Debatable and Non-Debatable Statements

An argumentative essay is built around a specific statement known as the thesis or conclusion that is debatable within the field in which you are studying. In other words, at the center of an argumentative essay is a statement with which your readers may disagree. Your essay will need to support that statement in a manner that convinces your readers of its truth.

To begin this unit of work on argumentative essays we will learn the difference between debatable and non-debatable statements

Debatable statements


Statements with which other people might or might not agree . These are sometimes called "arguments," "assertions," "propositions," "claims," or "conclusions."

eg. Solar energy is the best way of meeting California's energy needs in the 21st century

Non-debatable statements


Statements with which no-one would normally disagree or argue. These are sometimes called "facts".

eg. Coal and oil are the main sources of energy in the United States in the 20th century

Task 1
Which of the following statements are debatable and which are non-debatable? If the statement is debatable, put a tick in the box next to the word "debatable". If the statement is non-debatable, put a tick in the box next to the word "non-debatable". You will need to print out the page.


Computers and automation increase unemployment.




Smoking is harmful to people's health.




Plants produce oxygen that the world needs to sustain life.




Australia has some of the most venomous snakes in the world.




A good education is necessary for a successful and happy life.




Task 2
Now write a debatable and a non-debatable statement about each of the following topics:

  1. Alcohol

  2. Television

  3. Public transport

  4. The American education system

  5. The President


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