compose an essay in which you articulate a specific claim around a topic related to our course theme

 

Objectives

compose an essay in which you articulate a specific claim around a topic related to our course theme

synthesize evidence from multiple sources, including scholarly/peer reviewed sources, to support the claim with reasons and evidence

persuade your audience of the validity of your position on this issue, using your research to support your argument 

  • Instructions
  • A research paper is an argument essay in which you negotiate different perspectives on a common issue AND draw your evidence from sources beyond the texts we have read in class. In other words, you will make a claim and then support the claim with reasons and evidence from multiple sources, with the goal of convincing and persuading your audience effectively.
  • This is your opportunity to pick a topic of your own choosing related to our course theme. Drawing upon the perspectives presented in The Nature Fix and Braiding Sweetgrass, you will write an argumentative research essay that critically analyzes the themes of environmental consciousness, human-nature connection, and the implications for individual and collective well-being. In your essay, you must identify some of the challenges to fostering environmental consciousness and sustainable practices in modern societies, discuss the barriers to reconnecting with nature and prioritizing environmental protection, and propose potential solutions and strategies.

In your paper, you must accomplish the following things (not necessarily in this order):

Provide information on the issue. What is the issue? What are the basic facts? What’s the background information that will help your reader understand it? Explain and define key terms and concepts, and set the issue up for your reader as clearly and objectively as possible.

Make your own argument about it. Drawing on the information you have researched and the range of arguments and evidence you have looked at, what is your own view about this issue? What, as you see it, are the key causes of the problem, and what are the solutions? Where do you fall among the spectrum of viewpoints you have looked into?

Since you are making your own argument, providing strong evidence is particularly important, utilizing the sources you have at your disposal. Therefore, think of your thesis as a claim, and your illustrations as evidence: you are trying to prove your claim to a reader who may not agree with you. Quote from writers that you agree with and writers that you disagree with, so as not to “stack the deck” in your argument. If you disagree with a writer, provide a counterargument. In other words, explain this other writer’s opinion and then explain why you disagree with it. (If you only provide the other writer’s opinion without explaining your response to that opinion, you haven’t provided a counterargument.)

Your essay should be formatted and documented in MLA style. In other words, you should have in-text (parenthetical) citations and a works cited page (like a bibliography). 

Criteria for Success

Your Research Paper rough draft should include the following elements:

  1. A summary/overview of your issue in which you set the stage for your readers: What is the issue? What are the basic facts? What’s the background information that will help your reader understand it? Explain and define key terms and concepts, and set the issue up for your reader as clearly and objectively as possible.

Your argument around the issue: drawing on the information you have researched and the range of arguments and evidence you have looked at, what is your own view about this issue? What, as you see it, are the key causes of the problem, and what are the solutions? What are some actionable steps you can take to deepen your connection to nature and contribute to environmental stewardship? Where do you fall among the spectrum of viewpoints you have looked into?

  1. References to at least five sources you have found that support your argument. You are welcome to use Braiding Sweetgrass or The Nature Fix in addition to the other five sources you find through your own research.

 

compose an essay in which you articulate a specific claim around a topic related to our course theme

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