Topic: Executive Bonus / Employees Paycuts
Requirements: Argumentation is a basic human communication tool--we all desire our thoughts and beliefs to be heard and maybe even accepted. A formal definition of Argument is the art of persuading people how to think through speeches, debates, and informal discussions. And in any situation, those who present the most engaging arguments tend to have the most influence. Strategy is the key to good argumentation, especially for academic writing. It’s more than just throwing your beliefs and examples at your readers. It involves developing effective appeals, such as logos, ethos and pathos, addressing opposing arguments, and avoiding blatant attacks and logical fallacies.
1. You will write an essay arguing a particular position on a contemporary issue that is considered problematic in nature, interesting to you, and significant to your readers; it MUST have opposing viewpoints. Your position can’t be an issue stance that everyone agrees on, such as the need to rid the world of poverty, AIDS, or animal abuse
. You will consider your audience as skeptically neutral. Consider how you are going to get your audience to acknowledge your position by connecting to your audience’s beliefs and values. Therefore, your objective is not to convince your readers of your position, but have them at least acknowledge your position. Your essay will not be just a debate; it should be a well-crafted classical argumentation.
2. Your essay should be a minimum of 1,200 words and a maximum of 1,500 words.
3. Your essay will include at least four outside resources as evidence and a Works Cited page listing those resources. You must use MLA to document your resources. Use the correct format for your Works Cited page and essay’s parenthetical citations. Beware of Internet references that do not have authors or experts backing up the evidence. Do NOT use Wikipedia or Google/Bing as main sources on your Works Cited page! Always go for the peer-reviewed sources first.
4. Your essay must take a stand on a position and acknowledge alternative views (aka counterarguments). Analyze those counterarguments by rebutting or refuting in support of your position. If the counterarguments are solid, then concede them and move on quickly.
5. Use appeals to ethos, logos and pathos effectively. How can you increase your audience’s perception of your credibility and trustworthiness? Also use personal experience as evidence.
6. Watch out for fallacies and statements that may sound reasonable and true, but are deceptive and dishonest.
7. You are required to hand in a formal outline with your essay, which should include an Introduction, Body, and Conclusion. Your Works Cited page should be included with your final essay. Your writing strategy will determine Body organization:
a. Introduction of your main claim/thesis
1. Background/preliminary information
b. Body paragraphs (your own order)
1. Arguments supporting your own position
2. Objections and counterarguments
3. Response to objections through refutations or concessions
d. Works Cited page (on final essay)
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