Argument essay

Argument Essay Prompt Overview

Assignment: You will research and make an argument about a public issue in your second essay. Examples of public issues (also known as current events/issues) are immigration, climate change and the environment, racism/injustice, education and online learning, COVID-19, mental health, etc. You will be choosing your own topic for this paper and ensure that you choose a side on the issue. Please note that it is important to be clear about the position your are taking on the issue since this will be included in your thesis and will drive the argument you will be making throughout the paper. Your essay should be 1,000-1,200 words with a title and written in Times New Romans font size 12 double spaced. This paper will include in-text citations consisting of summaries, paraphrases, and direct quotes. A Works Cited page will also be included at the end of the essay.

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Final draft: Dec. 11th


This essay will serve multiple purposes. First, it is an opportunity for you to apply the rhetorical techniques to your own argument. How will you use concepts such as audience, kairos, and stance to craft your approach? We will discuss these in a video lecture. This essay also gives you an opportunity to move beyond analysis to argue your own position. In order to do this effectively, you will need to have a strong sense of the debate around your chosen issue, analyze various positions on the issue, and then position yourself among that debate, using strong evidence for your stance.

In order to learn more about multiple perspectives on your issue, you will need to engage in research. You will be coming up with a research question, evaluating sources, and incorporating citations and paraphrases. For this essay, you will need to consult 3-5 outside sources. Because your topic will be a current public issue, it is not mandatory to use scholarly, peer-reviewed sources in this 121 course, but your source MUST be credible. Please schedule an online library visit to help acquaint you with research practices.


Strong essays will:

Explore multiple perspectives on an issue (there is always more than two sides to any issue), breaking down (analyzing) the issue for the reader
Support all perspectives on the issue with credible sources
Quote and paraphrase from credible sources
Offer an argument for the best course of action, supported by evidence
Draw on the rhetorical principles we have discussed in making your arguments
Include a Works Cited page, in addition to in-text citations


Decide on which general issue that you would like to explore
Establish one or two research questions
Find credible sources about your issue/topic and read them
Identify multiple perspectives about your issue (not just two)
Formulate your own argument about how we should move forward on this issue, based on the evidence that you have read
Use the rhetorical principles to guide you as you craft your argument
Revise, revise, revise
Polish—edit and proofread your work. Consider reading it out loud.

Brainstorming questions: (Need answers listed separately on bottom of the essay)

Why is this issue important? What is at stake?
What is your personal connection to this issue?
What aspect of it do you think is most overlooked?
Why should people care about it, even if they are not directly affected?
Is your evidence convincing?
Can you anticipate how people might argue against your opinion? How could you use that to sharpen your own argument?

First, read the Argument Essay Prompt Overview to familiarize yourself with what the content is all about as well as what the expectations are for paper two. Next, watch the video I uploaded called “Choosing a Topic and Finding Sources.” Then think about the topic you are interested in researching as it relates to a current public issue. Some of these issues could be immigration, climate change, education, racism/injustice, the pandemic, etc. First, explain why you are interested in that topic. Next, find at least TWO sources either from online OR from MCC’s LibGuides.

Give the titles and authors’ names of the articles/sources then explain your initial reactions to the sources you found and explain what makes the sources appropriate or inappropriate for your topic.

The first page only will have at the top left of the paper your name, the instructor’s name, the course name, and the due date all in that order.

Your last name and page number should be on all pages of your exploratory writing even if it is one page long and should be double spaced, using Times New Romans font size 12.

Ensure your exploratory writing is saved as doc, docx, or pdf to upload it for submission.

Your writing should be at least 300 words and submitted

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