The Center for Learning and Teaching Newsletter Teaching News

Author's Department

Rhetoric and Composition Department

Document Type

News Article

Publication Title

New Chalk Talk

Publication Date



Recent research shows that visual arguments understood in less than thirty seconds persuade more effectively than lengthy reports detailing evidence that refutes commonly accepted claims. What does this mean? We need to teach visual argument. This does not displace the need for research papers or encourage cut-and-paste graphics to substitute for critical thinking skills. Visual arguments can help question or undo assumptions, strip claims down to evidence and change the way we deal with the tendency to affirm existing views in the research process.