Audience: A hostile academic audience.
Writing Style: Argumentative, Synthesis
Purpose: to investigate a topic; collect, generate, and evaluate evidence; and establish a position on the topic in a concise manner.
Background: A research/argumentative essay uses reasoning and evidence—not emotion—to take a definitive stand on a controversial or debatable issue. The essay explores two sides of a topic and proves why one side or position is the best. Where reasoning and evidence are primary, an effective use of pathos is expected.
Assignment: Consider the topic of the course. Construct an argumentative research paper.
• Generate your own sub-topic on some aspect of it. You can go in-depth about an issue mentioned in class, or you can branch out into other aspects of the topic.
• Make an argument about your sub-topic. This argument must be clearly stated in a working thesis statement. All body paragraphs must be focused and organized, clearly relating back to your thesis.
• Research sources appropriate to your topic, and effectively use those sources as evidence to support and prove your thesis. Although you may use articles in your reader, you must research outside sources*.
• Cite all sources using MLA Format. Your paper must include proper parenthetical citations and a Works Cited page.
* A Few Notes about Required Sources: Your sources must be reputable and reliable. Good sources include the following:
▪ newspapers (San Francisco Chronicle, New York Times, etc.)
▪ magazines (Time, Newsweek, etc.)
▪ scholarly journals
▪ some websites
Remember that a well-researched paper will include a variety of sources. Also remember that for academic papers, books and scholarly journals tend to provide the best information. The research paper must include 6 sources (4 academic/scholarly and 2 popular sources. You may have all your sources be academic/scholarly)
Your Essay must be written in MLA format; please see CANVAS for more information. It must be 5-8 pages in length, typed, double spaced, and be written in 12-point Times New Roman font.
This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeLocate and evaluate different types of evidence for logic, credibility, reliability, and bias (i.e. primary sources, online and written secondary sources)
This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeCompose humanities style research papers that include an evaluation of different types of evidence to support an original thesis and language appropriate for the audience and purpose
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