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Choose 3 questions from the statement of belief essay for further inquiry. Pick the ones that were either most interesting to you, the ones you felt you’ve changed your opinion on, or the ones you feel most strongly convicted of. Most especially, pick the ones that are causing you anxiety or worry. This is a natural reaction when your deeply held beliefs are challenged.
Introduction, 1 paragraph
Once you’ve chosen your issues, restate briefly what your beliefs were concerning those issues at the outset of the course. Don’t quote your statement of belief essay directly, instead try to capture the essence of those answers in the briefest possible summation. You should make mention of only the most relevant autobiographical details that shaped your moral worldview, before the beginning of this course, by way of explanation.
Subjecting your specific ethical beliefs to an interrogation, 3–6 paragraphs total
Then, devote 1–2 paragraphs to each of the three themes you’ve selected to articulate how those beliefs have been impacted by the arguments of the course, either positively or negatively. This will require the recapitulation of the arguments in the course that either changed your position, or that you had to refute. If your belief changed, which arguments convinced you? And if your opinion has stayed the same, explain why the arguments opposed to your view failed to persuade you, and which arguments convince you that you are right.
Defense of your Position
Next, defend your convictions, whatever they are, against objections. This will require some additional research on your part. Find at least one article that disagrees with your position for each claim you are defending (i.e. three articles total) and argue against your detractors. Use logic and reasoning to show how your opponent’s arguments are invalid, unsound, fallacious, incomplete, or inconclusive. 6–9 paragraphs. Coherence Check
Assess your set of claims for consistency. If you find inconsistencies, rectify them by either changing one of your beliefs, or explaining how an apparent inconsistency is not a true inconsistency. 1–2 paragraphs
Assess the impact of your additional research. Did consideration of their arguments impact your beliefs at all? How confident are you in your position? What additional things might you need to learn about in order to strengthen the convictions you are defending in this paper? 1–2 Paragraphs
12–20 paragraphs total, or no more than 10 pages.
Format: No cover page, Times New Roman, 12 pt. font, 1 inch margins, double spaced, works cited, MLA, APA, and Chicago format are all acceptable, use in-text citations, make references as specific as possible including page number, citations from our textbook should be to the specific articles you cite, not to the textbook as a whole, staple all pages, name in header of all pages, page numbers in footer.
Grading Rubric for the self-examination essay:
A: the paper meets every stipulation in this essay prompt, exhibits mastery of the material covered, is introspective and thoughtful, with flawless writing, organization, and formatting.
C: the paper satisfies every requirement in the prompt but does so ineloquently, with only a satisfactory grasp of the material covered, the organization is lacking, writing contains mistakes, and formatting is not exactly as specified below.
F: the paper fails to meet all of the stipulations in the above prompt, or exhibits unsatisfactory understanding of the material, or lack of proper organization renders the writing difficult to follow, or the writing is riddled with mistakes.
The structure of your paper should look like this, in order:
2. Subjecting your specific ethical beliefs to an interrogation, Issue 1
-Defense of your Position, Issue 1
3. Subjecting your specific ethical beliefs to an interrogation, Issue 2
-Defense of your Position, Issue 2
4. Subjecting your specific ethical beliefs to an interrogation, Issue 3
-Defense of your Position, Issue 3
5. Coherence Check
(You can do this and answer this however you chose. Pick any three questions. My opinions have not changed but it’s okay if you want to change them if it’s easier to write about as long as it doesn’t sound too much different.)