For this assignment, you will develop a sophisticated research question that explores an “unsolved mystery.” There are many ways for you to interpret this concept. You can interpret the concept literally–as in mysteries/events that have yet to be definitively answered, such as “Who killed Tupac and Biggie?” or “Did Robert Durst commit murder?” or “Is there life on other planets, and if so, why haven’t we met them yet?” or “Is Bigfoot real?”. You can also interpret it in other ways, with interesting deep dives into specific topics/events. Examples here include, “Why do people believe in ghosts?”, “Why do people see a human face in a tree or rock, where none really exists?”, “Why did people use leeches as medical treatment?”, or “What are the most recent advances in brain science?”. You should consider how to categorize your question using critical thinking/question categories and strategies of argument discussed in your handouts, notes, and readings. Please review the page “An Argument Can Be…” before embarking on this project! Assignment Process + Instructions For this assignment, you will compose an essay with a strong thesis statement and evidence, coherent body paragraphs, and a strong conclusion. You are required to use four sources for this assignment.
The sources can be anything you want (photo, audio, map, article, website, video, interview, survey, census, data, graphs, trees, art, literature, book, etc.) as long as they meet the following two parameters: A) You must have sources from at least two different modes (ie-print and digital, textual and visual, etc.) and B) One of your sources must be accessed through our library (catalog, database). As long as they meet those 2 criteria, your source selection is entirely up to you. You should choose the sources that have the most credibility, accuracy, and relevance to your topic. You should choose the best sources to answer your research question. *Your audience for this assignment is an interdisciplinary audience of college students, scholars, and inquisitive adults (the kind who watch PBS). The genre for this assignment is researched argumentation.* In order to complete this assignment, you should go through the following steps: Invention and Critical Thinking: Come up with a topic, conduct background research, and develop a research question. Research your question. Carefully choose four sources. Read and make notes as you go. Develop a working thesis statement based on your research. Draft body paragraphs and outline the conclusion of your essay. Draft your introduction and conclusion. As part of the introduction section, revise your working thesis statement into a more polished thesis based on your essay draft.
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