For 13.3.18

  1. Briefly outline Chapter 17 of The Craft of Research, “Introductions and Conclusions,” so you begin this homework with a strong foundation
  2. Revise your last paper’s introduction to include two parts: a review of what others are talking about and what you might add to the conversation
  3. Report on the conversation you’ve had with one or more partners and where you present what you started with, what you’ve learned, and your revised Introduction
  4. Briefly outline Chapter 10 of The Craft of Research, “Acknowledgements,” so you begin this homework with a strong foundation
  5. Answer the four questions in reference to the relevant literatures: 1) Why is this a problem, what costs or consequences …, 2) Why define the problem as you have …, 3) What counter-measures might you propose … what are you asking your readers to think or do …, 4) What exceptions and limitations might you now think relevant …
  6. Choose whatever questions or prompts you find in this chapter’s lengthy discussion and discuss them: use these prompts and this discussion to explore the literatures

Revision 17: Context and Argument (Introductions)

This part of the assignment is designed to help you understand and apply Chapter 17 of The Craft of Research, “Introductions and Conclusions,” and where your task is to contextualize your problem and then present your argument as you .

  • By “context” we mean a quick review of the state-of-the-art discussion among relevant professionals
  • By “argument” we mean what you are going to add to this discussion

To win the attention, respect, and participation of relevant professionals, you have first to acknowledge that you are familiar with them and their arguments, and once you’ve done this you invite them to consider what you might add to their understanding.

A question of audience

The problem is, that unless you are addressing what relevant professionals are discussing, nobody cares. For many of you, this is new: until now, many have become expert in “writing for school,” which is fine because it got you this far. But for business and professional life, your audience includes relevant professionals — people who have read widely, have larger experience, and already know the basics: they don’t need basic definitions or descriptions. In competitive professional contexts they are dealing with existential threats — the business is facing serious competition — and they simply do not have time, never mind interest, in the basics: they are looking for effective counter-measures.

The basic two-step

  1. Briefly review what the relevant professionals are discussing
  2. Briefly review what you might add to this discussion

You prepare for this by reviewing the relevant literatures, developing your research question, developing insight into the problem and, hopefully, finding something that might be understood and done better. In your introduction, you review your findings.

For example, if you start off with the interesting idea that “countries are ignoring the demographic problem …,” you have first to find a number of writers who have researched this already and review their findings. In the process, hopefully, you will stumble upon evidence or argument that other writers have not yet considered: good for you! Research that, collecting evidence and argument, and you are good to go.

The introduction will present, briefly, both steps.


Learning research since the 60s has shown that when students discuss their work with others they become smarter, more confident, and know better what to say and how.

  • Choose partners, as we have in class, invite them for a coffee, explain your work and solicit responses, and right away write down what happened, including what you and your partner have said and how, including the specific phrases and sometimes even the dialogues themselves
  • If you learn how to do this right, you will discover, first, that your confidence will grow with every nod of your partner’s head: you know more, and make yourself understood, more than you might think: this helps those of us who are insecure and are not sure we are heading in the right direction
  • Second, if you do this right, the presence of a listener will help you learn how to explain things differently, and usually, in simpler, more accessible terms: this is good! Write this down!
  • Third, when you have a protocol of such good conversations, you will find editing much, much easier! You may find that you can reduce an hour-long conversation to one paragraph, just a few sentences, and for many things that’s all you’ll need
  • you will explain things differently every time shows that then survey 3-5 different countries and the factors unique to each (religion, culture, etc.)
  • Talk/Write: learn how to first discuss this
  • Review Chapter 7, Introductions

Outline and apply 10: Acknowledgements

  • Outline Chapter 10: Acknowledgements
  • Look for