Lesson 3: Refining Your Topic


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Lesson 3: Refining Your Topic

  1. 1. Lesson Three Refining Your Topic Neijiang Normal University - Brent A. Simoneaux
  2. 2. From last week’s lesson, you should know: How to use different thinking processes to systematically develop and analyze key ideas prior to the drafting process. Last Week’s O bjectives
  3. 3. <ul><li>Definition </li></ul><ul><li>Exemplification </li></ul><ul><li>Comparison </li></ul><ul><li>Causality </li></ul><ul><li>Effects </li></ul>What is inventi o n?
  4. 4. By the end of this lesson, you should know: How to use your invention notes and research to refine your topic, making it meaningful and argumentative. Today’s O bjectives
  5. 5. Argumentative T o pics What does the definition of argument imply about our topics?
  6. 6. “ The aim or purpose of argument is to use logic (both inductive and deductive) to create reasoned communication of ideas, insights, and experiences to some audience so as to produce a new understanding of some issue for that audience.” argument
  7. 7. Argumentative T o pics What is the new understanding of your topic that you will provide for your audience? Right now, your topics are too general to produce a new understanding, so we must refine our topics.
  8. 8. Argumentative T o pics Let’s look at page 248 in your text: “Formulating the final topic”
  9. 9. Argumentative T o pics This new understanding of the issue is contained in what we call a thesis statement . At the most basic level (and in the simplest terms possible), a thesis statement is the “central idea” of our paper. (page 256)
  10. 10. Argumentative T o pics Eventually, you are going to need a concrete thesis statement . But for now, we are going to work on tentative thesis statements , possible statements of our best thinking about the topic.
  11. 11. Argumentative T o pics Argumentative thesis statements require that we take a stand on our topics. In other words, we must make a claim that can be proven through logic.
  12. 12. Argumentative T o pics <ul><li>Types of claims: </li></ul><ul><li>Claims of Fact or Definition </li></ul><ul><li>Claims of Cause and Effect </li></ul><ul><li>Claims About Value </li></ul><ul><li>Claims About Solutions or Policies </li></ul>
  13. 13. Argumentative T o pics General Topic: Global warming
  14. 14. Argumentative T o pics Claims of Fact or Definition These claims argue about what the definition of something is or whether something is a settled fact. Example What some people refer to as global warming is actually nothing more than normal, long-term cycles of climate change.
  15. 15. Argumentative T o pics Claims of Cause and Effect These claims argue that one person, thing, or event caused another thing or event to occur. Example The popularity of SUV's in America has caused pollution to increase.
  16. 16. Argumentative T o pics Claims About Value These are claims made about what something is worth, whether we value it or not, how we would rate or categorize something. Example Global warming is the most pressing challenge facing the world today.
  17. 17. Argumentative T o pics Claims About Solutions or Policies These are claims that argue for or against a certain solution or policy approach to a problem. Example Instead of drilling for oil in Alaska we should be focusing on ways to reduce oil consumption, such as researching renewable energy sources.
  18. 18. Argumentative T o pics <ul><li>Now, take 10 – 15 minutes to discuss your topic with a classmates. </li></ul><ul><li>Explain your general topic </li></ul><ul><li>2. Discuss possible claims you might make about your general topic. In other words, you are trying to refine refine your topic into several different tentative theses </li></ul>
  19. 19. Read i ng Read Chapter 8; pages 246 - 256
  20. 20. Next Week : Researching & The Internet