Public Speaking Resources

Argumentative Speech Topics and ideas: A Complete Guide

An argumentative speech is a persuasive speech. Here, speakers try to encourage audiences to alter their views on a controversial issue.

Though they are alike in some manner, persuasive and argumentative speech contains different goals.

A persuasive speech focuses on sharing a perspective and asking the public to think it over. An argumentative speech aims to alter the viewpoint already detained by the audience.

This type of speech is challenging. So, the speaker should pick up the topic that he is confident at and come up with a strong argument.

When you are involved in debates with family or friends, you obviously tend to win or lose. The way you argue shows your capability to compel facts and concepts in support of a topic.

While losing an argument, chances are you only used the standpoint supporting your situation. In a perfect argumentative speech, there should be a strong claim and the points to support it.

For an argumentative speech, find a concrete and controversial argument to use as your foundation. These speeches generally focus on the topics discussed at the moment by society. Most of the topics of argumentative speech are derivative of political discussion.

This is most commonly noticed in the media. The selected topic might be social, religious, ethical, or political by nature. The public must be confident to revise their long-held values. They might ask to change detained convictions relevant to the recent evidence.

In fact, picking up a topic that is debatable is important to develop good speech. The topic should not include something which is already demonstrated or verified.

Instead, it should be logical enough to convince the audience. The speaker should come up with a strong opinion to make his speech realistic to the audience.

To be able to argue in a reasonable and logical way is a fine life skill. It helps to stand up for what you think is correct and let others give attention to your viewpoints.

For instance, if the topic includes “eating egg and milk affects your healthiness”. You evaluate the opponent and create your own topic like “Eating egg and milk does not affect your health”. Yet, you have to give strong points to support your answer.

Table of Contents

Terms to Present Argumentative Speech

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These are some terms that help you to present an ideal argumentative speech:

  • Claim – This is the main term that you should focus on. Try to give a strong standpoint. Support on the point, position, and the issue you are talking about. Do not forget the main purpose of the speech.
  • Grounds – Grounds are the key information or the facts that you use to make your point more powerful and reliable. Make sure that the details you give are an appropriate reason for your claims in the initial place.

Argumentative Speech is based on:

It starts with the reality relevant to the evidence. For an instance, you drink too much alcohol and do not exercise. Then, you will surely put up the weight. If you control your drinks, then you can maintain the weight.

Claims of value include the belief something is correct or incorrect, good or bad. For an instance, punishing children is wrong. It does not improve the habits of your children.

Here you can also state “Punishing children is right”. They will think properly before doing anything wrong

Claims of the policy are taken from the course of action. For an instance, you should be able to vote through a driving license. There is a precise rule for the policy. It is realistic and superior compared to the current system.

Every child should learn different languages in school. It is vital to introduce teachers to the value of beginning foreign language experience.

While initiating the argumentative speech, get ready with strong arguments. You desire to give an influential impact right in front. Also, you might wish to leave a good impression on the audience hearing your speech.

Stay away from personal attacks. If you make the argument too boring, there will be a higher chance of losing your audience.

Besides, argumentative speech needs a powerful viewpoint on the topic that you are delivering. Remember, the goal is not to win your audience but to win the argument. You have to stand on your own point with an appropriate reason.

Essential components of an Argumentative speech:

The main goal of an argumentative essay is to influence others in your opinions. Generally, an argumentative speech addresses an audience with opposite opinions on a specific subject.

Here are four essential elements to focus on when developing an argumentative essay:

While picking up a topic, you should select the topic with more than a single side. For an instance, there is no way to discuss the topic of human smell with the nose. It is familiar fact that has no other strong points to discuss against.

While preparing for an argumentative speech, take a strong standpoint. Try to stick with the stance. This makes your speech powerful. Make sure you do not confuse the audience with any irrelevant points.

A good argument needs to have reasonable and convincing evidence. Better support your statement with information, figures, examples, and some relevant opinions. Also, argumentative speech does not contain unproven opinions. Make sure you research and present the argument that is a relevant argument.

At the end of a strong argumentative speech, you have to refute alternate positions. By dealing with the opponent, make some powerful arguments. Try to work on some common and stronger viewpoints.

  • Look for a concrete and controversial argument to use as your base.
  • Arrange your points properly. Arranging the points can be helpful while planning your thoughts and presenting them
  • Give most of your time for research. Better research on your topics along with the topics which your opposition is likely to pick up.

How to develop an effective Argumentative Speech?

After picking up a fine controversial topic, you should work on some powerful points. Those points must make your speech influential. Start developing an outline that translates into better argumentative speech.

These are some points to consider while working on an argumentative speech:

From absorption to health, you can find many types of topics that you feel comfortable presenting.

At first, think about the topic that you are supporting. Are you supporting abortion or speaking against it? Most of the speaker loves to speak against abortion but should be confident to speak on the topic.

