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stack of booksWorks that use research, evidence, and logic to advocate for one idea over another.  Related to, but not the same as, persuasive essays.

Features of Argumentative Essays

  • Cites evidence (anecdotal, original, or referenced)
  • Acknowledges and addresses alternate positions
  • Relies on logic & evidence versus moral/emotional appeals
  • Summary terms include: critiques, explains, contends, theorizes....

Find Argumentative Essays:

stack of journalsAlso known as "Scholarly Articles," "Refereed Articles," or "Academic Articles." These sources are written and reviewed by scholars; this means the information is approved by other experts before publication.

Key Features of Journal Articles:

  • Provide new research, analysis, or information about a specific topic
  • The information is based on research and expertise
  • Usually focused on a narrow subject or a single case study
  • Intended for an academic audience

Find Journal Articles:


Information written by reporters (AKA journalists) on topics of current interest.

Key Features of News Sources:

  • Intended for a general audience; commonly written no higher than an 8th-grade reading level
  • Reviewed by one or more editors for quality and accuracy
  • Provide information on a recent event or topic of interest
  • Provide the perspectives of average people, not experts

IMPORTANT NOTE: Not all news sources are created equal! Some have hidden (or obvious!) motives or political beliefs. Do some background research into who owns the news organization to learn more about it.

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graph and map displaying statisticsStatistics provide an interpretation and summary of data. For argumentation, you may be particularly interested in statistics about communities, public opinion, or businesses.  Data is the raw information.

Key Features of Statistics:

  • Numbers that can answer questions that start "how many...?" or "how much...?"
  • Result of data analysis
  • Numbers that tell a story (unlike raw data, which is not yet interpreted)

Find Data & Statistics:

In this box, please create at least 2 and no more than 5 tabs for different types of sources used by student researchers in this subject.

For each source, please include:

  • A brief definition or description of essential information about the source
    • Aim for 50 words in length and try to keep all tabs roughly equal
  • An image of the source or which is relevant to the source
    • Images should be set to 40% Width and Height, HSpace 8 and VSpace 5, Alignment set to "Right"
  • Appropriate databases or other links in which to find the source type
    • No more than 5 per source
    • Limit descriptions to approximately 10-20 words; further details can be kept in the "More Info" area

Please see the currently published guides for examples! You can also copy text and images from the Suggested Source Descriptions page.

When you are finished, please delete this tab!