What Is a Claim in Writing? Definition, Types, & Examples

When it comes to writing, making a claim is a crucial aspect of building a strong argument. But what exactly is a claim? Essentially, a claim is a statement that asserts a particular point or position on a specific topic. Claims serve as the foundation for persuasive writing and are essential for effectively making your case to your audience.

Understanding the different types of claims and how to effectively use them can greatly enhance the persuasiveness of your writing. Whether you are writing an essay, a research paper, or a persuasive speech, knowing how to craft strong claims is key to convincing your audience of your point of view.

In this article, we will explore the definition of a claim in writing, the various types of claims you can make, and provide examples to help you better understand how claims function in different contexts. By mastering the art of making compelling claims, you can elevate the quality of your writing and make a more convincing argument every time.

What Is A Claim In Writing?

A claim in writing is the core argument defining an essay’s goal and direction. It’s assertive, debatable, and supported by evidence. Also, it is complex, specific, and detailed.

Think of a claim as a specific, debatable statement you, the writer, intend to prove or support. It’s the central argument in your essay, the core message of your blog post, and the foundation of your persuasive pitch. Unlike opinions, which are subjective beliefs without the burden of proof, claims demand justification. They’re the battle cry, the call to action, inviting your reader to join you on a quest for understanding and agreement.

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What Are The Types Of Claims In Writing?

There are three types of claims: claims of fact, claims of value, and claims of policy. Each type of claim focuses on a different aspect of a topic. To best participate in an argument, it is beneficial to understand the type of claim that is being argued.

Claim of Fact

A claim of fact declares the existence, current presence, or future occurrence of something measurable. The core issue within a factual claim revolves around the reasonableness of the stated fact. To put it differently, a claim of fact engages in a discussion about the accuracy or inaccuracy, validity or invalidity, truth or falsehood of the statement. When making such assertions, our reasoning typically progresses from the known to the unknown. Claims of fact also center on examining cause-and-effect relationships.

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Claim of Value

A claim of value makes qualitative assessments of people, things, and events in one’s surroundings on a good-to-bad continuum. You have made a valuable claim if you formulate an opinion that says something is good, terrible, or superior to another. Claims of worth include things like “Indian food is the best food of all,” “The Wizard of Oz is the greatest movie of all time,” and “Snowboarding is the greatest way to spend a vacation.”

Claim of Policy

A claim of policy makes the assertion that someone should or shouldn’t do a certain action. It suggests that a certain course of action ought to be followed, however, it’s not a given that it will. The conditional verb “should,” which indicates that a certain action ought to be taken but not that it must or will be taken, is crucial when making a claim about policy. For example, “Students should read the assigned text material before the instructor lectures on it,” or “The United States should send a manned expedition to Mars.”

Types of Writing With Claims

Here’s a list of the types of writing with claims:

  1. Argumentative articles. Consider a controversial issue, proving it with evidence throughout your paper.
  2. Literary analysis. Build a claim about a book, and use evidence from it to support your claim.
  3. Research papers. Present a hypothesis and provide evidence to confirm or refute it.
  4. Speeches. State a claim and persuade the audience that you’re right.
  5. Persuasive essays and memos. State a thesis and use fact-based evidence to back it up..

What can you use as evidence in essays?

  • Statistics
  • Facts and other data from relevant and respectful resources (no Wikipedia or other sources like this)
  • Primary research
  • Secondary research (science magazines’ articles, literature reviews, etc.)
  • Personal observation
  • Expert quotes (opinions)
  • Info from expert interviews

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Examples of Claims In Writing

Here’s a rundown of examples of claims based on types:

Essay claim (type):Example of a claim:
FactThe moon landing occurred in 1969 is a fact-based claim that can be supported by historical records.”
Definition“By examining what it means to ‘network,’ it’s clear that social networking sites encourage not networking but something else entirely.”
Value“Video games are a valuable addition to modern education.”
Cause“By seeking to replicate the experience of reading physical books, new hardware and software actually will lead to an appreciation of printed and bound texts for years to come.”
Comparison“The varied policies of the US and British education systems reveal a difference in values.”
Policy“Climate change education should be part of the public school curriculum.”

What Is The Difference Between Claims, Opinions and Facts?

Here’s how claims differentiate themselves from their close cousins:

  • Opinions: These are personal beliefs, unsupported by evidence. Saying “Pizza is the best food ever” is an opinion, not a claim.
  • Facts: These are verifiable truths, independent of interpretation. “The Earth revolves around the Sun” is a fact, not a claim.
  • Claims: These are debatable propositions that require evidence to be convincing. “Eating spicy food boosts metabolism” is a claim, as it needs proof to be accepted.

Why Do We Use Claims In Writing?

All forms of writing rely on claims to maintain the interest of the reader, give characters more nuance and depth, and convey the author’s own viewpoint on the issues covered.

The objective of a claim in writing is to persuade the reader of anything. Claims drive the reader towards a specific solution, even when they may not agree with the author’s statement at first or may need more information to come to their own opinion. If a reader already concurs with an author’s assertion, the material offered just strengthens and validates the reader’s position.

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What Is a Counterclaim in Writing?

When someone presents an alternative argument to your claim, that is a counterclaim. Another word for a counterclaim is a rebuttal. When someone presents a counterclaim, they are making a claim of their own. It will be up to them to state their counterclaim, and then seek to back it up with evidence (just as you did when making the initial claim).

FAQs On Claim in Writing

What is the difference between a claim and an opinion?

A claim is a statement that asserts a particular stance or viewpoint, while an opinion is a subjective expression of personal beliefs or preferences.

How can I make my claims more persuasive?

Make your claims more persuasive by providing clear evidence, avoiding overgeneralization, and addressing potential counterarguments.

Are there situations where a writer should avoid making claims?

Writers should be cautious when making claims without sufficient evidence or in areas where the topic is highly subjective and lacks objectivity.

Can a single piece of evidence support multiple claims?

It depends on the nature of the evidence and the claims. In some cases, a well-supported piece of evidence may contribute to multiple related claims.


Claims in writing showcase the diverse ways in which writers express their perspectives and influence their audience. Whether rooted in facts, values, or policies, claims form the bedrock of effective communication. Crafting and evaluating claims require a thoughtful approach, ensuring that writers engage their readers with clarity, evidence, and nuance.

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