What Types of Evidence Does the Writer Use to Support the Ideas in an Essay?
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What Types of Evidence Does the Writer Use to Support the Ideas in an Essay?

Writer Use to Support the Ideas in an Essay

Any form of academic writing including essays and essay ideas, require the student to support the ideas and arguments that are state in it. You need to providence evidence to clarify your position on the topic. But the most important thing is to provide the right type of evidence that is relevant and suitable for the stated problem. Only then can the evidence prove to be effective and convincing enough and will display your true research and analyzing skills.


What is Considered Evidence?

Before collecting information which can be used as evidence, a writer needs to make sure that they comprehend the purpose of the assignment perfectly. Studying the assignment prompt thoroughly will be required to figure out which types of evidence will be needed for the essay. It becomes even easier if the mentor has provided you with reference books you can use or any author names with similarly written essays.


What is the Teacher Looking For?

Instructors belonging to different academic areas ask for various kinds of evidences and arguments. For example, a chemistry topic will need statistics, charts and graphs and an English essay will need passages quoted from the poetry, prose or play which is being discussed in it. Studying your assigned topic and the subject will define evidence clearly to you.


Primary and Secondary Sources of Evidence

Most researchers distinguish evidence in two clear categories which are primary and secondary sources. The term primary here means original or first.

The primary sources consist of documents that are original, interviews, photographs and similar material. Secondary source evidence is information that is processing or interpreting by another individual. To make the idea more comprehensive, if your essay is about a movie or book an interview of the author/director will be a primary source of evidence. But the reference of a review will count as secondary source in this case.

However, depending on the context, the same material can turn into secondary or primary sources. If you are writing about people bonding relationships with pets, a collection of stories of that genre will be considered secondary source. But if the topic of the essay ideas is about how editors put together different stories into a single collection. Then the same reference book will now function as your primary source.


Finding the Evidence

Now that we have all aspects of evidence explained, it is time to move on to explore the variety of sources that can be used to gather it. If you are finding it difficult to determine which source would be the most appropriate then ask your instructor to guide you.


Electronic and Print

Journals, websites, magazines, books, newspapers and documentaries are the most commonly use evidence sources in academic writings. You can acquire these from either a library or the internet.



You can get the best perspective by observing the things your essay ideas is about. You can get a personal and original evidential feedback in your essay if you have firsthand knowledge about what you’re writing about.



Interviews are a prime source of collecting information that might be unavailable through other channels of research. Through an interview, the essay ideas or arguments can be back up by an expert opinion, first hand or biographical experiences.



A survey enables the writer to explore the views of a group of people regarding the topic of their essay. It can be challenging to design an impact ful survey and interpretation of the data, so a student better check with their instructor before they create or administer a survey.



Data gained by experimentation is a primary source when you need scientific evidence. For this, guidelines of the disciples being studied should be used specifically to avoid in disastrous results. If experimental data is required for any other field than science it can be of a more informal nature.


Personal Experiences

Including personal experiences as evidences can be very appealing to the readers. But this source should only use if the topic of your essay allows it. Furthermore, in most academic reliable essay writing it cannot be the only type of evidence and some instructors are quite averse to mentioning any personal evidence in your writing at all. So you must assess the situation before you use this source.


Is Stating the Evidence Enough?

That is certainly not the case. Once you have included your chosen form of evidence into your essay you must explain the reasons and causes behind it supporting the main idea. It is the writer’s job to clarify the significance and function of the evidence in relation to your topic. A clear connection with the argument must be establish for the reader to understand it.

To a writer it might seem obvious. But you must think from the perspective of the audience also when you are crafting an essay. Every element must be comprehensive enough in its own place for the ease of the reader. This will allow them to focus upon and appreciate your writing skills.


Summing it Up

As mentioned previously, the evidence is a crucial element of your essay. Your ideas do not carry enough weight if there is no proper evidence to support them. So select your sources carefully and be aware of the preferences of your teacher during its course.

Study the evidence thoroughly before including it to your writing. Think about whether it is interesting and worthy enough of the audience’s attention. You must not skip upon answering the whys and the hows between the evidence and the argument.


Put all your effort in illustrating any relevant point precisely and in a concise manner. Incorporate the evidence in the body of your essay in the form of a summary, quotation or paraphrase. Graphs, charts and tables, interview excerpts, figures or photographs are all different types of evidence. The key is to remain focused upon the topic and only include the sources which are fully relevant to the topic.