WR2 Argumentative Essay

WR2 Argumentative Essay.

I’m working on a English exercise and need support.

In “The Neurology of Free Will,” Charles Duhigg shares the story of Angie Bachmann and her court case against Harrah’s Casino. Duhigg uses Bachmann’s story, along with intersecting narratives and relevant research, to question whether addiction is a choice. Ultimately, Duhigg asks us to reflect on how much personal responsibility addicts like Bachmann bear for their habits. The subsequent articles in the unit (Slater, Schaler, Halpern) provide additional perspectives about addiction, and they offer valuable information that we can connect to Duhigg’s inquiries.

In an argumentative essay that draws from the articles in our unit, answer the following question: To what degree should Angie Bachmann be held accountable for her debts? Explain your position.


Charles Duhigg’s “The Neurology of Free Will,” excerpted from The Power of Habit (2012)

Lauren Slater’s “Rat Park: The Radical Addiction Experiment,” excerpted from Opening Skinner’s Box: Great Psychological Experiments of the Twentieth Century (2004)

Jeffrey A. Schaler’s “Addiction is a Choice,” published by The Psychiatric Times (2002)

John H. Halpern’s “Addiction is a Disease,” published by The Psychiatric Times (2002)


Introduction that explains the topic, and the relevant case, and defines key concepts

Three dimensional thesis statement with clear what, how and why elements

Subclaims at the beginning of each body paragraph*

*Note that body paragraphs that continue analysis of a previous sublcaim can just have a topic or transition sentence at the beginning

Context or lead-in for evidence

Evidence in the form of a quoted or paraphrased material, with in-text citations in MLA format

*Note that students must cite from a minimum of TWO articles in our unit. Students must focus on the information provided in the articles and may not conduct or use outside research for this essay.

Close analysis of details of quote, including explanation of an author’s point, attention to an author’s language, definitions or discussions of key concepts, and applications to the issue or question at hand

Discussion of larger significance of evidence, with connections to the thesis statement

Body paragraphs that connect to thesis and unfold logically from one to the next (organization and development of ideas)

Conclusion that restates main argument and/or responds to the significance of the topic

Correct grammar and usage; professional quality writing for an academic essay


Name, class, date at top left, double spaced

Original title centered

12 point font Times New Roman or 11 point Arial, 1” margins

Double spaced with no extra spaces between paragraphs

Final draft totals 1,000-1,500 words

No Works Cited page required for this essay (see note below)


Essays must go beyond broad discussion or summary to make an argument in response to the prompt, and support that argument with evidence from at least two unit articles, and analysis of that evidence. Essays that do not follow the in-class format for argument and analysis will not receive a passing grade.

This assignment is designed so that students closely engage with the details and complexities of the articles in the unit and refrain from conducting outside research. Please see me with any questions or special requests regarding the use of information not in the unit articles.

The main argument, or 3D thesis statement, must “take a side” in response to the prompt question. However, I welcome students to consider the complexities of the issue and “gray areas” of the issue: consider options of partial responsibility, ultimate responsibility, etc.

Write the essay for a reader who is not in this class and who is not familiar with the articles in this unit. This means you need to spend some time introducing and summarizing the Bachmann case, the texts and author’s arguments, defining key concepts, etc.

Violations of academic integrity, including (but not limited to) plagiarism, use of outside research, unauthorized sources or assistance, or submission of others’ work as your own, will result in a failing grade for the assignment and/or the course.


This assignment is designed to support students in the core academic skills of crafting an original argument, and supporting that argument through evidence and analysis. This assignment also supports the Student Learning Objectives, as outlined in the course syllabus.

WR2 Argumentative Essay

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