Research Paper. For this assignment you’ll compose a 2000-2500-word argumentative essay that works within the larger context of the rhetorical situation and discourse community. The primary purpose of the research paper genre is to persuade your audience that your argument is valid, but you can also persuade them to a course of action, clear up misinformation, inform about a complex subject, point out problems that need to be solved or how they’re being addressed badly… Much of that will depend on your topic and argument. The point is to give the paper purpose: your paper needs to be accomplishing something. It cannot be, for instance, a report or a research review.
The paper will use knowledge from at least 8 primary or secondary sources. Ideally you will be able to find scholarly or peer reviewed sources online, but because of our circumstances, use what you deem to be reliable, accessible sources. All sources must be used and cited correctly in your paper and listed in a works cited page (on the last full page of your paper after you end your paper). You may use more sources if necessary, but any source you use you have to cite. You will still practice critical analysis with these sources by only choosing sources that are credible, accurate, and authoritative, and giving proper context for sources that may not stand up to scrutiny. The information you get from the sources can be quotes, paraphrases, and summaries, but they can also be visual: images, graphs, or figures. You will need to look up the proper MLA citation and format for using these (OWL at Purdue is a good resource),and they must be listed in the works cited page.
A note on sources: You may use the sources you wrote about in Unit 2, but you may also include primary sources and other types of sources not allowed in Unit 2. You cannot use inappropriate sources: Wikipedia, study guide websites, etc. Do not exceed 20 sources.
Your final product will be graded on how well you present your argument to this audience. In each paragraph, I will be taking on the role of a reader unfamiliar with our class discussions and your previous work, and I will evaluate you on the effectiveness of your argument and your credibility as an author and researcher. Remember that correct grammar and punctuation are essential to maintaining this credibility, as well as a clear and concise argument that stays focused on your message and rhetorical purpose. Careful attention to MLA citation and format will not only maintain your credibility, but will also allow you to avoid plagiarism.
Guidelines and Assignments
Length: 2000-2500 words for the research paper, with 8 sources (6 peer-reviewed); length for the multi-modal presentation will depend on what type it is
Format: Research paper will follow MLA page format with a Works Cited page; multi-modal presentation will depend on what type it is.
Unit 3 Rubric
I will use the following rubric to evaluate your Research Paper.
The evaluations are listed across the top, along with the letter grade they’re associated with. In the grid itself are descriptions of how a paper can fulfill each evaluative criteria. If a paper gets more of one column than any other, they’ll generally get that letter grade. I determine a number by how many other columns the paper gets. For instance, if a paper gets mostly Somewhat Effective, it will get a B, but if the other most frequent column is Highly Effective, it will get a high B (an 87-89). Rhetorical Knowledge counts for more than Processes and Knowledge of Conventions. I keep this numbering system loose, because sometimes a paper will do well enough in one area that it makes up for another area, and a strict grading system would then be unfair.
See the next few pages for the grading grid:
Evaluative Criteria Highly Effective (A) Somewhat Effective (B) Satisfactory (C) Developing (D) Poor (F)
Focuses on an argumentative purpose connected to a larger academic conversation The paper has a clear argument with a strong purpose, and it’s connected to a larger academic conversation. The paper has a clear argument and purpose. The connection to the larger academic conversation may not be clear.
The paper has a clear argument, though the purpose may not be well-established, and it’s not connected to a larger academic conversation. The paper does not have a clear argument, has little to no purpose, and is completely disconnected from a larger academic conversation. The paper has no argument.
Responds to the needs of different audiences by getting them invested in the topic, providing enough background and context, and addressing possible disagreements. The paper effectively gives background and context, addresses possible disagreements, and works to engage the audience by getting them invested in the topic.
The paper gives enough background and context and addresses possible disagreements. However, the paper does not work to engage the audience by getting them invested in the topic.
The paper gives background and context, and may address possible disagreements. However, it may not do either effectively. It also does not work to engage the audience by getting them invested in the topic. The paper gives very little background and context, and does very little to address possible disagreements. It does not work to engage the audience by getting them invested in the topic. The paper gives no background or context, does not address possible disagreements, and doesn’t engage the audience.
Uses evidence from credible and appropriate sources, as well as sound logic, to make the argument. Evidence from sources is integrated well with author’s own words and ideas. The paper backs up all argumentative points with evidence from appropriate and credible sources, and the logic is completely sound. The source material is integrated well.
The paper backs up all argumentative points with evidence from appropriate and credible sources, although some of the logic may not be explained completely. The source material is integrated mostly well.
The paper backs up most argumentative points with evidence from sources, although some of the sources may not be appropriate or credible, and there may be some lapses in logic. The source material may not be integrated well. The paper fails to back up its argumentative points with evidence from sources (either by not including sources or using them wrong), and most of the sources are not appropriate or credible. There are severe lapses in logic. The source material is not integrated well.
The paper has serious problems with use of evidence from sources and logic. There may or may not be any source material.
Uses organization appropriate to the rhetorical situation, using sections, body paragraphs, topic sentences, and transitions to communicate that organization. The paper has a strong organizational principle, with very few problems with paragraph focus or transitional words.
The paper is organized effectively, although there may be a few issues with paragraph focus or transitional words. The paper has an organizational principle, but that organization may not be the most effective, and there are some issues with focus, transition, and topic sentences. The paper has severe problems with organization, including problems with focus, transition, and topic sentences. It’s repetitive and difficult to follow.
The paper overall lacks any organizational principle.
Is the product of good writing processes: planning, drafting, responding to feedback from instructor and peers, and self-directed revision. The draft uses writing processes as an opportunity to transform and generate new ideas in the writing. The draft uses many writing processes to make effective and positive revisions. The draft makes good-faith attempts at using writing processes, though a few problems persist from previous drafts. The draft may make one or two changes as a result of using writing processes, but it doesn’t answer the most important revisions. The draft largely ignores all opportunities for writing process and does not make many substantive revisions.
Knowledge of Conventions
Uses appropriate and clear MLA in-text citation for sources within the paper The paper uses MLA in-text citation correctly and well, avoiding errors and “Annoying Ways.”
The paper uses MLA in-text citation mostly correctly, although one or two errors or “Annoying Ways” might slip in. The paper tries to follow MLA in-text citation, although there are several errors and “Annoying Ways.” The paper has severe problems with MLA in-text citation, to the point that it’s difficult to follow the citation but not completely stray into plagiarism.
The paper utterly fails to use MLA in-text citation correctly.
MLA format and works cited citation is correct The paper has no errors in MLA format and works cited citation.
The paper only has 1-5 repeated MLA format and works cited errors, but that doesn’t cause any major problems with readability and citation.
The paper has 6-10 repeated MLA format and works cited errors, causing a few problems with readability and citation. The paper has more than 10 repeated MLA format and works cited errors, causing severe problems with readability and citation. The paper fails to properly use MLA format and works cited citation.
Control surface features such as syntax, grammar, punctuation, and spelling. There are few to no typos and grammar, usage, and punctuation errors. There are some typos and grammar, usage, and punctuation errors, though not enough to obstruct meaning. There are several typos and grammar, usage, and punctuation errors, which occasionally obstructs meaning. There are serious issues with the grammar, usage, and punctuation, to the point that the reader has difficulty understanding the paper. The paper has so many grammar, usage, and punctuation issues that it’s impossible to understand.
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