discussion #1

The reading this week stresses the importance of thesis statements, so let’s take a moment to determine your thesis statement before you begin fleshing out your argument in more detail. Don’t worry—you’re not starting from scratch here. We’ve worked on your intended argument over the course of the term. This is a “hide-and-seek” exercise, where your hidden thesis statement will need to be sought out. Now it’s just a matter of finding your argument and making sure you’re putting that argument into a clear, concise thesis. Access your Writing Plan in your course notebook, accessible under “course tools,” to use the work you’ve done so far to respond to the following questions. This handy guide will help you through the process.

  1. What is the work-related problem you will be addressing?
  2. State your argument that addresses this problem. Feel free to look back at your course notebook, which is accessible using the “course tools” button. Remember, your argument may have changed now that you’ve conducted more research.
  3. What is your first reason or major point why your audience should be persuaded by your argument? Can it be supported using the research you’ve conducted so far? Briefly identify the research you will use to support this point.
  4. What is your second reason or major point why your audience should be persuaded by your argument? Can it be supported using the research you’ve conducted so far? Briefly identify the research you will use to support this point.
  5. What is your third reason or major point why your audience should be persuaded by your argument? Can it be supported using the research you’ve conducted so far? Briefly identify the research you will use to support this point.
  6. Now, combine your answers to questions 2-5 to construct a working thesis statement. Your thesis statement should be 1-2 sentences long. Begin by stating the position you will argue, and then go on to list the reasons or major points you will elaborate on in the paper to defend that position. To review an example, feel free to look back to the discussion of thesis statements in 5-2.

Discussion #2–Activity: Drafting Plan 

Before we start the drafting process, let’s think of a couple of areas of the Writing Plan you’re confident in and a couple of areas where you’d like to spend additional time. Use the prompts below as guidance when reflecting on your personal drafting goals. In response to each question, copy and paste any examples from your Writing Plan. Then write 1-3 sentences explaining why you’ve selected those examples and, when applicable, what changes you might make.

  1. Which sections of your Writing Plan do you feel most confident in?
  2. Which sections of your Writing Plan do you feel least confident in?
  3. Which of your main points do you find the strongest? Which of your main points do you find the weakest?
  4. Do you think you have identified important counterarguments? Are you comfortable with your responses to those counterarguments?
  5. Do you think you’ve found evidence that supports your main points? Is there a point you think needs more supporting evidence?

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