Begins with an early, explicitly-stated thesis

Delays its thesis until later in the essay

Leaves its thesis implied (lets the reader figure it out)

Develops credibility (ethos)

Appeals to readers' emotions (pathos)

Reasons effectively (logos)

Targets a narrow, specific audience

Establishes exigence (the occasion or situation that inspires the argument)

Engages counterarguments

Introduces, engages, and cites secondary sources effectively

Uses interviews or other primary research

Uses stories (fictional or real) to illustrate points

Centers on first-person narrative

Combines first person with secondary research

Offers rhetorical analysis of literary or visual texts

Uses multimedia effectively / employs persuasive images

Hooks readers with a strong beginning

Transitions between paragraphs effectively

Concludes well / leaves a strong final impression

Employs a memorable voice or creative style

Experiments / takes risks in structure or subject

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