Answered By: Paul Lai
Last Updated: Sep 04, 2021     Views: 118

 

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Welcome everyone I think we can get started to our writing center webinar building and organizing academic arguments will likely have some folks still drop in.

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As we get started here and that's just fine you can continue to introduce yourself in the chat box if you'd like.

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Michael if you'd like to skip to the next slide for me will go through a few housekeeping items before we dig in.

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So accessibility today we do have closed captions and subtitles available in the zoom. If you click the closed caption or subtitle button in your zoom toolbar.

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You can also find the subtitle settings there if you'd like to make some adjustments. And note that you can drag and drop those subtitles around the screen as well.

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You can also click that button to turn them on and off. And the same goes with a transcript.

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Do note that we will provide a transcript, with the webinar, after afterwards so if you want to access that later or don't want to turn it on right now that will be available afterwards as well.

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Next slide please. Michael.

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Thank you. So I mentioned that the webinar is being recorded and a recording will be available in our webinar archive after the webinar.

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The slides are also available for you to download. If you are using zoom desktop and my colleague Claire will share those for you in the chat box will also send those out by email and have them available in our webinar archive as well after the webinar.

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Many of you have already seen that we have a chat box going and that will be open throughout the webinar. For any questions that you might have. And there will also be some dedicated times to chat as a group and do some activities during the webinar as

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well.

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There are in or excuse me reactions, you can use to interact throughout the webinar if you'd like to as well and we'll keep an eye on those.

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If you have any technical trouble, the support that zoom.us URL is the best place to go for technical support.

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And lastly, we welcome you, ahead of time to share your feedback with us after the webinar. In a brief post webinar survey that we have and we will share that link with you after the webinar.

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So just keep an eye out for it as we get towards the end.

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We are excited to have you here. I recognize a lot of your names and we also have some, some new students who have just joined Walden even within the last couple days.

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So whether you are here for the first time or whether you've been to many of our webinars before we welcome you. We're so glad to have you. We have a really great presentation for you here today.

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So Michael, if you want to go to the next slide, I will introduce, Michael. Our presenter. He is a writing instructor at the writing center. And we also have clear how coffee and other writing instructor with us and she is manning the chat box so she'll

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keep an eye out for all of those great questions that you'll have throughout the webinar. And I'll keep an eye there as well so you might see my name from time to time.

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And with that, I will turn it over to you, Michael.

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Hey, great.

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Thank you for that lovely introduction and thank you for working behind the scenes and thank you to Claire as well for kind of monitoring the chat box here and for the cohesive support that we're offering students here today but yeah, to talk to get started

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with this webinar. This is really about, you know, building and supporting academic arguments within building and organizing academic arguments within your writing.

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Um.

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Before we get into this too far. I mean academic arguments are really the backbone of your academic writing the quality of your writing is often going to be assessed on how persuasive your argument is or put differently, how well supported your the argument

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that you're making is within the writing that you're crafting. So this is a really important topic and one that's going to be really applicable throughout your program whether you know this is your, your first day at Walden or you know as you're moving

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towards some of the larger projects towards the end of your program of crafting organizing academic arguments effectively is a really important aspect of scholarly writing and so, yeah, that's, that's our focus here today, thinking about this though how,

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how does one build and organize an academic argument. There are a number of elements that go into this right and as you can see these elements kind of listed on the screen under today's agenda.

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Um, these are kind of broader topics and each one of these topics can really make a webinar of its own. I think they're they're really super important aspects of academic writing.

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And what I think that this webinar does really well is it kind of brings up these, these elements that are needed to build an organized effective academic arguments.

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And then it kind of gives you a broad overview of these, so you can as you as you follow through this this webinar, you can take a look and and kind of decide if there's something that you'd like to learn more about, or if there's an area that you'd like

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to focus more on in your own kind of research, outside of this webinar so I think that's what what this webinar does really really well it's kind of a broad overview of all the elements involved in organizing and building a strong academic argument.

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Today's agenda then. First we're going to talk about what is argumentation How does this. Enter the academic sphere, how does that relate to a thesis statements and how are these things kind of corresponding elements.

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We're going to look at evidence, using sources paraphrasing and quoting from outside sources to support the argument that you're making. We're going to look at organization within an academic piece.

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More broadly, taking a look at some of the organizational elements specifically that should be included in an effective academic argument or an effective academic argumentation.

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And lastly, we're going to look a little bit at revising and outlining and how you can sharpen your academic argument once you've kind of got it nailed down a little better.

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Excuse me, but yeah that's today's agenda. Let's, let's dive in here.

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First, arguments, an argument is is a reason given to give it improve or rebuttal right you're offering some sort of reason. When you are arguing.

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It's, it can also be thought of as discourse intended to persuade, and this notion of persuasion or persuading your audience is something that that's going to be pretty heavily touched upon in this webinar.

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I mean that's really what sets argumentation apart from just informing your reader of what your, your topic area is when you are arguing, you're choosing aside and you are actively persuading the the reader that decide that you chose is the most logical

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side in this argument, right in this kind of conversation surrounding a topic area, can also be thought of as a coherent series of statements, supported by evidence, leading from on premise to a conclusion.

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Yeah, a couple things to pick apart, they're coherent. So there is a logical order to a strong argument right one part of an argument leads into another so that that coherence piece is is worth mentioning there.

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Another thing that I think sticks out and looking at that specific definition of argumentation is the notion of evidence. Evidence in academic writing is is a super important part, this is, this is how you are supporting the points that you're making.

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So you need to also focus on bringing evidence, effectively into your writing to them build your academic argument.

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Looking at the API definition from section 3.7 arguments should be presented in quote in a professional manner, a professional non combative manner.

