Purpose and Description The aim of composing an argumentative research paper is not only to summarize existing perspectives or simply to inform readers about a topic. You have been developing these skills throughout the course, and you should use them to support your writing process, but they are not ends in themselves; rather, they are a means to achieve more complex rhetorical objectives. Your aim for this assignment, specifically, will be to construct a research-based argument that contributes something new to an ongoing scholarly conversation. The instructions described below are designed to guide you through this process. Invention and Inquiry Identify the core problem that motivates your research; Revisit your research question and refine/refocus it where necessary; Gather together the resources you have developed throughout the semester; Note the different perspectives represented in the conversation you have defined; Consider where you stand with respect to core problem and competing perspectives; Draft a thesis statement in which you position yourself within the conversation (based on the research you have completed, the evidence you have gathered, and what contribution you hope to make to the scholarly conversation). The Composing Process Introduce your topic and define the scope of your paper; Provide background on your topic and why it should interest to your audience; Use the sources you have gathered to position yourself in a scholarly conversation; Add your own research findings based on the evidence you have gathered and analyzed; Draw a conclusion about the topic that adds something new to the conversation; Conclude your paper by reaffirming the importance of the issue and pointing toward additional research and/or analysis that can be done to better understand and potentially act on it.

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