Inductive essays are appropriate for ethical problems that do not have a single solution.

Inductive writing uses reasoning and information to support a likely conclusion or well-reasoned opinion, in contrast to deductive writing, which uses logic and evidence to prove a conclusion. Inductive writing is advantageous because it allows you to argue for a point of view without necessarily proving an objective fact, engage with topics that deductive writing cannot fully explain, format essays according to the argument and write to an interested audience. Because inductive writing is a form of argument, learning about these advantages to writing an inductive essay can also help you be more persuasive.


Inductive reasoning does not set out to prove anything, but instead aims to show a likely conclusion or well-reasoned opinion. An advantage of inductive essays, therefore, is that you only need to persuade a person that a point of view or interpretation of evidence is the most appropriate. You do not need to provide the final solution to a problem or the complete objective reality of a topic.


According to Winthrop University, inductive essays are advantageous for controversial and complex topics. For example, if an electric company wanted to build a dam and a conservation organization wanted to stop the dam from being built, inductive writing could be a useful persuasive tool. On the one hand, the electric company could make an inductive argument supporting the dam: “The dam will produce electricity for many homes without producing carbon emissions, and these benefits outweigh the costs to the environment.” On the other hand, the conservation organization could make an inductive argument against the dam: “The dam will destroy the pristine wilderness remaining in the river basin that normally performs an important ecological function, so it is best not to build.” While information and argumentation still provide substance for such opinions, inductive essay topics are typically too broad or too unpredictable to summarize in a single essay.


One advantage of inductive essays is the flexible formatting. Because you can introduce and interpret information in many different ways, the general format of your argument and essay can be unique to the topic. Still, inductive essays should have an introduction, body and conclusion. Instead of revealing the author’s argument in an early thesis statement as in a deductive essay, however, inductive essays introduce a topic broadly to readers, build an argument through body paragraphs containing information and interpretations of that information, and reveal the author’s argument in the conclusion.


Inductive essays can be advantageous persuasive tools for specific target audiences. Because readers of an inductive essay likely have some interest in the topic, the format and substance of your argument can keep them interested while also encouraging debate. For example, if readers agree with your point of view, your essay can help build consensus. If readers disagree, they might write their own inductive essays, stirring the debate and nonetheless bringing everyone one step closer to understanding the topic.