- Slides: 37
WHAT IS POSITION PAPER? Like a debate, a position paper presents one side of an arguable opinion about an issue.
GOAL OF A POSITION PAPER The goal of a position paper is to convince the audience that your opinion is valid and defensible.
IMPORTANCE OF A POSITION PAPER It is very important to ensure that you are addressing all sides of the issue and presenting it in a manner that is easy for your audience to understand. The position paper is something you want to excel at, and to do this, several criteria must be met.
IMPORTANCE OF A POSITION PAPER The position paper is meant to give delegates an opportunity to organize their research into an organized policy statement. In position paper, you have to take one side of the argument and persuade your audience that you have a well-founded knowledge of the topic being presented.
IMPORTANCE OF A POSITION PAPER It is important to support your argument with evidence to ensure the validity of your claim, as well as to refute the counterclaims to show that you are well informed about both sides. REMEMBER: The position paper is written based on facts that provide a solid foundation on the topic.
FOUR STEPS IN WRITING A POSITION PAPER
I-OUTLINE THE TOPIC IN GENERAL The purpose of outlining the topic in general and providing insight into the root of the conflict. As the subject of the paper is Free Trade, the write-up begins by first stating the areas of concern, discussing some of the positive and negative aspects of globalization, as well as emphasizing the controversial nature of the topic at hand.
I-OUTLINE THE TOPIC IN GENERAL Your opening paragraph should, as this paper attests to, be a brief summary of the current perception held towards the status quo. It should state the problem and express why it is significant.
II-IDENTIFY AND DESCRIBE YOUR LOCATION– HOW HAS YOUR PLACE BEEN AFFECTED? Where your background research on your location pays off. Firstly, you should identify and describe your country. Be sure to state how your nation relates to the topic for discussion, specifically citing how your state has been affected.
II-IDENTIFY AND DESCRIBE YOUR LOCATION– HOW HAS YOUR PLACE BEEN AFFECTED? It is imperative to emphasize the extent to which change has taken place. Hold off any normative judgments in this section, the purpose of this paragraph is not to evaluate the institution or development in reference to your country, but rather, to merely discuss how it has altered domestic dynamics.
III-YOUR COUNTRY’S POLICIES AND PROPOSED SOLUTIONS Where you outline your country’s policies and what factors contributed to those policies being established in the first place. At this point, you are to address the relative benefits (if any) and detriments of the development, specifically relating to your nation and the actions you have taken to maximize or minimize these effects.
III-YOUR COUNTRY’S POLICIES AND PROPOSED SOLUTIONS You are to explain why your country has acted in a certain fashion historically and why it will continue to follow this course of action. Outline your state’s particular interest in the issue being discussed, and begin to discuss what needs to be changed about the current interpretation of the situation.
III-YOUR COUNTRY’S POLICIES AND PROPOSED SOLUTIONS Cite the areas needing reform and provide suggestions as to how this revision process should be accomplished. Following this, you may want to focus on one area of particular concern for your country.
III-YOUR COUNTRY’S POLICIES AND PROPOSED SOLUTIONS Depending on your topic area, this could be anything from the affect of a war on a nation’s health care infrastructure to how creating new national boundaries may affect resource deposits running along the potential borders.
III-YOUR COUNTRY’S POLICIES AND PROPOSED SOLUTIONS Be sure to select an area of concern that could potentially form the basis of a resolution, or at least one that can stimulate prolonged debate.
IV-TIE TOGETHER LOOSE ENDS Finally, a conclusion should be written to restate your country’s position and sum up what you hope to achieve throughout the duration of the conference.
IV-TIE TOGETHER LOOSE ENDS The position paper leaves the committee chair with a first impression of your delegation. Naturally, it’s important to make that impression as strong as possible. The staff looks for original and critical thinking, a true understanding of the nature of your nation and both a function and applied knowledge of your topic.
IV-TIE TOGETHER LOOSE ENDS Be sure to demonstrate this through presenting a concise yet effective paper. As expressed before, be sure to dedicate equivalent energy to position papers for both topic areas. They are equally important in the eyes of the committee and the directors (the people who will be evaluating your write-ups).
