Touchstone 1.2: Write a Research Question, Thesis, and Outline

Learning to conduct research is important because it is a skill you will use both in academia and in your professional life. It improves critical thinking and empowers you to find information for yourself. Consider the process of researching as a whole. What was the most challenging aspect of the process for you? (2-3 sentences)The working thesis statement is a proposed answer to your research question. It should clearly identify a debatable topic and take a position on one side of that topic. Analyze the effectiveness of your working thesis statement. (3-4 sentences)A detailed outline is an effective tool for laying out the progression of an argument. It allows you to consider the arrangement and organization of your ideas, as well as choose places to incorporate outside source materials. Review your detailed outline and summarize the argument you’ve presented. (3-4 sentences)You will use the same topic on three of the remaining Touchstones in this course. What kind of feedback would be helpful for you? What are specific questions you might have as you go deeper into the research process? (2-3 sentences)D. RubricAdvanced (90-100%) Proficient (80-89%) Acceptable (70-79%) Needs Improvement (50-69%) Non-Performance (0-49%)Research QuestionPose a meaningful research question on a debatable topic.Constructs a precise and focused research question relative to a current and debatable topic. Constructs a focused research question relative to a debatable topic. Constructs a research question relative to a debatable topic; however it is somewhat too broad or too narrow for the assignment. Constructs a research question; however, the question is too broad or too narrow for the assignment and/or it is not debatable. Does not construct a research question, or constructs a research question that does not meet any of the rubric criteria.Working ThesisPropose a focused working thesis.Includes a working thesis that takes a well-articulated, clear, specific position on one side of an issue. Includes a working thesis that takes a clear, specific position on one side of an issue. Includes a working thesis that takes a clear position on one side of an issue; however it lacks specificity. Includes a working thesis; however, it lacks specificity and does not take a clear position. Does not include a working thesis, or includes a thesis that does not take a position.Detailed OutlinePresent a detailed outline that includes coherent headings, subheadings, and source placement notes.Outline is thoroughly developed and clearly labeled with effective notes, such that the reader can easily see how the essay will build its argument; all necessary elements of the outline are present. Outline is well-developed and labeled with sufficient notes, such that the reader can get a sense of how the essay will build its argument; all necessary elements of the outline are present. Outline is primarily well-developed and labeled with sufficient notes, such that the reader can get an overall sense of how the essay will build its argument; however, a few necessary elements may be unclear or missing. Outline is not fully developed and/or labeling and notes are often unclear, such that the reader cannot easily get a sense of how the essay will build its argument; several necessary elements of the outline are unclear or missing. Outline is not developed and/or labeling and notes are unclear or absent, such that the reader is unable to see how the essay will build its argument; most necessary elements of the outline are unclear or missing.StyleEstablish a consistent, informative tone and make thoughtful stylistic choices.Demonstrates thoughtful and effective word choices, avoids redundancy and imprecise language, and uses a wide variety of sentence structures. Demonstrates effective word choices, primarily avoids redundancy and imprecise language, and uses a variety of sentence structures. Demonstrates generally effective style choices, but may include occasional redundancies, imprecise language, poor word choice, and/or repetitive sentence structures. Frequently includes poor word choices, redundancies, imprecise language, and/or repetitive sentence structures. Consistently demonstrates poor word choices, redundancies, imprecise language, and/or repetitive sentence structures.ConventionsFollow conventions for standard written English.There are only a few, if any, negligible errors in grammar, punctuation, spelling, capitalization, and usage. There are occasional minor errors in grammar, punctuation, spelling, capitalization, and usage. There are some significant errors in grammar, punctuation, spelling, capitalization, and usage. There are frequent significant errors in grammar, punctuation, spelling, capitalization, and usage. There are consistent significant errors in grammar, punctuation, spelling, capitalization, and usage.ReflectionAnswer reflection questions thoroughly and thoughtfully.Demonstrates thoughtful reflection; consistently includes insights, observations, and/or examples in all responses, following or exceeding response length guidelines. Demonstrates thoughtful reflection; includes multiple insights, observations, and/or examples, following response length guidelines. Primarily demonstrates thoughtful reflection, but some responses are lacking in detail or insight; primarily follows response length guidelines. Shows limited reflection; the majority of responses are lacking in detail or insight, with some questions left unanswered or falling short of response length guidelines. No reflection responses are present.E. RequirementsThe following requirements must be met for your submission to be graded: