WRT 265 – Argument and Evidence Across Contexts

Course Description: In this course students will investigate the following questions: What is argument? What is evidence? To answer these questions, students will also think deeply about how context does or does not shape our understanding of these concepts. For instance, what do arguments in STEM fields have in common with those in the humanities? Do different fields such as philosophy, psychology, and biology share evidence and argumentative strategies? Is the meaning of evidence static across these fields? We will begin by investigating different models of argument from philosophy and argumentation theory, and then students will use these broad models to investigate and analyze argument in academic contexts of their choice. We will also explore how these theoretical accounts of argument apply to popular contexts such as advertising, public deliberation, and journalism. Students will explore these issues through reflective writing, several short papers and a research project of their own design.

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