Touchstone 3.1: Construct a Rogerian Argument

ASSIGNMENT: As you learned in this unit, a Rogerian argument is one that presents two sides of a debate and argues for a solution that will satisfy both sides. Given two articles presenting opposing sides of an issue (mandatory uniforms in schools), construct your own 2-3 page Rogerian argument essay in which you attempt to arrive at a workable solution or “middle ground.”

In order to foster learning and growth, all essays you submit must be newly written specifically for this course. Any recycled work will be sent back with a 0, and you will be given one attempt to redo the Touchstone.

Article 1: “School Dress Codes and Uniform Policies”
Article 2: “Dressing Diversity: Politics of Difference and the Case of School Uniforms”

Sample Touchstone

A. Assignment Guidelines

DIRECTIONS: Refer to the list below throughout the writing process. Do not submit your Touchstone until it meets these guidelines.

1. Summary of Positions

❒ Have you briefly introduced the author and publication context (year, journal, etc.) of Article 1?
❒ Have you included a summary of the stance presented in Article 1?
❒ Have you briefly introduced the author and publication context (year, journal, etc.) of Article 2?
❒ Have you included a summary of the stance presented Article 2?

2. Thesis/Claim

❒ Does you claim address both sides of the issue, including specific points raised in the articles?
❒ Does your claim present a clear, workable solution that could be viewed as a “middle ground” between the two sides?

3. Analysis

❒ Have you backed up your claim using facts from both sides of the argument?
❒ When using direct quotations, have you supplemented them with your own explanation of their relevance?

4. Reflection

❒ Have you answered all reflection questions thoughtfully and included insights, observations, and/or examples in all responses?
❒ Are your answers included on a separate page below the main assignment?

B. Reflection

DIRECTIONS: Below your assignment, include answers to all of the following reflection questions.

  1. How does the Rogerian model of argument help you better understand the topic that’s being discussed? Why is it a good practice to acknowledge both sides of the argument? (3-4 sentences)
  2. Will you use the Rogerian Approach in your own argumentative essay? Why or why not? (2-3 sentences)

C. Rubric

Advanced (90-100%)Proficient (80-89%)Acceptable (70-79%)Needs Improvement (50-69%)Non-Performance (0-49%)

Summary of Positions

Introduce the two sources and summarize each side of the argument.Effectively introduces both authors and provides a complete and concise summary of both positions presented in the articles.Introduces both authors and provides a concise summary of both positions presented in the articles.Provides a brief overview of the authors and positions, but key details of the positions may be missing.Introduces both authors, but does not provide a complete summary of positions presented in the articles.Does not introduce both authors and/or does not provide a summary of each position presented in the articles.

Thesis/Claim

Present a thesis that advocates for a solution to satisfy both sides of the argument.Provides a thesis that clearly and effectively advocates for a solution to satisfy both sides of the argument.Provides a thesis that clearly advocates for a solution to satisfy both sides of the argument.Provides a clear thesis; however, it does not suggest a solution to satisfy both sides of the argument.Provides a thesis, but it is unclear and/or does not advocate for a solution to satisfy both sides of the argument.No clear thesis has been presented.

Organization

Exhibit competent organization and writing techniques.Includes all of the required components of a Rogerian argument paper, including an engaging introduction with source summaries and a claim, body paragraphs with topic sentences, and a conclusion with a concluding statement.Includes all of the required components of a Rogerian argument paper, including an introduction with source summaries and a claim, body paragraphs with topic sentences, and a conclusion with a concluding statement.Includes nearly all of the required components of a Rogerian argument paper; however, one component is missing.Includes most of the required components of a Rogerian argument paper, but is lacking two components. Sequences ideas and paragraphs such that the connections between ideas (within and between paragraphs) are sometimes unclear and the reader may have difficulty following the progression of the argument.Lacks several or all of the components of a Rogerian argument paper. Sequences ideas and paragraphs such that the connections between ideas (within and between paragraphs) are often unclear and the reader has difficulty following the progression of the argument.

Style

Establish a consistent, informative tone and make thoughtful stylistic choices.Demonstrates thoughtful and effective word choices, avoids redundancy and imprecise language, and uses a wide variety of sentence structures.Demonstrates effective word choices, primarily avoids redundancy and imprecise language, and uses a variety of sentence structures.Demonstrates generally effective style choices, but may include occasional redundancies, imprecise language, poor word choice, and/or repetitive sentence structures.Frequently includes poor word choices, redundancies, imprecise language, and/or repetitive sentence structures.Consistently demonstrates poor word choices, redundancies, imprecise language, and/or repetitive sentence structures.

Conventions

Follow conventions for standard English.There are only a few, if any, negligible errors in grammar, punctuation, spelling, capitalization, formatting, and usage.There are occasional minor errors in grammar, punctuation, spelling, capitalization, formatting, and usage.There are some significant errors in grammar, punctuation, spelling, capitalization, formatting, and usage.There are frequent significant errors in grammar, punctuation, spelling, capitalization, formatting, and usage.There are consistent significant errors in grammar, punctuation, spelling, capitalization, formatting, and usage.

Reflection

Reflect on progression and development throughout the course.Demonstrates thoughtful reflection; consistently includes insights, observations, and/or examples in all responses, following or exceeding response length guidelines.Demonstrates thoughtful reflection; includes multiple insights, observations, and/or examples, following response length guidelines.Primarily demonstrates thoughtful reflection, but some responses are lacking in detail or insight; primarily follows response length guidelines.Shows limited reflection; the majority of responses are lacking in detail or insight, with some questions left unanswered or falling short of response length guidelines.No reflection responses are present.

D. Requirements

The following requirements must be met for your submission to be graded:

  • Composition must be 2-3 pages (approximately 500-750 words).
  • Double-space the composition and use one-inch margins.
  • Use a readable 12-point font.
  • All writing must be appropriate for an academic context.
  • Composition must be original and written for this assignment.
  • Plagiarism of any kind is strictly prohibited.
  • Submission must include your name, the name of the course, the date, and the title of your composition.
  • Include all of the assignment components in a single file.
    • Acceptable file formats include .doc and .docx.

E. Additional Resources

The following resources will be helpful to you as you work on this assignment:

  1. Purdue Online Writing Lab’s APA Formatting and Style Guide
    1. This site includes a comprehensive overview of APA style, as well as individual pages with guidelines for specific citation types.
  2. Frequently Asked Questions About APA Style
    1. This page on the official APA website addresses common questions related to APA formatting. The “References,” “Punctuation,” and “Grammar and Writing Style” sections will be the most useful to your work in this course.
  3. APA Style: Quick Answers—References
    1. This page on the official APA Style website provides numerous examples of reference list formatting for various source types.

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