I am an undergraduate student taking one of the Political Science courses called Business and Government Relations.
I have to write an Op-Ed about the topic, "Do corporations have too much power?"
I can be on either side, but it would be better if I can stand on negative side, that is, corporations don't have too much power. Here is the outline of the assignment
An op-ed is a public policy “opinion-editorial” piece which appears on a newspaper’s Comment, Opinion or Editorial page. The purpose of most op-eds is to take a stand on a public policy issue and to argue for or against a particular policy or lack of policy. In making an argument for or against a particular policy, op-eds must be more than pure opinion. The opinion must be backed up with research and with the use of specific examples, facts and statistics as well as with quotations from experts. Op-eds present evidence and, when applicable, offer policy alternatives and solutions. Most op-eds are between 700 and 800 words and are submitted to editors with a title, in 12-point font, typed double-spaced format. For examples of op-eds, see the Comment pages towards the back of the first section of the daily 'Globe and Mail' (newspaper in Toronto, Canada). Writing op-eds involves the following stages and considerations:
Researching the Issue
The first stage in writing an op-ed is to thoroughly research the issue. Research should draw on books, reports from governments, think tanks and interest groups, articles from academic journals, articles in credible newspapers and magazines and op-eds in credible newspapers. The research should be conducted in three main stages. First, do some general reading on the issue to determine the “for” and “against” arguments that relate to the issue. Second, determine what stand you are going to take on the issue (for or against a particular policy). Third, do more specific research to determine specific points to back up your argument as well as to gather specific facts, statistics, quotations from experts, and potential policy alternatives. While an op-ed is shorter than an essay, the amount of research you need to do is the same.
Developing the Argument.
Once you have conducted your research and determined your stand on the issue, you must now organize your argument into a few main points and begin to determine which facts, statistics and quotes will help you to support each point. Also important here is to include views that go against what you are arguing and some points to show why they are wrong.
Finding a “Hook”
A “hook” is the way that you make your general argument more relevant to the reader. In most cases, a hook will be a recent news development that relates to the issue such as the release of a new report or set of statistics, the announcement of a specific policy, a debate in the House of Commons, a crisis/ problem etc. For example, news showing that the polar ice cap is melting may be a useful hook for an argument on the benefits of Canada ratifying the Kyoto Protocol on climate change. Alternatively, a story about lay-offs in the oil and gas industry may be a useful hook for an argument for rejecting the Kyoto Protocol.
Another type of hook is a personal story which shows how a larger issue can affect individual citizens. For example, a story about a person who died because of long-line ups at hospital emergency rooms may be a good hook for an argument about what policies are needed to improve the Canadian healthcare system.
Organizing the Structure of the Op-Ed
Before starting to organize and write the op-ed, it’s a good idea to read actual op-eds (use the Globe and Mail) to get a sense of how they are structured and of the writing style. In contrast to an academic essay, which has an Introduction, a Main Body and a Conclusion, an op-ed generally starts with the “hook”, then includes a brief statement of the argument and then launches into the most important and persuasive points first with each backed up by specific facts, statistics or quotations. The op-ed should finish by relating the broader argument back to the hook.
Writing the Op-Ed
Op-eds are written for the general public rather than for academics or experts and, as a result, should be written in a clear and accessible style. Some general rules on the writing style for op-eds include:
- Unlike academic essays, the length of paragraphs in an op-ed should be two or three sentences long - try to mix short and long sentences
- Use clear and simple words but avoid slang
- Avoid using acronyms, technical terms and numbers (for example, in the case of statistics, instead of saying “64.8% of Canadians support the policy” say “nearly two thirds”)
Using Quotations, Statistics and the Ideas of Others
Any time you use quotations, statistics or the ideas of others you need to mention where they come from in the body of the op-ed. For example: As Joe Smith, the director of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, reminds us “taxes suck!”. You also need to include detailed endnotes of each source you cite as well as a detailed bibliography for all the sources that you used (both in general research and those that you specifically cited in the op-ed).
Re-Writing the Op-Ed
Because op-eds are short and must convey a lot of information in a short space, they must be very well written. This means that you must write, re-write and re-write the op-ed. Tips for re-writing include:
• Review each sentence until you hate them all - look for words or sentences that can be eliminated or replaced with simpler words or more relevant information
• Read the op-ed out loud to see how the writing style flows
• Have someone else read your op-ed to see if the argument is logical and well-organized
• Read your op-ed and ask yourself which is the most persuasive point and did you use it first.
How Your Op-Ed Will Be Marked
Your op-ed will be marked with all of the above points in mind (see the op-ed marking sheet). Particularly important will be evidence that you have done real research and not simply taken everything from one or two sources. To do well, you need non-media sources on the issue and evidence that you haven’t relied solely upon the Internet. Also important will be an original title and “hook” as well as strong evidence that you spent time writing and re-writing the op-ed.)
The following link is the model citation entries.
[url removed, login to view]
8 freelancere byder i gennemsnit $43 på dette job
Hello, I have wide experience in writing op-eds and academic essays. Sending a sample. If you like what you see, please get in touch soon. Thanks and regards.
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