In all of the disciplines, researchers begin their research by asking a question (inquiring) about their topic. The research question then guides the researcher as she strives to make a contribution to her field by answering the question. The researcher carefully weighs facts and inferences, and avoids judgments. Your goal is to become the researcher. Use the issue you have treated so far in this course as the foundation for researching a topic more deeply and then formulating your own informed argument. In this paper, you will move beyond the role of a student and will assume the position of an expert upon your topic. Your overall goal should be to use all that you are learning about effective argumentation to develop your own convincing argument on an important issue. You will then be ready to work on presenting your argument visually in an effective manner to your professor, who will assume the role of your target audience.
1. Begin by developing a key research question that will guide your argument. For example, What are the 1-3 most important factors leading to the prevalence of bullying in American schools? The goal of this paper will be to offer the most convincing answer that you can to your research question.
2. Once you have a research question, use it to find a total of 10 sources. You may use any sources from your annotated bibliography or quotation sampler as they apply to this paper. Your bibliography must contain a minimum of 10 sources.
Audience: One of your choosing, appropriate to the rhetorical situation
Length: 6-9 pages typed, double-spaced (not including apparatus; i.e., cover page, bibliography, appendices)
Format: MLA or APA style, depending on the subject and intended audience
1. Does the paper have a strong, clear introductory paragraph?
2. Does the paper present the thesis in a manner that is appropriately suited to the audience?
3. Does the paper make the research question clear? You should pose the question your paper will attempt to answer.
4. Is the paper organized into logical paragraphs that support and develop the thesis?
5. Are sources documented appropriately and effectively used? (quoting, summarizing, paraphrasing)
6. Does the paper have a conclusion paragraph that effectively sums up and closes the major points presented?
7. Do grammar and punctuation follow the requirements of Standard American English?