Lesson 4 Learning Objectives: 

  • Identify and distinguish between arguments that have multiple independent premises and those in which one premise supports another premise.
  • Visually represent these basic argument structure types.

Every argument – no matter how simple or how complex – has a structure. Argument mapping allows us to visualize that structure so we can clearly see how reasons fit together to support a claim.

So far, you have just looked at the simplest kind of argument: a main claim supported by a single premise. But most arguments have more than one premise – that’s what makes them interesting! 

There are several basic argument structure types, which we will introduce to you one at a time in this lesson and in lesson 5. These basic structure types can then be combined to make all the complex and interesting arguments that the world has to offer!

Let’s start with independent premises.