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WRITING A POSITION PAPER

Prepared by: Ms. Roann M. Baleza


STEPS IN WRITING A POSITION PAPER
1. Choose an issue for a topic
2. Collect information on the issue: identify the
different positions on the issue, as well as the
supports by the different sides
3. Organize your presentations
Step 1: CHOOSING AN ISSUE FOR A
TOPIC
Is there a particular problem in your
community that you feel strongly about? If
for example, youve always felt great concern
towards child beggars, this can be a possible
issue for your position paper
Are you a member of a cause-oriented
group? Such groups can also lead you to a
possible issue as usually they are oriented
towards a significant concern in society.
Exercise 1
Work in groups and identify some issues.
State your position or claim on this issue,
and state the reasons for you position as
well. Use your bond papers and marker in
doing this activity.
STEP 2: COLLECT INFORMATION ON
THE ISSUE

It is important that you get information on


both sides of the issue. Gather information
that will give you a strong understanding of
the issue, such as answers to basic reporter
questions (who, what, when, where, why).
STEP 2: COLLECT INFORMATION ON
THE ISSUE

Your position (and of course that of the


opposing camp) may be supported through
two major types of appeals:
STEP 2: COLLECT INFORMATION ON
THE ISSUE
1. Logical appeals the use of facts in order to
support a position; it persuades the audience by
targeting their thinking
2. Emotional appeals the use of the audiences
feelings for the subject of the paper such as
anger, pity, and aversion in order to persuade.
It may also refer to values that the reader may
identify with, such as the importance of family
ties, hospitality, and the bayanihan spirit
Exercise 2

Analyze the statements used in each of the


following ads by classifying each as either logical
or emotional appeal.
LOGICAL APPEALS: THE USE OF
EVIDENCE AND LOGICAL
REASONING
Arguments
Explain why a claim is correct and believable
Usually generalizations that are made on the
basis of supporting evidence, such as facts,
comparisons, examples, and the writers
experiences
Different Types of Arguments According
to Reasoning Based on Evidence

1. Argument from transitivity


2. Argument from incompatibility
3. Argument from reciprocity
4. Argument from comparison
5. Argument from generalization
6. Argument from examples
7. Argument from cause
8. Argument from sign
GROUP ACTIVITY

Be able to present a group report regarding


your assigned topic(s), and provide at least 2
examples each. Use PowerPoint presentation
as you present your report in the class.
EMOTIONAL APPEALS: THE
USE OF EMOTIONAL
TRIGGERS TO MOVE PEOPLE
McWhorter (2001) identifies
the following types of
emotional appeals:
1. Bandwagon or join-the-crowd
appeal -
The writer uses peoples tendency to conform
with the majority, pointing out that his or her
position enjoys support from many people
The idea here is to convince people to go
with the flow everybody else is doing it, so
you should follow, too
Keep in mind that just because a lot of people
do something doesnt mean that its the right
thing to do
2. Appeal to common folk
The persuasion is done by pointing out that a
person is no different from ordinary people,
or, that a product or idea is something that
ordinary people would purchase or support
We see this a lot in elections as when
candidate states that like the masses, he came
from a poor family and experienced struggles
in life.
3. Name calling or ad hominem

It uses labels with negative


meanings to cast one opponent
in a bad light, as when a politician
calls her opponents idiots.
4. Association

This is done by creating a link


between one thing or idea and
another one that people have a
positive or negative feelings for
For example, certain food products
may be associated with Filipino
values such as strong family ties
NOTE: The right way to use emotional appeals is
to use them only in addition to logical appeals as
to ensure a balanced approach one that targets
both mind and the heart of our readers. if we
rely solely on emotional appeals, then our paper
commits a very serious error in reasoning:
argumentum ad misericordiam (argument to
pity)
Step 3: ORGAIZE THE CONTENT
I. INTRODUCTION
Introduce the issue being debated
State your claim on the issue
II. BODY
Present the opposing viewpoint
Present your arguments and make them
convincing
III. CONCLUSION
Conclude by summarizing your arguments and
reiterating your position
Corporal punishment involves inflicting pain on
a child by a parent or guardian in the home by
spanking or slapping, or occasionally with an
implement such as belt, slipper, cane or paddle.
In our country, our culture still considers it as
part of parental responsibility to discipline the
child. According to a study conducted by Save
the Children Philippines, a nongovernmental
organization crusading against child abuse,
Filipino children experience punishment at
home 85 percent of the time and that 65
percent of them have received spanking as a
form of punishment.
(Reference: http://business.inquirer.net/13787/corporal-punishment-discipline-or-
abuse#ixzz4tupNLNTD)
Discipline for children involves training and
helping them develop judgment, a sense of
boundaries, self-control, self-sufficiency, and
positive social conduct. Discipline, unlike
punishment, teaches children to learn from their
mistakes rather than making them suffer for
those mistakes. In fact, imposing suffering
actually shifts the focus from the lesson that
needs to be learned to who is in control. As a
result, with punishment, the focus is on the
parent controlling a childs behavior, as opposed
to discipline wherein the focus is on the child
controlling his own behavior (Tulali, 2009).
Proponents of corporal punishment primarily base
their support for this disciplinary practice on their
interpretation of biblical statements and other
religious teachings, or on their firm conviction that
physical punishment is a parental obligation or
duty. Many also recount their personal experience
of physical discipline within their childhood home
or school and note that, because it never did them
any harm, it is likely to work for the next
generation as effectively. Advocates of corporal
punishment, therefore, support existing legal
provisions, which provide parents a defense against
charges of assault, provided the force used was
just and reasonable and for the purpose of
correcting the childs behavior. (Tulali, 2009)
Refer to the pdf copy of Anti-Corporal
punishment by Tulali
PROJECT
Write your own position paper on The jeepney
modernization in the Philippines.
Conventions:
Computerized on a short bond paper enclosed in a red
folder with fastener
Font style: Times New Roman
Font size: 11
Spacing: 1.5
Margin: Normal
Minimum of 3 pages