For this paper, you will cover a controversial social issue; however, some topics are off limits due to the fact that they have been written on ad nauseum by many other students before you. You are to go to the database called Opposing Viewpoints in Context. From that database, choose a subject that you are interested in, but do NOT choose any of the following: abortion, gun control, capital punishment, prayer in schools, or drug use/legalization. Once inside your area of interest, find some articles. Look especially for opposing viewpoints. You will incorporate at least two separate articles from this database into your paper, remembering to treat quotations and paraphrases correctly and citing them parenthetically as well as listing the articles on your Works Cited page. One unit assignment requires a short summary of the articles that you plan to use. If you have trouble locating articles, ask one of the librarians. They are always glad to help. In addition to the two articles from the Opposing Viewpoints in Context database, you will use one internet source that you have carefully evaluated.
Caution: Pay attention to assignment on evaluating sources. Make sure you choose reliable sources. No Wikipedia, no blogs, no sources of questionable reputation will be allowed. Apply those checkpoints we covered in the evaluation exercise to make sure your sources are credible ones.
You will write Theme 4 on a specific problem, issue, concern, or proposal, but make sure that you are actually making an argument, not providing an encyclopedic “report” such as you might have written in high school papers. Think of this as a proposal paper that suggests a solution or partial solution to a social problem that you have identified. Make sure that you correctly cite your source material. Whether you quote, paraphrase, or summarize, you must clearly show in your paper which words and ideas you obtained from outside sources. Presenting material from an outside source as though it is your own constitutes plagiarism and will result in a grade of “zero” for this assignment and could result in a failing grade for the course. Use signal phrases, quotation marks (when applicable), and parenthetical citations for all source material. Review instructional material, online and from textbooks, in this regard. Chapters 43, 44, 45, and 46 in the LBH are especially relevant. Do not use second person (any form of “you, your, yourself,” and no imperative sentence structures with understood subjects of “you.” Do not use contractions.
This essay must be at least 1,200 words in length and should conform to MLA guidelines for form and citations (see Section 46 in your Little, Brown Handbook). It must be typed, double-spaced, in size 12 Times New Roman font. The margins should all be one inch.
You essay will be graded on following instructions, use of correct MLA guidelines, clarity of argument, supporting evidence, logical progression, paragraph unity, paragraph transition, grammar and punctuation. (Three sources are REQUIRED. At least two of these sources must come from the Opposing Viewpoints in Context database, and one source must be an electronic source which you did NOT find on the databases. You must cite them within the paper, parenthetically, and you must list them on the Works Cited page.) Also, inclusion of a formal sentence outline IS REQUIRED. A Works Cited page IS REQUIRED, and you will list all three sources on it. The paper must consist of a single document that contains all three elements in this order:
1. formal sentence outline
3. Works Cited page
For Theme 4, you will be asked to locate an electronic web source to help support your argument. This is in addition to the two articles you will be using from the database. Choosing the source you will use is extremely important because your ethos as a writer depends, in large part, upon your choice of experts to cite.
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