Can you help me understand this Writing question?

Please respond to both POST1 and POST2 in at least 200-250 words each.

In this section of the discussion, you will review and respond to at least two peers and what they identify as part of their plan to draft their paper in Part 1 above.

In each response, address your questions and concerns with clear and concise information and advice. If what your peer(s) propose for their papers does not seem valid, identify errors or omissions and provide suggestions for improvement. If you think they are on track, be sure to note why you think they are progressing in a positive manner.

After you have posted your own main response to the Discussion assignment, post at least two substantive responses, minimum of 100 words each, to other students’ main postings, offering specific feedback about the ideas they posted. You must post your main Discussion posting before you can reply to other students.

A substantive post will do at least ONE of the following:

  • Ask an interesting, thoughtful question pertaining to the topic
  • Answer a question (in detail) posted by another student or the instructor
  • Provide extensive additional information on the topic
  • Explain, define, or analyze the topic in detail
  • Share an applicable personal experience
  • Provide an outside source (for example, a website) that applies to the topic, along with additional information about the topic or the source (please cite properly in APA)
  • Make an argument concerning the topic


The most consistent feedback I received from tutors was to strengthen my thesis statement. A thesis statement is more than just taking a side, it is meant to serve as a road map for the rest of your paper. My working thesis is: “Busing was an effective way to desegregate schools because it improved minority student’s success in multiple cities and showed no detriment to white students.” My body paragraphs go on to explain the busing program’s success in cities such as Boston and Charlotte. I also have a paragraph explaining the history of school segregation for some background, and a paragraph explaining why “busing” was a cover argument for blatant racism.

I believe I can use ethos and pathos effectively in my paper by describing what minority schools were like. Broken playground equipment, no textbooks, and undertrained staff are all things that would appeal to someone’s emotions and sense of ethics. Segregated schools were not fair or equal and the reader should be able to understand the lack of ethics in a segregated school system.

Explaining that Jim Crowe laws and de facto segregation led to the segregation of neighborhoods, which in turn led to the segregation of schools is an appeal to logos. The logic behind why something happened can help the reader form an informed opinion.

Sharing statistics regarding minority student’s improvement also solidifies the argument that busing worked. Several studies showed improved grades, increased graduation rates, and decreased crime rates during the time period when busing was enforced.

One argument against busing used at the time was that federal funds should not go towards the busing effort. People thought the districts that wanted to bus should be the ones to pay for it. This may be a fair argument, however, in reality, no school district implemented busing policy on their own accord. The federal government was forced to intervene when it became clear no local governments would enforce integration.

When I started researching this topic I had a basic understanding of forced integration because I live in a school district that attempts school choice. It is highly controversial and most parents claim they don’t want their children on long bus rides. This is fair, but upon further exploration, it became clear that majority black schools are underfunded and underachieving. In reality, to achieve real change a drastic measure like busing is needed for the betterment of society as a whole. I started my research on the fence about busing, but I am not convinced that it was effective and necessary. It is difficult to accept, but in this day and age schools are still extremely segregated.


The feedback I have received throughout this course has helped me remain mindful of the small errors I may make that have an impact on the quality of my writing. For example, I have a tendency to end paragraphs with a citation, and have been told to look out for this as I need to provide information as to why this citation provides support for my claim. While I may think it is clear, it is only because I generally have more knowledge than those reading my paper on the subject because I’ve spent weeks researching. I’m learning to provide explanation for my sources at the end of a paragraph, and this has really helped me to further evaluate if the source adds enough credibility to my claim that it is worth noting in the first place.

I am able to effectively employ ethos when I cite information I gathered from two expert interviews. I plan to utilize logos by citing credible studies that highlight the statistics for the success of first-generation students both during and post-college. I did receive feedback that my draft is lacking in pathos, and I agree. I think I can help develop this rhetorical device by introducing a personal story since I am also a first-generation college student.

I have not received criticism on my thesis. I feel that I have a strong thesis, but nothing is ever perfect, so I will keep searching for ways to really refine this.

I believe that the three gaps that affect first-generation students– the Opportunity Gap, Awareness Gap, and the Achievement Gap–are strong arguments in favor of first-generation students lacking the support they need. This theory can be applied to a recent academic study conducted regarding first-generation students, and by bridging the two together I believe I can create a sense of urgency.

A counter-argument I’ve come across is that first-generation students do have support from their parents. I am able to rebut this by noting that moral support and constructive guidance exist separately.

My opinion on the subject has not changed since I began my research. I still feel that measures should be taken on the part of universities to ensure that all students receive their expected return on their college investment so long as they are actively working for it. Every student should have the same access and knowledge of resources available to help them succeed both during and post-college.

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