you’ll prepare to turn your outline from Lesson 1 into a research essay.

Write a rough draft of a 1,000- to 1,200-word argumentative research essay based on your outline from Lesson 1 and then present it to the class to help you anticipate further counterclaims.

Your draft should include the following:

  1. An introduction paragraph that clearly presents the claim and lets the reader know what your essay is about, including any necessary background information
  2. Body paragraphs that support your claim with reasons and evidence from researched sources
  3. At least one extra paragraph addressing a counterclaim that a reasonable person might make (unless you address counterclaims in other body paragraphs)
  4. A conclusion paragraph that ties up any loose ends in the essay, reminds the reader of the overall point of the essay, and leaves the reader with a lasting impression
  5. Careful organization and use of transitions to clearly show the connections between the claim, reasons, counterclaims, and researched evidence

Aim for a formal style that establishes your authority in the eyes of the reader and treats counterclaims objectively and politely.

Feel free to conduct additional research and implement more or better sources. You may end up changing your claim, reasons, or subpoints. In other words, the arguments you make in your rough draft do not have to be precisely the same as the arguments you made in your outline.


Draft an argumentative research essay based on the outline you created in Lesson 1. Although you’re free to find new sources and make changes to your original plan, all the original requirements from Lesson 1 remain, including a strong claim, evidence from credible sources, and supporting reasons that back up the claim.

In addition to writing your draft, you must respond to at least one counterclaim. This response may appear in one of the body paragraphs you already planned out in Lesson 1, or it may appear in a new body paragraph. Your assignment should show good judgment about where best to address counterclaims.

Your essay should include the following elements:

  • A claim, supporting reasons, and evidence from at least five sources
  • An introduction paragraph, body paragraphs, and a conclusion paragraph
  • A counterclaim, followed by a response that supports your argument
  • Transitions to show how the claim, reasons, evidence, and counterclaim are related

Ask yourself these questions as you revise:

  • Is my claim arguable and defensible? Do my supporting reasons back up my claim? Does my evidence back up both my claim and my supporting reasons?
  • Does my introduction paragraph get the reader’s attention? Does it present my claim clearly? Does it give the reader enough information about my topic to understand my position?
  • Do my body paragraphs present both reasons and evidence? Does the evidence come from credible sources? Do my body paragraphs include an appropriate amount of content? Do I provide a topic sentence for each paragraph that clearly explains what it’s about?
  • Do I address at least one counterclaim? Do I respond to it fairly and professionally? Is my response located in an appropriate place in my essay?

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