Unit #3
January 18-24
​Argumentative Essays

As we continue with our essay writing, we are looking at several different types of writing, but one thing that is in common with ALL the methods we are looking at; all are in a traditional 5 paragraph paper format. This allows you to continue practicing the 5 paragraph form, and gives you the opportunity to write different styles of papers at the same time. How creative is that?!!

Assignment 3.1

Read and take notes over pp 277-297

Turn to pages 289-290 and pick an argumentative topic you might like to write an essay on...or choose a topic of your own.
Look at pages 279 under the heading, "Decide which points of argument to include" and follow the instructions below for this assignment:
1. After selecting a topic, make a "Pro-and-Con Sheet" to help you sort out which points you will discuss in your essay (look at page 279-280 for an example). As you are writing your Pro-and-Con sheet, remember you are not writing the "pros and cons" of your topic, you are listing YOUR side of the argument, then listing your OPPONENT'S side of the argument ideas.
2. After making your list above, look over the list and decide which of your strongest points (pick only 2) you want to argue in your paper and also which of your opposition's claims (pick only 1) you want to refute. **You may have to combine a few of your points into one point
3. Make a working thesis (this means you will need to come up with a thesis but by "working" I mean that you may need to "tweak" it as you work on your paper) and an essay map with the 2 points to support your argument and 1 point of refuting your opponent's point.

For the thesis, notice the example in the middle and bottom of page 280.
The three main points arguing for your side (you will be writing on only 2 points) include:
1. professional note-taking services keep students from developing their own thinking and organizational skills
2. professional note-taking services discourage class attendance and participation
3. unfair advantages to some students

The one point from the other side of the argument says:
1. helps students to learn and organize material

Notice the thesis statement includes all three of your points as well as the one point from the other side of the argument. Here it is:

"Although some students maintain that using professional note-taking services helps them learn moresuch services should be banned from our campus because they prevent students from developing their own thinking and organizational skills, they discourage class attendance, and they give unfair advantages to some students."

Notice in green, the other side of the argument is given, then in red, the author gave three points to argue their side of the issue.



Let me say it again in another way that may help it "click" since previous students have struggled with how to put this thesis statement together. We'll do the same thesis statement as shown above but instead of using 3 points, I'll use only two since that's how your homework will be done.

First, write down the other side of the arguments strongest point:
"using professional note-taking services helps them learn more"
Second, write your side of the argument
"they prevent students from developing their own thinking and organizational skills"
Third, write down your 2 points to support the second steps argument above
1. discourage class attendence
2. give unfair advantages to some students

Now put it all together with the words "although" and "because" inserted into the right places:

"Although some students maintain that using professional note-taking services helps them learn more, such services should be banned from our campus because they discourage class attendance, and they give unfair advantages to some students."


So...for assignment 3.1 I want:
1.  notes over pp 277-297
2. your pro/con sheet
3. your thesis statement/essay map (remember you are choosing 2 points for and 1 to argue against) using "although" and "because" as in the example above (this can be one sentence as is in the example above, or you can write two sentences like we have in the past--they are both correct).

(2 hours)

Submit your assignment for 3.1 (10 pts) due Jan 19

Assignment 3.2
For this lesson, prepare an outline for the thesis statement and essay map from 3.1
(50 minutes)

Submit your outline for 3.2 due Jan 21 (10 pts)


Assignment 3.3
Take the thesis/essay map and outline from Assignment 3.1 and 3.2 and write an argumentative 5 paragraph paper.  

It must include:
1. Your intro with lead-in and thesis
Remember, your thesis MUST use the "Although
Because" method of writing a thesis for an
argumentative paper.
2. 1 paragraph to refute or argue against your opponent's strongest claim  
3. 2 paragraphs to argue FOR each of your two points
4. Conclusion summing up the three main points you discussed above.
5. At least 700 words

(2 hours)

Submit Assignment 3.3 (50 points) due Jan 24