crtw essay one

Project Description:

nosich explains how our fundamental concepts of things often shape how we think, feel, act, and react in significant ways. he asserts, “we think in terms of concepts, and these inevitably shape our life to a considerable degree. very often . . . we accept [these concepts] uncritically” (26). in this topic, you will bring some of your assumptions and unexamined concepts to the level of consciousness and self-reflective consideration by examining any impediments, filters, or barriers that may contribute to your viewpoint on a controversial issue or on a key event in the past. i have provided for you a few suggested topics. you may choose one of these topics, or you may choose another topic about which you feel strongly. regardless of which topic you choose, you must write a four-to-six page essay in which you incorporate at least five direct quotations or paraphrases from nosich and possibly other assigned articles or outside sources. these references must be documented correctly according to mla format. you will use nosich’s “impediments to critical thinking” (16 – 30) as your main source in analyzing your chosen topic.
choose one controversial topic, such as same-sex marriage, illegal immigration, abortion, government-run healthcare, or capital punishment, etc., and analyze why and how you came to hold your current position on the topic. alternatively, you may choose another topic about which you hold strong convictions and beliefs. (please consult with me if you wish to choose a topic not listed here and are unsure of whether the topic would be appropriate.) consider carefully your background, personal experiences, educational experiences, and past exposure to the topic in your analysis, and attempt to identify any impediments that have shaped your viewpoint on your topic. nosich lists possible impediments on pages 18 through 28 in his text. these impediments include, but are not limited to:
• forming a worldview based on the news
• forming a worldview based on movies, tv, and/or stereotyping
• all-or-nothing thinking, us-versus-them thinking, stereotyping
• forming a worldview based on educational habits and practices
• egocentrism
• fear of making a mistake, or looking foolish, etc.
• developmental patterns of thinking (needing others to accept us, like us, etc.)
• previous commitments and personal experiences
additionally, nosich discusses other barriers to critical thinking, such as simply accepting what others have told you without investigating it yourself, living in denial over a subject, or accepting uncritically the viewpoints of teachers, institutions, etc. your essay should 1) state clearly your current position on one of the suggested controversial topics, and 2) analyze in detail how you developed your current concept. i do not care what your position is, nor do i wish to receive a paper arguing why your current position is correct. you should spend approximately one paragraph clearly stating and explaining your current position, and then should spend the rest of the essay analyzing how you developed that position, the extent to which you did or did not engage in critical thinking in developing your position, and the extent to which impediments might have influenced your process of coming to your current position. you should take care to identify all assumptions and concepts which support your viewpoint on the topic. you should quote nosich or other articles frequently in your analysis, and should attempt to step back from your viewpoint and analyze it critically and thoughtfully.

requirements and grading criteria:
each time you introduce a new impediment in your paper, type it in bold face type. when citing nosich, use correct mla documentation. address a minimum of six impediments. in grading your paper, i will assess the degree of thoughtfulness, sufficiency, complexity, and clarity in your analysis of each element and impediment; the sufficiency of your support for your assertions (use of concrete details, concrete explanation, and textual evidence); and the degree of coherence in your presentation of ideas. please see the writing rubric, linked blackboard, for information on how i assess papers. when submitting to turnitin, please make the title of your submission “essay 1.”
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