What is the Difference Between Persuasive Writing and Objective Writing?

Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

The difference between persuasive writing and objective writing is actually implied right in the names of these two styles of writing. In persuasive writing, an author hopes to convince an audience of something. Objective writing, on the other hand, presents facts and information organized in an accessible way, without any specific conclusions or hidden agenda. Many wiseGEEK articles are excellent examples of objective writing.

Advertisements are forms of persuasive writing.
Advertisements are forms of persuasive writing.

Both of these types of writing have a specific place in the world, and they are both valuable. Many literature classes teach students to identify objective and persuasive writing, and students are often encouraged to refine their skills in both, so that they can be better writers and communicators. There are times when it is necessary to be objective, and times when being persuasive is crucial.

Many journalists strive to produce objective writing.
Many journalists strive to produce objective writing.

In a piece of persuasive writing, the author's goal is to convince the reader to agree with him or her. Typically, the writing includes a series of arguments, many of which are bolstered with facts which support the author's point of view. Most classically, this style of writing includes an introduction, which acquaints readers with the topic to be discussed, followed by a body, with the meat of the arguments, and a wrap-up conclusion to reiterate the point. Typically, a thesis statement like “the death penalty is cruel and unusual punishment” or “gun control laws do not work” is a tip-off that you are reading persuasive writing.

Objective writing is ideally characterized by the unbiased presentation of facts. Many journalists strive to produce objective writing, providing their readers with the information they need to make their own choices. To use an example from above, objective writing about the death penalty would include a more general discussion of the history of the death penalty, various execution techniques, and perhaps information about research on how humane these techniques are, but the author would make no judgment or persuasive statement about the death penalty.

Both objective and persuasive writing require critical thinking on the part of the author and the reader. The author needs to be able to clearly present information in a format which will be logical to the readers, while the readers need to be prepared to think about the information presented. In both cases, readers should always draw their own conclusions after thinking critically about the information, and in the case of persuasive writing, it is a very good idea to read a piece written by the other side before you make a decision.

Writing a persuasive piece may require writing multiple drafts.
Writing a persuasive piece may require writing multiple drafts.
Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a wiseGEEK researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

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Discussion Comments


After reading this, I see persuasive writing can be argumentative, while objective writing is more of a believe it or not. After reading both, the reader still has to and see if the facts presented are true.


Mutsy- Persuasive writing lesion plans develop persuasive writing prompts to allow children to elaborate on their particular point of view on an issue.

It is really a great idea to have a persuasive writing lesson plan because it gives children an opportunity to demonstrate their passion on an issue.

Children are more likely to enjoy writing when they are asked to elaborate on how they feel regarding an issue.

Since there is no wrong or right answer, children will relax and allow their creative juices to flourish.

Persuasive writing skills demonstrate a portion of the opposing point of view in order to illustrate the argument that is diametrically opposed to it.

When you try to understand the opposing viewpoints it will allow for better arguments and more effective expository persuasive writing.


A persuasive writing example would be an op-ed piece or an editorial in a local newspaper.

This type of article is written to demonstrate the writer’s point of view and does not try to offer an objective point.

It is written to persuade those that read it to consider the point of view of the writer.

An objective essay or article is neutral in tone and does not favor one point of view or another.

Such an article will base the facts of both arguments and let the reader develop their own opinion. This is the way true journalism should be and it is a vast contrast to much of what the mainstream media portrays.

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