlights, which offer dramatic possibilities for controlling wasted light. Other communities are finding success with simply turning off portions of their public lighting after midnight. Even Paris, the famed “city of light,” which already turns off its monument lighting after 1 a.m., will this summer start to require its shops, offices and public buildings to turn off lights after 2 a.m. Though primarily designed to save energy, such reductions in light will also go far in addressing light pollution. But we will never truly address the problem of light pollution until we become aware of the irreplaceable value and beauty of the darkness we are losing.

Write an essay in which you explain how Paul Bogard builds an argument to persuade his audience that natural darkness should be preserved. In your essay, analyze how Bogard uses one or more of the features in the directions that precede the passage (or features of your own choice) to strengthen the logic and persuasiveness of his argument. Be sure that your analysis focuses on the most relevant features of the passage. Your essay should not explain whether you agree with Bogard’s claims, but rather explain how Bogard builds an argument to persuade his audience.

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Essay example 1 scores: 2 1 1

In “Let there be dark,” Paul Bogard talks about the importance of darkness.

Darkness is essential to humans. Bogard states, “Our bodies need darkness to produce the hormone melatonin, which keeps certain cancers from developing, and our bodies need darkness for sleep, sleep. Sleep disorders have been linked to diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular disease and depression and recent research suggests are main cause of “short sleep” is “long light.” Whether we work at night or simply take our tablets, notebooks and smartphones to bed, there isn’t a place for this much artificial light in our lives.” (Bogard 2). Here, Bogard talks about the importance of darkness to humans. Humans need darkness to sleep in order to be healthy.

Animals also need darkness. Bogard states, “The rest of the world depends on darkness as well, including nocturnal and crepuscular species of birds, insects, mammals, fish and reptiles. Some examples are well known—the 400 species of birds that migrate at night in North America, the sea turtles that come ashore to lay their eggs—and some are not, such as the bats that save American farmers billions in pest control and the moths that pollinate 80% of the world’s flora. Ecological light pollution is like the bulldozer of the night, wrecking habitat and disrupting ecosystems several billion years in the making. Simply put, without darkness, Earth’s ecology would collapse…” (Bogard 2). Here Bogard explains that animals, too, need darkness to survive.

This response scored a 2/1/1.

Reading—2: This response demonstrates some comprehension of Bogard’s text. Although this essay consists almost entirely of two quotations taken directly from the passage, the writer does show an understanding of two of Bogard’s main points—darkness is crucial to humans and to animals—by selecting and briefly summarizing two important lines of text. However, the writer demonstrates no deeper understanding of the passage’s main ideas or important details. Overall, this response demonstrates partially successful reading comprehension.

Analysis—1: The response demonstrates no understanding of the analytical task. The writer does not attempt to analyze Bogard’s use of evidence, reasoning, or stylistic or persuasive elements. Instead, the writer merely cites two sentences from the passage, and offers a brief restatement of each point. Overall, this paper demonstrates inadequate analysis.

Writing—1: This essay demonstrates little cohesion and inadequate skill in the use and control of language. The essay begins with a very broad central claim (In “Let there be dark,” Paul Bogard talks about the importance of darkness) but otherwise lacks a recognizable introduction and conclusion. The writer’s two main ideas are separated into two separate paragraphs, but because there is little original writing here, there is no clear evidence of the writer’s ability to logically order or advance ideas. There is also little evidence of the writer’s ability to vary sentence structure. Overall, this essay does not provide enough evidence of writing ability to warrant a score higher than a 1.

Essay example 2. Scores: 2 2 2

In Paul Bogard’s essay “Let there be Dark” he emphasizes the importance of natural darkness. Bogard begins his argument by first providing a story from his personal experience, appealing to the reader by adding imagery. “I knew night skies in which meteors left smoky trails across sugary spreads of stars.” In this sentence, Bogard depicts the beauty of natural darkness using detail. Bogard continues with comparing his personal perspective of natural darkness in the past to society’s perspective in the present. “Today, though, when we feel the closeness of night fall, we reach quickly for a light switch.” Implying that the times have definitely changed and natural darkness’s value has been lost in society, replaced with artificial light. This example gives Bogard a sense of voice and his use of comparison is definitely effective.

