Argument Handouts


Argument Handouts

These handouts are adapted from the LRS curriculum and from Colomb and Williams, The Craft of Argument. New York, Longman, 2003. The first version of this archive was compiled by Jim Cocola.

| Argument Overviews | Claims and Reasons | Evidence | Warrants | Acknowledgment and Response

Argument Overviews

The Five Questions of Argument (adapted by Andrea Bobotis)

Shorter Five Questions of Argument

Argument Stations (adapted by Jason Coats)
These stations, each briefly summarizing a different part of argument, can be used to introduce the parts of argument and for various classroom exercises. One example: Post in different parts of the classroom. Divide students into groups, making each group responsible for a part of argument. Each group presents its part of argument, provides examples, or contributes a part to an argument being developed by the class.

What Makes an Argument? (adapted by Melissa White)
Overview of the five questions and five parts of argument, with emphasis on what makes an exchange an argument.

Argument Chart
This chart defines the parts of argument and gives examples based on the worst teacher exercise.

The Five Parts of Argument (Plus One) (adapted by Kevin Seidel)
Bullet-point explanations of the five parts of argument, plus qualifications.

Argument Review (adapted by Joley Wood)
Retrospective overview of the parts of argument with an emphasis on qualifications. You can substitute examples and explanations related to your course theme.

Nine Degrees of Argumentative Success
Different degrees of persuasion, depending on reader's response to the argument.

Five Ways Arguments Can Fail to Persuade
Based on reader responses to evidence, warrants.

Where Good Arguments Go Bad (adapted by Michael LeMaster)

Worksheet: Evaluating Arguments
This checklist helps students to analyze the structure of their own arguments as they plan and revise.

Worksheet: Analyzing Arguments in Readings (adapted by Ellen Malenas)
Students fill out this worksheet as they read.



Claims and Reasons

Worksheet: Ranking Claims (adapted by Cinnamon Grabill)
Worksheet: Evaluating Global Claims (adapted by Michael LeMaster)
Worksheet: Claims and Reasons (adapted by Clare Terni)
These are all variations on the claim rank exercises that can be adapted with thematic material.

Argument House Plan (Jason Coats)
This handout uses the metaphor of a house as it asks students to consider the most effective way to order their reasons.

Parallel and Sequential Reasons (adapted by Hannah Phelps)
This handout describes various relationships between reasons/evidence and the global claim and discusses different strategies for ordering reasons.




Evidence Overview (adapted by Clare Terni)

Five Maxims of Quality Evidence (adapted by Melissa White)

Evaluating Web Pages (Todd Burks, Clemons Library)

Literary Evidence: The PARSA Test (adapted by Bart Welling)
This handout is a longer version of the Five Maxims that applies these principles to literary evidence. It can be adapted with thematic examples.




Warrants Overview (adapted by Hannah Phelps)
This handout includes questions to help writers decide when they need to put a warrant on the page.



Acknowledgment and Response

Acknowledgment and Response Overview

Acknowledgement and Response: Imagining Alternatives (adapted by Lindsay Wright)
This overview focuses on imagining alternative interpretations/finding them in the readings and on locating A/R in papers.