Research Essay Instructions

Write a 500- to 750- word (1.5- to 2- typed double-spaced pages) argumentative essay on one of the topics listed below.

An argumentative essay is an essay in which you agree or disagree with an issue, using reasons to support your opinion.  Your goal is to convince the reader that your opinion is right.  You have to take a stand on an issue, support your stand with solid reasons and support your reasons with solid evidence.

Choose one topic from the list of topics below. You are also required to research your topic to complete this essay. 

Essay Topic Choices:

You must choose ONE topic from this list.   

1. Are biometrics an invasion of people’s privacy?  What is your opinion?  Support your           opinion with evidence.

2. Should athletes be paid high salaries? What is your opinion?  Support your opinion           with evidence.

3. Should people be allowed to own and carry guns? What is your opinion?  Support your       opinion with evidence.

Week One:

          Click on this link and read about how to write an academic essay

Week Two:

          Prepare to write your essay

  1. Select one of the topics above and decide what stance you are going to take.
  2. Research your topic and find sources that support your stance.
  3. Decide the three points you want to focus on that will support your stance.
  4. Create a brief essay outline to help yourself stay focused and organized as you write.

Weeks Three & Four:

          Write your five-paragraph essay

  1. Write an introductory paragraph that includes a hook, background information,           and a three-point, parallel thesis statement.
  2. Write three body paragraphs.  Each paragraph begins with a topic sentence           includes reasons, and supporting evidence which you have researched and cited           appropriately. Each body paragraph must have a concluding sentence.
  3. Write a concluding paragraph that paraphrases and summarizes your three           points.                               

Week Five:

          Create your title page with running head and revise your essay

  1. Create a title page with running head.
  2. Check to make sure your paper is organized.
  3. Revise the content of each paragraph.  Did you begin each paragraph with a                        topic sentence? Did you end each paragraph with a concluding sentence?
  4. Proofread for language errors.  Does each sentence subject agree with its verb?                     Are there any spelling or capitalization errors?
  5. Check for plagiarism by submitting the essay into library@MyCanvas.

If you cannot check each of these boxes before you submit your essay, you are missing something.

Essay Checklist:

☐  My essay includes a title page with a running head.

☐  My essay comprises five, double-spaced paragraphs

☐  My introductory paragraph contains a hook, background information, and a three-point    parallel thesis statement.

☐  Each of my body paragraphs begins with a topic sentence and I use clear transition expressions between paragraphs.

☐  Each paragraph has a single focus and a clear connection to the thesis statement.

☐  Each of my points is supported with factual data (research).

☐  I have provided an in-text citation for every quote or paraphrase piece of information I got from another source.

☐  Each of my narrative or parenthetical in-text citations follows APA guidelines.

☐  Each of my body paragraphs ends with a concluding sentence.

☐  My essay includes clear transition expressions between paragraphs.

☐  My concluding paragraph summarizes the main points of my essay.

☐  My essay follows all formatting guidelines (e.g. font, line spacing, indenting)

All material in this handout has been cut and pasted and/or adapted from the following source

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