Writing a Discussion Essay

[Discussion] essay is a type of the argumentative genres (analytical exposition, hortatory exposition, and discussion) whose purpose is to state an issue and then that issue should be supported by some kinds or arguments from different perspective (Refnaldi, 2012)

A discussion essay, also known as an argumentative essay, is one where you take a position on an issue. Start by taking a side, researching your topic, and outlining your essay before launching into the introduction and your thesis statement. Create a cohesive argument in the body of your essay, and use your conclusion to draw it all together without introducing new information (“How to Write a Discussion Essay (with Pictures) - wikiHow,” n.d.)

A discussion essay presents and discusses issues surrounding a particular topic--usually one that is debatable and open to argument (Hennessy, n.d.)

Discussion essay is that essay format that aims to stir a discussion on any thrilling topic (“Discussion Essay Topics Define the Scope Of Your Research | bestessay4u.com,” n.d.)

To sum up, Discussion essay is an argumentative discussion where each of the individuals take a position on an particular issue because each of them has different perspectives.

An outline of a discussion essay

  • Paraphrase the question
  • State both views
  • Give your view/opinion
  • Outline what is going to be discussed in the essay

Main Body Paragraph A
  • Introduce the view (view A – topic sentence)
  • Discuss/give detail
  • Example

Main Body Paragraph 2 
  • Introduce the view (view B – topic sentence)
  • Discuss/give detail
  • Example

Main Paragraph 3
  • Introduce your opinion (topic sentence)
  • Explain your opinion
  • Example

  • Summary of the main points
  • State which view is more important

An example of a discussion essay

The Pros and Cons of English Language Learning: Why do we need to learn English?

Some Indonesians are still not aware of the importance of English. Crystal  (2012) states “English is now the language most widely taught as a foreign language – in over 100 countries (p._). Given that, we should prioritize English as an important foreign language to be acquired, although some people don’t agree of prioritizing English as the important one because they assume it will lead to losing their nationalism. As Holliday states that “...[T]he legacy of linguistic and cultural imperialism has been a divisive force in the field in general, and that English is not inherently owned by a single culture in a single place. Also, without question, there is no reason that an applicant generically labeled 'non-native' cannot be as good a teacher or a better one than a fellow teacher who is seen as 'native' (2006). Thus, we need to avoid this kind of mindset because it could lead us to be the western one and losing our identity.

While what David Crystal states above, there is no doubt that English nowadays is international language in some fields, one of them is in the realm of business Rogerson-revel writes “…English for International Business (EIB) has an essential function as a lingua franca in multilingual settings…” (2007) Some of us believe that we need to prioritize it as an crucial language that we need to be acquired in the present day in order that in the future we are more prepared in the aspect of the language needs. Thus, we don’t have a language barrier when communicating with others from different countries.

While some of us agree that English as a crucial one, but on the opposite of the coin, some of us also disagree because the expansion of English could lead to losing our identity as the original one or simply means losing our nationalism. Holliday states that “"native-speakerism," the "established belief that 'native-speaker' teachers represent a 'Western culture' from which spring the ideals both of the English language and of English language teaching methodology"” (2006).

We eventually conclude that we believe English is the important one and even a must for us to learn it, but we don’t need to change our ideology becoming the western one. We need to avoid that kind of paradigm. Our conclusion is also strengthened by Holliday’s statement “It is possible to for me to teach as I do, and do it every day, without perpetuating superiority, without being what [I] would call 'culturist'--but rather, by just teaching, just giving the learners what they want and need, just telling the whole story.” (2006).


Crystal, D., 2012. English as a global language. Cambridge university press. Discussion Essay Topics Define the Scope Of Your Research | bestessay4u.com [WWW Document], n.d. URL https://bestessay4u.com/discussion-essay-topics (accessed 9.5.18).

Hennessy, R., n.d. How to Write a Discussion Essay [WWW Document]. Pen Pad. URL https://penandthepad.com/write-discussion-essay-4069.html (accessed 9.5.18).

Holliday, A., 2006. The struggle to teach English as an international language. Oxford University Press Oxford, England.

How to Write a Discussion Essay (with Pictures) - wikiHow [WWW Document], n.d. URL https://m.wikihow.com/Write-a-Discussion-Essay (accessed 9.5.18).

Refnaldi, R., 2012. Appraisals in Students’ Hortatory Exposition Essays, in: International Conference on Languages and Arts. pp. 272–280.

Rogerson-Revell, P., 2007. Using English for international business: A European case study. Engl. Specif. Purp. 26, 103–120.

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