Topic Proposal Assignment

GOAL: This assignment asks you to solidify your research topic and provide solid reasons why it is a good choice. REMEMBER: your topic must sustain your interest throughout the entire class and be a good fit for the three different types of essays you will write (these are overviewed in RealizeIT).

ASSIGNMENT: Use this template to complete this assignment by writing your responses directly under each question (if prompted, be sure to click “enable editing” first). All responses must be in complete sentences with correct grammar, punctuation, etc. Be sure to answer each question fully and completely.

1. What is your topic? It should be complex, debatable, narrow, academic in nature, and long-lasting. For example, issues such as “social media” are not specific enough. A more focused and acceptable topic would be “the impact of social media on teenage depression.”


2. What problems are associated with this topic? Who or what do the issues impact? How? Before you can discuss solutions, it is essential to establish that an issue actually is a problem that impacts many people or the world in a significant way. If it is something that only impacts a few people a year, is it really a problem? A weak choice may mean you will run out of steam on the topic before the quarter ends.


3. What do you know about this topic? Build on your working knowledge to explain the conversations surrounding your topic and the various perspectives being represented. What are people saying about this issue?


4. Create a total of three research questions to explore throughout the course. Pose specific, open-ended questions (that can’t be boiled down to a “yes” or “no” answer). The questions should match the assignment goals of each essay:


· Question #1: Expository Essay (goal: informing or explaining the topic) – ask a research question about a problem that will lead to offering factual evidence and expert positions you will use to educate readers about your topic. For example: Why do some K-12 school adminisrators mandate uniform wearing?

· Question #2: Argumentative Essay (goal: supporting a position on the topic) – ask a research question that demonstrates your well-supported perspective on the issue you researched in the Expository Essay. For example: Should K-12 school administrators mandate uniform wearing?

· Question #3: Opinion Article (goal: offering an opinion to your local community) – ask a question that will help your local community best understand their role in addressing your topic. For example: How can Nashville parents help their children transition from choosing their own clothes to wearning uniforms in school?