ENGL-122 Essay #2 Guidelines & Rubric Argumentative Essay For Essay #2, you will argue a position using one of the argumentative prompts below. (You are welcome to explore an alternative argument prompt, but the instructor must approve it). You must limit your argument to a single thesis, and your thesis must be an assertion. You must provide evidence to support your claim from outside sources, and you must address the counter-arguments to your thesis. Your goal with this essay is not necessarily to persuade me to agree with your argument, but to show me that you can reason and write in a logical, coherent manner. Discuss how logically convincing you find this argument. In your discussion, you should analyze the argument’s line of reasoning and use of evidence. It may be appropriate in your critique to call into question certain assumptions underlying the argument and/or to indicate what evidence might weaken or strengthen the argument. It may also be appropriate to discuss how you would alter the argument to make it more convincing and/or discuss what additional evidence, if any, would aid in evaluating the argument. Argumentative Prompts: • Is global climate change man-made? • Is the death penalty effective? • Is graffiti considered art? • Is torture ever acceptable? • Should animals be used for research? • Do violent video games cause behavior problems? • What role should technology play in education? • How is technology changing society’s definition of what it means to be human? • How can DVC create a safer environment for students? This assignment will give you practice in: • taking a stance on a controversial topic • understanding and garnering support for both sides of a topic • organizing material effectively • using a range of sources to write persuasively Format Requirements: • 5-7 pages in length (does not include a title page or works cited) • Typed, double spaced (Times New Roman or Calibri) • MLA format • Argument transition words • At least four sources with proper MLA citation • Correct grammar, punctuation, and sentence/paragraph formation Make sure your paper contains the following parts: • Introduction and thesis statement • Background Information • Main Arguments • Counter-Arguments (Refutation) • Conclusion • Works Cited (not included in page requirement) ENGL-122 Rubric for Essay #2 (Argumentative Essay) Criteria 0-1 (Needs Attention) 2 (Developing) 3 (Good) 4 (Excellent) INTRODUCTION Background/ History Define the Problem Thesis Statement Writer does not attempt to create interest. Background details are a seemingly random collection of information, unclear, or not related to the topic. The problem is not stated or it is vague. Introduction is vague or fails to establish a position that responds to the topic. The thesis statement is vague/unclear, improperly placed, and/or does not clearly state the writer’s position; thus making the text difficult or impossible to follow. No thesis statement OR introduction not developed or missing. Introduction does not adequately explain the background of the problem nor does the writer attempt to create interest. The problem is stated, but lacks detail. The introduction is evident, but position may not be clearly stated. The thesis statement is present; however, it does not clearly state the writer’s position and/or it is improperly placed. The satisfactory introduction contains some background information, uses a technique for creating interest, develops a clearly stated position, and states the problem, using sufficient details. The clear and properly placed thesis statement obviously states the writer’s position. The well-developed introduction engages the readers. It contains detailed background information, develops a significant and compelling position, and a clear explanation or definition of the problem. Finally, it creates interest in the topic. The well-formed, perceptive, and properly placed thesis statement clearly states the writer’s position. MAIN POINTS Body Paragraphs Refutation The main points are not sufficient. There is a poor/skimpy/ vague development of ideas and a weak or nonexistent link to the thesis. Body is too brief to develop a convincing argument; exhibits no style. Essay lacks focus and tends to wander. Refutation is missing or vague. Main points are present, but one or more may lack development and/or may not directly relate to the thesis. The essay minimally meets the requirements of the assignment and contains sufficient details to make the overall point clear, but it leaves the reader with unanswered questions. Support for argument is logical, but pattern of development and style is simplistic. Some aspects of argument do not relate to thesis. Refutation acknowledges the opposing view, but does not argue it logically or completely. Main points are present and directly related to the thesis, but one or more may lack enough detail and development. Yet, the essay is worthwhile reading. The writer knows his/her material well