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Argumentation Essay  


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Argumentation Essay

In third person, in 500-750 word using a minimum of 3 database sources, write argumentation/persuasion essay using any approach as a method of development.
  Avoid the use of internet sources, .org/.com/.net, encyclopedias, wiki, dictionaries, and freshman text books in college papers (except for government text, which are a federal database and too large to use for all sources). A library tour was arranged to teach the value of and how to find databases, which are the sources required for academic work
An effective argumentative essay must have evidence to make its case; most arguments that occur in daily life happen in the heat of the moment and are more likely directed toward saving one's own pride than toward giving clear and supportive proof to one's claims.

Writing Approach

Knowing how to brainstorm is going to save you from writing a weak essay. Also, knowing how to support your claims with evidence from outside sources will further strengthen your essay. For that reason, this assignment requires the use of two references (no internet sources). In addition, you will add a Works Cited page at the end of your essay. Finally, your Works Cited page will be in MLA (Modern Language Association) format so that all information provided will be easy for your reader to find.
  • Study Chapter 14, "Acknowledging Sources and Avoiding Plagiarism," in The St. Martin's Handbookto see how to cite the sources you use in your paper.
  • Study Chapter 32, "MLA Style," in The St. Martin's Handbookfor more information on finding and using references in your essays in MLA format.
  • Go to Writing Research Papers and Citing Sources at the Purdue OWL website for more on MLA, to include sample papers.

Writing Assignment

Purpose: to persuade
Method of Development: your choice
For argumentative/persuasive topics, see the list at the end of Chapter 11, Argumentation-Persuasion, in The Longman Reader.
Formatting: See Purdue OWL

General Guidelines

  • Title page and Outline 
  • Type your paper on a computer and print it out on standard, white 8.5 x 11-inch paper.
  • Double-space the text of your paper, and use a legible font (e.g. Times New Roman). Whatever font you choose, MLA recommends that the regular and italics type styles contrast enough that they are recognizable one from another. The font size should be 12 pt.
  • Leave only one space after periods or other punctuation marks (unless otherwise instructed by your instructor).
  • Set the margins of your document to 1 inch on all sides. 
  • Indent the first line of paragraphs one half-inch from the left margin. MLA recommends that you use the Tab key as opposed to pushing the Space Bar five times.
  • Create a header that numbers all pages consecutively in the upper right-hand corner, one-half inch from the top and flush with the right margin. (Note: Your instructor may ask that you omit the number on your first page. Always follow your instructor's guidelines.)
  • Use italics throughout your essay for the titles of longer works and, only when absolutely necessary, providing emphasis.
  • If you have any endnotes, include them on a separate page before your Works Cited page. Entitle the section Notes (centered, unformatted).


  1. Brainstorm for topics.
  2. Choose one topic, choose a method of development, and organize all details accordingly.
  3. Research for appropriate evidence to support your argument. While you are researching, be sure to note all information necessary to filling out your Works Cited page for that entry.
  4. Remember your conclusion and your Works Cited page in MLA format.
  5. Check the syllabus for due dates.

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