Quick Write

What issues do you care about?

Research Argument Topics

These are very general topics to consider. For our project, we will be arguing solutions to problems. The problems can be from the list below.

  • Legalize Drugs
  • Rap Lyrics promote sexism
  • Gun Laws
  • Universal Health Care
  • Planned Parenthood
  • Death Penalty
  • Miss Information
  • Protesting
  • Freedom of Speech
  • Gas taxes
  • Border Wall
  • Make drugs illegal
  • Marijuana Laws
  • Trump
  • Same-sex marriage
  • Trans Bathrooms
  • Free College
  • Trains vs Autos
  • Animal Testing
  • Participation Trophies
  • Prostitution should be legal
  • Homework is good or bad?
  • Try minors as adults
  • Driving age raised
  • Drinking age lowered
  • Paternity Leave

Intro to Arguments/Rhetoric

Language is an art form. Here is the Wikipedia definition of Rhetoric.

Rhetoric is the art of discourse, wherein a writer or speaker strives to inform, persuade or motivate particular audiences in specific situations.

Aristotle’s definition of rhetoric

“The faculty of observing, in any given case, the available means of persuasion

ethos pathos

Ethos: Appeals to Ethics, Credibility or Character. Ethics, ethical, trustworthiness or reputation, style/tone. The credibility of the speaker persuades.

Pathos: Appeals to Emotion. Emotional or imaginative impact, stories, values. Uses emotional response to persuade an audience.

Logos: Appeals to logic. Persuade by reason and evidence.


  1. Evidence, S.T.A.R.
    • Sufficient
    • Typical
    • Acceptable
    • Relevant
  2. Rhetorical Questions
  3. Signposts
    • Transitions and connections
  4. Pre-buttals
    • Anticipate objections and answering

Slaughter “Why Women Still Can’t Have it All”

Let’s break down the argument that Slaughter is making.

Look for instances of Logos, Pathos, and Ethos.

What argument is she making?

Multivocal Arguments

A great way to explore an issue is to assume the voice of different stakeholders within an issue. Who are the stakeholders in the Zinczenko article?

Assume a voice of one of the stakeholders and write for a few minutes from this perspective. We will discuss this briefly.

Now we will assume a different voice in the issue. Write briefly from this perspective. Discuss.


Quick Write

Why do we use sources?

Critical Thinking and Research

  • Identify important problems.
  • Explore relevant issues.
  • Evaluate available evidence.
  • Consider the implications of the decisions.

Critical thinking is NOT collecting information to support established conclusion.

  • Survey, considering as many perspectives as possible.
  • Analyze, identifying and then separating out the parts of the problem.
  • Evaluate, judging the merit of various ideas, claims, and evidence.

Why Use Sources?

  • To understand an issue
  • See what has come before
  • To find the facts
  • To inform and persuade your audience

You need to understand that research is connected with ethos, an appeal that establishes credibility with readers.

Evaluating Your Sources

Remember the Acronym CRAAP

  • C current
  • R relevant
  • A author
  • A accurate
  • P purpose

Ask yourself: “Am I choosing sources that represent a range of ideas, not simply ones that support my opinion?”