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Assignment | Proposal Essay with Research (Vasconcelos): Organize Your Ideas

ENGL 1301 | Prof. M. Vasconcelos (Fall 2021)

From Your Assignment

First paragraph: Introduction, a brief discussion of the topic, and a strong thesis.
Body paragraphs: body paragraphs should support the thesis and incorporate the writer’s research. Body paragraphs should explain both the problem and the solution.
Discuss who will be positively impacted by the change,
and why this is an important problem that is in need of a solution.
Final paragraph: Conclusion summing up your arguments in the essay in fresh words and a final thought to leave the reader with a strong impression

Develop Your Thesis

Your thesis is where you put forward your argument in a concise, declarative way. It is typically one sentence long and comes at the end of your introduction paragraph. You should only develop your thesis after you've started doing your research. You can have a thesis in mind as you start your research, of course, but be prepared to change it if you find it's unsupportable with the information available to you.

Thesis statements should be:





  • Specific - lay out exactly the arguments/reasons you're using in your thesis
  • Contestable - if you can find a definitive yes/no answer within a few minutes of Google searching, it's not arguable enough
  • Narrow - not about all of privacy ever, but this little sliver of a privacy issue in this particular time and society
  • Provable - or at least something you can persuasively argue.

Your thesis statement should essentially give your reader a preview of what arguments you'll be presenting over the course of your paper.

Parts of Your Paper

  1. Introduction Paragraph
    1. Introduce your topic
    2. Last sentence is your thesis statement
  2. "Big idea" paragraph
  3. Next "big idea" paragraph
  4. Repeat big idea paragraphs as needed, depending on your topic
  5. Conclusion: bring it all together
    1. Don't just think of this as a summary: how does everything above come together? What's the point? What's the big take-away?


An outline isn't required for this assignment. It can be a very useful tool for you anyway, though!

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