For this assignment, you will be asked to explore a current issue in bioethics or medical ethics. After choosing from one of the questions below, you will want to create an argument on the issue. This assignment will ask you to synthesize your own thoughts with current research in the field in order to offer a strong argument for your reader.
Step One: Choose one of the following questions around which to shape your argument:
1) Should safe injection sites be allowed in the United States? 2) Should convicted criminals be considered in receiving an organ transplant? 3) Should alcoholics be considered for receiving a liver transplant? 4) Should health insurance companies pay for alcohol or drug rehab programs? 5) Should non-medical exemptions from school vaccinations be allowed? 6) Should euthanasia (physician-assisted suicide) be legal in all 50 states? 7) Should marijuana be used legally for medical purposes other than epilepsy?
Step Two: Spend a few minutes jotting notes or brainstorming your own feelings on this issue. Then, spend another few minutes considering what those on the other side of this issue might say. Jot down a few pieces of evidence that you know you can use to support your position on this question.
Step Three: Do some research on this issue. Use the El Centro College library databases or Google Scholar as a place to start. You will need one scholarly source (either primary or secondary). Then, you will want to find one other credible source. Once you have identified your two sources, post them in the Journals on eCampus as soon as you can, but no later than Friday, March 1. You must have sources posted in the Journals for your assignment to be accepted.
Step Four: Begin outlining or drafting your paper. You will follow a condensed version of a typical argumentative essay.
Introduction You will want to consider what your audience knows about your topic and begin with a general introduction leading into your argument. Though you have already researched and thought about this topic for a while, your reader is looking at the topic for the first time, so be sure your introduction is developed. Your audience may have similar knowledge of the topic, but you still need to prepare readers for your argument. Consider why this is an important topic, some of the ways it affects your audience, a brief history of the issue, etc.
After a strong introduction, you should start moving towards your argument. The thesis statement will be a VERY important part of the essay because it should clearly state your argument. For example, a thesis like “Global Warming is a very important issue in American society” would NOT be appropriate. An argumentative thesis would state something like “Because global warming is such a major concern, all Americans must work to save the environment.” You might consider posing the answer to the question you chose in argument form, or you can use another approach to stating your argument on the topic.
Body of Argument Once you have identified your argument, you will then spend the remainder of the assignment supporting the argument (or claim) made in your introduction with facts from your research. You will want to include two support paragraphs. The first supportive paragraph will provide one reason (using evidence) to support your claim. The second supportive paragraph will provide a second reason (using evidence) to support your claim. No counterargument is required in this essay (however, you can add one if you desire).
Conclusion End your essay by helping your reader see why this issue is important to consider. Give him or her the “so what?” moment that sums up what you are arguing or looks forward to what might need to happen in the future.
Your Audience Who is your audience? For this assignment, you can assume that your readers will have at least the same amount of knowledge about bioethics or medical ethics that you do, if not more. While your professor is part of your audience, she is not your only intended audience. Thus, you would not want to reference things from class discussion like “when we talked in class…” etc.
Format • Your essay should be at least one and a half pages in length. This will include an introduction paragraph, two supporting body paragraphs, and one conclusion paragraph. You can always write more than is required, but not meeting the length requirement could result in a significant loss of points. • Your essay should be double spaces, using an 12-point font, and Times New Roman. Arial, or Calibri. • You should follow APA format for citing your research, though you don’t need to worry about typical sections found in an APA formatted paper (such as title page and abstract). Sources must be cited properly, and the References page will count as a portion of the overall paper grade. It is appropriate to use other people’s information in the paper but be sure to paraphrase and cite the material. PLEASE do not take any chances with plagiarism. See folder on eCampus with resources to help you with APA citation formatting. • The use of direct quotes in scientific writing is a rare occurrence. Since this is not a typical scientific paper, you will be allowed to use direct quotes. However, you will also need to become familiar with paraphrasing material you find in your sources. Therefore, you can only use a maximum of ONE quotation in your paper. All other information given from sources must be paraphrased. • There should be no use of the first person “I,” “my,” “me,” “our” or the second person “you” in this paper. You will want to strive for the formal academic tone, so avoid contractions and casual language as well. Always integrate quotes and do not leave them standing alone as a sentence. Use attributive tags like “According to the author,” or something similar to tie quotes in to the rest of the paper.
A strong Argumentative Essay will do the following: • Include the above-stated format. • Include a strong, argumentative thesis statement. Your position on the question that you chose should be clear and well-supported. • Integrate your sources well. Don’t simply include a citation for your sources. Try to work them into your discussion. • Avoid personal stories. You will want to altogether avoid the use of first person (“I,” “we,” “me,” “my,” etc.) and second person (“you” and “your”). If you are tempted to say “I think that safe injection sites are essential in the U.S.,” just cut off the “I think that” and use the rest of the sentence. Your argument will be stronger. • Include a strong conclusion. • Be clean and free of sentence level errors. Be sure to proofread carefully.