Better verify and try to prove the facts using some examples or supportive words. This makes your speech more powerful and interesting. Consider determining whether you are attempting to take the topic.  

You can definitely find the people who have worked for or else against the topic that you picked up earlier.

For this, you have to carry out the research well. But, this does not mean you have to copy from them. Just take your idea and use them in a better way. This helps to know what step you should take to move forward to make a good flow of the argument.

Each argumentative speech contains both for and against the side. The best probable approach that you can use is to know your opponent. Knowing how your opponent thinks and the points they use makes you easy to perform.

An argumentative speech might be weak if you do not provide any facts. For a good outcome, you need facts supporting your argument on the controversial topic. If you ignore this you might be in a problem while presenting the speech.

Be sure, you know and give the facts, and make your points strong. These facts reduce your risk of looking unprepared and unprofessional.

You cannot give a better outcome without passion. To present superior argumentative speech, you should have an interest in the topic. Better select the topic of your interest. This helps you to work and perform better. If you do not trust yourself and your topic, no one will as well.

Deciding on an arguable topic is essential to developing an effective argumentative speech. Better do not pick up the topic which needs great logic for convincing the audience.

You should have an extreme desire in the topic with a deep opinion on the subject. If he cannot fulfill these criteria, he might not provide influencing arguments.

Argumentative Speech Topics and ideas

Find here the List of Argumentative Speech Topics. They are great for developing arguments for debates, persuasive speech, and argumentation.

