Op-ed is short for “opposite the editorial page.” It is an article that presents the writer’s opinion on a specific subject.

If you have an idea for an op-ed, please email the College’s media relations representative. We can work with you on editing and placing your article.

Examples of op-eds written by College of Liberal Arts faculty can be found on Life & Letters and Texas Perspectives, as well as in publications across the state, country and world.

A successful Op-ed is:

  • Relevant and interesting. Answer the question: “So what?” Newsworthiness is based off five factors: timeliness, significance, proximity, prominence and human interest. So, make connections to current events, local references, popular culture or social issues whenever possible. 
  • Clear and Concise. Use active voice and keep it between 600 and 800 words. Don’t beat around the bush; lead with your argument. When defending your point, eliminate the jargon, and use examples the reader can relate to and understand.
  • Specific. Make a single point or argument clearly and persuasively. If you cannot explain your message in one or two sentences, readjust your focus. 
  • Informed. Set the stage quickly, but provide enough background information to show the reader why and how the problem exists. Acknowledge opposing viewpoints. 
  • Forward-looking/Motivating. An op-ed is not a mere analysis. Offer specific recommendations and determine the best course of action to take to improve matters. Answer the question “where do we go from here?” and motivate readers with a call to action.
  • Personal. Be yourself, and write in your own voice. Use conversational English and your own experiences to lead the reader through the discussion.

Public Affairs

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