The Essay Prompt: Pick an issue affecting your future career field, your major field, or your community, discussing the causes of this issue as well as effects. Write a paper that explains various perspectives on this issue, using at least three different sources (published texts) and no more than five sources. Rather than presenting the issue as having only two sides (those for or against something), explain more than two points of view, showing the complexity of the issue. In the final part of the paper, you should take your own stand, and write a thorough, researched argument about the issue. To complete this assignment successfully, you should take into account what you’ve learned during this course. For instance, begin by showing the conversation your paper is responding to (“they say”), have a clear statement of your own argument (“I say”), include quotes and incorporate them smoothly, point out possible objections to your argument, use appropriate transitions, and explain why the issue matters. Also add metacommentary and find ways to include your own voice, even though this is academic writing. Organization: A common organizational approach to a cause & effect essay is listed below. Consider using this method (also reflected in the Cause/Effect Essay Template): I. Introductory paragraph II. Explanation of the issue: (2-3 paragraphs). Using research, identify its cause(s) and effects. Examine several different perspectives on the issue Explain the complexity of the issue. III. Explanation of your argument: (3-4 paragraphs) Using research, present your informed perspective. Identify how your argument is different than those you’ve already identified. Address any possible objections (plant a naysayer). Explain why this issue matters, in your opinion. IV. Concluding paragraph Cause-and-effect analysis explains why something happened—or is happening—and it predicts what probably will happen. Elements from They Say/I Say to incorporate into your essay: Think of these first three as happening together within your composition: Starting with Others (ch.1) — Start with what these authors are saying and the overall conversation or topic. Summarizing (ch.2) — A succinct summary of the contents of these selections (in other words — short!) Evidence of reading for the conversation (ch.14) — Make it clear you understand the conversation and the important parts. Incorporate each of these rhetorical moves into your composition: Yes, No, Okay, but… (ch.4) – Make a decisive response and entry to the conversation Quoting (ch.3) – Make the most of essential quotations from the authors using “quotation sandwiches.” Distinguish your voice from theirs (ch.5) — Show clear differences between the conversation of the authors and your own. Skeptics (ch.6) — Plant a naysayer in your text and answer objections. Metacommentary (ch.10) – Clarify and elaborate on your perspectives to keep misinterpretations at bay. Use your own voice (ch. 9) — Use the recipe of academic language followed by casual rewording in a choice place within your essay. Connect the parts (ch. 8) – Throughout your essay concentrate on connecting each sentence to the next. Use transitions and make logical movements from one idea to the next. So What/Who Cares (ch.7) – Incorporate why it matters, who already cares, and why we should too. MLA Format CHECKLIST First Page: Student name Professor Name Course Title Date (Day/Month/Year) Original title of essay (Centered, normal font) Last name and page number (Right hand side, header) Format: Typed in 12-point font Readable Font (Times New Roman) Double spaced One inch margins all around No extra spaces between paragraphs Introduction: Introduces the issue itself, mentioning the author(s), source title(s) and types (identify the genre) of texts used in the analysis. A strong, persuasive thesis statement that clearly identifies your argument in response to the research. Body: The main argument of the essay should be your own. The essay should contain accurate information from credible scholarly sources. Aside from correct use of outside sources, the entirety of the essay should be written in your own words. Any quoted or paraphrased material must be identified by quotation marks, lead-in sentences with a signal phrase, and in-text parenthetical citations e.g., (Lewis 294). Credit must be given each time that the information is used, even if it is paraphrased or summarized. Each source listed on the Works Cited page is cited at least once within the essay. When you consult additional (secondary) sources, they should be from credible print sources, such as books, scholarly journals, and periodicals. Most of the non-print sources should NOT be web based, but should come from the online databases that the library subscribes to (JSTOR, Gale Literature Resource Center, ProQuest). Conclusion: A logical closing that ties together the main points of the essay. A unique closing statement that does not repeat the opening statement and leaves the reader with something to think about. Avoid phrases like, “In this paper you have learned…” or “Now that you’ve read my paper…” Works Cited Page: Entries for both primary and secondary sources included. Entries are alphabetized according to the author’s last name. Entries are not numbered. Entries should be double-spaced. Entries should be formatted with a hanging indent in each citation. No meaningless character strings (URL) or hyperlinks.

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