Bogard supports his claims about natural darkness’s underrated value by providing the reader with evidence of health problems that the opposite replacement, artificial light, can cause. “Our bodies need darkness to produce the hormone melatonin, which keeps certain cancers from developing.” Oh, no! Not cancer! Right there is a quick attention grabber to any reader previously bored by Bogard’s constant opinions because now there are facts, and a fact relating to the reader is the best persuasion, especially when it relates to there health or well-being. Cancer, because who wants a terminal illness over an action as simple as flipping a switch on a night light when it’s too dark for your comfort?

This response scored a 2/2/2.

Reading—2: This writer demonstrates some comprehension of the passage. In the first paragraph, the writer conveys the passage’s broad central point—the importance of natural darkness. The writer also shows an understanding of the comparison Bogard draws between his own past and the present day (the times have definitely changed and natural darkness’s value has been lost in society, replaced with artificial light). In the paragraph that follows, the writer briefly cites Bogard’s point about the negative health implications of too much artificial light. However, this is the last evidence of understanding the writer provides, as the essay ends almost immediately afterward. Overall, the writer has demonstrated partial understanding of the source text.

Analysis—2: The response offers some limited analysis of the source text, demonstrating partial understanding of the analytical task. The writer identifies Bogard’s use of imagery in the story of meteors in the night sky and then asserts that this imagery appeals to reader, but the writer offers no further discussion of Bogard’s use of imagery or how imagery contributes to his argument. The writer also refers to the comparison Bogard makes between his youth and current times and says that the comparison gives Bogard a sense of voice, but the writer doesn’t explain why this comparison contributes to an authorial voice or how establishing a particular voice serves Bogard’s argument. The writer offers one additional point of analysis, asserting that Bogard’s reference to cancer is a quick attention grabber and that the use of a fact relating to the reader is the best persuasion, especially when it relates to their health or well-being. However, the writer does not elaborate on this point. In each instance of analysis in this short response, the writer identifies the use of evidence or rhetorical features, but asserts rather than explains the importance of those elements. Overall, this response demonstrates partially successful analysis.

Writing—2: This response demonstrates limited cohesion and some skill in the use of language. Although the writer offers a central claim that guides the essay, there is no indication of an introduction or conclusion to frame ideas. Overall, sentences are clear and the writer generally observes the conventions of standard written English. However, by the end of this short response, the writer has deviated from a formal style and objective tone (Oh, no! Not cancer! Right there is a quick attention grabber to any reader previously bored by Bogard’s constant opinions). The essay abruptly concludes with a rhetorical question that also somewhat strays from a formal tone (Cancer, because who wants a terminal illness over an action as simple as flipping a switch on a night light when it’s too dark for your comfort?). On the whole, this response offers some evidence of cohesion and control of language.

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Essay example 3. Scores: 3 3 3

In Paul Bogard’s article “Let there be dark” he’s building an arguement to persuade his audience to preserve natural darkness. Bogard builds his arguement in a few different ways. Bogard uses a personal story, appeals to people’s emotions, and states benefits of natural darkness.

By using a personal story Bogard allows his audience to connect to him. If his audience can relate or even understand his story they will be more willing to agree with him. The personal story also shows that the issue of preserving natural darkness isn’t just another topic to write about but something that he is actually passionate for. In his personal story Bogard uses great imagery making the audience picture what he saw and maybe make them want to experience it too.

Bogard uses pathos by stating examples that appeal to people’s emotions. In the article he wrote

“Those of us over 35 are perhaps among the last generation to have known truly dark nights.” This statement appeals more to the younger generations emotion. By stating this people who are younger then 35 might feel that they were robbed of the oppurtunity to experience the real beauty of natural darkness. This would proably help his younger audience to agree with him because they might want the chance to see the real beauty of natural darkness.

Bogard writes about the benefits that natural darkness actually produces. In the article he talks about how darkens actually helps the body produce a hormone that keeps certain cancers from developing. He also includes how darkness helps and is neccessary for certain animals. These examples will help his audience see that he is arguing for some benefical for people. This also helps appeal to an audience that might not care for the beauty of darkness but care for their own personal health.

Bogard uses different features in order to persuade his audience. The different features also help him in appealing to a broader audience.

This response scored a 3/3/3.

