Soc 1a argument Outline for Essay Exam #1



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Soc 1A

Argument Outline for Essay Exam #1


You are going to write your first essay exam in two stages - outline and final draft of the essay. In the first stage you will develop an outline of the argument you will present in your essay exam. For this stage I want you to develop and submit to me a detailed 1-2 page outline of your argument.

Essay Exam #1: Consumer Culture and the Social Construction of Differences

Using examples from the film Overspent American AND the course readings/lectures, explain how the dominant culture in American society can be considered a consumer culture the role that the mass media plays in socializing us into a consumer culture. (be sure to cite all sources)



Requirements for Assignment:

  • 1-2 page outline

  • Typed in 12 point font

  • Double-spaced

  • Name on each page

Here is an example of an alphanumeric outline:
The College Application Process

I. Choose Desired Colleges

A. Visit and evaluate college campuses

B. Visit and evaluate college websites

1. look for interesting classes

2. note important statistics

a. student/faculty ratio

b. retention rate

II. Prepare Application

A. Write Personal Statement

1. Choose interesting topic

a. describe an influential person in your life

(1) favorite high school teacher

(2) grandparent

2. Include important personal details

a. volunteer work

b. participation in varsity sports

Four Main Components for Effective Outlines

*Adapted from the OWL Writing Lab at Purdue University


Parallelism - How do I accomplish this?


Each heading and subheading should preserve parallel structure. If the first heading is a verb, the second heading should be a verb. Example:

  1. Choose Desired Colleges

  2. Prepare Application

Coordination - How do I accomplish this?


All the information contained in Heading 1 should have the same significance as the information contained in Heading 2. The same goes for the subheadings (which should be less significant than the headings). Example:

  1. Visit and evaluate college campuses

  2. Visit and evaluate college websites

    1. Note important statistics

    2. Look for interesting classes

(Campus and websites visits are equally significant. They are part of the main tasks you would need to do. Finding statistics and classes found on college websites are parts of the process involved in carrying out the main heading topics.)

Subordination - How do I accomplish this?


The information in the headings should be more general, while the information in the subheadings should be more specific. Example:

  1. Describe an influential person in your life

    1. Favorite high school teacher

    2. Grandparent

(A favorite teacher and grandparent are specific examples from the generalized category of influential people in your life.)

Division - How do I accomplish this?


Each heading should be divided into 2 or more parts. Example:

  1. Compile resume

    1. List relevant coursework

    2. List work experience

    3. List volunteer experience

(The heading "Compile resume" is divided into 3 parts.)

Technically, there is no limit to the number of subdivisions for your headings; however, if you seem to have a lot, it may be useful to see if some of the parts can be combined.

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