Writing Project 3: The Research-Based Argument

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Final due: By the end of Week 5



By the end of this writing project, you will be able to:

Develop an argumentative thesis that articulates a position on a significant issue

Use evidence from research to provide relevant background information, examples, and counter-arguments

Employ strategies of argumentation including making a claim, supporting claims with evidence, and identifying and engaging with alternative perspectives

Attribute and cite sources using signaling phrases, in-text citations, and a works cited page

Apply genre conventions for a research-based academic essay including structure, design, formatting, language usage, and mechanics

Compose a text using the writing process by drafting, reviewing, collaborating, revising, and editing



Audience: Your English 102 instructor

Purpose: To make a persuasive claim about a significant issue and support your claim using evidence from sources

Genre: A research-based argument

Conventions: A 2,000-2,500 word research paper with MLA citation conventions for in-text citations and a works cite page

First Draft Due: Monday, by 11:59 p.m. 8/10/2020 La TIME ZONE


The research-based argument is the culmination of your semester-long research project. In this paper, you will make an argumentative claim on a significant topic; this claim should be developed and supported by summarizing, analyzing, and synthesizing perspectives from sources. You will demonstrate your skill in articulating complex ideas, examining claims and evidence found in your research materials, supporting your ideas with relevant reasons and examples, sustaining a coherent discussion, and employing rhetorical strategies to convince your readers to agree with your stand on the issue or at least to believe in the soundness and reasonableness of your position.


You will complete a required rough draft of your research-based argument. The draft should be at least 1,000 words long and should include a working introduction, your argumentative thesis, parts of your argument including the counterargument or alternative perspectives, and a working conclusion. As a draft, it is perfectly acceptable for sections to be incomplete or missing, but the more writing you provide, the more feedback you will receive that will strengthen your final paper. The draft will be graded as Complete/Incomplete. Your instructor will provide feedback on your rough draft that will help you revise your draft for the final assignment. If you do not turn in a rough draft, your final research-based argument will be penalized 20 points.

Consider the following questions as you write your research-based argument:

Author: How do you wish to represent yourself in your research-based argument, and how will you achieve that representation?

Purpose: Given that your purpose is to make a persuasive claim and support your claim using evidence from sources, how will you achieve this purpose in your research-based argument?

Audience: Given that your audience is your ENG 102 instructor, how will this audience inform the content, structure, and language of your research-based argument?

Genre: Given that your genre is a research-based argument, what are the genre conventions (structure, design, formatting, language usage, and mechanics) that you need to apply?

Content: What claim are you making in your research-based argument? How will you craft an effective argument and support your claim? How will you balance background information, examples, argument, and other perspectives in your paper?

Structure: How will you structure your research-based argument? What structure will help your audience understand your position and be persuaded by your argument?

Language: What linguistic choices will you make in your research-based argument? How formal or informal should your language be? How can you revise and edit your language to meet your rhetorical purpose in the genre?



Your research-based argument will be evaluated according to the following criteria:

Rhetorical choices- Does the research-based argument effectively fulfill its purpose and appeal to the audience?

Content choices- Does the research-based argument make a clear, persuasive claim about a significant topic? Is the claim supported throughout the entire paper using evidence from sources? Are multiple perspectives on the topic, including counterarguments, discussed?

Genre choices- Does the research-based argument effectively apply genre conventions for an academic research paper?

Structural choices- Does the research-based argument introduction follow a logical arrangement?

Linguistic choices- Does the research-based argument use effective language for the genre and rhetorical situation?

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