Reading—3: This response demonstrates effective understanding of the passage, with increasing evidence as the response continues. In the second paragraph, the writer discusses the personal experience of the night sky that Bogard draws on; although the writer does not recount the experience itself, it is nevertheless clear that the writer understands the story of Bogard’s youth. In the next paragraph, the writer cites and discusses a generational claim that Bogard makes, again demonstrating comprehension. Finally, the writer discusses general points Bogard makes about darkness’s usefulness for both animals and humans, although again, the writer makes a vague reference that darkness helps and is neccessary for certain animals without offering any of specific textual examples that Bogard provides. However, across the whole of this essay, the writer demonstrates effective understanding of the text’s central idea (he’s building an arguement to persuade his audience to preserve natural darkness) and important details.

Analysis—3: The writer demonstrates an understanding of the analytical task by first identifying three ways Bogard builds his argument (Bogard uses a personal story, appeals to people’s emotions, and states benefits of natural darkness) and then developing each point in turn. In the response’s body paragraphs, the writer moves beyond mere assertions to a competent evaluation of how pieces of evidence, reasoning, or stylistic or persuasive elements contribute to the argument. For example, in the response’s discussion of the personal story Bogard opens with, the writer argues not only that the story allows his audience to connect to him but also explains the importance of such connection (If his audience can relate or even understand his story they will be more willing to agree with him). The writer also contends that the use of this personal story shows Bogard’s passion and that the imagery included in the story makes the audience picture what he saw and maybe make them want to experience it too. The response could have made a stronger point had the writer elaborated on the potential effects of making the audience want to share Bogard’s experience. Nevertheless, in this example and others like it in the response, the writer exhibits effective analysis of the source text using relevant and sufficient support.

Writing—3: This essay is mostly cohesive and demonstrates mostly effective control of language. The brief introduction establishes the writer’s central idea and sets up the essay’s three points. The essay then follows a clear, if formulaic, format. In each paragraph, the writer demonstrates a progression of ideas, integrating quotations or examples from the source text into the analysis and connecting ideas logically (Bogard uses pathos by stating examples that appeal to people’s emotions. In the article he wrote “Those of us over 35 are perhaps among the last generation to have known truly dark nights.” This statement appeals more to the younger generations emotion. By stating this…). Sentence structure is varied, and some precise phrasing is used to convey ideas (robbed of the oppurtunity, their own personal health). Language control on the whole is good, although there are a few minor errors (These examples will help his audience see that he is arguing for some benefical for people) that do not detract materially from the quality of writing. Overall, the response demonstrates proficient writing.

Essay example 4. Scores: 4 4 4

In response to our world’s growing reliance on artificial light, writer Paul Bogard argues that natural darkness should be preserved in his article “Let There be dark”. He effectively builds his argument by using a personal anecdote, allusions to art and history, and rhetorical questions.

Bogard starts his article off by recounting a personal story – a summer spent on a Minnesota lake where there was “woods so dark that [his] hands disappeared before [his] eyes.” In telling this brief anecdote, Bogard challenges the audience to remember a time where they could fully amass themselves in natural darkness void of artificial light. By drawing in his readers with a personal encounter about night darkness, the author means to establish the potential for beauty, glamour, and awe-inspiring mystery that genuine darkness can possess. He builds his argument for the preservation of natural darkness by reminiscing for his readers a first-hand encounter that proves the “irreplaceable value of darkness.” This anecdote provides a baseline of sorts for readers to find credence with the author’s claims.

Bogard’s argument is also furthered by his use of allusion to art – Van Gogh’s “Starry Night” – and modern history – Paris’ reputation as “The City of Light”. By first referencing “Starry Night”, a painting generally considered to be undoubtedly beautiful, Bogard establishes that the natural magnificence of stars in a dark sky is definite. A world absent of excess artificial light could potentially hold the key to a grand, glorious night sky like Van Gogh’s according to the writer. This urges the readers to weigh the disadvantages of our world consumed by unnatural, vapid lighting. Furthermore, Bogard’s alludes to Paris as “the famed ‘city of light'”. He then goes on to state how Paris has taken steps to exercise more sustainable lighting practices. By doing this, Bogard creates a dichotomy between Paris’ traditionally alluded-to name and the reality of what Paris is becoming – no longer “the city of light”, but moreso “the city of light…before 2 AM”. This furthers his line of argumentation because it shows how steps can be and are being taken to preserve natural darkness. It shows that even a city that is literally famous for being constantly lit can practically address light pollution in a manner that preserves the beauty of both the city itself and the universe as a whole.

