Assessment Task - Week 2

Task type: Argument essay

Topic: The Internet has a positive impact on society. Do you agree or disagree? Support your opinion with reasons and examples.

We will write the essay in class after the break. Do not write the essay now.

1) First, you should think of some arguments for and against the topic. What are some pros of the Internet? What are some cons? Organize your thoughts into a chart like this one:


2) Next, decide if you agree or disagree with the topic.

3) Finally, use the time in the library to conduct research to support your opinion. Remember that an argument is an opinion supported by facts.

4) Don't forget to cite your references in your essay. Write the URL ( and page title at the end of your in-class essay.

Good luck!



What is an argument?

"In logic, an argument is not a fight but a rational piece of discourse ... that attempts to persuade the reader or listener to believe something... we should also recognize the difference between voicing an opinion and developing an argument.... Think of opinions as starting points for arguments"

Cooper, s and Patton, R, 2006, Writing Logically, Thinking Critically, 5th edition, Longman Publishing, p54-55

"An argumentative essay is an essay in which you agree or disagree with an issue, using reasons to support your opinion. Your goal is to convince the reader that your opinion is right. ...(students) have to take a stand on an issue, support their stand with solid reasons, and support their reasons with solid evidence...

Hogue, A and Oshima, 2006, Writing Academic English, 4th Edition, Pearson Education, pp142-144

In persuasive or argumentative writing, we try to convince others to agree with our facts, share our values, accept our argument and conclusions, and adopt our way of thinking."

Study guides and strategies, Persuasive or argumentative essays(accessed 12 November 2011) <>

What you will be assessed on

  • Ability to structure an argument essay in a logical manner
  • A clear thesis statement and effective topic sentences
  • Ability to use explanation, elaboration and example to develop and support arguments
  • Appropriate use of discourse markers
  • Accurate use of simple and compound structures
  • Some successful use of complex structures
  • Use of academic register

'Frames' for thesis statements (argumentative)

This essay will look at two important reasons why ... + clause (e.g: studying abroad is beneficial for students)
This essay will present three key reasons why ... + clause (e.g: learning a second language benefits the brain)
This essay will present the main advantages of + noun phrase (e.g: learning a second language)
This essay will outline the main arguments why ... + clause
This essay will briefly consider the main reasons why ... + clause
  • Remember! 2 strong, clearly presented, and well supported reasons are BETTER than 3 weak ones.