Choose an important issue on your campus or in your community that you want to explore. Research the issue by reading what others have written, speaking to people in your community, conducting a survey, or some other method. Write a report that presents a balanced view of all sides of the issue but ends with a recommendation for action based on your research. As you develop your own researched report, consider the rhetorical situation of this essay: • What is the context (the immediate occasion or the timing or kairos) of your writing? In responding to an issue that involves a community, you are joining a conversation. Hear what others are saying and think about why. • Who is your audience? Consider who will read your essay (classmates, teachers, friends, family, the public) and how these different audiences might require you to shape your report. • What is your purpose? A report requires presenting information, but a recommendation requires you to use that information to make a judgment. Your essay should present a judgement based on a fair presentation of that information. • What is your topic and what is your stance? What do you think and why? Use your reading of research, your own experience, or your own min-research project to guide your discussion of this topic to your stance. • What are your genre, your medium, and your design? You are asked to write a research report essay, so what are the conventions of essay writing that will impact your work? How will you organize your work? Your essay will be a written text, so how will this impact your rhetorical choices? Your essay should follow MLA guidelines for format and citations. • What’s your style? What is appropriate and correct for your rhetorical situation? How formal should you be? Consider matching your style with your purpose, topic, and audience.
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