ENGL 1010/Summer 2009
Assignment #3: Argument Paper
This handout provides details about our third class assignment, an argument paper. I have
modeled this assignment after the chapter “Argument” in the class textbook. Please review the
chapter carefully as you compose and revise this assignment. I also encourage you to re-read the
two essays we’ve discussed in class (“A Call to Action” and “Why I Hate Britney”) and to
consciously imitate the structure of these texts as you compose your own essay.
In a 3-4 page paper, write an argument paper on a topic on your choice. In this paper, your task is
to present a perspective of your own on a debatable topic and to defend your claims
authoritatively by drawing on personal experience and two outside sources. Be sure your paper
introduces the topic, explains your purpose, provides information and background on the topic,
and includes a specific claim that you support in the course of the paper. Attach copies of your
two sources to the paper.
Pay particular attention to the following elements of a strong argument paper:
• Offer a level-headed, well-defined, and reasonable argument.
• Include appropriate and thoughtful reasons to support your claims.
• Include an opposing point of view and either refute it or simply acknowledge it.
• Use logos, pathos, and ethos carefully and adequately for academic writing—at the level
of argument and at the level of your own language (word choice, tone, etc.).
• Create a clear paragraph structure that moves the argument forward—consider the
structure presented on pp. 84-86 in out textbook.
• Following directions in our textbook (pp. 437-473), format in-text citations and the
Works Cited page according to MLA documentation style.
• As we discussed in class, include relevant and precise author tags every time you refer
to outside sources; structure paragraphs around quotations and paraphrases from your
outside texts. Read very carefully the sections “Summarizing Sources,” “Paraphrasing
Sources,” and “Integrating Sources into Your Work” in our textbook.
Your grade for this paper will be based not only on the final product, but also on showing that
you completed all the steps of the writing process. These steps include:
Prewriting Your notes for the paper, including class exercises, an outline, and other
brainstorming notes you took on your own.
Draft #1 The first version of your essay, due in class Wednesday, June 17.
Draft #2 A second draft of your essay following peer-review in class that shows
evidence of revision, editing, and proof-reading; due to me, Friday, June
Draft #3 A newly revised, edited, and proof-read final draft of your essay, turned in
to me on the final day of class, Wednesday, June 24.
When you turn in drafts #2 and #3 to me, please turn them in as part of a writing folder in which
you include the previous drafts, prewriting exercises, and copies of your two sources.