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So, yeah, I think what's important to think of here and this relates directly to the academic sphere is that you need to keep your writing your tone specifically on a professional non combative level right in academic writing.

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The point is not to insult someone who would disagree with you or to belittle them into silence. Right.

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The point is to engage with, with the audience, even if they do disagree with you and offer them coherent evidence evidentiary support to potentially persuade them, right.

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So things like emotional appeals, and a kind of charged emotional language. It should really be avoided in academic writing in favor of evidentiary support, and kind of logical conclusions.

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Yeah, so this is just kind of the base definition of what an argument is as we think about it in academic writing.

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Michael, sorry to interrupt, we are having a few folks report that they're having just a slight hard time hearing you today if you could just try and speak up a little bit louder I think that'll help.

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Okay, sure. I can, I can always speak louder.

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Thank you.

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Yeah, I apologize for those of you who couldn't hear me before I usually the problem is that I'm too loud. But yeah okay so from here let's take a look at a couple of possible premises for a paper, and I want you to in the pole, that's about to be launched,

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tell me which of these is argumentative.

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So options are this first premise of paper describing to readers what happens physiologically to a person's brain when that person eats chocolate or a paper persuading readers that chocolate in moderation has health benefits, which of these two is an

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argumentative premise for a paper.

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Let me give you about 30 seconds to do this.

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Yeah, I think, I think actually that's everyone who was in the webinars participated just now. So, that's awesome we can move on. But as I look at these two premises for a paper.

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They are significantly different. Right when we look at the first one, a paper describing to readers what happens physiologically to a person's brain when they eat chocolate.

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This is what we think of in the writing community as being an informative paper you're describing this physiological process that takes place when a person eats chocolate right this is you're informing the reader.

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Our second premise here is going to be the the argumentative premise.

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And what this does is actually takes a stand, write a paper persuading readers that chocolate in moderation has health benefits. And as I kind of evaluate these two, you can see that the second one, you can disagree with.

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Right. Someone could come along and say, you know, even in moderation. It is unhealthy to eat chocolate. That's a pretty straightforward rebuttal to this statement, making it argumentative.

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When I look at this first premise of paper describing to readers what happens physiologically to a person's brain when they when they eat chocolate.

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This is again informative. It's really hard to disagree with that right when the reader is when the writer excuse me is informing the reader.

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There's not a lot of room for disagreement or counter argument.

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Um, it is simply telling the audience what happens, right, whereas the second premise here is is actually trying to persuade the reader it's offering a.

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It's offering reasons why this is the case. Um, so yeah, of the two. The second one is the argumentative premise, I saw a lot of you have that we're adding the money with that so good job they're

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moving on, then talking about establishing the argument for your paper and looking at a thesis statement. This is a really central aspect of an academic piece, the thesis statement.

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And what this is is it's a real brief articulation of the main argument in your piece. It encompasses the main points of your of your paper. It makes an argumentative claim with which someone could disagree.

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It acts as a roadmap it previews, the contents of the paper or tells the reader what argument, you will prove in the paper. Yeah, so it's a thesis statement and there's a, this is actually a active hyperlink for those of you who have downloaded the PDF.

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So you can click on that and be taken to a resource that we offer discussing thesis statements. But back to what I was saying, thesis statement is really that brief articulation of your central argument.

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Everything from the rest of the for the rest of the paper, really stems on that thesis statement. It previews, the rest of the piece it might even preview some of the reasoning behind the argument that you're making, right, it gives the reader a good

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idea of where the papers going

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in all academic pieces that you craft, there should be some sort of thesis statement. This really goes from things like course papers all the way to things like, you know, like a discussion post or something that's shorter and a little more informal.

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This is again the central guiding statement of your whole piece, and in an argumentative thesis, it offers an argument for the reader it tells the reader specifically what argument that you are going to be unpacking and supporting in your academic writing,

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and that be specifically.

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Taking a look at where this is situated within the, the piece that you may be crafting or within an academic essay. This is located in the introduction section this is where the reader expects to find a thesis statement.

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Right. as the reader encounters, your piece. This is where they're going to be looking in order to find your thesis statement to kind of against Center, the argument of your whole piece.

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And lastly, his last bullet point kind of can't be stressed enough, your thesis needs to be supported by evidence right, the body paragraphs in your essay are going to pick apart different parts of that thesis statement, and then offer evidence that supports

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those sub points.

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Some tips for crafting a thesis statement and again in the upper right hand corner we got a resource a link to a resource there that can that can be useful to you if that's something you want to learn more about if you want to kind of explore thesis statements,

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more. But, as you're looking at a thesis statement that you're crafting, you can ask yourself a few questions to kind of make sure that you're on the right track.

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One can someone disagree with you.

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And this is kind of what we talked about as we were evaluating those two paper premises for a thesis statement to be argumentative.

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It has to be able to be disagreed with right and that's what makes it argumentative. So that's one thing that you should definitely kind of reflect on.

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If you're wondering if you're crafting an effective argumentative thesis, then someone disagree with it. Right.

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Who can you base your argument on scholarly evidence, or are you relying on opinion, or morality.

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So again, as I mentioned before in scholarly writing evidence is is really the gold standard for supporting your beats, emotional, appeals opinion appeals to morality.

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These are things to be avoided in academic writing, although you may be writing about something that is emotionally charged or that you find to be moral or immoral.

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There's really no place in academic writing for these kinds of judgments because what morality means to one person. it definitely means something different to another person.

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Right. And in academic writing we're all trying to kind of start on the same level playing field here, a logical evidence based playing field. So again you want to think about as you're taking a look at your thesis statement.

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Is this something that I can prove with evidence, or is this a statement of opinion or my own values. And if it's the second one, that's a pretty good indication that that you need to kind of take a step back and think about the point that you're making

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the argument that you're beginning to build that thesis.

