Student Worksheet: Cause-Effect and Argument

Student Worksheet for Cause and Effect and Argument Essay

Cause and Effect and Argument Essay

Length requirement: 3-5 pages

Point of view (first person or third person): Third person

Due date:

Rhetorical mode and chosen topic:

Cause and effect and argumentation

Research requirements:

You are not required to include secondary resources. However, if you decide to use secondary information for supporting evidence, you must document all sources in MLA documentation.

Thinking ahead:

Essay’s main idea and thesis statement:

Argumentative essays assert the soundness of a debatable position, belief, or conclusion. Arguments examine ideas to persuade readers to accept new ideas or to take new actions.

Your thesis statement is the most important sentence in your paper. It is an assertion and answers the question, “What am I trying to prove?” Your thesis statement is NOT a factual statement or an announcement of purpose. It is a claim that has to be proven throughout the paper.

Basic necessary elements in paper:


Your paper should be double-spaced and formatted using MLA heading and MLA documentation as required.

Paragraph Organization

Your paper must include the following elements in separate paragraphs:

  • Identify the topic/issue
  • Describe the major controversy or debate related to your issue
  • State your assertion/claim about the issue
Background Information
  • Provide information to inform the audience about the issue
  • Explain key concepts or terms
  • Reiterate your assertion or claim
Supporting Evidence
  • Supporting Evidence for Ethos/Ethical Appeal: Establish credibility about the issue by revealing your experience or knowledge. In other words, show why the audience should believe what you are proposing in your assertion.
  • Supporting Evidence for Logos/Logical Appeal: Explain universal facts or widely accepted concepts relating to your issue. For example, explain how your issue relates to current laws, constitutional rights, or money.
  • Supporting Evidence for Pathos/Emotional Appeal: Connect to audience-based beliefs or values about your claim. For example, appeal to patriotic values, human values, or moral ideas.
Counterargument and Refutation
  • Counterargument: Summarize major opposing counterarguments about your claim. This shows fairness and establishes credibility.
  • Refutation: Respond to opposing counterarguments by pointing out the weaknesses and emphasizing the strength of your position.

Restate your assertion or claim. This is the last opportunity you will have to present your case. Remind the audience of your assertion. Summarize main points. Offer a recommendation or course of action.

Questions to ask about the paper:

  • Does my introduction identify my topic?
  • Is my thesis debatable?
  • Did I include background information about my topic?
  • Did I establish ethos/credibility relating to the topic in a separate paragraph?
  • Did I establish logos/logical appeal relating to the topic in a separate paragraph?
  • Did I establish pathos/emotional appeal relating to the topic in a separate paragraph?
  • Did I acknowledge the major counterarguments and provide rebuttals to emphasize my claim?
  • Did I remind the audience of my claim/assertion in an effective conclusion?
  • Did I include the appropriate MLA documentation for all secondary sources?
  • Did I proofread, revise, and edit for grammar, punctuation, and mechanical errors?


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Writing Rhetorically: Framing First Year Writing Copyright © 2022 by LOUIS: The Louisiana Library Network is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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