Project 3 & 4: Persuasive Research Essay

In this project you will write an essay that seeks to persuade a specific audience to take specific action (not necessarily physical action; you can persuade people to think differently) on a specific issue from the textbook. There are several key steps for this project:

* Choose an issue you care about.

            * Conduct research about your topic (already completed in annotated bib).

            * Take a stance,

            * Lay out your position with clear, organized arguments,

            * Support your claims with evidence and examples.

The most important part of these papers is the approach you take towards your issue. Generating a clear, arguable thesis statement is essential to crafting a good argument. Likewise, your paper must progress logically through your argument in a manner that can be followed easily by the audience. To put it simply, you should plan your strategy out beforehand, including the scope your argument will cover―you will not be able to prove every argument and refute counterargument for your topic because your pages are limited.

For this project, you are required to conduct research, quote, and cite at least four sources (most likely from your annotated bib). Any statistics, information, or opinions that are not your own must be cited in correct MLA format. One possible approach using research is to find an op-ed article or blog (a good one) that addresses your issue from the opposite side and respond to it in your paper. I strongly encourage this course of action. (Don’t try to find an article that argues from your point of view, you will end up re-writing it and committing plagiarism.)

Your papers should be organized around a specific research question that you will develop as you progress through this project (and your preceding annotated bibliography). The sources you cite should relate directly to this question and assist you in communicating with your audience. Be aware that a good research paper does not merely string together quotations; you should use your sources to reinforce the points that you are making.

The second paper (project 4) will be explained at the end of project 3.

Physical Requirements:

* 3-5 pages double spaced in Times New Roman 12.

* At least 4 secondary sources quoted or cited in the paper with correct parenthetical citations and a works cited page.

Things I will be looking for as I grade:

1. Clear, ordered, and supported arguments and claims (thesis statement and organization).

2. A definite stance (choose a side – and establish your parameters).

3. Evidence of a tone that seeks to engage your audience in a discussion.

4. Correct citation of sources.

5. Adherence to the rules of Standard English.

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