GENERIC SAMPLE OUTLINE OF POSITION PAPER
I- INTRODUCTION A. B. C. D. Introduce the topic Get the reader’s attention by using a “hook” Provide background information on the topic Assert thesis (your view of the issue)
II- COUNTER ARGUMENT (IT CAN BE PLACE BEFORE CONCLUSION) A. B. C. D. Summarize the counterclaims Provide supporting information for counterclaims Refute the counterclaims Give evidence for argument
III-FIRST ARGUMENT OR REASON TO SUPPORT YOUR POSITION A. Topic sentence asserting point #1 of your claims 1. Give your educated and informed opinion 2. Provide support using reliable sources 3. Comment on evidence given 4. Write a concluding sentence to wrap up your idea
IV-SECOND ARGUMENT OR REASON TO SUPPORT YOUR POSITION A. Topic sentence asserting point #2 of your claims 1. Give your educated and informed opinion 2. Provide support using reliable sources 3. Comment on evidence given 4. Write a concluding sentence to wrap up your idea
V-THIRD ARGUMENT OR REASON TO SUPPORT YOUR POSITION A. Topic sentence asserting point #3 of your claims 1. Give your educated and informed opinion 2. Provide support using reliable sources 3. Comment on evidence given 4. Write a concluding sentence to wrap up your idea
VI-CONCLUSION A. B. C. Summary of main points or reasons Restate your argument Provide a plan of action but do not introduce new information
CONSIDERATIONS IN PREPARING POSITION PAPER
I- ISSUE CRITERIA Is it a real issue, with genuine controversy and uncertainty? Can you identify at least two distinctive positions? Are you personally interested in advocating one of these positions? Is the scope of the issue narrow enough to be manageable?
II- CONSIDERING YOUR AUDIENCE AND DETERMINING YOUR VIEWPOINT Is your topic interesting? Remember that originality counts. Can you manage the material within the specifications set by the instructor? Does your topic assert something specific, prove it and where applicable, propose a plan of action? Do you have enough material or proof to support your opinion?
III- STATING YOUR THESIS A THESIS is a one sentence statement about you topic. It’s an assertion about your topic, something you claim to be true. To make your topic into a thesis statement, you need to make a claim about it, make it into a sentence. Example: Orig topic: an important issue in my major field Focused topic: media tech education for communication majors Thesis: Theories of media technology deserve a more prominent place in this University’s Communication program.
IV- WRITING WITH STYLE AND CLARITY 1. Diction-refers to the choice of words for the expression of ideas; the construction, disposition and application of words in your essay, with regard to clearness, accuracy and variety, etc. ; mode of expression and language.
IV- WRITING WITH STYLE AND CLARITY 2. Paragraphs-creating clear paragraphs is essential. Paragraphs come in many sizes and patterns that no single formula could possibly cover them all. it is developing and framing an idea or expression. Carefully and clearly organize the order of your paragraphs
IV- WRITING WITH STYLE AND CLARITY 3. Transitions-it tells the reader what to do with the information you present them. Its function is to give signal for readers how to think about, organize and react to old and new ideas as they read through what you have written. Basically, it provides readers a directions how to logically coherent arguments.
IV- WRITING WITH STYLE AND CLARITY 4. Grammar and Spelling-make sure that your paper is free from grammar and spelling mistakes. Mechanical errors are usually the main reason for lack of clarity in essays, be thoroughly proof read your paper before handling it in.
IV- WRITING WITH STYLE AND CLARITY 5. Plagiarism and academic honestyplagiarism is a form of stealin; as with other offenses against the law, ignorance is no excuse. Give credit where credit is due even if you have changed the wording or just summarized the main points.
SOURCES: Guilford, (2001). Occasions for Argumentative Essays. Writing Argumentative Essays. Retrieved August 26, 2002 from the: http: //www. powa. org/agufrms. htm Previously adapted from: Hairston, M. (1982) A Contemporary Rhetoric (3 rd ed). Boston: Houghton Mifflin. Northey, M. (1993). Making Sense: a student’s guide to research, writing, and style (3 rd ed). Toronto: Oxford University Press. UNC-CH Writing Center (2000). Transitions. Writing Center Handouts. Retrieved August 26, 2002 from the: http: //www. unc. edu/depts/wcweb/handouts/thesis. html
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