Argumentative Speech Topics about Education

  • Mobile phones should be banned in schools for both students and teachers.
  • Exams should be abolished.
  • Exam scores do not reflect student performance.
  • Mandatory dress code.
  • Studying of foreign languages should begin from kindergarten age.
  • College students should have freedom to choose their own courses.
  • Sex education should be required in all schools.
  • Benefits of attending a single-sex school.
  • Essays do not demonstrate student’s knowledge on a topic.
  • Home education should only be allowed for medical reasons.
  • Education should be free to anyone.
  • Teachers should have mandatory re-training every 5 years.
  • Testing and choice are undermining education.
  • Grades are not important.
  • Bilingual education.
  • CPR and first aid techniques should be a mandatory course.
  • State colleges should be free to attend.
  • Teachers should wear uniforms or obey a dress code.
  • Why educational computer games should be used in school
  • Music education should be placed back into schools
  • Student Debts
  • Do colleges put too much stock in standardized test scores?
  • Price of Education and textbooks
  • Popular literature is not as valuable as classical literature.
  • Smoking and drinking on campus
  • Workers should get four weeks paid vacation each year.
  • The illegal immigrant workforce is good for the economy.
  • Christmas is just a way for businesses to increase sales.
  • Rich people should have tax breaks.
  • Decreasing wealth tax is good for the economy.
  • Salaries of actors, professional athletes and CEOs should be regulated and capped.
  • Government aid for students should be based purely on academic performance.
  • Taxes should be imposed on unhealthy foods to combat obesity.
  • Paying the waiter hourly rate below minimum wage is unfair.
  • Mortgage Crisis
  • Consumer Debt
  • Outsourcing jobs to foreign countries
  • Equal pay for equal work
  • Fuel Prices
  • How nuclear power shaped the 21st century in electrical generation.
  • Space exploration is a waste of money.
  • Genetic Research is destroying humanity.
  • NASA space landing on the moon was a hoax.
  • Media’s effect on teen suicide.
  • Stem cell research and the guidelines that control it.
  • Hunting is good for the environment.
  • Food shortage / world hunger.
  • Crimes against the environment should be tougher.
  • Vegetarianism is an ecologically thoughtful lifestyle.
  • Destruction of the world’s forest is justified by a human need for land and food.
  • Racing industry should be forced to use environmentally-friendly fuel.
  • Working from home is good for the environment.
  • Genetically modified food should be the answer to the world’s hunger problem.
  • The government should support and subsidize alternative energy sources.
  • Alternative Energy and Hybrid Vehicles can help save our planet.
  • Nuclear power is better than solar power.
  • Future of recycling.
  • Advantages of recycling water.
  • Alternative Fuels.
  • Every family with children filing for divorce must go through a mandatory ‘cooling off’ period.
  • Couples should be banned from adopting overseas.
  • Future parents should take parenting classes and pass tests before having a child.
  • Physical punishment is good practice for raising children.
  • Do curfews keep teens out of trouble?
  • Does access to condoms prevent teen pregnancy?
  • Violent video games and toys should not be allowed.
  • Technology is making people less creative.
  • Human beings are becoming slaves of modern technology.
  • Does technology limit creativity?
  • Technology makes us lose most of our traditions and culture.
  • New technologies create new problems.
  • Positive effects of technology on society.
  • Modern technology has increased material wealth but not happiness.
  • Social Networking Sites had an impact on changing us for the worse.
  • Internet censorship is unnecessary.
  • Whether the internet has made research easier and more convenient.
  •  Life was better when technology was less and more simple.
  • Online friends are more effective than real friends.
  • Internet Privacy.
  • Torrents and internet pirating.
  • Social networks are killing sincere relationships.
  • Organ donation should be mandatory.
  • Health risks of smoking are exaggerated.
  • Vaccinations should be compulsory.
  • Veganism is an unhealthy way to raise kids.
  • Breast-feeding is one of the most important things a mother can give to a child.
  • Terminally ill patients should be allowed to use heroin.
  • Knowing your ancestry is important for health.
  • All farmers should go organic.
  • Lapses in food safety as a result of a complex interplay of factors.
  • Music Therapy.
  • The need of teen depression prevention.
  • Drug addiction is a sickness.
  • Running is unhealthy.
  • Fast food, soda, chips and other unhealthy food should be heavily taxed.
  • Bread is bad for your health.
  • Child obesity.
  • Any products that are believed to cause cancer should have a  warning label.
  • The only difference between normal and organic food is the cost.
  • Dangers of herbal remedies.
  • Smoking a pipe is more harmful than smoking cigarettes.
  • Denying health insurance on a basis of a pre-existing condition is against human rights.
  • Athletes who are caught using steroids should be banned from the professional sport for life.
  • Stretching before and after exercise is overrated.
  • A vegetarian diet is as healthy as a diet containing meat.
  • Eating meat and dairy is bad for your body.
  • GMOs are bad for health and should be avoided at any cost.
  • Why slavery was good for society back in the 1800s.
  • Adolf Hitler was a great leader.
  • Slavery and its effects on global economic developments.
  • Why Reagan’s “War on Drugs” had negative effects.
  • Many Caribbean people do not understand their heritage and history.
  • Famous people (actors, athletes) should not be allowed to become politicians.
  • The War in Iraq was justified.
  • Invading other countries, as long as for good cause, is justified.
  • Illegal immigrants should get an asylum.
  • Democracy is the best form of government.
  • Why should we trust Official Statistics?
  • War as an instrument of foreign policy.
  • Voting should be compulsory for all citizens.
  • Compulsory military service is good for society and the country.
  • Voting age should be lowered.
  • Terrorism is a major issue in the world because innocent people are affected.
  • The assassination can never be justified.
  • Why electronic voting is not effective.
  • Downsides of multiculturalism
  • Can racial profiling be useful?
  • Churches should be required to pay taxes.
  • Racialist blames are often used as a great excuse to shut down dialogue.
  • The world would be a more peaceful place without religions.
  • Life after death.
  • Evolution vs. Creationism.
  • There should be no religion in schools.
  • Islamic Fundamentalism.
  • Religion is a force for evil.
  • Students should learn about world religions in public schools.
  • Jehovah witnesses.
  • Why hockey should allow fights.
  • Not all great sportsmen can be good coaches. 
  • For athletes: Discipline is more important than talent.
  • Female athletes train better with female coaches.
  • Chess is not a sport.
  • Should players’ jerseys display ads?
  • Should there be a set age range for basketball players?
  • Can gambling be legalized as a professional sport?
  • Spousal Abuse.
  • Polygamy creates healthy relationships.
  • Gender equality is a myth.
  • Having sex with a prostitute is not cheating.
  • Does age matter in relationships? What age is appropriate for dating?
  • Men should be forced to take paternity leave from work.
  • Gender does not affect learning.
  • Guns should be made illegal.
  • Minors should be tried for murder at any age.
  • Social Security and Medical Reform are non-negotiable ways out of the debt crisis.
  • Gay couples should have the same rights as heterosexual couples.
  • Plastic surgery should be illegal for anyone under 18.
  • Identity Theft.
  • Ban on smoking in public places is undemocratic.
  • Euthanasia should be legalized.
  • Prostitution should be legalized.
  • The taboo on recreational drugs is unjustified.
  •  Driving speed limits should be lifted in areas with low accident risk.
  • DUI offenders should give up their driver license for a year.
  • Laws to protect the victims of domestic abuse should be enforced.
  • Making drugs illegal creates an environment for crime and violence.
  • Fast Food advertisements and promotions should be banned.
  • Retirement should be made compulsory at the age of 60.
  • Cell phones and driving.
  • Billboards should not be allowed on interstate highways.
  • Acceptance of all types of people.
  • Today’s world is a dangerous place to live in.
  • People don’t enjoy what they have. They constantly seek for more.
  • Benefits of having friends.
  • Modern offices should have facilities for an afternoon nap.
  • Would you rather be lucky, rich, or intelligent?
  • Reality television makes people stupid and should be regulated.
  • Has television become out-dated?
  • Watching television makes people smarter.
  • Banning some books and movies can help society.
  • Assisted Suicide.
  • Genetic Research.
  • Is human cloning ethical?
  • The Ethics of Capital Punishment.
  • Euthanasia is not morally acceptable.
  • Abortion is inhumane and murder.
  • Abortions should be legal in cases of rape and incest.
  • DNA experiments on human embryos are unethical and should not be allowed.
  • Torture is an acceptable measure to prevent terrorism.
  • Wearing fur is unethical.
  • Cultural treasures should be returned to their countries of origin.
  • Do animals have rights? Using animals for scientific research is inhumane.
  • Spaying and neutering pets should be mandatory.
  • Zoos, aquariums, and circus violate animal rights and should be shut down.
  • Should scientists bring back extinct species through cloning?
  • Hunting is unethical and should not be allowed.
  • Doctors are better than Lawyers Are beauty pageants exploitative?
  • Feminism is bad for society.
  • The Miss America pageant is sexist.

