Argumentative Research Paper


Type: Argumentative Paper

Weight: 15%

Length: 2100-2400 words (approximately 7-8 pages, not including the title page or references page)

Font: Times New Roman, size 12

References: Minimum of 3 scholarly course readings and 3 scholarly external texts*

Citation style: APA

Please note: "External texts" would include articles from scholarly journals and/or chapters from scholarly books. These texts must not be not listed on the course syllabus as required or additional readings.


Elizabeth Comack and Salina Brickey argue that social and legal understandings of violence tend to be understood through narratives and stories (or to use their word, discourses) that are fundamentally gendered (pp. 4-5). These narratives and stories—utilized by the law, the media, and sometimes even violent people themselves—often rely on problematic assumptions about femininity and masculinity in order to make sense of the violence.

Discuss Comack and Brickey’s argument with respect to one of the following four topics:

  1. violent women
  2. right-wing extremists
  3. rape myths
  4. HIV-positive women


This assignment is explicitly developed as the culmination of previous assignments in the course. You are encouraged to use the material you have already completed this term (most importantly, the Annotation Assignment and the Introduction and Working Thesis Assignment). If you got a good mark on your “Introduction and Working Thesis Assignment,” feel free to reuse that assignment as the introductory paragraph of your paper. Before re-using any previous assignments, however, you should be sure to take into consideration the feedback given to you by your TA and make any necessary revisions.

(Important Note: In reusing previous assignments, you may have a higher-than-normal “unoriginality” percentage on Turnitin. As long as the highlighted material is your own work in this class from these previous written assignments—or something else legitimate, such as direct quotes with quotation marks and a proper in-text citation—this is fine.)

Your essay should include the following:

  1. Introductory paragraph: Introduces the topic of the paper and includes the thesis statement and roadmap.
  2. Supporting Argument #1: This will likely take you more than one paragraph to develop.
  3. Supporting Argument #2: This will likely take you more than one paragraph to develop.
  4. Supporting Argument #3: This will likely take you more than one paragraph to develop.
  5. Concluding Paragraph: Includes a re-statement of your thesis statement and supporting arguments in different words. Do not introduce new arguments or evidence in your conclusion.

Please Note: In scholarly writing, all paragraphs (including the introductory and concluding paragraphs) should be approximately 8-12 sentences. In addition, you may have more than three supporting arguments, but you should not have less than three.

Your Research Paper should be developed around an explicit thesis. It should be double spaced using Times New Roman (font size 12) with regular (1 inch) margins. Include a title page and references page. Your title page should include an original and relevant title (not “Gender and the Law Research Paper” or “SOSC 1350 Paper”), your name and student number, the course code, your professor’s name, your TA’s name, the word count (not including the title page or references page) and the date the paper is being submitted. For late penalties, read page 7 of the syllabus carefully.

Grading Rubric

To see how you’ll be evaluated, click here.