Core Value 1. My work demonstrates that I used a variety of social and interactive practices that involve recursive stages of exploration, discovery, conceptualization, and development.
I used this core value in my research for my Definition Rewrite. While I posted my first draft, I began to wonder how I could improve the strength of the argument, so I consulted my professor on what I should to for my rewrite. I ended up switching a source I used in my first draft for a new source that I found. My professor also advised that I emphasize certain points to make them more clear and to give them more “weight” to my argument, which I followed through with.
Core Value 2. My work demonstrates that I read critically, and that I placed texts into conversation with one another to create meaning by synthesizing ideas from various discourse communities.
This core value can be applied to my Causal Argument. I broke down the points in my argument: a school environment that needs to be encouraging, teaching the importance of warning signs and helping those with depression, and the act of approaching a student. These points had sources that support my argument, and I used quotes from these authors to add more strength to my thesis. I also made an edit within my argument due to a source: my initial argument was for authority figures to detect and respond to warning signs. Through my research, I found that students themselves can help each other too, which expands the possibility of detecting warning signs.
Core Value 3. My work demonstrates that I rhetorically analyzed the purpose, audience, and contexts of my own writing and other texts and visual arguments.
I used this core value in my Rebuttal Argument. When acknowledging a counterpoint, which is that approaching students is an ethical issue, I cited a source that explained how people with depression can look completely normal. While this may be true, I clarified that this may apply for those who may not be looking for warning signs of depression or may not know what a warning sign may look like at all. It is a sort of counter-point/explanation that teaching warning signs would cause some “normal” behaviors to stand out.
Core Value 4: My work demonstrates that I have met the expectations of academic writing by locating, evaluating, and incorporating illustrations and evidence to support my own ideas and interpretations.
I used this source in my Definition Argument. While defining what warning signals are, I had to pick a “target group”. Depression affects many people in many ways. People handle this mental illness differently depending on age, family situation, area of dwelling, etc. I chose to target teenagers, since nurturing their mental health as they reach adult age is essential to maximizing the chances that they have a successful future. I found multiple sources that define warning signs in teenagers, all with the same symptoms. I chose to look for multiple sources to ensure the validity of the group’s research on teen depression and warning signs. This gave me an idea on what warning signs should be educated on during high school: a community greatly populated by adolescents.
Core Value 5. My work demonstrates that I respect my ethical responsibility to represent complex ideas fairly and to the sources of my information with appropriate citation.
This core value can be seen in my Rebuttal Argument, which makes its way into my Research Position Paper. My topic was very controversial. It involves approaching a student who seems to be depressed and offering to help them. In a public setting such as a city square or a shopping mall, approaching one and talking about a personal issue is highly risky and against many peoples’ morals. However, the setting of my argument is not a city square or a shopping mall. It is a high school: a learning environment where teenagers spend most of their day and start to approach adulthood. This is perhaps the most appropriate setting to be on the lookout for students, but also a risky action. I mentioned that teaching the severity of depression would motivate those who recognize warning signs to find an effective, non-threatening and welcoming way to approach and help the student, while decreasing the stigma that being approached and offered help is a “sign of weakness.”