The above-mentioned topics and tips for argumentative speech should help you prepare and deliver an argumentative speech. If you have any suggestions or feedback, please let me know in the comment below.

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great argumentative speech topics

112 Persuasive Speech Topics That Are Actually Engaging

What’s covered:, how to pick an awesome persuasive speech topic, 112 engaging persuasive speech topics, tips for preparing your persuasive speech.

Writing a stellar persuasive speech requires a carefully crafted argument that will resonate with your audience to sway them to your side. This feat can be challenging to accomplish, but an engaging, thought-provoking speech topic is an excellent place to start.

When it comes time to select a topic for your persuasive speech, you may feel overwhelmed by all the options to choose from—or your brain may be drawing a completely blank slate. If you’re having trouble thinking of the perfect topic, don’t worry. We’re here to help!

In this post, we’re sharing how to choose the perfect persuasive speech topic and tips to prepare for your speech. Plus, you’ll find 112 persuasive speech topics that you can take directly from us or use as creative inspiration for your own ideas!

Choose Something You’re Passionate About

It’s much easier to write, research, and deliver a speech about a cause you care about. Even if it’s challenging to find a topic that completely sparks your interest, try to choose a topic that aligns with your passions.

However, keep in mind that not everyone has the same interests as you. Try to choose a general topic to grab the attention of the majority of your audience, but one that’s specific enough to keep them engaged.

For example, suppose you’re giving a persuasive speech about book censorship. In that case, it’s probably too niche to talk about why “To Kill a Mockingbird” shouldn’t be censored (even if it’s your favorite book), and it’s too broad to talk about media censorship in general.

Steer Clear of Cliches

Have you already heard a persuasive speech topic presented dozens of times? If so, it’s probably not an excellent choice for your speech—even if it’s an issue you’re incredibly passionate about.

Although polarizing topics like abortion and climate control are important to discuss, they aren’t great persuasive speech topics. Most people have already formed an opinion on these topics, which will either cause them to tune out or have a negative impression of your speech.

Instead, choose topics that are fresh, unique, and new. If your audience has never heard your idea presented before, they will be more open to your argument and engaged in your speech.

Have a Clear Side of Opposition

For a persuasive speech to be engaging, there must be a clear side of opposition. To help determine the arguability of your topic, ask yourself: “If I presented my viewpoint on this topic to a group of peers, would someone disagree with me?” If the answer is yes, then you’ve chosen a great topic!

Now that we’ve laid the groundwork for what it takes to choose a great persuasive speech topic, here are over one hundred options for you to choose from.

great argumentative speech topics

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  • Should high school athletes get tested for steroids?
  • Should schools be required to have physical education courses?
  • Should sports grades in school depend on things like athletic ability?
  • What sport should be added to or removed from the Olympics?
  • Should college athletes be able to make money off of their merchandise?
  • Should sports teams be able to recruit young athletes without a college degree?
  • Should we consider video gamers as professional athletes?
  • Is cheerleading considered a sport?
  • Should parents allow their kids to play contact sports?
  • Should professional female athletes be paid the same as professional male athletes?
  • Should college be free at the undergraduate level?
  • Is the traditional college experience obsolete?
  • Should you choose a major based on your interests or your potential salary?
  • Should high school students have to meet a required number of service hours before graduating?
  • Should teachers earn more or less based on how their students perform on standardized tests?
  • Are private high schools more effective than public high schools?
  • Should there be a minimum number of attendance days required to graduate?
  • Are GPAs harmful or helpful?
  • Should schools be required to teach about standardized testing?
  • Should Greek Life be banned in the United States?
  • Should schools offer science classes explicitly about mental health?
  • Should students be able to bring their cell phones to school?
  • Should all public restrooms be all-gender?
  • Should undocumented immigrants have the same employment and education opportunities as citizens?
  • Should everyone be paid a living wage regardless of their employment status?
  • Should supremacist groups be able to hold public events?
  • Should guns be allowed in public places?
  • Should the national drinking age be lowered?
  • Should prisoners be allowed to vote?
  • Should the government raise or lower the retirement age?
  • Should the government be able to control the population?
  • Is the death penalty ethical?

