cleaner energy options using emissions data W r i t i n g

cleaner energy options using emissions data W r i t i n g

Multi-Audience Research Paper Assignment Description

In this project, you will analyze an issue by researching the different people who have a stake in it and produce a 1500-1700-word (~6 page) paper.

Overview of Project: Writing to Explain Multiple Perspectives

Specific Requirement: you have to collect at least three audience arguments on an issue, summarize and analyze those arguments, and present your thesis in conversation with those arguments. The paper should have an introduction, thesis statement, focused body paragraphs, and a thoughtful structure.


You have probably heard the expression, “There are two sides to every story.” The purpose of this assignment is to use what you have learned about telling stories, collecting information, and conducting analysis to explain not just two but multiple sides to a complex issue.


Your instructor may have specific instructions about what the audience to write for. Otherwise, consider writing for an audience of people invested in the issue you are discussing. Be mindful of how people with differing ideas would react to your writing. Do not just write for the people who agree with you. Try not to alienate the people who do not agree with you. Ask yourself, “How can I get the people who disagree on this issue to listen to what I’m saying?”


The genre you are going to use for this assignment is the exploratory essay. In an exploratory essay, you start with a central question or tentative idea. Then you conduct research to learn more about that question or idea. Finally, you explain what you learned through your exploration.

Trouble Spots

You have probably realized by now that there are almost always options for organizing a piece of writing. As a writer, you have to think critically about what information should come first, what should come second, and so on. You will have to do that again here but remember what you have learned about introductions, conclusions, works cited pages, and MLA format.

In addition, because this paper asks you to explain multiple perspectives, you’ll need to consider a range of people who have a stake in your issue (i.e. stakeholders) and find information that will help you explain their points of view. It is important to remember to acknowledge all points of view, including those that disagree with yours.


Here are a few key criteria to keep in mind:

  1. This paper focuses on one meaningful issue.
  2. This paper includes a clear thesis or research question in the introductory paragraph.
  3. This paper incorporates at least three different perspectives on the chosen issue and analyzes them effectively.
  4. This paper integrates sources effectively with appropriate citations.
  5. This paper organizes your argument in a way that makes a difficult issue easy to understand.
  6. This paper uses an engaging voice that draws in readers with diverse points of view.
  7. The paper uses correct grammar and focused paragraphs.
  8. This paper is approximately 1,500 to 1,750 words (5-6 pages) of polished writing.


Now that you have a topic, a research question, and time to do a little research, how will you frame a thesis to reach multiple audiences that include some readers who may disagree with your view?

Some things to think about:

    • What rhetorical claims and appeals might you make to your audience?
    • Where will you start?
    • How do you anticipate questions or opposition?
    • Where will you integrate research to provide support for your argument?

If your topic is, for instance, wind power, here is how you might begin:

1. You have narrowed the topic to look at the issue locally:

Wind power and its effect on Delawareans.

2. Who are some stakeholders? (Be sure that you have chosen stakeholders who represent a broad range of perspectives on the issue.)

Politicians, residents, environmental activists, and state tourism advocates.

3. Once you have chosen four audiences with interests in the issue, think about what perspective each represents.

For example, would state tourism advocates see the issue in economic terms?

4. What will be your major argument? What evidence will you need to support your position? How would you incorporate at least three major different arguments coming from these audiences? For instance, if you want to persuade politicians to support wind power, how might you argue for cleaner energy options using emissions data?

Are there economic advantages you might also cite?

What opposition might you anticipate? How would you respond to those oppositions?

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