Using Pros and Cons to Express Your Opinion

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What’s been happening in the Middle East over the past few weeks is devastating and heart-wrenching. This is why it is critical that we not only learn how to examine issues fairly but also be able to distinguish between facts and opinions.

Being able to do so demonstrates fairness and professionalism.

During this challenging time, I’ve realised that I’m even more determined to help English learners express themselves in the fairest, most balanced, and informed manner possible.

This means encouraging learners to check and present the validity of facts, use reliable sources, conduct thorough research, and minimise biases.

Knowing how to do this doesn’t just make you smart, it helps you make better choices too.

Is there a way to structure your points fairly? You can use a number of frameworks such as the cause-and-effect framework and the compare-and-contrast framework, to name a few.

This episode focuses on the pros and cons framework.

You can also listen to this episode on SpotifyApple Podcasts or Google Podcasts.

This is how using the pros and cons framework might look:

Step 1: State your point. 

Step 2: Present the advantages or drawbacks of that point. 

Step 3: Discuss the disadvantages or drawbacks of that point.

While presenting points that haven’t been validated, you can use words like “possibly”, “maybe”, “perhaps”, and “potentially”.

To express your personal opinion, you can preface it with “I believe”, “in my view”, “I think”, “this is my personal opinion”, or “as far as I’m aware”.

Although this episode was recorded before the recent crisis between Palestine and Israel, you may still find the tips I share useful in your everyday communication or workplace interactions.

With that, let’s strive for justice, peace, and solidarity.

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Hi there!

We’re Azimah, Amnah and Aisya from Malaysia. We created My English Matters as an online platform to help people improve their English.

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