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ENGL 120SL - Woodlief  

Last Updated: Nov 29, 2016 URL: Print Guide

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English 120SL: Fall 2015/ Woodlief

Argument Paper (assignment #3)


Weds, Oct. 7:             Summary of ONE research article on your topic due

Mon, Oct. 12:             Summary of a SECOND source you plan to use

Weds, Oct. 14:           Small group presentations for argument topics

Mon, Oct. 19:             Outline + draft intro

Weds, Oct. 21:           Rebuttal paragraph due (draft)

Mon, Oct.  26             Full Draft due (2 - 3 pages) – Peer response in class.

Weds, Oct. 28:           Final essay due (turn in final, draft, outline, peer review, tutoring feedback)                                                                                                       

Length:           4 – 5 pages  + Works Cited; tutoring required


Sources:  You must cite (quote/paraphrase) information from at least 2 sources from the library databases (or other credible sources) for this paper and include a complete Works Cited list at the end of your paper


Your task: Write a formal argument essay supporting one side of the issue for ONE of the topics below, using research and evidence to support your claims. In addition to making strong arguments in favor of your position, you will need to rebut (or argue against) one of the arguments made by the other side.


 In a rebuttal, you show that the other side’s argument is not a strong, logical, compelling, useful argument.  Often, the “rebuttal” paragraph is either the first or last body paragraph.

Note: A thesis statement for an argument essay often takes a stand using the word “should” (“We should abolish the death penalty because…” or “College athletes should not be paid because…” etc.)


You will need to do research so you can have credible sources and data to support every part of your argument.  To help in gathering research and finding the strongest evidence, you will work with a group of other students to assemble, summarize and present information for both sides of the issue you select.  Then you will write your own paper (this is not a group writing project).


Argument topics (choose one):


1)     Death penalty: Should the death penalty be banned or allowed in the United States? (note:  some states currently allow the death penalty, while others do not)


2)     Minimum smoking age:  Should the federal smoking age be raised from 18 to 21 years old?


3)     Minimum wage:  Should the US government raise the federal minimum wage?


4)     Junk food:  Should junk food be banned in U.S. K-12 schools?


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