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Lastly, is it narrow enough that you can discuss it with detailed in depth evidence.

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Yeah, this takes me back a little bit to when I was in person teaching a student I remember this vividly there, I was asking my students to craft the paper, an argumentative paper about a topic of their choice.

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And this student came up to me and said, I want to write the paper about the benefits of technology.

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And it gave me a pause because I'm thinking to myself. Hmm. There's a lot of technology that's happened throughout history, and there are a lot of benefits that that technology in all its forms has brought to our world as we know it.

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And it occurred to me that the students idea, you could you could fill a library with all of the discussion that the student would need to effectively encompass the benefits of technology.

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Right. So in order to make your paper manageable. You need to narrow that down, you need to be more specific and hone in on different aspects of your topic area, so that you're not writing about this broad thing that that would take, you know, thousands

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and thousands of pages to make a cogent point about. And this students case I think they ended up talking about something like the benefits of social media for college age students.

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So you can see that it's like a what what technology are we discussing what we're discussing this one.

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And to whom well to this specific population. And this is how you kind of narrow your thesis down. The point is, is that your thesis needs to be sufficiently narrow, so that you can then fully cover that topic in kind of the scope of the paper that you're

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crafting.

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If you're making a if you're crafting your paper that's five to six pages, discussing the benefits of technology is not really going to be able to be fit into that space right.

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So, it is important also to narrow your topic,

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looking at kind of the the notion of a topic versus a thesis, a topic is going to be the subject of a paper right this is what I'm writing about, whereas your thesis statement, you're actually putting forth an argument, it's your argument of your paper.

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And there's a couple of examples that and how this could look right.

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And when you're when you're presenting a topic or an informative thesis, it can sound like this, my paper will discuss employee engagement, and how it relates to employee motivation.

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Hey, sure. I think what this does well is it gives the reader a good idea of what's going to be discussed here, right, we're going to talk about employee engagement, and how it relates to motivation.

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The issue with this is that this isn't argumentative right. No one can really disagree with this, you're describing a situation, you're not taking a stand, or making an argumentative state.

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So, from this topic, then you could craft a thesis statement that does take a stand and that could sound something like this right managers should focus on increasing employee engagement, which translates to increased employee motivation, and thus better

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business outcomes.

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As we look at this you know we're working with some of the same topic we're working within that topic area right, you know, employee engagement and employee motivation right how engaged employee is and how that motivates them, but it's we can see in our

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thesis example, this author is taking a stand, they're saying that managers should focus on this one thing employee engagement, because it positively impacts employee motivation and causes better outcomes.

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Right now someone could disagree with this right they could say something like, managers should focus on casual Fridays, implementing a casual Friday in the office, because it translates to employee motivation and better outcomes.

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The point is that someone could disagree with this, right someone could say that there's a better way to motivate employees and and improve business outcomes, other than employee engagement.

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So, yeah, you can kind of see the difference here. So our topic statement are informative thesis is is really just introducing the topic to the reader, whereas our thesis thesis Dave in an argumentative thesis statement is taking a stand and saying, you

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you know, this is how you do this can also see that this previews The, the piece to come right this author, when we look at the thesis statement here is going to be talking about ways that employee engagement can translate into increased employee motivation.

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And from there, you can see that this paper is also going to discuss how these this employee motivation can improve business outcomes.

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might be it might be rambling a little bit on this slide, probably am, but the point is, take a stand, take an argument and and use that as the the driving force for the rest of your paper.

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I think this is a really important thing to note here is that your thesis, develop throughout your writing process. One thing that I encountered a lot again with in person teaching his students would kind of decide their argument, and then they would

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go off to try to find sources that supported the argument that they wanted to make this is ineffective, because you're essentially handcuffing yourself and your research.

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You're, you're saying you're using. Excuse me.

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You are participating in bias research at that at that point, because you're not being fair to both sides of an argument you're not looking at a bunch of evidence in a topic area and deciding what the best way forward is you're essentially picking the

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best way forward. And then cherry picking sources to support your idea. Even if a great number of scholars disagree with what you would your argument is, if one or two agree, you are going to be using that as evidentiary support, but that doesn't do justice

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to the entire situation. Right. We need to present an argument that is sustainable right and can be proven.

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So, yeah, it's okay for your thesis to change throughout the writing process is what I'm saying. So in the beginning we can start with something like, like a topic area and that would be perfectly acceptable.

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You could even start with a research question that you'd like to find the answer to. Sure, point is is that the thesis isn't completely fleshed out yet when you start, we can start here with our example from a previous slide, employee engagement and employee

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motivation are important. Sure.

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As you read and as you research, then this is going to be refined a little more and that could look something like this, managers should focus on increasing employee engagement, which results in better business outcomes.

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So there were talking, you know we're making an argument we're saying this is what managers should focus on, and here's what that does.

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As we get to the revision stage and as we begin to finalize our thesis statement, it really can sharpen and it makes it a stronger argument. And here's what that gets online managers should focus on increasing employee engagement, which translates to

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increased employee motivation and the better business outcomes.

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Yeah. So again, my point in having this slide is that don't start with your thesis statement and then try to find things that agree with you. Right, be flexible with your thesis statement.

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As you read an encounter more research, you're going to encounter new ideas, that could potentially change the way that you're thinking about this topic area, and it could change the argument that you wish to make.

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That's not a bad thing. That's a good thing, because you're now more informed on this topic than you were before. So, it can be flexible throughout the drafting process until you're reaching that final draft stage, at which time, you are ready to really

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finalize that thesis statement, because at that point you've read a lot of research and you're informed on this topic. You're to a place where you're ready to take a stamp.

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All right, Let's launch our second poll here.

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Which of these is the strongest thesis statement.

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First one, Many companies are using leadership techniques.

