15 Good Persuasive Essay Topics to Start Your Essay Right

Even though you might not think you’re a master at persuasion, chances are you’re better than you think.

Did you ever try to persuade your parents to let you stay out beyond curfew? Have you ever tried to persuade a friend to watch a movie he really didn’t want to see? Maybe you’ve even tried to convince your professor to accept your late paper.

All of these situations require excellent persuasion skills because you need to offer reasons and examples to convince someone of something.

Writing a persuasive essay is a lot like other forms of persuasion, but you need good persuasive essay topics to start your essay right. This post will give you 15!

What Makes for Good Persuasive Essay Topics?


Good persuasive essay topics have to be persuasive.

Don’t write an informative essay about the rules of hockey or a how-to paper about Photoshopping your image next to Zac Efron on the red carpet.

Both of these topics are informative not persuasive.

Instead, write a persuasive paper about how the rules for tripping or diving should be more strictly enforced in the NHL. Or write about why Zac Efron’s performance in The Lucky One deserves an Oscar.

These topics allow readers to agree or disagree with your opinion and allow you to use evidence and examples to help persuade your audience.

But even if you know what makes a good topic, it’s not always easy to think of one. If you’re struggling to find good persuasive essay topics, take a look at the 15 examples below.

15 Good Persuasive Essay Topics to Start Your Essay Right

persuasive essay topics

Just like a good breakfast can start your day right, a good persuasive essay topic will help start your essay right. Keep reading to find the right fit for your paper.

1. What are the causes of divorce?

This list can be almost endless. Many kids feel they’re the reason their parents divorce. Couples often point to infidelity, financial troubles, and abuse as causes for divorce.

You might want to develop an extended argument to explain what you feel is the key reason for divorce, or you might write about the top three or four reasons for divorce.

2. How does violence on television affect people?

An essay on this topic might focus on a specific age group, such as kids or teens. The essay might discuss how TV violence can cause viewers to become desensitized to violence or how violence may cause people to feel less empathy towards others.

3. Should organ donors be financially compensated?

Some feel that organ donation is a gift, and people should voluntarily donate their organs to help others. On the other hand, some feel that donors should be financially compensated when they sign up and think this strategy will help increase the number of people willing to donate their organs.

4. Do celebrities make good role models for children?

We’ve all heard the stories of Angelina Jolie and her humanitarian efforts. Likewise, we’ve all heard the stories of Lindsay Lohan’s substance abuse problems and subsequent arrests.

It’s obvious that some celebrities make better role models than others, so the challenge with this topic is to look at the world of celebrities to determine whether or not celebrities make good role models for kids.

5. Should high school students be required to take foreign language classes?

Have you ever sat in Spanish, French or another language class and thought, “this is great, but when will I ever use this stuff?” If you feel this way, you’ll likely have plenty of reasons why foreign language classes should not be a requirement.

Talk to your teachers or counselors (or anyone who is bilingual) to learn why they feel studying a foreign language is beneficial and helps you see the world from new perspectives. You may find there is a compelling argument for learning a second language after all! Que bueno!

6. Should drug testing for welfare recipients be mandatory?

With drug testing now common in many workplaces, some argue that it’s only fair to drug test welfare recipients. These people don’t think their tax dollars should assist those who somehow find the money for illegal drugs but cannot find the money for daily living expenses.

Others argue that drug testing welfare recipients ultimately and unfairly harms children, as they may not receive adequate housing, food, or care if their parents are ineligible for assistance.

7. Can you receive a quality college education through completing only online courses?

If you’ve ever taken an online course, you know how different it can be from a traditional face-to-face course. Did you feel you learned as much in the online course? Perhaps you thought you learned more due to the online format.

Your persuasive essay about online courses might include a discussion of different learning styles. Perhaps include an analysis of the effectiveness of online learning for various types of learners.

8. Should embryonic stem cell research be allowed to continue?

The pro side argues that stem cell research is necessary to help save lives. This side believes religion and science shouldn’t mix, and more funding should be available for additional testing.

The con side argues that stem cell research is like abortion and is murder. This side believes similar research can be conducted using other methods that do not involve embryonic stem cells.

9. Are PETA’s advertising campaigns inappropriate?

PETA often uses controversial (and some would say inappropriate) ad campaigns to draw attention to their cause. Does the shock-value make these ads effective, or are they too offensive?


11. Are professional athletes overpaid?

According to BusinessInsider.com, in 2014 Ndamukong Suh of the Detroit Lions earned $22.4 million. Forbes.com reports that Kobe Bryant earns a $20.6 millon salary and an additional $44 million each year in endorsements.

USNews&WorldReport.com lists the median salary for registered nurses (in 2013) as $66,220. The starting salary for a chemical engineer, according to Forbes.com, is $70,400.

With such a large gap in wages, does this mean pro athletes are deserving of such high salaries because of their unique skills and abilities, or does this mean they are grossly overpaid?

12. Should student loan debt be forgiven?

Two schools of thought often emerge about the student loan debate.

On one hand, people argue that because students took out the loans, they should be obligated to repay them.

On the other hand, some argue that the cost of college leaves students with crippling debt that they’ll never be able to repay.

If you’re writing about student loan forgiveness, consider who is harmed and who is helped if the loans are forgiven. Students will no longer be in debt, but who actually pays the price for the unpaid loans?

13. Are children being overmedicated?

Increasing numbers of children are given a variety of medications, such as ritalin, to help alleviate the symptoms of ADD and ADHD. Why are the numbers of medicated children increasing? Do more children need the medication? Are parents too quick to ask for medications for their children? Are doctors too eager to push medications on patients?

15. Should people be considered adults at age 18?

Did you ever do something stupid during your teen years? I bet most of us can answer “yes” to that question.

At the same time, did you feel once you turned 18 you were an adult and should be able to make your own decisions without that nagging parental voice of reason? I’m sure most of us can say “yes” to that question, too.

Even though people are generally considered adults at age 18, research suggests that the adolescent brain is not fully developed until age 25.

Does that mean college students should still be considered adolescents? Should society only consider people adults once they reach 25?

A Little (More) Help

There are times (and this may be one of them) that even after reading a list of really good persuasive essay topics, you still don’t find one you want to write about.

If you’re looking for more good persuasive essay topics, try one of these: 20 Persuasive Thesis Statement Examples That are…Persuasive and 20 Persuasive Essay Topics to You Help Get Started.

You’ve spent a lot of time searching for the perfect topic–and it was a lot of work, wasn’t it? Trust me, it will be worth it. But now comes another really time-consuming part–writing the paper!

Are you in need of a little more assistance to help you actually write a persuasive essay?

Let me point you in the right direction.

Start by checking out these posts:

And here’s where I practice the art of persuasion:

Did you know that Kibin editors have amazing skills and can offer superb feedback and revisions? This type of feedback is a great way for you to not only improve your own writing but to also improve your grades.

Happy writing!


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