How to Write a Rhetorical Analysis Essay in AP Lang

How to Write a Rhetorical Analysis Essay in AP Lang

Knowing how to write a rhetorical essay in AP Lang is a task that may seem challenging to many students. However, it is such a simple exercise that you can easily master if you rely on professional advice. By reading this section, you will be able to get the best tips and sample rhetorical analysis essays written by experts to guide you on how to write a good paper with so much ease.

The first step in finding out how to write a rhetorical analysis essay in AP Lang should be to understand what a rhetorical analysis essay and AP Long mean. A rhetorical analysis essay is an essay that requires analysis, persuasive and firm knowledge of the discussed piece of work and ability to structure arguments clearly. AP Lang on the other hand, refers to a common abbreviation that means Advanced Placement Language. It is a course in English that is applied in studying rhetoric elements.

When you are asked to write a rhetorical analysis essay in AP Lang, the assignment basically requires you to write an analysis essay that can vividly show the methods and tools used by the author of the material in communicating the message or developing a character or plot. The assignment will require you to explain clearly how the author has used rhetorical strategies in building his or her argument.

Tips on how to write a rhetorical analysis essay in AP Lang

There are certain things that you have to bear in mind in order to easily know how to write a rhetorical analysis essay in AP Lang. The following are the basics on how to craft a good rhetorical analysis essay.

Formulate a relevant thesis statement

When writing a rhetorical analysis essay, it is important to note that the thesis statement is the basis of the argument. This is because the arguments of the paper will all be in support of the thesis statement. It is always advisable to come up with a thesis statement that relates to the arguments of the author and also rhetorical strategies used in the text.

For instance, a good thesis statement could be like, ‘’The author has used logos, pathos and irony to show that the society regards men and women in different standards.’’

Do not try to analyze all strategies in every passage

In order to make your work less hectic, it is recommended that you choose about two or three outstanding rhetorical strategies in the passage to use in your argument. Trying to justify all the strategies used in the passage will make it almost impossible to deliver a cohesive essay. Instead, you should focus on two or utmost three that have been mostly used and important to the discussion.

Some rhetorical strategies may stand on their own while others are used to support or justify the other.

Build a clear argument

In order to get the best score that you desire, do not simply throw in words to fill in the page. However, you should be able to develop strong points with evidence to ensure that your essay has some weight. Proper argument will tell the reader that you truly understand what you are discussing. Be keen on identifying the various rhetoric strategies in the material and only choose those that you can effectively argue out in the essay without problems.

There are a few questions that you will need to ask in order to build a strong argument for your essay. They include the following:

  • What is the belief of the author? (Claim or reason why the essay or speech was written)
  • What is the author trying to persuade readers or audience to believe or react to?
  • Why is the author’s rhetoric style or content effective or ineffective?
  • What is the known or perceived response of the audience?

By carefully answering the four questions above, you will be able to create an outstanding rhetorical analysis essay in AP Lang.

There is no condition that you always have to agree with the author’s argument; you can as well disagree provided that you have enough points to support your take. Besides, disagreement with the argument of the author does not mean that you have to discredit his or her work.

How to write a rhetorical analysis essay in AP Lang- The procedure

In the process of finding out how to write a rhetorical analysis essay in AP Lang, you should also note that there are basic steps that have to be taken in writing. It is advisable that you first organize your points in a draft in order to plan well how the argument and points should be framed.

Knowing how to write a rhetorical analysis essay in AP Lang requires you to be able to create an outstanding introduction, body and conclusion for the paper. The following are the main procedures for writing a rhetorical analysis essay.


The introductory paragraph to a rhetoric analysis essay is normally brief. However, there are certain critical elements that it must contain. It is advisable that you include SOAPS in the introduction. This should be followed by providing the details of the speaker or author, occasion and subject of discussion.

Besides, you should also outline the aim of the author in creating the speech or essay. In order to make the introduction punchier, it is also recommended that you highlight the tone used by the author or speaker in order to influence the readers.

Body of the essay

This is the part where you will be required to give a comprehensive analysis of the essay. You will need to provide a clear and elaborate explanation of the rhetorical strategies used by the author in the material.

The best way to organize the body of the essay should be chronological format. This implies that you should begin with discussing the strategies used by the writer then moving on to tackle their effectiveness. However, it is always important that you use a fresh paragraph to discuss a new point or strategy.

Each paragraph of the essay should clearly outline the part of the text that is being analyzed. Besides, you should also identify the key rhetorical strategies used in a particular section. This includes specific texts as they are exactly used in the text. After this, you should further explain how the strategies have been used to meet the goals of the author.


This is usually the easiest and last section of the essay. A good rhetorical analysis essay or paper should be compelling from the introduction to conclusion. Therefore, you also have to be very keen on how the conclusion of the essay is crafted. The ending should be brief just like the introduction. However, you have to ensure that it reminds the readers of the essence of the discussion. This means that you should highlight the introduction without re-writing it.

Examples of Rhetorical analysis essay in AP Lang

The following samples are also recommended to enable you master the art of how to write a rhetorical analysis in AP Lang easily. They are examples written by professionals to offer you a more vivid illustration on how a typical rhetorical analysis paper should be written.

Example 1

A Search for Quality

‘’Ann Roiphe’s ‘’Confessions of a Female Chauvinist Sow’’ was first published in a magazine in New York in1972. In the essay, Riophe aims to convince her readers that women must believe in the idea that they are equal to men, and not superior. ‘’Women who want equality must be ready to give it and have faith in it…’’ Personal anecdotes, contrast and comparison are some of the techniques that have been skillfully used by Roiphe in creating a strong and compelling essay…’’

To read the whole of this essay click here.

Example 2                                                           

Old Spice Advertisement; ‘’The Man Your Man Could Smell Like’’

‘’When an organization produces a commercial, their main aim is to get their product or whatever they are promoting to sell. Many methods are used for luring an audience that is expected to buy the product. Based on a study conducted at the Obafemi Awolowo University in Nigeria, advertisement refers to a promotional strategy designed to encourage buying, and ideally re-purchase, through brand loyalty,’’ (…’’

Click the link here to read the whole rhetorical analysis essay.

Example 3

Why Privacy Matters: Debunking the Nothing-to-Hide Argument

‘’In the contemporary society, the word ‘privacy’ has become quite ubiquitous. We come across it daily; On HIPAA forms, social network sites, online transactions among others. In this essay, ‘’Why Privacy Matters Even if You Have ‘Nothing to Hide,’’ published in May 2011, Professor Daniel J. Solove argues that the issue of privacy impacts more than just people who are harboring wrong…’’

Read the whole of this sample rhetorical analysis essay here.

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