Students Use Textual Source persuasively
article, “Helping Students Use Textual Source persuasively” by Margaret Kantz,
shows us the significance of reading texts, even factual works like encyclopedias
and suggests us to argue on it by using argument, audience, context and claims.
Understanding the text enables one to put his or her own way of thinking to
draw information about the context (Kantz 579). The author, says every human
has his or her own way of understanding the text. The author mentions that, most
of the time, facts are considered as real and authentic claims because people
believe and follow them without providing evidence since the facts or claims
have been part of daily exercises. As an example, the earth is round and people
believe it, but no one researches where the information originated from (Kantz 579).
The author also uses one of her student Shirley’s essay as an example in her
own essay to demonstrate how students get confused with facts, arguments and
opinions. Shirley’s research was about the facts, but for the author, research meant
understanding the study (Kantz 579). The main focus of the author is to
demonstrate the realization in believing what people said without any personal
research is a vague analysis of claiming. The author explains Shirley’ views, “believes
that facts are what you learn from textbooks, opinions are what you have about
clothes and arguments are what you have with your mother when you want to stay
out late at night” (Kantz 598). According
to the author, facts are those that are not left after proven but are read by
every student. Arguments are what one understands about the context and the way
the content is thought in order to exhibit one’s point (Kantz 579). In addition,
the statistics that the author tries to exhibit in her essay are the same
facts, arguments and opinions which differ from that of Shirley’s ideology of
understanding the concepts mentioned above. Opinions are always considered as
facts may be as part of religious practices, personal or through genetics, but
the truth is these facts are claims unless one reads the actual texts even after
been proven and inhale the context. Most of the students do not care about the
Many students expect their sources
to tell the truth and they equate persuasive writing in this context with
creating things up.
Many students like Shirley
misunderstand sources because they read the writing like they read story books.
Many students do not understand that
facts are a kind of claim and are often used persuasively in so-called “objective
writing to create an impression” (Kantz 593).
feel that the author is ingenious and smart in understanding the student’s
perspective. I feel I understand all the concepts in the above list because I
am a skeptical and a rhetoric person and I carefully examine the finished
result. Every time, I write an essay I learn from my errors after my Peer-Review
and from my professor. After enrolling into University of Central Florida and
coming here, I had to do loads of research to write a paper which I have never
done before. I always get very excited when I select a new article as I want to
keep learning new things every time. Furthermore, I feel facts are nothing but
Margaret. Helping Students Use Textual
Sources Persuasively. Writing about Writing. edited
by Elizabeth Wardle & Doug Downs, Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2014. Pp.
579 – 593.