Pre-writing thinking strategies

Writing is not an easy activity, and it is a mental activity which requires using high order thinking skills and presenting accurately thoughts, assumptions and arguments in a written form. People therefore find writing argumentatively and meaningfully arduous. The main mistake of people is that they do not think ahead arguments and supportive details enough before starting their writing. However, by using two pre-writing thinking strategies people can think about and understand the topic in-depth, identify his clear focus for further argumentatively and meaningfully writing. I want to present these pre-writing thinking strategies offered by Barnet and Bedau (2011) to get better understanding their influences on writing argumentatively and meaningfully. I will discuss about influence of clustering ideas and imagining from different perspectives on a meaningful and argumentative writing and my experience of benefitting from using these strategy.

In their book, Critical thinking, reading and writing: A brief guide to arguments, Barnet and Bedau (2011) propose two pre-writing thinking strategies to write argumentatively and meaningfully. According to them, it is important to ponder upon the topic by clustering one’s idea and imagining from different perspectives as necessary preludes for a meaningful and an argumentative writing.  This is because people can think about and discuss the topic by communicating and reflecting his or others ideas about the topic. These strategies help to get in-depth understanding the topic and construct arguable claim. For instance, when you use cluster approach, you will list all your ideas on the topic. Subsequently, you can find the relation of your ideas, reject weak points and do further research to prove your strong claims by reviewing literatures. It will be easy then to support your claims with relevant evidences. Another pre-writing thinking strategy such as imagining from different perspectives is also useful to consider and look at different sights or thinking out of box.  You need to put yourself on others place and feel their points. Then, you will start analyzing their perspectives by recognizing complexities, differences and similarities or visualizing every detail of situations and their relationships. It enables you to judge and give meaningful evaluation to the situations. By thinking deeply, considering topic meticulously, reflecting pertinently it is possible to write confidently and expertly giving valid arguments with supportive evidences on any topic.

These pre-writing thinking strategies affected me to improve my writing skills. I start to present meaningful and arguable claims in my writing and receive praising feedbacks from professors for my written reflections.  It is increasingly important to employ high-order thinking skills such as understanding, analyzing, synthesizing and evaluating to present valuable paper. I did it by clustering my ideas and finding relevant evidences to prove them and thinking out of box considering different perspectives on the topic. Now I feel more confident when I am writing because I can reveal meaningful claims with pertinent and valid arguments.

In conclusion, pre-writing thinking strategies offered by Barnet and Bedau (2011) such as clustering ideas and imagining from different perspectives have pertinent values to present argumentative and meaningful writing. This is because you can organize your thoughts, construct clear claims, provide strong arguments with supporting details and consider thoroughly topic by looking out of box.


Barnet, S.,& Bedau, H. (2011).Critical thinking, reading and writing: A brief guide to arguments. USA,Boston: RR Donnelley and Sons

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