Types of EvidenceIn most research and class-assigned papers the aim of the writer is to take a topic and assert an opinion about it. This assertion is better known as the writer's argument. With it the writer tries to win the reader over to his or her point of view about the topic, or, at the very least, to force the reader to see the subject discussed from an innovative perspective. If the writer is going to make some headway with an argument, however, he or she must be able to give evidence to support the claims that the paper will make. There are three main categories of evidence that are essential to gain the audience's basic confidence in the writer's assertions. These categories are facts, judgments, and testimony.FactsFacts are probably the best tools to get the reader involved in the argument. Since facts are indisputable, the writer automatically wins the mutual agreement of the reader by utilizing them. A statement such as this, "On January 28, 1986, the shuttle Challenger exploded upon lift-off," must be accepted by the reader since it is a historical certainty.
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Writer, Space Shuttle Columbia, Space Shuttle Challenger, STS-51-L, STS-6