Chapter 8 Arguments Of Fact

30 August 2022
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What is an argument of fact?
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"An argument of fact is basically a claim about what is or is not the case in the real world. While some claims of fact take on meaning outside of this, few of them are academic arguments. Many times, claims of fact need to go beyond what can be directly observed; academic claims of fact deal with inference and conclusion—they tend to involve a lot of analysis of evidence."
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Understanding Arguments of Facts
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¥ Factual arguments are portrayed in many different ways Ex: Is a historical legend true? Has a crime occurred? Are the claims of a scientist accurate? ¥ People tend not to argue factual theories Ex: The Earth revolves around the sun, and the moon revolves around the Earth. ¥ Arguments of Fact relate mostly to Ethos ¥ Factual arguments often address a wide variety of questions about how we know the past ¥ Add interest and complexity
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Characterizing Factual Arguments
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¥ Often spark human curiosity or suspicion ¥ "Such observations can lead quickly to hypotheses — that is, toward tentative and plausible statements of fact whose merits need to be examined more closely." ¥ A case can be made that factual arguments try to rely more on "hard evidence" than do "constructed" arguments based on logic and reason. Ex. of hard evidence: quotations from interviews, videos, news photos, etc.
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Developing a Factual Argument (Definition)
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¥ Any factual argument that you might create, should be similar to the occasion for the argument and the need to serve the audience that you hope to reach.
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Developing a factual Argument (Steps
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1. Identifying an Issue 2. Researching Your Hypothesis 3. Refining Your Claim 4. Deciding which Evidence to Use 5. Presenting Your Evidence 6. Considering Design and Visuals
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Identifying an Issue
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¥ You need to provide an issue and/or problem that will interest you and the potential reader(s) ¥ Ex. You notice people you know are not attending college. How widespread is this change, and who is making this choice? ¥ Be careful, do not argue matters that pose no challenge ¥ Persuading is not offering anything new. Offer something new to the reader to make an argument out of it
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Researching Your Hypothesis
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¥ Use primary sources as often as you can Primary research can be useful when the subject of the argument is local and resources are easily accessible
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Refining Your Claim
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¥ The more you know about your subject, the more you might want to revise your hypothesis to reflect your new discoveries ¥ Examples of Qualifiers — words and phrases such as some, most, few, for most people, for a few users, under specific conditions, usually, occasionally, seldom, and so on...
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Deciding which Evidence to Use
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¥ General public = magazines, documentaries, social media, blogs, etc ¥ " Lab reports" are recognizable as an academic form of a scientifically factual argument ¥ Less scientific factual arguments relate to society, behaviors, institutions, and habits
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Presenting Your Evidence
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¥ Present evidence as strongly as possible ¥ Presentation of argument(s) can be relatively simple ¥ More persuasion = more attention from the reader
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Considering Design and Visuals
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¥ Take into consideration the effectiveness of the presentation of your evidence ¥ Evidence can be measured, computed, or illustrated ¥ Ex: Bullet points, dashes, charts, tables, prezi slideshow, powerpoint ¥ Technical illustrations to imaginative re-creations ¥ Readers expect some sort of illustration to be offered, especially if you have the resources to create one
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Avoid assuming it is always true
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¥ For example, a claim is true because Source A says it is. I know Source A is right because it is never wrong. I know Source A is never wrong because Person B told me so. Person B knows Source A is never wrong because s/he read it in Source A. This argument proves nothing, except that Person B really trusts Source A.
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Things To Know
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- Facts become arguments when they challenge people's lifestyles and/or beliefs - Corrective arguments are shown in daily media - Hypotheses occur when seeing questions like "what if? how come?" and when a writer sees something new and wants to draw attention to the fact(s) - Hard evidence is shown in factual arguments - factcheck.org and politifact.com are great sources to check facts - Your audience should always be your main focus when composing an argument - To offer a factual argument of your own, you need to identify the problem or issue - When developing an argument of your own you need four requirements... A.) Identify the issue B.) Research your hypothesis C.) Refine your claim D.) Present evidence - Images and photos have the power to document what readers have imagined - Making a claim and proving it, is the easiest way to structure a factual argument
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Purpose
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"Factual arguments address broad questions about the history or myths that societies want to believe about themselves. In addition, we need factual arguments that correct or challenge beliefs and assumptions that are held widely within a society on the basis of inadequate or incomplete information."
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Argument of Fact examples
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What is the effect of media coverage on elections? How do elected female officials differ from elected males? Does religious persecution exist? How do American students compare with students from other countries? Does adding days to the school year really improve learning? Computers are changing the way humans think. How does global warming increase the dangers of disease in the U.S.?