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Second one, power companies using leadership techniques to increase the employer, the benefit to employers and employees.

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The third one, this paper will discuss how companies are using leadership techniques to benefit employers and employees, fourth option. This paper will explore the question of how companies are using leadership techniques benefit employers and employees.

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And lastly, leadership techniques have several benefits to employers and employees, including increased productivity employee engagement and reduced employee turnover.

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I'm going to take a sip of water here and give you guys about 30 seconds to participate in this pool should you choose to.

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Okay, Awesome, thank you guys for, for those of you who chose to participate in the poll, that's awesome overwhelmingly. We thought that the last option here was the strongest thesis statement, and I would totally agree.

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Um, there are some issues with the previous ones but instead of like kind of picking the major part, I think it would be best to look at what the last one is doing well.

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Okay, leadership techniques have several benefits to employers and employees. But that's, that's our argument, leadership techniques using leadership techniques, has benefits both to the employer and the employee.

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Awesome.

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And then it goes on to preview the body of this piece really well, including increased productivity employee engagement and reduced employee turnover, as a reader.

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I'm expecting there to be a section of this piece about how leadership techniques can increase productivity. I'll leadership techniques can employee engagement, and a third section about how leadership techniques, reduced employee turnover.

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So yeah, this is doing a good job of previewing how this argument is going to be supported that thesis statement is the strongest of the five. And I think it's doing a good job of, again, both putting forth that argument that is arguable, but also previewing

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the argument that's going to be made and how this author is going to support their thesis statement overall.

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So thinking about support and how we support our arguments within academic writing this really boils down to the use of evidence, right, and evidence can come in in a number of forms is a lot of different evidence that you can use in scholarly writing

00:29:23.000 --> 00:29:32.000
but the three main sources of evidence that you should focus on are peer reviewed journals, books, and scholarly websites.

00:29:32.000 --> 00:29:41.000
These are really the strongest sources of evidence that you can use. Right. And these are going to be used to support the argument that you're making.

00:29:41.000 --> 00:29:54.000
Thus, persuading your readers that the argument that you're making is a logical supported argument. Right. But again the reason for this slide is that these three sources of evidence.

00:29:54.000 --> 00:30:09.000
Excuse me, are really the three that you should be drawing the majority of your evidentiary support from, particularly those peer reviewed journals. So yeah, I just want to put that on your radar, before we go on.

00:30:09.000 --> 00:30:15.000
There's a couple of do's and don'ts when it comes to supporting the argument that you're making.

00:30:15.000 --> 00:30:22.000
Try to ground, your ideas and evidence, particularly firm scholarly sources. Right.

00:30:22.000 --> 00:30:39.000
Instead of doubting your ideas in belief or opinion. Scholarly sources are sources that, in which scholars are studying these topic areas and coming up with narrowed conclusions from their studies.

00:30:39.000 --> 00:30:44.000
Right. They've spent time looking at this they've crafted studies that.

00:30:44.000 --> 00:30:48.000
Take a look at different parts of your topic area that you might be writing on.

00:30:48.000 --> 00:30:59.000
So those are effective things to us as evidence right because it's from someone who studied that someone who is an expert in their field, looking at something like belief or opinion.

00:30:59.000 --> 00:31:08.000
I mean, it gets a little bit more dicey because beliefs or opinions don't necessarily need to be supported by anything, right, anyone can believe anything and and that makes them inappropriate for academic academic argumentation.

00:31:08.000 --> 00:31:21.000
And that makes them inappropriate for academic academic argumentation. So again, ground your ideas that evidence based them in scholarly evidentiary support.

00:31:21.000 --> 00:31:31.000
Avoid statements that are avoid supporting your point, with beliefs or opinion because these are really appropriate an academic context.

00:31:31.000 --> 00:31:45.000
Next, supports your thesis with facts statistics and evidence yeah this is pretty similar to the previous one, but really you're offering those concrete facts right or statistics are awesome because it's a concrete thing.

00:31:45.000 --> 00:31:50.000
Rather than saying things like, I think, or I believe.

00:31:50.000 --> 00:32:05.000
Yeah statements like I think and I believe are really ineffective in academic writing because they introduce doubt into your writing right if you're saying, I believe this is really, this is like this, what you're saying is, is I, it looks like it's really

00:32:05.000 --> 00:32:16.000
close to this other thing, instead of just being strong and saying hey, this is what it is. Here's how I know, here's a fact. Right. So again, here's the facts statistics and evidence.

00:32:16.000 --> 00:32:22.000
That's a good idea. Using phrases like, I think, or I believe, definitely something to be avoided.

00:32:22.000 --> 00:32:40.000
Third, analyze your evidence with logic and reason. When you bring evidence into your into your writing it's meant to support the point that you're making analysis using that logic and reason that tells the reader how that evidence is supporting your

00:32:40.000 --> 00:32:51.000
point, you're working with the sources that you're using. You're not just presenting them, so that the reader has to figure out what you meant by that or what you're supposed to take from that.

00:32:51.000 --> 00:33:06.000
You also want to avoid supporting your thesis, with moral claims as we as we mentioned earlier, you know, morality is different for each person, so making a moral claim is something that, again, is inappropriate in an academic context.

00:33:06.000 --> 00:33:20.000
You also want to try to address opposing sides. I know this sounds kind of strange like, Oh, won't I be taking away from my own point if I address it opposing side, well actually an academic writing, what you're doing is you're showing the reader that

00:33:20.000 --> 00:33:27.000
I've considered all the sides to this argument, and the one that I am arguing for is the one that's most logical.

