By Monday, you must complete a plan for your argument about the value of a college education. This is, essentially, an outline of your argument with specific details. Your plan needs to include all of the following parts:
- A thesis that is clear and specific.
- This is specifically what you are going to set out to convince your audience of.
- A specific thesis is not:
- “college is really valuable.”
- A specific thesis is:
- “college is valuable for everyone, but especially important for [some specific group]”
- “college is less valuable to [some specific group] than it is for [some specific group]”
- “because college results in [these effects], it is especially important for [specific group] to go”
- Your intended audience. Be specific: teenagers, school administrators, parents, legislators, etc.
- Three major supporting details of your argument AND at least one piece of evidence for each.
- Each supporting detail will be its own paragraph or more in the final essay (but not in this outline).
- A supporting detail is a part of your argument used to support your thesis. For example, to prove the first thesis above (college =valuable, more so for some) my three supporting details might be:
- 1) the average effect of a college education for all people
- 2) the social/economic conditions of the specific group of my focus
- 3) the specific effect education might have for this group
- A counterclaim with concession and refutation.
- Identify the strongest argument someone can use against your position
- In one sentence, briefly concede (agree to) what accuracy or truth there is to this criticism.
- In one sentence, briefly explain how you will refute this criticism of your position. What data?
- Call to Action
- Consider who your audience is. What action do you want them to take as a result of your argument? Try to avoid “think differently,” as this expects almost nothing of your audience. These could be actions that result in greater or fewer numbers of students going to college!
Goals are to prepare an outline for the coming argumentative essay that show a clear understanding of the parts of an argument, and how to use evidence and counterclaims to support a central claim.
Exemplary Work references specific piece of evidence and demonstrates significant knowledge of the argument.