Finally, Bogard makes subtle yet efficient use of rhetorical questioning to persuade his audience that natural darkness preservation is essential. He asks the readers to consider “what the vision of the night sky might inspire in each of us, in our children or grandchildren?” in a way that brutally plays to each of our emotions. By asking this question, Bogard draws out heartfelt ponderance from his readers about the affecting power of an untainted night sky. This rhetorical question tugs at the readers’ heartstrings; while the reader may have seen an unobscured night skyline before, the possibility that their child or grandchild will never get the chance sways them to see as Bogard sees. This strategy is definitively an appeal to pathos, forcing the audience to directly face an emotionally-charged inquiry that will surely spur some kind of response. By doing this, Bogard develops his argument, adding gutthral power to the idea that the issue of maintaining natural darkness is relevant and multifaceted.

Writing as a reaction to his disappointment that artificial light has largely permeated the prescence of natural darkness, Paul Bogard argues that we must preserve true, unaffected darkness. He builds this claim by making use of a personal anecdote, allusions, and rhetorical questioning.

This response scored a 4/4/4.

Reading—4: This response demonstrates thorough comprehension of the source text through skillful use of paraphrases and direct quotations. The writer briefly summarizes the central idea of Bogard’s piece (natural darkness should be preserved; we must preserve true, unaffected darkness), and presents many details from the text, such as referring to the personal anecdote that opens the passage and citing Bogard’s use of Paris’ reputation as “The City of Light.” There are few long direct quotations from the source text; instead, the response succinctly and accurately captures the entirety of Bogard’s argument in the writer’s own words, and the writer is able to articulate how details in the source text interrelate with Bogard’s central claim. The response is also free of errors of fact or interpretation. Overall, the response demonstrates advanced reading comprehension.

Analysis—4: This response offers an insightful analysis of the source text and demonstrates a sophisticated understanding of the analytical task. In analyzing Bogard’s use of personal anecdote, allusions to art and history, and rhetorical questions, the writer is able to explain carefully and thoroughly how Bogard builds his argument over the course of the passage. For example, the writer offers a possible reason for why Bogard chose to open his argument with a personal anecdote, and is also able to describe the overall effect of that choice on his audience (In telling this brief anecdote, Bogard challenges the audience to remember a time where they could fully amass themselves in natural darkness void of artificial light. By drawing in his readers with a personal encounter…the author means to establish the potential for beauty, glamour, and awe-inspiring mystery that genuine darkness can possess…. This anecdote provides a baseline of sorts for readers to find credence with the author’s claims). The cogent chain of reasoning indicates an understanding of the overall effect of Bogard’s personal narrative both in terms of its function in the passage and how it affects his audience. This type of insightful analysis is evident throughout the response and indicates advanced analytical skill.

Writing—4: The response is cohesive and demonstrates highly effective use and command of language. The response contains a precise central claim (He effectively builds his argument by using personal anecdote, allusions to art and history, and rhetorical questions), and the body paragraphs are tightly focused on those three elements of Bogard’s text. There is a clear, deliberate progression of ideas within paragraphs and throughout the response. The writer’s brief introduction and conclusion are skillfully written and encapsulate the main ideas of Bogard’s piece as well as the overall structure of the writer’s analysis. There is a consistent use of both precise word choice and well-chosen turns of phrase (the natural magnificence of stars in a dark sky is definite, our world consumed by unnatural, vapid lighting, the affecting power of an untainted night sky). Moreover, the response features a wide variety in sentence structure and many examples of sophisticated sentences (By doing this, Bogard creates a dichotomy between Paris’ traditionally alluded-to name and the reality of what Paris is becoming – no longer “the city of light”, but moreso “the city of light…before 2AM”). The response demonstrates a strong command of the conventions of written English. Overall, the response exemplifies advanced writing proficiency.

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SAT Essay Examples to Support Your Thesis in Your Essay Response

Evidence Examples

Evidence examples refer to the use of evidence, such as statistics or other data points, in order to prove a point. They also include the use of anecdotes.