00:33:27.000 --> 00:33:41.000
You're also what addressing opposing sides or opposing arguments can do for you as a writer, is it gives you the chance to respond to them, right, you can say well here's what some people might think but this is where they, you know, maybe they haven't

00:33:41.000 --> 00:33:52.000
considered this evidence that I found that, that is, you know, kind of, contrary to that. Right. So yeah, it's a great idea to address opposing sides and to use counter arguments in your work.

00:33:52.000 --> 00:33:58.000
You want to avoid the assumption that readers will understand your points without analysis. Right.

00:33:58.000 --> 00:34:04.000
Yeah. Again, bring the reader all the way there.

00:34:04.000 --> 00:34:19.000
Lastly, as I mentioned, just a second ago. You want to refute opposing sides with fairness and respect. So, even though someone disagrees with you. That's not an invitation for you to belittle them or to insult them on, even when you are disagreeing with

00:34:19.000 --> 00:34:28.000
someone you need to be fair to the point that they're making and you need to be respectful to them and the work that they're doing. So, yeah, do that.

00:34:28.000 --> 00:34:37.000
Use professional tone, use a professional tone. To do this, rather than you know belittling the opposing side.

00:34:37.000 --> 00:34:55.000
Again this is about, but remaining formal and professional within your writing, rather than bringing this kind of emotionally charged insulting tone to your work which is again in appropriate in academic context.

00:34:55.000 --> 00:35:08.000
When looking at sources more broadly, you know, there are there are sources that you want to use and there are sources that should be avoided. Things like statistics and data studies and experiments facts, supported by research, you know, peer reviewed

00:35:08.000 --> 00:35:23.000
sources being the highest quality. These are good sources to use in your academic writing right because they can be backed by work that other the others have done by work that has been vetted by peer reviewed processes by data that's been produced from

00:35:23.000 --> 00:35:24.000
their studies.

00:35:24.000 --> 00:35:40.000
Want to avoid things like anecdotes analogies personal experience, popular magazines and opinion pieces, because these aren't necessarily based in in that kind of fact with a capital F right are these kind of studies that have been carefully designed

00:35:40.000 --> 00:35:58.000
and done over the course of a great deal of time on things like anecdotes analogies yeah these just are less appropriate in an academic context. So when you're supporting your point, thinking that in the realm of data and peer reviewed sources and avoid

00:35:58.000 --> 00:36:08.000
popular sources and things that put up put forth anecdotal evidence or personal experience.

00:36:08.000 --> 00:36:12.000
Take a look at what this can look like you know opinion versus evidence.

00:36:12.000 --> 00:36:23.000
The top one is going to be an opinion based state, right. Today, many students have said that high school curriculum or boring unimaginative, and based on rote memorization.

00:36:23.000 --> 00:36:27.000
So this is this is an opinion right, whose opinion is it the opinion of many students.

00:36:27.000 --> 00:36:44.000
Well, how many my exit already person. My first question is how many students would have this, this opinion. Um, are these students who, you know, what what are these students look like are these students who enjoy school to begin with, or these students,

00:36:44.000 --> 00:36:58.000
you know, what the point that I'm getting at here is this isn't very specific, but this author is saying is that hey you know some people think this statement of opinion it's opinion there's a better way to do this would be something like our second example

00:36:58.000 --> 00:37:10.000
here, because high school history curricula are based on rote memorization visual and kinetic learners, often do not get the support that they need. and we have a citation at the end.

00:37:10.000 --> 00:37:20.000
Well, not only is this you know, being more specific about who's being referred to here, what population specifically might find the rote memorization.

00:37:20.000 --> 00:37:32.000
To be ineffective. We're showing the reader that this isn't just something that I have observed or something that I think is true. This is something that this author has studied in this specific study.

00:37:32.000 --> 00:37:44.000
So yeah, this is this is kind of what we mean by avoiding opinion based statements and really working within the realm of evidence.

00:37:44.000 --> 00:37:56.000
Let's take a look at this piece of evidence, and in the chat box if you would like to go ahead and write one sentence of analysis or one interpretation that you can take from this evidence.

00:37:56.000 --> 00:38:11.000
Evidence is this. According to recent data 88% of online learners report high satisfaction with the flexibility of their courses. So, in the chat box then you guys about a minute to do this.

00:38:11.000 --> 00:38:41.000
include one sentence of your own analysis your own interpretation your own approach to this to this evidence, I'm going to go on mute and I'll get back in about a minute.

00:39:37.000 --> 00:39:50.000
Alright. So in looking at this piece of evidence, you know this this is putting forward a statement right according to recent data, 88% of online learners report high satisfaction with the flexibility of their courses.

00:39:50.000 --> 00:40:00.000
Here's a couple examples of what analysis could look like when using this in your writing. We have our evidence here, and then we can see our analysis is in bold.

00:40:00.000 --> 00:40:13.000
Clearly the vast majority of online learners have chosen to get their education online because of the flexibility that it provides. This is what I mean by analysis and working with the source that you're offering to a reader.

00:40:13.000 --> 00:40:25.000
They're not just giving them this statistic and expecting them to know what would you wish them to take from that analysis tells the reader exactly what you mean for that evidence to show.

00:40:25.000 --> 00:40:34.000
In this case, is that the vast majority of online learners have chosen to get their online education. Education online excuse me because of the flexibility that it provides.

00:40:34.000 --> 00:40:37.000
Sure.

00:40:37.000 --> 00:40:47.000
Here's another example of what this evidence can start with this analysis consumer. In other words, online higher education is meeting the flexibility needs of online learners.

00:40:47.000 --> 00:40:49.000
Yeah.

