Argumentative Research Essay

Argumentative Research Essay

Specifications: 6-8 pages, double-spaced, 12 pt. Times New Roman font

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For your final essay you will write a research paper that includes an argumentative position. For this paper you will need to use a minimum of six sources. One must be a book, and you must have three scholarly journal articles from NC Live/Proquest Central. You must document your sources in-text and with your works cited page. 

A research essay is designed around your ability to read, analyze, and synthesize a variety of sources into a coherent, well-argued paper. The ability to craft this type of essay is an important skill that you can use during your college career and in the workplace. For most courses, including this one you will need to have the skills to gather information from a variety of sources and then be able to focus, organize, and present that information in a formal paper that documents your sources. The end goal is to help you demonstrate your knowledge about your chosen topic in a well written essay that encapsulates your research and position on the topic that you are writing and researching about.

For this essay you will need to write using a mixture of source styles- one block quote, at least one example of a direct quote, and paraphrasing. You may also use charts, graphs, etc. as long as they are pertinent to your topic and the argument that you are making.

The options for this paper are limitless. You could research someone or something historical, something you have written about for another paper or learned about in another class. You could research a hobby, sport, career, event, pop culture phenomenon, scientific phenomenon, etc. The only stipulation is that you must be able to form a clear, well thought out, and unique argument about the topic. Certain topics (abortion, or gun control for instance) have been written about so many times that it is hard to form a unique, compelling argument about them.  

Keep in mind that the more narrow the paper topic is, the clearer and more focused the paper will be. For example, instead of talking about global warming in general, argue for or against requiring more strict regulations on automobile manufacturers or the benefits of solar energy, or even how we could go more “green” here on Caldwell’s campus.

Also, be prepared for your instructor to know little to nothing about your topic. Give a brief summary of any background information necessary to understand your argument.



  1. Introduction

Introduce your topic with something catchy or attention grabbing. Give a brief overview of your topic with the most salient information. Include a thesis statement

  1. History/ Background information

Discuss the significant and relevant history of your topic up to the current situation. Use research as needed to give precise and accurate background for context in making your later argument.

III.       Argument and Evidence

This section will be several paragraphs. This is the heart of your work. Discuss the evidence you’ve found to support your argument (facts, expert’s opinions, statistics). May include any visual aids, as long as they are integrated smoothly and cited correctly. Have several points in support of your thesis.

  1. Refutation

Discuss the viewpoints of those who would disagree with you. What other opinions do they have, and why do they have them? Do they make any good points? Why, ultimately, do you still feel your argument is the best? This can be its own section or paragraph. Or, consider weaving refutation throughout your section on argument and evidence.

  1. Conclusion

Summarize clearly and precisely the conclusions you have drawn. Offer any ideas for where future research is needed, or discuss the implications of your argument.


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