“To write a paper convincing teachers to give students a second chance when they make a mistake on their writing assignments.”
Then list reasons why and give examples to back them up. Then write the counterargument and a conclusion.
Points to consider:
- Be aware of what your audience knows or does not know about your topic. Give adequate background information so your reader can follow your argument.
- Make sure that all your terms are clearly defined. For instance, instead of saying “Students,” say Community College students” or “elementary school students in Stearns County,” etc. Remember you are trying to persuade your reader to agree with you. Readers will not agree with you just because you have an opinion; instead, you need to figure out why you have that opinion and then convey that why to your readers. Question your own assumptions. Such questioning may lead you to revising your initial opinion or may lead you to strengthening your initial opinion. For instance, you are writing about high school no-tolerance drug policies, you may be assuming that such policies are always applied fairly. Considering counterarguments is one way to question your assumptions. You may not be used to having a strong opinion about an issue or may be uncomfortable expressing your opinions. If so, focus on developing your argument with reasons and evidence, rather than worrying too much about your actual position. By focusing on the process of creating an argument, you may find you come to care about your opinion more and feel more confident about your opinion. Think of your argument as a pyramid: a broad foundation of evidence supports a smaller section of reasoning that supports the very small top of the pyramid, which is your position. Thus, the bulk of your essay will be evidence. Our book discusses types of evidence you can use to build your argument. See pages 265-268. Do not automatically write a five paragraph essay; make your argument as long as it need be. Organize your essay according to the argument you are making, not according to how long you think an essay is supposed to be. No <you> and no<I> allowed in this paper. Use logos, pathos, and ethos in your argument. Avoid the logical fallacies we discussed in class. Academic Honesty: do not consult, review, copy, or even read anything from outside sources – not Spark Notes, not another textbook, not your older sister’s essay, not a website – I want only your ideas and your ideas only. If you look at someone else’s ideas, you run the risk of plagiarizing. If you are having trouble with your essay, talk to me or a writing tutor.