00:40:49.000 --> 00:41:02.000
Again, we're working with the sources source material that we're using here. We're not just presenting it and assuming that the reader gets, how that source material fits into the argument that you're making, we are showing them how the reader, excuse

00:41:02.000 --> 00:41:12.000
me, we're showing them how it fits in the argument that we're making they're

00:41:12.000 --> 00:41:27.000
looking at ways that you can engage with evidence right, I think, I think, one that is pretty familiar to most students is the use of quotation right which is capturing information from a source, word for word you're taking a piece of source language,

00:41:27.000 --> 00:41:44.000
and lifting it from a source that you've encountered and putting it into your, your own right. When you do this, you need to include quotation marks, and need to include a citation to show the reader what source specifically that you're drawing this information

00:41:44.000 --> 00:41:46.000
is an example of what that could look like.

00:41:46.000 --> 00:42:01.000
Mr 2014 noted that adult learners or off adult learners, often are more motivated, than traditional students here, it is clear to the reader that Cubist is 2014 study is where this information is being drawn from.

00:42:01.000 --> 00:42:07.000
And we can see from the use of quotation marks, exactly what language is being drawn from that qubits to source.

00:42:07.000 --> 00:42:08.000
Yeah.

00:42:08.000 --> 00:42:11.000
And we want to make this clear for the reader.

00:42:11.000 --> 00:42:24.000
The reader shouldn't have to kind of guess what information is coming from you and what information is coming from a source. So this is the required format and when you're quoting from a piece of evidence.

00:42:24.000 --> 00:42:30.000
When doing so you really, you want to integrate a quote into your writing. Right. You want to show the reader.

00:42:30.000 --> 00:42:40.000
You know fit that into your writing. So instead of just dropping a quote in as we see in our example above, you want to bring that and smoothly integrate that into your writing.

00:42:40.000 --> 00:42:43.000
So, here's what that the difference looks like.

00:42:43.000 --> 00:43:00.000
Patients trusted their providers and believe that their healthcare was safe and have high quality to them. This is just a quote that's been just dropped in, right, we have a citation there this is in terms of APA style This is alright to include you're

00:43:00.000 --> 00:43:14.000
not breaking any rules or plagiarizing in any way here. However, this is jarring for the reader you're essentially using someone else's language, without bringing any of your own language into smooth that out when integrating a quote like this into your

00:43:14.000 --> 00:43:27.000
writing. Here's how it can sound Hyman and silver 2012 observed that patients trusted their providers and believe that their healthcare was safe and have high quality.

00:43:27.000 --> 00:43:42.000
So again we're using the same piece of of source material we're using the same bit of source language in both of these examples, but the bottom example, the integrated quote is more effective because it's going to be again smoothly integrated into your

00:43:42.000 --> 00:43:46.000
writing.

00:43:46.000 --> 00:43:54.000
Another way to engage with evidence is using paraphrasing, which is where you take an idea from a source and put it into your own words.

00:43:54.000 --> 00:43:57.000
To do this effectively to do this.

00:43:57.000 --> 00:44:04.000
Yeah, to do this effectively you need to change both the wording they use both the word choice and the structure of the sentence.

00:44:04.000 --> 00:44:13.000
As with our rotation, you need to also include a citation to show the reader where this information is being drawn from. Yeah.

00:44:13.000 --> 00:44:25.000
Here's what this could look like adults, more often than younger students are motivated to learn. And then we have our citation at the end there. I think it's pretty straightforward that when you're drawing language from an author, you need to give credit

00:44:25.000 --> 00:44:40.000
to that author, but in academic writing when you're using the ideas from a scholar, you need to give the scholar credit for those ideas as well. And when you're paraphrasing, then you do also need to include a citation, just show the reader, where you're

00:44:40.000 --> 00:44:50.000
drawing that idea from, even though it's in your own words, it's still necessary to give credit to the person who whose idea that is

00:44:50.000 --> 00:45:00.000
why do we paraphrase, I mean paraphrasing is favored to quotation in APA style but but why, right, what does this do for us.

00:45:00.000 --> 00:45:15.000
One, it helps you work through your own ideas. When your paraphrase something you're showing the reader that you understand the source well enough to put it into your own words, right, it helps you to gain that that understanding with the source material.

00:45:15.000 --> 00:45:25.000
As I mentioned there. It shows the readers that you understand the source information. And lastly, it helps your readers see your academic voice when you're quoting your drawing the voice of another.

00:45:25.000 --> 00:45:39.000
But when you're paraphrasing, using the idea of another scholar, but you're expressing it in your own voice. When you look at how that works in your academic writing, you know, you're writing in your own voice, up until you're offering evidence, and then

00:45:39.000 --> 00:45:49.000
you're still offering that evidence in your own voice so that's going to be smoother for the reader to encounter. Then when you're writing in your own voice, then by using a quotation.

00:45:49.000 --> 00:46:01.000
you're giving away that voice and you're, you're having the voice of another included in your writing. This can be kind of jarring for the reader.

00:46:01.000 --> 00:46:09.000
So, whenever possible, I'd recommend paraphrasing instead of using quotation.

00:46:09.000 --> 00:46:10.000
Okay.

00:46:10.000 --> 00:46:20.000
Yeah, organizing arguments, take a look at how these elements kind of fit together in a, the organization of an academic piece.

00:46:20.000 --> 00:46:36.000
This is a really basic outline for a five paragraph essay at the level that you guys are at, you know, you're going to need to write more than five paragraphs in a piece, but this is is important to include here because this is kind of a simplified example

00:46:36.000 --> 00:46:40.000
that can then be expanded to larger pieces of writing.

00:46:40.000 --> 00:46:51.000
Firstly, start with an introduction right which introduces the topic right to introduce the topic you're going to tell the reader you know what this piece is going to be about, you're going to provide the reader with some background information or contextual

00:46:51.000 --> 00:47:02.000
information that helps the reader understand this piece and can help them understand, you know, give them the information that they need in order to understand the argument that you're making.