1. Anecdotes

Anecdotes are short, real-life stories that illustrate a particular point. They can be used to prove or disprove a given statement and are often more powerful than mere data points.

Anecdotes are often more powerful than statistics because they provide a rich context for the data.

An anecdote is a short story that’s either personal to you or something that happened in your life, such as an interaction with someone from another culture. This could be helpful if you’re trying to explain why people might have different reactions to things in different cultures.

The word anecdote comes from the French “anecdote”, which means a scrap of information about something, usually interesting or amusing. One example is when he was on vacation in Paris and asked his waiter to take him to the Louvre. The waiter said that it was closed for renovation but offered to show his guest the nearby D’Orsay Museum.

An anecdote might help you to illustrate a point, or explain why people have different reactions in various cultures.

Anecdotes can be about anything—an interesting interaction with someone from another culture, your favorite movie, how walking into that one room changed your life forever…anything!

How do you identify anecdotes in a sat essay prompt?

-If the essay prompt asks you to share specific anecdotes, then it’s unnecessary for a student to create their own.

-An example is: “Tell us about an experience from your life.”

-If the essay prompt asks for a personal experience that helped to shape who you are, then it’s always appropriate.

*Anecdotes can be used to prove or disprove a given statement and are often more powerful than mere data points.*

This is because anecdotes provide context—a rich story behind the point of view

What are some examples of Anecdotes used in sat essays?

A few common SAT Essay topics that often call for using anecdotes are the following:

-The impact of media on society and how it shapes our view

-An experience that changed your life or perspective in a meaningful way.

What does an anecdote look like? Here’s an example from Andres, who is writing about his encounter with a homeless man while he was walking home one night.

“I was walking home one night when I saw a homeless man sitting on the sidewalk. He looked up and asked me for change, but instead of giving him money or food, I took out my guitar.”

Andres continues to tell us about his experience with this man: “He didn’t seem surprised by what happened next; he just took the guitar from me and started playing.”

Andres goes on to say that he’s never been able to forget this man. “Sometimes I think about him, sitting there alone on a curb, waiting for someone like me to come his way.”

2. Facts

A fact is a statement that can be proven to have happened. The use of facts as evidence in an essay will often rely on the support of other details, such as statistics.

What are some examples of using Facts?

-If you’re trying to prove something like, “The best way to prepare yourself for life after high school is by participating in extracurricular activities and taking AP courses,” then you might include facts that support your argument.

-You could mention statistics about the number of people who don’t graduate from high school or discuss how being enrolled in an AP class has helped other people to succeed at their jobs after graduating.

What does a Fact look like? Here’s an example:

“The best way to prepare yourself for life after high school is by participating in extracurricular activities and taking AP courses.”

This sentence contains the following facts:

-Successful people have often participated in extracurricular activities and taken AP courses. (this statement has been proven)

The following sentence contains statistics as evidence:

“Only 40% of Americans graduate college. That means 60% do not.”

How do you identify facts in a sat essay prompt?

-In a prompt like “What are some ways to get the most out of your college experience?” you might find facts such as how many people graduate from high school, or what percentage of students have an interest in participating in extracurricular activities. So how does one identify facts? You might find them in statements that are supported by statistics, or mentions of specific numbers.

Examples:

-Facts as evidence can be found in the following sentence: “I have always wanted to go to college.” This statement is not factual because it cannot be proven true or false — but if you’re trying to prove something like “The best way to prepare yourself for life after high school is by participating in extracurricular activities and taking AP courses,” then you might include facts that support your argument.

-In the sentence “Only 40% of Americans graduate college. Which means 60% do not.” it is clear that this statement contains a statistic, which can be considered evidence.

-A fact is a statement that can be proven to have happened. The use of facts as evidence in an essay will often rely on the support of other details, such as statistics.”

Reasoning Examples

Good authors use reasoning to explain their points clearly and logically. They present evidence that supports the case they are making to make it compelling for readers.

We will explore four different types of essays where good writers use reasoning effectively: I)Counterclaims, II) Counterarguments III) Evidence explanation. IV) Cause and effect.

1. Counterclaims

Counterclaims should not be confused with counterarguments. A counterclaim is a claim that an argument could be true, even if it’s not.