Environment

  • Should stores charge customers for plastic bags?
  • Should breeding animals (dogs, cats, etc.) be illegal?
  • Is it okay to have exotic animals as pets?
  • Should people be fined for not recycling?
  • Should compost bins become mandatory for restaurants?
  • Should electric vehicles have their own transportation infrastructure?
  • Would heavier fining policies reduce corporations’ emissions?
  • Should hunting be encouraged or illegal?
  • Should reusable diapers replace disposable diapers?

Science & Technology

  • Is paper media more reliable than digital news sources?
  • Should automated/self-driving cars be legalized?
  • Should schools be required to provide laptops to all students?
  • Should software companies be able to have pre-downloaded programs and applications on devices?
  • Should drones be allowed in military warfare?
  • Should scientists invest more or less money into cancer research?
  • Should cloning be illegal?
  • Should societies colonize other planets?
  • Should there be legal oversight over the development of technology?

Social Media

  • Should there be an age limit on social media?
  • Should cyberbullying have the same repercussions as in-person bullying?
  • Are online relationships as valuable as in-person relationships?
  • Does “cancel culture” have a positive or negative impact on societies?
  • Are social media platforms reliable information or news sources?
  • Should social media be censored?
  • Does social media create an unrealistic standard of beauty?
  • Is regular social media usage damaging to real-life interactions?
  • Is social media distorting democracy?
  • How many branches of government should there be?
  • Who is the best/worst president of all time?
  • How long should judges serve in the U.S. Supreme Court?
  • Should a more significant portion of the U.S. budget be contributed towards education?
  • Should the government invest in rapid transcontinental transportation infrastructure?
  • Should airport screening be more or less stringent?
  • Should the electoral college be dismantled?
  • Should the U.S. have open borders?
  • Should the government spend more or less money on space exploration?
  • Should students sing Christmas carols, say the pledge of allegiance, or perform other tangentially religious activities?
  • Should nuns and priests become genderless roles?
  • Should schools and other public buildings have prayer rooms?
  • Should animal sacrifice be legal if it occurs in a religious context?
  • Should countries be allowed to impose a national religion on their citizens?
  • Should the church be separated from the state?
  • Does freedom of religion positively or negatively affect societies?

Parenting & Family

  • Is it better to have children at a younger or older age?
  • Is it better for children to go to daycare or stay home with their parents?
  • Does birth order affect personality?
  • Should parents or the school system teach their kids about sex?
  • Are family traditions important?
  • Should parents smoke or drink around young children?
  • Should “spanking” children be illegal?
  • Should parents use swear words in front of their children?
  • Should parents allow their children to play violent video games?

Entertainment

  • Should all actors be paid the same regardless of gender or ethnicity?
  • Should all award shows be based on popular vote?
  • Who should be responsible for paying taxes on prize money, the game show staff or the contestants?
  • Should movies and television shows have ethnicity and gender quotas?
  • Should newspapers and magazines move to a completely online format?
  • Should streaming services like Netflix and Hulu be free for students?
  • Is the movie rating system still effective?
  • Should celebrities have more privacy rights?

Arts & Humanities

  • Are libraries becoming obsolete?
  • Should all schools have mandatory art or music courses in their curriculum?
  • Should offensive language be censored from classic literary works?
  • Is it ethical for museums to keep indigenous artifacts?
  • Should digital designs be considered an art form? 
  • Should abstract art be considered an art form?
  • Is music therapy effective?
  • Should tattoos be regarded as “professional dress” for work?
  • Should schools place greater emphasis on the arts programs?
  • Should euthanasia be allowed in hospitals and other clinical settings?
  • Should the government support and implement universal healthcare?
  • Would obesity rates lower if the government intervened to make healthy foods more affordable?
  • Should teenagers be given access to birth control pills without parental consent?
  • Should food allergies be considered a disease?
  • Should health insurance cover homeopathic medicine?
  • Is using painkillers healthy?
  • Should genetically modified foods be banned?
  • Should there be a tax on unhealthy foods?
  • Should tobacco products be banned from the country?
  • Should the birth control pill be free for everyone?

Do Your Research

A great persuasive speech is supported with plenty of well-researched facts and evidence. So before you begin the writing process, research both sides of the topic you’re presenting in-depth to gain a well-rounded perspective of the topic.