00:47:02.000 --> 00:47:09.000
And then at the end of the introduction, we're going to offer the reader that thesis statement or that direct articulation of the argument that's being made.

00:47:09.000 --> 00:47:26.000
From there, then your body paragraphs are going to pick apart, different parts of that thesis and offer support for that specific part we can see, there's our first body paragraph tells the reader about a claim or reason why that thesis statement is true,

00:47:26.000 --> 00:47:41.000
a reason why you think that that argument is the most logical in this topic area, right, there's where we bring in evidence and we support that, that claim, which then builds our thesis statement and shows the reader why each part of a thesis statement

00:47:41.000 --> 00:47:53.000
is true. This is how you build an argument throughout the piece. Each of these body paragraphs talked about a different claim and offers support for that plan individually.

00:47:53.000 --> 00:48:07.000
Lastly, then you're going to wrap up with a conclusion paragraph or conclusion section and reiterate your thesis oftentimes paraphrase your thesis and remind the reader reiterate, to the reader the main points of your piece.

00:48:07.000 --> 00:48:30.000
This is how an academic paper functions cohesively introduce the topic we tell the reader the argument, you take apart different parts of the argument and support them with evidence, then we wrap up, and kind of close the piece for the reader.

00:48:30.000 --> 00:48:44.000
And as I mentioned here, you're going to be dealing with with pieces that are going to be longer than five paragraphs, but this format kind of holds up each body paragraph or each section of a body of a piece should really focus on one specific part of

00:48:44.000 --> 00:49:01.000
your thesis or one reason why you believe your thesis to be true. One way that you can logically organize your body paragraphs or the claims that you're making about your thesis statement is to organize them from broad to specific right.

00:49:01.000 --> 00:49:15.000
So in this case your first body paragraph would be more general where maybe you have kind of broad background information. Then as you go through the rest of your body paragraphs, you're getting more specific, you're offering more specific evidence, and

00:49:15.000 --> 00:49:20.000
you're making more specific claims about the argument that you're making about your thesis statement.

00:49:20.000 --> 00:49:32.000
Lastly, then, and this would be in your last body paragraph, you're going to make the most specific narrow and pointed evidence to your claim. This, this can be really effective because what you're doing here is in your last paragraph you're really offering

00:49:32.000 --> 00:49:50.000
your strongest evidence to the reader. And so that leaves the reader with this, this best piece of evidence as they finish reading your piece. So that can be a really effective way to persuade the reader that your argument is valid.

00:49:50.000 --> 00:50:03.000
This is what this can look like and this is more an example of an informative. As we look at the body paragraphs here, man. We have our thesis statement managers should focus on increasing employee engagement, which translates to increased employee motivation

00:50:03.000 --> 00:50:15.000
and thus better business outcome, we were using that as an example in my previous slide, to look at this, generally, then the first body paragraph could talk about the importance of employee engagement and motivation.

00:50:15.000 --> 00:50:28.000
Second one can talk about the relationship between employee engagement and motivation, there you know the relationship specifically, the third body paragraph your third, you know claim, talk about how employee engagement and motivation relate to performance.

00:50:28.000 --> 00:50:37.000
Lastly, you can talk about how employee engagement and motivation relate to business outcomes. All of these body paragraphs and what we're putting in this o line is pretty informative.

00:50:37.000 --> 00:50:46.000
The move forward then you can make these pick apart a certain part of your thesis statement and make a sub point that supports that thesis statement.

00:50:46.000 --> 00:50:56.000
For example, employee engagement and motivation is an important element of management. So first of all, establishing that employee engagement is a really important part of being a manager.

00:50:56.000 --> 00:51:09.000
Second employee engagement and motivation are connected and one helps the other, so you're not just saying, Oh hey, we're going to talk about the relationship here instead you're telling the reader, you know, more specifically how one can help the other

00:51:09.000 --> 00:51:11.000
for getting more specific.

00:51:11.000 --> 00:51:23.000
Third employee engagement and motivation, result in better employee performance. so here we can see this ship, you're moving to employee performance and connecting that to employee motivation and engagement.

00:51:23.000 --> 00:51:30.000
You're really driving this point home right and we can see those ideas expressed in our thesis statement specifically.

00:51:30.000 --> 00:51:45.000
Lastly, these increased metrics, often result in increased business outcomes and performance. One thing I really like about this outline is it's easy to see which part of the thesis statement is being discussed in each body paragraph right you can see

00:51:45.000 --> 00:52:04.000
which part is being really dissected and then we'll be supported with evidence, as you go through this piece but again as we mentioned, these go from broad and get more specific, offering your strongest piece of your argument at the end.

00:52:04.000 --> 00:52:19.000
In terms of revision, you know revision is an important part of the writing process and really this is where your pieces going to go from the kind of unpolished maybe rougher draft, to something that is that is a little bit more refined and a little bit

00:52:19.000 --> 00:52:21.000
more.

00:52:21.000 --> 00:52:33.000
Yeah well less rough, I should say. But I think it can't be understanding the importance of revision here, because this is really where you go back and make your peace better.

00:52:33.000 --> 00:52:46.000
So, if you're one of those people who's not used to going back and revising your piece and making it better. Now this would be a good time to kind of put that away and to prepare yourself to continuously go back and revise your writing, couple of resources

00:52:46.000 --> 00:52:57.000
here you can see, improving your writing strategies for revising proofreading and using feedback. It's an awesome resource that can help you if this is something that you struggle with on.

00:52:57.000 --> 00:53:08.000
Also there's a podcast right cast Episode 14, the five hours of revision on if this is, you know, maybe a podcast format is something that you gravitate towards more organically.

00:53:08.000 --> 00:53:14.000
This can be a great way to digest this information as well.

00:53:14.000 --> 00:53:20.000
couple of tips as you're revising your argument, improving refining your argument.