When someone makes an assertion or gives reasons for something being true, another person may either agree with them or disagree with their point of view by making a counterclaim or counterargument.

This is how you can identify a counterclaim in the sat essay prompt. For instance, in the prompt “What are some ways to get the most out of your college experience?” you might find statements like “Some students feel that taking a break from their studies between semesters is helpful for mental health.” A counterclaim like this could follow this statement: “Others disagree, believing that taking a break can detract from their academic performance.”

Counterclaims are often followed by the word “although” and sometimes with other words like “yet” or “however.”

2. Counterarguments

Counterarguments, on the other hand, are statements or reasons that someone disagrees with.

When people disagree about something and want to set out their point of view in a strong way, they may need to be able to give counterarguments for why it is not true. Counterclaims show how even though one side has arguments against it, there might be some reasons for believing it.

Counterarguments show that the other person has strong arguments against their point of view. For example:

If someone were to say, “John was a great singer”, then an argument in favor of his singing abilities could be countered with “John had terrible stage presence” or this would instead be a counterargument.

This is how you can identify counterarguments in a sat essay prompt.

For instance, in the prompt “How do you know when a person is lying?” you might find statements like “There are many ways to tell if someone is lying.” This sentence could be followed with a counterargument that cites research findings on deceptive behaviors.

Counterarguments can also be found by looking for words such as “nevertheless” or “however”.

3. Evidence Explanation

When an author is trying to prove something true or false, they need evidence that supports their point of view in order for it to make sense and be compelling. That’s what evidence explanation does–it explains how the different pieces of information fit together so you can see why one side has good arguments against the other.

This is how you can identify evidence explanation in a sat essay prompt. For instance, in the prompt “Are cell phones bad for our health?” you might find statements like “Cell phone use has been linked to brain cancer.” This sentence could be followed with an evidence explanation that cites research findings from studies on this topic and how they support the idea that cell phones are not good for your health.

Evidence explanation is one of the easiest types of reasoning to identify in a prompt, since it usually starts with “For example” or “Research has shown.”

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4. Cause and Effect

In order to understand cause and effect relationships between events, people need evidence from research findings or other sources. This is what cause and effect does–it explains how one event leads to another, which helps readers understand why this type of point of view might be more convincing than the other options on the prompt.

This is how you can identify a cause-and-effect relationship in a sat essay prompt. For instance, in the prompt “How does social media affect society?” you might find statements like “Social media has a negative impact on the culture of conversation.” This statement could be followed by a cause-and-effect explanation citing research findings from studies about how people use social media and why it can have these effects.

Cause and effect is another type of reasoning in which it’s usually easy to identify, since it will be in the form of “because” or “since.”

Persuasive Examples

These types of examples are the most commonly seen on the SAT essay, but they can also be found in other types of essays as well. The main purpose of these examples is to persuade people into believing that your argument or opinion is true and should be followed. These are usually backed up with statistics, studies, surveys, expert opinions and many more sources.

They include vivid language and direct addresses.

1. Direct addresses.

A “direct address is when an author directly talks to their audience. Often, the author tries to appeal to the emotions of the audience. The wordings used by the author provoke a response from the audience.

Following is the use of a direct address in an essay.

“You are the ones who really matter to me. You are my people.”

– Prince Rogers Nelson, “The Rainbow Children”

In this sentence, Prince directly addresses his audience about how much he cares for them and wants their support. He might be trying to appeal to an audience’s emotions that feel like they don’t matter.

Direct addresses are commonly used in essays to show how the author feels about their audience and to try to convey a sense of urgency or importance.”

2. Vivid language.

Vivid language is used when the author tries to describe something in a very detailed way. It often uses lots of figurative language, such as similes and metaphors. Following are examples of vivid language being used:

“He was so beautiful he took my breath away.” – Marilyn Monroe describing Joe DiMaggio.

“She was so ugly, it made me want to puke.” – Jennifer Aniston describing her best friend.

In the first sentence, Marilyn is trying to use vivid language in order to make you feel something. She wants you to imagine how she felt when this person who is beautiful takes your breath away. In contrast, in the second sentence, Jennifer tries to be as vivid and descriptive of this person who’s ugly for the reader not to like her.

The use of vivid language can often make a sentence more persuasive because it evokes strong feelings from people.”

 

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