Understand Your Audience

It’s critical to understand your audience to deliver a great persuasive speech. After all, you are trying to convince them that your viewpoint is correct. Before writing your speech, consider the facts and information that your audience may already know, and think about the beliefs and concerns they may have about your topic. Then, address these concerns in your speech, and be mindful to include fresh, new information.

Have Someone Read Your Speech

Once you have finished writing your speech, have someone read it to check for areas of strength and improvement. You can use CollegeVine’s free essay review tool to get feedback on your speech from a peer!

Practice Makes Perfect

After completing your final draft, the key to success is to practice. Present your speech out loud in front of a mirror, your family, friends, and basically, anyone who will listen. Not only will the feedback of others help you to make your speech better, but you’ll become more confident in your presentation skills and may even be able to commit your speech to memory.

Hopefully, these ideas have inspired you to write a powerful, unique persuasive speech. With the perfect topic, plenty of practice, and a boost of self-confidence, we know you’ll impress your audience with a remarkable speech!

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130 New Prompts for Argumentative Writing

Questions on everything from mental health and sports to video games and dating. Which ones inspire you to take a stand?

great argumentative speech topics

By The Learning Network

Note: We have an updated version of this list, with 300 new argumentative writing prompts .

What issues do you care most about? What topics do you find yourself discussing passionately, whether online, at the dinner table, in the classroom or with your friends?

In Unit 5 of our free yearlong writing curriculum and related Student Editorial Contest , we invite students to research and write about the issues that matter to them, whether that’s Shakespeare , health care , standardized testing or being messy .

But with so many possibilities, where does one even begin? Try our student writing prompts.

In 2017, we compiled a list of 401 argumentative writing prompts , all drawn from our daily Student Opinion column . Now, we’re rounding up 130 more we’ve published since then ( available here as a PDF ). Each prompt links to a free Times article as well as additional subquestions that can help you think more deeply about it.

You might use this list to inspire your own writing and to find links to reliable resources about the issues that intrigue you. But even if you’re not participating in our contest, you can use these prompts to practice the kind of low-stakes writing that can help you hone your argumentation skills.

So scroll through the list below with questions on everything from sports and mental health to dating and video games and see which ones inspire you to take a stand.

Please note: Many of these prompts are still open to comment by students 13 and up.

Technology & Social Media

1. Do Memes Make the Internet a Better Place? 2. Does Online Public Shaming Prevent Us From Being Able to Grow and Change? 3. How Young Is Too Young to Use Social Media? 4. Should the Adults in Your Life Be Worried by How Much You Use Your Phone? 5. Is Your Phone Love Hurting Your Relationships? 6. Should Kids Be Social Media Influencers? 7. Does Grammar Still Matter in the Age of Twitter? 8. Should Texting While Driving Be Treated Like Drunken Driving? 9. How Do You Think Technology Affects Dating?

10. Are Straight A’s Always a Good Thing? 11. Should Schools Teach You How to Be Happy? 12. How Do You Think American Education Could Be Improved? 13. Should Schools Test Their Students for Nicotine and Drug Use? 14. Can Social Media Be a Tool for Learning and Growth in Schools? 15. Should Facial Recognition Technology Be Used in Schools? 16. Should Your School Day Start Later? 17. How Should Senior Year in High School Be Spent? 18. Should Teachers Be Armed With Guns? 19. Is School a Place for Self-Expression? 20. Should Students Be Punished for Not Having Lunch Money? 21. Is Live-Streaming Classrooms a Good Idea? 22. Should Gifted and Talented Education Be Eliminated? 23. What Are the Most Important Things Students Should Learn in School? 24. Should Schools Be Allowed to Censor Student Newspapers? 25. Do You Feel Your School and Teachers Welcome Both Conservative and Liberal Points of View? 26. Should Teachers and Professors Ban Student Use of Laptops in Class? 27. Should Schools Teach About Climate Change? 28. Should All Schools Offer Music Programs? 29. Does Your School Need More Money? 30. Should All Schools Teach Cursive? 31. What Role Should Textbooks Play in Education? 32. Do Kids Need Recess?

College & Career

33. What Is Your Reaction to the College Admissions Cheating Scandal? 34. Is the College Admissions Process Fair? 35. Should Everyone Go to College? 36. Should College Be Free? 37. Are Lavish Amenities on College Campuses Useful or Frivolous? 38. Should ‘Despised Dissenters’ Be Allowed to Speak on College Campuses? 39. How Should the Problem of Sexual Assault on Campuses Be Addressed? 40. Should Fraternities Be Abolished? 41. Is Student Debt Worth It?

Mental & Physical Health

42. Should Students Get Mental Health Days Off From School? 43. Is Struggle Essential to Happiness? 44. Does Every Country Need a ‘Loneliness Minister’? 45. Should Schools Teach Mindfulness? 46. Should All Children Be Vaccinated? 47. What Do You Think About Vegetarianism? 48. Do We Worry Too Much About Germs? 49. What Advice Should Parents and Counselors Give Teenagers About Sexting? 50. Do You Think Porn Influences the Way Teenagers Think About Sex?