00:53:20.000 --> 00:53:26.000
If your thesis in mind and ask, does this point or evidence relate to or support my thesis.

00:53:26.000 --> 00:53:47.000
Yeah, so each of the body paragraphs that you crack needs to relate directly back to or support your thesis statement in some way. So if it doesn't, this is a good indication that you might be including something that may not be necessary there a tipping

00:53:47.000 --> 00:53:50.000
I think that's good idea.

00:53:50.000 --> 00:54:01.000
Next, make changes, don't be afraid to find new evidence for tweak your thesis. If they don't match. Yeah thesis doesn't have to stay the same throughout the writing process as we talked about.

00:54:01.000 --> 00:54:17.000
It's okay to change it pieces, it's okay to change your mind. Right. As you research more and develop a better understanding within a topic area. It's only natural that your ideas in that topic area are going to change the, you know, refine be sharpen

00:54:17.000 --> 00:54:33.000
and could could be completely wholesale different, so be open to that. Yeah, develop ideas, check that you are pairing evidence with analysis. Sure. By using a meal plan paragraph developed, which is another kind of strategy we talked about a lot in the

00:54:33.000 --> 00:54:36.000
writing center that's link there.

00:54:36.000 --> 00:54:51.000
You can also try using outlines and I personally like outlines, I would suggest using outlines, because they kind of plan out what a piece is going to do, but I also find that you can evaluate your writing really in a really low stakes way and an outline.

00:54:51.000 --> 00:55:04.000
If you're looking at an outline before you write a piece, you can say hey look, this body paragraph three would be better as body paragraph one, and you can, you know, switch around the order of those body paragraphs, without having to do a ton of writing

00:55:04.000 --> 00:55:15.000
in order to kind of smooth that out as things, take a different place in your piece. Um, so yeah really what you're doing a sketching out the structure and order of your paper before you write it.

00:55:15.000 --> 00:55:32.000
It's super useful for planning and I would recommend doing this, I think as I got higher in my, in my programs. This became something that was more necessary to do as I was dealing with more complicated nuanced ideas.

00:55:32.000 --> 00:55:35.000
Also, after you've written a piece.

00:55:35.000 --> 00:55:48.000
You can also reverse outline, which is where you sketch out the structure in order of your paper after you write. And what this looks like practically is you're going to read through your peace, and you're going to look at every body paragraph and pull

00:55:48.000 --> 00:55:58.000
out the main idea from that body paragraph, and from there you're going to construct an outline. So essentially you're taking a piece that's already been completed.

00:55:58.000 --> 00:56:13.000
And from that, you're going to evaluate and reflect on that, creating an outline. I think this can be useful to again to see if you followed through with the organization that you meant to have, or if your organization could be improved by moving points

00:56:13.000 --> 00:56:20.000
around reverse outline is another strategy that can be really effective, do that.

00:56:20.000 --> 00:56:27.000
Okay, to recap here then articulate your argument with a thesis statement. Yes, do that. That's a great idea.

00:56:27.000 --> 00:56:55.000
This focuses the reader's attention and helps them see where this piece is going right. So, yeah, definitely take it, take the opportunity to add a thesis statement to every academic piece that you support your argument with appropriate evidence via paraphrase

00:56:55.000 --> 00:57:09.000
You can also use headings to kind of lead the reader through the main points that you're, you're working with, or the sub topics that then support your thesis statement, revise the successful argumentation using outlining.

00:57:09.000 --> 00:57:19.000
Yeah, outlining reverse outlining. These are really tools to get you to think about your, your how you're building that argument, an organizing that argument specifically.

00:57:19.000 --> 00:57:27.000
From there you can kind of reflect and say you know maybe I want to make this argument, a little bit differently. Maybe I want to present these ideas in a little bit different order.

00:57:27.000 --> 00:57:41.000
I think that that would make for a more logical argument. Yeah, it's really about finding a way to reflect on your own writing and bring in a logical presentation of your argument that makes sense to you.

00:57:41.000 --> 00:57:42.000
Okay.

00:57:42.000 --> 00:57:54.000
Thank you for listening. I know I've talked to a great deal and covered a lot of information here. Again, I think this is really meant to be a kind of an introductory webinar and in serve as a jumping off point for you.

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If these are some concepts that you'd like to learn more about and seek out more information on, but I will ask Claire. Is there any questions that you'd like me to talk through from the chat box.

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Thanks Michael we didn't have a lot of questions, but one thing I think that would be helpful to touch on really quick, is our paper views and how those can tie into the building an argument process.

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Yeah, sure. So, paper reviews are a service that they're offering the Writing Center, it's a kind of makes up the lion's share of the work that ready instructors like myself or like Claire do on a day to day basis.

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And what this is is is you'll schedule a time to work with a writing instructor, they'll submit a piece that you're working on, and that writing instructor will give you some individualized feedback on that piece on how that fits into organizing and building

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an argument is that this is something that you can gain some, some feedback on from a writing instructor, right, we're going to give you their impression of how well this, this is organized or how well this argument is being built, and that can be a catalyst

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for you to, you know, reflect on your own writing and think about how maybe you want to go about presenting an argument differently or organizing your piece in a slightly different way.

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Effectively, paper review gives you an outside perspective on your own writing, which can be really valuable as a as an honest reflection of how you're doing.

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So that to me is how the paper review service fits into the notion of building and organizing an academic argument.

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Anything else that bears mentioning.

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I think that's all for now.

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Okay, cool.

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We are at time then I'm going to wrap up this webinar. Thank you for listening.

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You know this was a lot of information coming at you.

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But do reach out to the Writing Center at the below email address if you have questions beyond this webinar, we monitor this this role account and we will get back to you in a timely manner.

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