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RWS 100 Project _3 Prompt

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RWS 100 Project #3: Rhetorical Strategies Paper (150pts)


In the controversial article “Is Google Making Us Stupid?” Nicholas Carr addresses how he believes the Internet is affecting our brains. For this project, you will produce an elaborative and evaluative account of Carr’s work. You will introduce Carr’s argument, exploring how he aims to persuade his intended audience—noting specifically who that intended audience might be—of his main claim. As in Project #1, this includes adequate discussion of the main claim, important subclaims, and evidence. However, in this case, you will also address rhetorical strategies at play in order to evaluate the effectiveness of this text. What rhetorical strategies present to you may be different than the strategies that present to your peers.


You may pull from the Rhetorician’s Toolbox, the Fallacies Worksheet, or the Rhetorical Strategies Power Point. These may include, but are not limited to: ethos (any of the rhetorical appeals), anecdotes, tone, structure, etc. Whatever strategies you choose you must identify and ANALYZE at least two rhetorical strategies and one fallacy. You must provide evidence from the text to demonstrate the strategy at work and explain the significance of said strategy. Why would the author choose to utilize this specific strategy? What effect could it have on his audience? How does it help—or hurt—his overall argument?


*Please note: If you find his argument fallacy-free, you can opt to analyze three rhetorical strategies instead.


In this paper, you will:

  1. Bring the reader into the conversation (lead us into the topic, general to narrow).

  2. Introduce the author, the article, and intended audience.

  3. Accurately describe the author’s project and argument.

  4. Layout YOUR project. (Explain how you/the paper will proceed.) This should be a more “pointed” thesis, meaning more specific. You may include your overall evaluation of the text.

  5. Identify specific claims from Carr’s text. Use quotes from text to support.

  6. Connect these claims to rhetorical strategies—how do these strategies aim to convince the audience of the claim?

  7. Analyze two rhetorical strategies and one fallacy. (Or three strategies.) Explain significance and effectiveness.

  8. Conclude your thoughts cohesively, tying up all loose ends.

  9. So what? Why do we care? In this case, the bigger picture may be focused on your overall evaluation, answering your thesis, and/or making recommendations for improvement.

  10. Use clear structure that guides the reader through your paper. Transition.




  • 4-8 pages in length: Non-negotiable

  • 12pt font, 1-inch margins, MLA format.

  • Work Cited page: REQUIRED

  • Check Owl Purdue Online, handouts, or your handbook for MLA formatting tips.



Important Dates:

  • First Draft due: Hard copy on Friday Nov. 6th

  • Revision due: Hard copy on Monday Nov. 9th

  • Final Draft due: Electronic copy on Turnitin by Friday Nov. 13th at 11:59pm.



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