Race & Gender

51. How Should Parents Teach Their Children About Race and Racism? 52. Is America ‘Backsliding’ on Race? 53. Should All Americans Receive Anti-Bias Education? 54. Should All Companies Require Anti-Bias Training for Employees? 55. Should Columbus Day Be Replaced With Indigenous Peoples Day? 56. Is Fear of ‘The Other’ Poisoning Public Life? 57. Should the Boy Scouts Be Coed? 58. What Is Hard About Being a Boy?

59. Can You Separate Art From the Artist? 60. Are There Subjects That Should Be Off-Limits to Artists, or to Certain Artists in Particular? 61. Should Art Come With Trigger Warnings? 62. Should Graffiti Be Protected? 63. Is the Digital Era Improving or Ruining the Experience of Art? 64. Are Museums Still Important in the Digital Age? 65. In the Age of Digital Streaming, Are Movie Theaters Still Relevant? 66. Is Hollywood Becoming More Diverse? 67. What Stereotypical Characters Make You Cringe? 68. Do We Need More Female Superheroes? 69. Do Video Games Deserve the Bad Rap They Often Get? 70. Should Musicians Be Allowed to Copy or Borrow From Other Artists? 71. Is Listening to a Book Just as Good as Reading It? 72. Is There Any Benefit to Reading Books You Hate?

73. Should Girls and Boys Sports Teams Compete in the Same League? 74. Should College Athletes Be Paid? 75. Are Youth Sports Too Competitive? 76. Is It Selfish to Pursue Risky Sports Like Extreme Mountain Climbing? 77. How Should We Punish Sports Cheaters? 78. Should Technology in Sports Be Limited? 79. Should Blowouts Be Allowed in Youth Sports? 80. Is It Offensive for Sports Teams and Their Fans to Use Native American Names, Imagery and Gestures?

81. Is It Wrong to Focus on Animal Welfare When Humans Are Suffering? 82. Should Extinct Animals Be Resurrected? If So, Which Ones? 83. Are Emotional-Support Animals a Scam? 84. Is Animal Testing Ever Justified? 85. Should We Be Concerned With Where We Get Our Pets? 86. Is This Exhibit Animal Cruelty or Art?

Parenting & Childhood

87. Who Should Decide Whether a Teenager Can Get a Tattoo or Piercing? 88. Is It Harder to Grow Up in the 21st Century Than It Was in the Past? 89. Should Parents Track Their Teenager’s Location? 90. Is Childhood Today Over-Supervised? 91. How Should Parents Talk to Their Children About Drugs? 92. What Should We Call Your Generation? 93. Do Other People Care Too Much About Your Post-High School Plans? 94. Do Parents Ever Cross a Line by Helping Too Much With Schoolwork? 95. What’s the Best Way to Discipline Children? 96. What Are Your Thoughts on ‘Snowplow Parents’? 97. Should Stay-at-Home Parents Be Paid? 98. When Do You Become an Adult?

Ethics & Morality

99. Why Do Bystanders Sometimes Fail to Help When They See Someone in Danger? 100. Is It Ethical to Create Genetically Edited Humans? 101. Should Reporters Ever Help the People They Are Covering? 102. Is It O.K. to Use Family Connections to Get a Job? 103. Is $1 Billion Too Much Money for Any One Person to Have? 104. Are We Being Bad Citizens If We Don’t Keep Up With the News? 105. Should Prisons Offer Incarcerated People Education Opportunities? 106. Should Law Enforcement Be Able to Use DNA Data From Genealogy Websites for Criminal Investigations? 107. Should We Treat Robots Like People?

Government & Politics

108. Does the United States Owe Reparations to the Descendants of Enslaved People? 109. Do You Think It Is Important for Teenagers to Participate in Political Activism? 110. Should the Voting Age Be Lowered to 16? 111. What Should Lawmakers Do About Guns and Gun Violence? 112. Should Confederate Statues Be Removed or Remain in Place? 113. Does the U.S. Constitution Need an Equal Rights Amendment? 114. Should National Monuments Be Protected by the Government? 115. Should Free Speech Protections Include Self Expression That Discriminates? 116. How Important Is Freedom of the Press? 117. Should Ex-Felons Have the Right to Vote? 118. Should Marijuana Be Legal? 119. Should the United States Abolish Daylight Saving Time? 120. Should We Abolish the Death Penalty? 121. Should the U.S. Ban Military-Style Semiautomatic Weapons? 122. Should the U.S. Get Rid of the Electoral College? 123. What Do You Think of President Trump’s Use of Twitter? 124. Should Celebrities Weigh In on Politics? 125. Why Is It Important for People With Different Political Beliefs to Talk to Each Other?

