Argumentative Essay (Outline) Assignment Instructions

Argumentative Essay (Outline) Assignment Instructions

For this assignment you are not required to write a complete draft of your Argument Essay. Instead, you are to select a topic for your Argument Essay and write a detailed outline of your essay based on the model below.

Argument Essay Prompts

In this assignment choose a specific issue in which two credible parties have documented the following:

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· Clearly opposing positions, and

· Clear agendas.

Choose the position you agree with and argue that position using:

· Three separate lines of reasoning to support your position

· Research to support each line of reasoning (example, testimony, and fact/data, or any combination) that supports your position

· Research about the opposing position’s views

· Presentation of the opposing views, along with lines of reasoning to refute them

Final Draft Essay Requirements

This assignment requires an “issue statement” (refer to the Student_AnnotatedSample_Salvaging-the-Old-Growth-Forest.pdf file for further explanation about issue statements).

This assignment requires a two-part thesis:

· Statement of position; and

· Forecast (essentially a “preview”) of your lines of reasoning

The assignment also requires:

· A minimum of three credible outside sources formatted on a source page (MLA, Works Cited)

· MLA citation style for the paper

· Minimum of four (4) FULL pages not including the Works Cited page

Writing Tip #1

This Argument Essay is a Classical Argument Essay aimed at both arguing the author’s thesis and refuting the opponent’s thesis. It is NOT a Persuasive Essay, where the purpose is to persuade without necessarily arguing against an opposing perspective. The difference is that an argument essay tries both to persuade and refute against an opposing view.

With this in mind, you should not choose a generic issue that has no credible opposing view – like “energy conservation” – for a Classical Argument essay. One can try to write a persuasive essay that makes an appeal to a reader to conserve energy. But unless you can find a credible opponent with an active agenda opposing your appeal (“We should NOT conserve energy”), then you cannot write a Classical Argument essay.

Writing Tip #2

It can be helpful to look into current legislation under debate everywhere from your city council, state legislature or even at the federal level. But be careful with large issues. Students often like to take them on, but they can be too unwieldy for a short assignment like this.

Writing Your Argument Essay

To get started writing your essay:

1. Review What is an Essay?

2. Take time to review possible subjects.

3. Use prewriting to help you narrow your topic.

Remember that “story starters” are everywhere. Think about issues that come up in status updates or “likes” on social media. What issues are being debated in student forums on your campus? What are the headlines in the college paper? Your local television news or newspaper website? Your topic may be closer than you think!

Assignment Instructions

1. Review the grading rubric as listed on the following page.

2. Choose a writing prompt as listed.

3. Create a prewriting in the style of your choice for the prompt. Review the prewriting videos on the My Writing Process: Prewriting and Draft page if needed.

4. Create an outline using the outline below as a guide. Papers submitted that do not meet the requirements will be returned to you ungraded.

5. Submit your detailed outline as a single file upload.

Argument Essay Outline

1. Issue statement

2. Two-part thesis (assertion plus forecast)

3. Opponent’s first claim

· One sentence summary of opponent’s source support

4. Opponent’s second claim

· One sentence summary of opponent’s source support

5. Your first claim with “keyword”

· One sentence summary of your source support #1

· One sentence summary of your source support #2

6. Your second claim with “keyword”

· One sentence summary of your source support #1

· One sentence summary of your source support #2

7. Your third claim with “keyword”

· One sentence summary of your source support #1

· One sentence summary of your source support #2

8. Conclusion: Summation of arguments and why should we care? What’s at stake?

Please Note: a “one sentence summary” is the same thing as the first sentence in a normal summary, i.e., author, title, source, and “main point” of the source.

Requirements

· Be sure to:

· Choose a specific issue in which two credible parties have documented clearly opposing positions and clear agendas

· Choose the position you agree with and argue that position using the following:

· Three separate lines of reasoning;

· Each line of reasoning will support your position with research (example, testimony, and fact/data, or any combination) that supports your position; and

· Research about the opposing position’s views

· Present the opposing views and refute them.

· Include a two-part thesis with:

· Statement of position; and

· Forecast of your lines of reasoning

· Develop an enticing title that implies your position.

· Use a sympathetic appeal and/or cited research in the introduction to establish the issue.

· Avoid addressing the assignment directly. (Don’t write “I am going to argue about…” Instead, introduce the issue in a more compelling way that makes the reader care.)

· Your voice should be professional and scholarly.

· Package your source material with appropriate signaling and commentary.

Grading Rubric: Argument Essay Outline

Criteria Ratings Point Total: 50
Ideas 15 pts: The outline demonstrates outstanding idea development.12 pts: The outline demonstrates above average idea development.11 pts: The writer sufficiently defines the topic, even though development is still basic or general.9 pts: The outline has an idea that needs to be developed.0 pts: There is no coherent idea. 15 pts
Content 15 pts: The outline demonstrates outstanding evidence of supporting the main point.12 pts: The outline demonstrates above average evidence of supporting the main point.11 pts: The outline demonstrates sufficient support of the main point.9 pts: The outline requires more supporting evidence of the main point.0 pts: There is little content supporting the main idea. 15 pts
Organization 15 pts: The organization is outstanding and showcases the central theme. The presentation of information is compelling.13 pts: The organizational structure is above average.10 pts: The organizational structure is strong enough to move the reader through the text without too much confusion.8 pts: The writing needs a clearer sense of direction. The internal structure is weak.0 pts: The organization is poor. 15 pts
Word Choice, Sentence Fluency, Conventions 5 pts: The writer demonstrates an outstanding word choice selection, flow and cadence, with well-built sentences and strong grasp of standard writing conventions.3 pts: The writer demonstrates above average word choice selection, flow and cadence, with well-built sentences and strong grasp of standard writing conventions.2 pts: The writer demonstrates sufficient selection of words. The text tends to be more mechanical and contains some errors of standard writing conventions.1 pts: The writer demonstrates a limited vocabulary and lack of fluidity. Errors in spelling, punctuation, capitalization, usage and grammar repeatedly distract the reader and make the text difficult to read.0 pts: No marks. 5 pts

CC LICENSED CONTENT, ORIGINAL

· Provided by: Lumen Learning. Located athttp://lumenlearning.com/LicenseCC BY: Attribution

CC LICENSED CONTENT, SHARED PREVIOUSLY

· Authored by: Daryl Smith O’ Hare and Susan C. Hines. Provided by: Chadron State College. Project: Kaleidoscope Open Course Initiative. LicenseCC BY: Attribution

· Authored by: Paul Powell. Provided by: Central Community College. Project: Kaleidoscope Open Course Initiative. LicenseCC BY: Attribution

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