Skip to Main Content

Argumentative / Persuasive Research Paper Resources: Home


Topic ideas

The following websites can help you decide on a persuasive research paper topic: 

Tips on topic selection

Your topic must be arguable.

  • For example, no one is going to argue that human trafficking is a good thing. 

Pick a topic that is interesting to you. 

  • You will be doing a lot of research into this topic.  It will go more smoothly if you are interested in the topic. 

Avoid topics that have been over done. 

  • Such as gun control, abortion, marijuana, etc. Also check with your professor for other topics that might not be allowed.

Do some preliminary or background research on your topic. 

  • This will allow you to familiarize yourself with the issues within the topic before you start writing. 

Recommended databases

Opposing Viewpoints has a 'Browse Issues' feature which will show you today's hottest topics.  Includes full-text viewpoint articles, statistics, and articles from academic journals, newspapers and other reference sources.

opposing viewpoints

CQ Researcher also has a 'Browse Topics' function.  You can also view the most popular subjects in the 'Hot Topics' column on the right side of the page. This database provides award-winning in-depth coverage of the most important issues of the day. Reports are written by experienced journalists, footnoted, and professionally fact-checked. Full-length articles include an overview, historical background, chronology, pro/con feature, plus resources for additional research.

CQ Researcher

Academic Search Complete is a general library database.  It does not focus specifically on controversial topics but it is a good place to start your research. 

academic search complete

Login Required

You must log in to use library databases and eBooks. When prompted to log in, enter your Passport credentials. 

If you have trouble, try resetting your Passport pin, sending an email to, or calling the Help Desk at 863.292.3652

You can also get help from Ask a Librarian

Ask a Librarian

Writing tips

Polk State College is committed to equal access/equal opportunity in its programs, activities, and employment. For additional information, visit