The focus on reasoned argumentation distinguishes writing in philosophy from other types of academic writing. This page offers a variety of resources for addressing the most common forms of philosophical writing: argumentative essays, in which the writer argues a particular claim or opinion; exegetical essays, in which the writer summarizes another author's argument; or response essays, in which the writer evaluates or responds to another author's argument.
This essay, "On Locke's Theory of Ideas" by Christine Cooper, serves as an example of a response essay. The essay begins with an extended example, an illustration of the problem. The writer then briefly summarizes Locke's position. Next, the writer offers a critique and evidence for her objection. Finally, the writer concludes by summarizing Locke's view and offering a modification of his position.