Assessing Arguments

Assessing Arguments

Understanding the elements of an argument is the first step toward creating your own. In this assignment, you will review three essays, each demonstrating a unique style of presenting an argument, and choose one essay to evaluate using strategies outlined in your text. Evaluating these arguments will prepare you to write effective persuasive arguments. 

Review the following essays in Ch. 1 of Elements of Argument. After accessing the ebook, enter the page number given for each article to access them. The place to enter the page number is at the bottom left of the screen once the book has been accessed.

  • Page 15: Aristotelian: "I am Adam Lanza's Mother" by Liz Long
  • Page 22: Rogerian: "The 'Unnatural' Ashley Treatment Can Be Right for Profoundly Disabled Children" by Peter Singer
  • Page 31: Toulmin: "Latest 3-D Films Add Dimension, Not Appeal" by Jonathan Winchell

Select one of the three argument essays listed above to evaluate.

Use the strategies on pp. 53-54 in Ch. 2 of Elements of Argument for your evaluation.

Write an assessment of the essay. Your assessment must be at least 350 words total. Include the following in your assessment:

  1. Identify the essay and the author.
  2. Identify the author's thesis.
  3. Explain whether the organization of the article was effective in making its argument.
  4. Describe the methods the author used to argue a point, persuade, mislead, or sway the reader.
  5. Describe how the author's awareness of and response to other arguments were demonstrated in the essay.
  6. Describe the level of timeliness, relevance, credibility of the author and publication presented in the essay.
  7. Implement one quote from the essay you selected to illustrate your evaluation.


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