For your final course paper, you will write a 2-3 page paper on one of the controversial topics listed below (see “Paper Topics”).

COMM 104: Written Persuasive Appeal (Final Paper)

For your final course paper, you will write a 2-3 page paper on one of the controversial topics listed below (see “Paper Topics”). The purpose of this paper is for you to choose a stance on a controversial issue and integrate your knowledge about rhetoric and persuasion to defend that stance. To do this effectively, you must conduct research on your topic and apply course concepts by creating a compelling and logical argument based on evidence.

This assignment is worth 100 points. For grading criteria, see the Written Persuasive Appeal Rubric located in the Final Paper folder on eCampus.


What to include in your paper: Structure your paper in an organized manner so that there is an introduction, body, and conclusion.

  • In the introduction paragraph of your paper, make sure to clearly state your argument/claim. Your claim should be specific (e.g., if you are arguing for the legalization of euthanasia, are you arguing that it should be legalized under all circumstances or just certain circumstances?).
  • In the body paragraphs of your paper, provide reasons (about 3) to support your argument/claim. Make sure to incorporate compelling evidence and various types of appeals that we have discussed throughout the course to persuade your audience. You should also address and refute potential opposing viewpoints.
  • In the conclusion paragraph, summarize your claim/argument and the reasons you used in support. In addition, go beyond these points by providing implications about your argument. What should your audience do now?

Format: Your 2-3 page paper should be typed and double-spaced, use 12-point Times New Roman font, have 1” margins, and follow APA 6th edition format for all in-text and reference citations. Visit http://libguides.wvu.edu/apa for clarification on APA style. The final paper must also include a separate cover page (that includes your name, date, section #, and ID#; see example cover page located in the Final Paper folder) and a copy of the rubric. Your document must be stapled.

References: You must use at least 6 sources (that are credible, up-to-date, and relevant) to support your argument/claim. All sources must be cited both in-text and in the References section of your paper using APA 6th edition format.

Due date: Unauthorized late and/or emailed papers will not be accepted. You must hand in a printed copy of your paper by the beginning of class.

Paper Topics: You must create and support an argument/claim based on ONE of the following topics.

Should marijuana be legalized?Should prostitution be legalized?Should euthanasia be legalized?Should higher education be free for all students?Should college athletes be paid?Should governments be permitted to use the death penalty?Argue for or against a specific source of energy (e.g., coal, solar, nuclear, etc.).What should role should the United States play in the war on terror?Should presidential elections continue to be decided by the Electoral College?Should companies be allowed to test their products on animals?Should experimental cloning be permitted?Should scientists be allowed to genetically design/modify children prior to birth?Should US law enforcement be permitted to engage in torture, or “enhanced interrogation?”Should individuals be allowed to utilize alternative/homeopathic medicines? Should professional athletes be allowed to utilize performance enhancing drugs?Should GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms) be used in food production?Argue for or against the morality of placing animals into zoos.Should 21 years of age remain the legal drinking age?Should gambling be legal?Should recycling be mandated by law?Should children be allowed to play contact sports?Should firearms be more rigorously regulated?Should the minimum wage be altered?Should American citizens have access to universal healthcare?Is it ethical to lie to children regarding the existence of Santa Claus? Should tobacco be legal?Is climate change occurring, and is it influenced by humans?Argue for or against the censorship of controversial material in media.Should parents vaccinate their children?Should the US government continue to fund NASA and pursue space exploration?Other (must obtain approval from instructor)
 Incomplete (1)Needs Improvement (2)Acceptable (3)Good (4)Excellent (5)
      (x5) ArrangementThis paper does not follow the introduction, body, and conclusion format. The writing does not adhere to the basic mechanics of spelling and/or grammar.This paper is structured so that there is an introduction, body, and conclusion, but the thesis is missing or unclear. Spelling and/or grammatical errors are common.This paper is structured so that there is an introduction, body, and conclusion. The thesis and conclusion is vague but present. There are several spelling and/or grammatical errors.This paper is structured so that there is an introduction, body, and conclusion. The introduction has a thesis and the paper has a conclusion. There are minimal spelling and/or grammatical errors.This paper is structured so that there is an introduction, body, and conclusion. The introduction has a clear and explicit thesis, the conclusion is concise, and the paper flows nicely. There are no spelling or grammatical errors.
      (x5) ArgumentationThis paper fails to clearly articulate a position on a controversial issue. This paper articulates a position on a controversial topic, but fails to use compelling evidence.This paper articulates a position on a controversial topic. It identifies evidence but does not fully integrate evidence into its arguments.This paper articulates a position on a controversial topic. It is well reasoned and supported with compelling evidence that is fully integrated into its arguments, as well as recognizes opposing viewpoints.This paper articulates a position on a controversial topic. It is well reasoned, fully integrates compelling evidence, and recognizes and addresses opposing viewpoints.
    (x5) Use of Evidence  This paper fails to incorporate in-text citations.This paper uses sources that lack credibility, are outdated, and are not clearly connected to the topic.This paper uses credible and up-to-date, sources that are clearly connected to the topic with minor inaccuracies.This paper uses credible and up-to-date sources that are clearly connected to the topic accurately.This paper uses credible, up-to-date, and primary sources that are clearly connected to the topic accurately. 
    (x3) FormatThis paper does not meet the minimum page requirement, is not double-spaced, and/or fails to utilize 12-point font size.This paper is missing a title page, is not written in Times New Roman font, and/or does not have 1” margins.This paper includes a title page, but it contains three or more inaccuracies.This paper is not stapled and/or does not include a rubric.This paper is a full 2 to 3 pages; is written in 12-point, Times New Roman font; has  1” margins; is double spaced; has a title page attached to the front and a rubric attached to the back; and is stapled.
  (x2) References (APA)This paper does not include references, or does not follow APA format.  This paper uses less than six sources, or has more than five APA mistakes on the references page.This paper uses at least six references but there are three to five APA mistakes on the references page.This paper uses at least six references, and there are less than three APA mistakes on the references page.This paper uses at least six references, and there are no blatant mistakes on the references page.
Uncategorized
All Rights Reserved, Essaysland.com
Disclaimer: