For the Final Paper, you will identify a specific claim relative to one of the topics listed below and defend it with as strong an argument as possible. These topics are presented below as questions. The best way to develop a thesis statement is to offer an answer to the question, and then state in a clear and specific sentence the basis for your answer.
- Should homosexuals be able to marry?
- Is racism and anti-Semitism still a problem in the United States?
- Is factory farming cruel to animals?
- Is anthropogenic climate change (what used to be known as “global warming”) a problem that needs immediate and/or long term attention?
- Should physician-assisted suicide be legal?
- What, if any, limits should there be to embryonic stem cell research?
- Should public workers be allowed to join unions and engage in collective bargaining?
- Is the death penalty just and applied fairly?
- Are there any legitimate restrictions on gun ownership?
- Is it a problem if one percent of Americans possess 50% of American wealth and assets?
- Should abortion be legal?
- Should evolution be taught in the public schools?
- Are science and religion in conflict?
- Can one be moral and not believe in God?
Part One – Thesis
In this part of the paper, the thesis is to be stated clearly and specifically. It should appear no later than the end of the introduction paragraph.
Part Two – Argument
This part of the paper will present the argument for the thesis. The focus should be on identifying the strongest support for the thesis. Then, present that support by constructing an argument. This argument, or set of arguments, will probably employ both deductive and inductive reasoning.
Part Three – Counter-thesis and counter-argument
In this part of the paper, the strongest objection to the thesis is presented along with an argument (probably briefer than the argument in Part Two) for that thesis.
Part Four – Response to counter-thesis
In this part of the paper, you respond to and refute the counter-argument based on evidence discussed in Part Three. This response will draw on the earlier argument in Part Two to show that the original thesis can be defended against this objection.
The paper will be evaluated in terms of the grading rubric. The clearer your presentation of the debate and the more specific you can be in that presentation, the stronger the paper will be.
The Final Paper must be six to eight pages in length (not counting the cover page or reference list). You must use at least four resources, at least one of which must provide support for your thesis and at least one of which must provide support for your counter-thesis. Two of the four required resources must be found in the Ashford Online Library. The Final Paper must be formatted according to APA (6th edition) style, and all resources must be properly cited in text as well as on the reference page. If you would like to refer to APA samples and tutorials, log into the Ashford Writing Center (located in the Learning Resources tab in the left navigation bar). Click on the “APA & Research Guides” tab and review the resources.
Writing the Final Paper
The Final Paper:
- Must be 6 to 8 double-spaced pages in length (not counting the cover page or reference list), and formatted according to APA style as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center.
- Must include a title page with the following:
- Title of paper
- Student’s name
- Course name and number
- Instructor’s name
- Date submitted
- Must begin with an introductory paragraph that has a succinct thesis statement.
- Must address the topic of the paper with critical thought.
- Must end with a conclusion that reaffirms your thesis.
- Must use at least 4 scholarly resources, including a minimum of 2 from the Ashford Online Library.
- Must document all sources in APA style, as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center.
- Must include a separate reference page, formatted according to APA style as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center.
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