. For this assignment, you will select a topic suitable for an argumentative essay about a social issue, then write an informative paper about the topic. You will provide an objective overview of the different sides and angles to the topic. For example, if you were to write about abortion, you would summarize and explain the arguments in favor of keeping abortion legal, those arguments opposed to keeping it legal, and any arguments that fall in between. Depending on your topic, you may need to provide some necessary history/background in order to understand the issue completely.
Keep in mind that your argumentative paper will ask you to think about your topic in terms of policy, so it will behoove you to approach this essay in the same way. For example, “Intelligent design is the best theory explaining the creation of the universe,” is not an acceptable thesis for your argumentative paper, but “Intelligent design should be taught in biology classes” is. For that reason, your Understanding an Issue paper should approach the topic in a similar fashion.
Topics are open, but please be aware that not all argumentative paper topics are created equal. Some topics lend themselves to misinformation and sloppy research — I see this problem most often with abortion and obesity, so tread carefully if you choose either of those topics, and make sure you are pulling from reliable sources. Gun control, universal health care, immigration, and capital punishment have similar issues, although they are not as pronounced.
I would suggest choosing a topic that interests you, but this assignment may be difficult to complete if you choose an issue you feel extremely passionate about, particularly if you have trouble seeing the opposing side’s view. Please keep that in mind when choosing a topic.