Assignment 4: Proposal

Assignment 4: Proposal


Proposal: July 27

Rough Draft: July 30

Final Draft: July 31


Purpose: A proposal argument aims to identify a problematic situation that merits your taking a stand and then advocating a plan of action. For this assignment, your goal is to identify a problem and then advocate for a solution or way to address that problem.



First, you’ll want to convince your audience that a problem does exist, if necessary.  Then you’ll argue that a certain action should be taken to respond to or resolve that problem. Your proposed plan of action should be both possible and desirable. Your starting point, then, is to identify something that bothers you, something you feel should be changed. Devote the balance of the paper to advocating your proposed plan for addressing/resolving that problem. (See Everything’s an Argument Ch. 12, “Proposal” p. 273)


Invention: Here are some questions to consider as you find a topic for your proposal argument. You may also wish to return to some feature of the topic of an earlier paper. Or you might look through Everything’s an Argument for ideas.

-What local/national/global economic issues concern you? What ideas do you have for addressing those issues?

-What issues, policies, or practices concern you as a student? Those relating to admissions, testing, requirements, prerequisites? What issues or practices bother you about student life? Once you’ve identified a problem, can you also identify a solution?

-As a community citizen, what issues concern you? Those having to do with the environment, textbooks, sports, your school district? For instance, you might consider a local issue particular to your hometown or school district—e.g., should your town build a community center to give young people a place to gather? Should the school district make ice hockey a varsity sport?

-Or you may want to consider issues related to entertainment.  Should movies or video games be rated separately for violence and sex?  Should they be rated at all?  Would you propose some restrictions on bands with offensive lyrics? Should food or drink be regulated in some way as a way to combat obesity?


WARNING: Students are often caught off guard by how much research this assignment requires. Don’t let that happen to you!! Remember, I’m here to help!!

Accomplishing Your Task:

This assignment will require that you use credible sources to supply the data and authority that often persuade contemporary audiences. Your final draft should include at least three reputable outside sources.


Format: A well-developed proposal argument will be approximately five, double-spaced pages, following MLA. List your intended audience at the top of your paper near your name.

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