A research-based argumentative essay

For this paper, you’ll write a research-based argumentative essay in which you try to change your readers’ minds about the value, worth, or ethics of something. Choose a phenomenon to be evaluated that is controversial so that your readers are likely at first to disagree with your evaluation or at least to be surprised by it. Somewhere in your essay you should summarize alternative views and either refute them or concede to them This must be in MLA format and using MLA-style citations. To boil ethics down we’re talking about what is just and what is just. In the content folder, you can go back and revisit the supplemental items we’ve discussed in class, plus more.

To assess fairness/justice, think about how welfare, virtue, and liberty are considered when looking at the “common good,” a concept discussed by politicians, religions, and philosophers.

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Checklist criteria for success:

Must have an intro that engages the reader’s interest, shows what’s at stake, provides background and states claim
Body Paragraphs must provide support to claim, evidence, and reasoning. Look at the outlines below for more.
The conclusion should sum up your argument, help the reader return to the “big picture” of what’s at stake (what do people have to gain or lose), and show what’s really wrong with the position you argue against
3-5 Pages
Must be on an ethical issue
Must use MLA style and MLA citations
Citations should be using the ICE Method
Must have at least three sources (one should be a primary source)

Our text book discusses the following: evaluation issues are all around us. Think of disagreements about the value of a person, thing, action, or phenomenon within the various communities to which you belong—your home, or apartment community; your school community, including clubs or organizations; your academic community, including classes you are currently taking; your work community; and your city, state, national, and world communities. Once you have settled on a controversial thing to be evaluated, place it in its smallest relevant category, determine the purposes of that category, and develop your criteria. If you are making an ethical evaluation, consider your argument from the perspective of both principles and consequences.

Before drafting your argument, identify your targeted audience and determine what’s at stake. Consider your responses to the following questions:

What audience are you targeting? What background do they need to understand your issue? How much do they already care about it?

Before they read your evaluation argument, what stance on your issue do you imagine them holding? What change do you want to bring about in their view?

What will they find new or surprising about your argument?

What objections might they raise? What counterarguments or alternative points of view will you need to address?

Why does your evaluation matter? Who might be threatened or made uncomfortable by your views? What is at stake?

As you write a draft, you may find useful the prototypical structures for evaluation arguments shown in Figures 14.1 and 14.2. Of course, you can always alter these plans if another structure better fits your material.

Figure 14.1
Organization plan 1: Criteria and match in separate sections

Figure 14.2
Organization plan 2: Criteria and match interweaved

Submit your paper on Brightspace by Nov. 1st before midnight. Each day it’s late you’ll lose 10%. If it’s not finished that’s okay, there’ll be another draft for this 🙂
Begin your Works Cited page on a separate page at the end of your research paper. It should have the same one-inch margins and last name, page number header as the rest of your paper. You should have three sources. Example citation below:
Author. “Title.” Title of container (name of book or website, Publisher, Publication Date, Location (pages, paragraphs and/or URL, DOI or permalink).
Label the page Works Cited (do not italicize the words Works Cited or put them in quotation marks) and center the words Works Cited at the top of the page.
Only the title should be centered. The citation entries themselves should be aligned with the left margin.
Double space all citations, but do not skip spaces between entries.
List page numbers of sources efficiently, when needed. If you refer to a journal article that appeared on pages 225 through 250, list the page numbers on your Works Cited page as pp. 225-50 (Note: MLA style dictates that you should omit the first sets of repeated digits. In our example, the digit in the hundreds place is repeated between 225 and 250, so you omit the 2 from 250 in the citation: pp. 225-50). If the excerpt spans multiple pages, use “pp.” Note that MLA style uses a hyphen in a span of pages.
If only one page of a print source is used, mark it with the abbreviation “p.” before the page number (e.g., p.157). If a span of pages is used, mark it with the abbreviation “pp.” before the page number (e.g., pp.157-68).
If you’re citing an article or a publication that was originally issued in print form but that you retrieved from an online database, you should type the online database name in italics. You do not need to provide subscription information in addition to the database name.
Capitalize each word in the titles of articles, books, etc, but do not capitalize articles (the, an), prepositions, or conjunctions unless one is the first word of the title or subtitle: Gone with the Wind, The Art of War, There Is Nothing Left to Lose.
Use italics (instead of underlining) for titles of larger works (books, magazines) and quotation marks for titles of shorter works (poems, articles)
Attached are some questions that may help you in your analysis and future analyses: Questions That May Help You in Your Analysis

MLA Information: MLA Formatting and Style Guide (Purdue Owl) and MLA formated MS Document

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