Developing an Argument : Constructing an Argument Louise Livesey Academic Skills Adviser This...

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Developing an Argument : Constructing an ArgumentLouise LiveseyAcademic Skills AdviserThis workshop will:Revisit what an argument isSuggest types of argument that an assignment can be built aroundOffer strategies to apply evidence and theory into your written work

13 January, 2015Academic Skills Advice11Types of arguments to construct

Using evidence to support your argument

Using theory in your writing

Todays Plan13 January, 2015Academic Skills Advice2Evidencing is more than one source Check your reading listKeep a recordThink, read, write1.Types of argument to construct13 January, 2015Academic Skills Advice3Agreeing and presenting reliable evidence to support the position taken.

Rejecting but again using reliable evidence to do this. (A counter-argument with each individual claim in the argument in question is countered by another claim).

Conceding that an existing argument/point of view has merits, but needs to be qualified in certain respects, and stating what these are.

Proposing a new argument/point of view, or reformulating an existing one, so that the new version makes a better explanation for the situation under discussion.

Reconciling by bringing a new perspective to bear on the topic.

Connecting or synthesizing different ideas, so new approaches and arguments/points of view can be brought to bear on the subject.

13 January, 2015Academic Skills Advice41.Types of argument to constructGraphic representation of argument: agreement13 January, 2015Academic Skills Advice51.Types of argument to construct Graphic representation of argument: rejectionTALKING POINTPoints/beliefsEvidence13 January, 2015Academic Skills Advice61.Types of argument to constructClick for visual6Activity 1: Workshops v Instant AdviceStudy Skills Workshops Instant Action one-to-oneConcedingCan learn from students on different coursesCan only learn from advisorNot enough personal attentionAdvisor provides undivided attention to studentHave long time to work through specific problemShort time to work through more than one problemHave to wait for when scheduledCan access help without waitingProposing new argumentDo not deliver study skills as students should have skills alreadyReconcilingMake a group appointment for longer time with co-studentsConnecting or synthesizingStudy skills could be delivered in subject sessions at appropriate times 13 January, 2015Academic Skills Advice71.Types of argument to constructClick for table7Use examples Which highlight the most significant or far-reaching implicationsTo illustrate different aspects of your argumentFrom a range of sources, e.g. journal articles, books, and reports To support general arguments. Use empirical evidence, i.e. evidence collected via systematic and rigorous observationUse maps, diagrams and numerical data (in appropriate assessments, i.e. not essays but reports and dissertations)

2.Using evidence to support your argument13 January, 2015Academic Skills Advice8DO NOT PANIC

3.Using theory in your writing

13 January, 2015Academic Skills Advice9Competing theories are not equal different theories appeal to different kinds of evidence, so different theories are useful in different contexts. Do not lump together good bits of different theories into one super theory as they will contradict each other.

Stand outside to see a theorysstrengths and weaknesses

4.Using theory in your writing13 January, 2015Academic Skills Advice10SummaryUndertake critical analysis before you start writingAre clear about your position on the issue (if asked to choose a stance)Take multiple perspectives THE BEST ANSWERS DO THIS: IT IS A MARK WINNERAre clear about your conclusion (if asked to be definite)Use appropriate empirical or theoretical evidence to support your points/beliefsStand outside a theory to see its strengths and weaknesses

13 January, 2015Academic Skills Advice11Analyse your own work be your own critic

13 January, 2015Academic Skills Advice12ReferencesClip art spectacles/questionCottrell, S. (2013) The Study Skills Handbook. 4th Ed. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.dogfaceboy (2007) Slick flame stitch. [online] Available at: [Accessed 21.7.2014]Redman, P. (2001) Good Essay Writing. 2nd Ed. London: Sage Publications Ltd.The Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. (2014) Available at: [Accessed 21.7.2014]

13 January, 2015Academic Skills Advice13University of Surrey. (2014) Writing Skills. Guildford: University of Surrey. [online] Available at: [Accessed 6.3.2014]Van den Brink-Budgen, R. (2010) Critical Thinking for Students. 4th Ed. Oxford: How To Books Ltd.

13 January, 2015Academic Skills Advice14ReferencesAcademic Skills Advice ServiceWhere are we? Chesham Building B0.23. Give us a call or come speak to us Monday- Friday 9am-5pm (closing at 4pm Fridays).Who am I? Louise, the dedicated workshop adviser. Who can help me with study and writing skills? Lucy and Russell run Instant Study Skills Advice sessions every weekday and Writing Skills Clinics three times a week. You can also access self-help resources on our webpage.Who can give me maths advice? Helen and Michael specialise in Maths support for students though clinics and pre-booked appointment.How do I get in touch? Email: Telephone: 01274 236849

13 January, 2015Academic Skills Advice15 questions?

13 January, 2015Academic Skills Advice16Produced by Louise Livesey May 2014