Other Questions

126. Should the Week Be Four Days Instead of Five? 127. Should Public Transit Be Free? 128. How Important Is Knowing a Foreign Language? 129. Is There a ‘Right Way’ to Be a Tourist? 130. Should Your Significant Other Be Your Best Friend?

50 Argumentative Essay Topics

Illustration by Catherine Song. ThoughtCo. 

  • M.Ed., Education Administration, University of Georgia
  • B.A., History, Armstrong State University

An argumentative essay requires you to decide on a topic and take a position on it. You'll need to back up your viewpoint with well-researched facts and information as well. One of the hardest parts is deciding which topic to write about, but there are plenty of ideas available to get you started.

Choosing a Great Argumentative Essay Topic

Students often find that most of their work on these essays is done before they even start writing. This means that it's best if you have a general interest in your subject, otherwise you might get bored or frustrated while trying to gather information. (You don't need to know everything, though.) Part of what makes this experience rewarding is learning something new.

It's best if you have a general interest in your subject, but the argument you choose doesn't have to be one that you agree with.

The subject you choose may not necessarily be one that you are in full agreement with, either. You may even be asked to write a paper from the opposing point of view. Researching a different viewpoint helps students broaden their perspectives. 

Ideas for Argument Essays

Sometimes, the best ideas are sparked by looking at many different options. Explore this list of possible topics and see if a few pique your interest. Write those down as you come across them, then think about each for a few minutes.

Which would you enjoy researching? Do you have a firm position on a particular subject? Is there a point you would like to make sure to get across? Did the topic give you something new to think about? Can you see why someone else may feel differently?

50 Possible Topics

A number of these topics are rather controversial—that's the point. In an argumentative essay, opinions matter and controversy is based on opinions, which are, hopefully, backed up by facts.   If these topics are a little too controversial or you don't find the right one for you, try browsing through persuasive essay and speech topics  as well.

  • Is global climate change  caused by humans?
  • Is the death penalty effective?
  • Is our election process fair?
  • Is torture ever acceptable?
  • Should men get paternity leave from work?
  • Are school uniforms beneficial?
  • Do we have a fair tax system?
  • Do curfews keep teens out of trouble?
  • Is cheating out of control?
  • Are we too dependent on computers?
  • Should animals be used for research?
  • Should cigarette smoking be banned?
  • Are cell phones dangerous?
  • Are law enforcement cameras an invasion of privacy?
  • Do we have a throwaway society?
  • Is child behavior better or worse than it was years ago?
  • Should companies market to children?
  • Should the government have a say in our diets?
  • Does access to condoms prevent teen pregnancy?
  • Should members of Congress have term limits?
  • Are actors and professional athletes paid too much?
  • Are CEOs paid too much?
  • Should athletes be held to high moral standards?
  • Do violent video games cause behavior problems?
  • Should creationism be taught in public schools?
  • Are beauty pageants exploitative ?
  • Should English be the official language of the United States?
  • Should the racing industry be forced to use biofuels?
  • Should the alcohol drinking age be increased or decreased?
  • Should everyone be required to recycle?
  • Is it okay for prisoners to vote (as they are in some states)?
  • Is it good that same-sex couples are able to marry?
  • Are there benefits to attending a single-sex school ?
  • Does boredom lead to trouble?
  • Should schools be in session year-round ?
  • Does religion cause war?
  • Should the government provide health care?
  • Should abortion be illegal?
  • Are girls too mean to each other?
  • Is homework harmful or helpful?
  • Is the cost of college too high?
  • Is college admission too competitive?
  • Should euthanasia be illegal?
  • Should the federal government legalize marijuana use nationally ?
  • Should rich people be required to pay more taxes?
  • Should schools require foreign language or physical education?
  • Is affirmative action fair?
  • Is public prayer okay in schools?
  • Are schools and teachers responsible for low test scores?
  • Is greater gun control a good idea?
  • Preparing an Argument Essay: Exploring Both Sides of an Issue
  • Controversial Speech Topics
  • Tips on How to Write an Argumentative Essay
  • Bad Essay Topics for College Admissions
  • 25 Essay Topics for American Government Classes
  • How to Write a Narrative Essay or Speech
  • Topic In Composition and Speech
  • How to Write a Solid Thesis Statement
  • 40 Writing Topics for Argumentative and Persuasive Essays
  • MBA Essay Tips
  • 61 General Expository Essay Topic Ideas to Practice Academic Writing
  • Expository Essay Genre With Suggested Prompts
  • Topical Organization Essay
  • Middle School Debate Topics
  • Supporting Detail in Composition and Speech
  • 5 Steps to Writing a Position Paper

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