enough to clearly explain it. Patterns of development used for support and the style are not necessarily appropriate. Each aspect of argument is present, but the writer may not have shown connection to thesis. Refutation acknowledges the opposing view and argues it logically, but not necessarily completely. Main points are well developed and directly related to the thesis. The supporting details are concrete and so rich that the readers learn by reading the essay. The writer is obviously comfortable with his/her material and knows enough about the subject to explain it in great detail. Support uses appropriate patterns of development and style. Each aspect relates to thesis, providing coherence and continuity. Refutation acknowledges the opposing view and argues it completely and logically. ORGANIZATION Structure Transitions Competency Arrangement of essay is unclear and illogical. The writing lacks a clear sense of direction. Ideas, details or events seem strung together in a loose or random fashion; there is no identifiable internal structure and readers have trouble following the writer’s line of thought. Few, forced transitions in the essay or no transitions are present. Progression of ideas in essay is awkward, yet moves the reader through the text without too much confusion. The writer sometimes lunges ahead too quickly or spends too much time on details that do not matter. Transitions appear sporadically, but not equally throughout essay Overall, the paper is logically developed. Progression of ideas in essay makes sense and moves the reader easily through the text. Strong transitions exist throughout and add to the essay’s coherence. Logical, compelling progression of ideas in essay; clear structure which enhances and showcases the central idea or theme and moves the reader through the text. Organization flows so smoothly the reader hardly thinks about it. Effective, mature, graceful transitions exist throughout the essay. ENGL-122 Criteria 0-1 (Needs Attention) 2 (Developing) 3 (Good) 4 (Excellent) MECHANICS AND STYLE Sentence Structure Punctuation Sentence Variety Writing is incoherent. Work contains multiple incorrect sentence structures (more than 3). Diction is elementary and/or inappropriate, and often writing is awkward due to many examples of poor/incorrect word choice. There are more than 4 errors in punctuation, spelling, capitalization, and/or other mechanics. Errors are beyond distracting; they make the essay difficult to follow and unacceptable for college-level writing Writing lacks flow to achieve coherence throughout the essay. Work contains some sentence errors (2 or 3) and grammatical errors. Many consecutive sentences begin with the same words, are of the same length or the same sentence construction; the sentences hang together, and get the job done in a routine fashion. Diction is very elementary and lacks flair. There are three or four errors in punctuation, spelling, capitalization, and/or other mechanics. Errors are distracting; however, the reader can still follow the basic intentions of the writer. Writing is smooth and coherent throughout most of the essay. Most sentences are varied in length and style, with an occasional (1 or 2) repetition of sentence beginnings or a number of consecutive sentences of the same length or type. The sentence structure is generally correct, though some awkward sentences do appear. Diction is mostly at the college level, but may have some examples of unsophisticated or poor/incorrect word choices. There are one or two errors in punctuation, spelling, capitalization and/or other mechanics. Few, if any, errors distract the reader from the text Mature writing is smooth, skillful, and coherent throughout the essay. Sentences are well built with strong and varied structure that invites expressive oral reading. Diction is at a college level or the appropriate level for the audience. Punctuation, spelling, and capitalization are correct. Virtually error free SOURCES & WORKS CITED Lacks sources and/or sources are not accurately documented. Incorrect format is used. Sources are neither relevant nor reliable. OR 0—Works Cited page and documentation were required but are missing. Most source material is used, but integration may be awkward. All sources are accurately documented, but many are not in the desired format on the Works Cited page. Some sources are relevant and reliable. OR Material from outside sources is evident but not necessarily acknowledged. All source material is used. All sources are accurately documented, but a few are not in the desired format on the Works Cited page. Most sources are relevant and reliable. OR Resource material is acknowledged but may not be logically integrated into test. All source material is used and smoothly integrated into the text. All sources are accurately documented and in the desired format on the Works Cited page. All sources are relevant and reliable. OR Resource material is acknowledged and integrated logically.