ENGL 104H: Argumentative Writing and Critical Thinking - Honors

Citrus College Course Outline of Record

Citrus College Course Outline of Record
Heading Value
Effective Term: Fall 2024
Credits: 3
Total Contact Hours: 54
Lecture Hours : 54
Lab Hours: 0
Hours Arranged: 0
Outside of Class Hours: 108
Total Student Learning Hours: 162
Prerequisite: ENGL 101 or ENGL 101E or ENGL 101H.
District General Education: A2. Communication & Analytical Thinking
Transferable to CSU: Yes
Transferable to UC: Yes - Approved
Grading Method: Standard Letter

Catalog Course Description

In this course, students will develop critical thinking, writing, and research skills beyond the ENGL 101 level by examining and modeling complex classical methods of invention, arrangement, and style for writing assignments. Students will read and critically evaluate (for meaning, purpose, strategy and style) expository and argumentative essays from classical sources and multicultural perspectives. Students will test prejudices they hold, prove or disprove a hypothesis, evaluate the opinions of others, explain the effect of the media, and attempt to synthesize opposing arguments on an issue through critical thinking. Critical thinking skills are demonstrated through research papers, in-class presentations, and collaborative exploration of material. Students are expected to demonstrate honors level work which includes strong critical thinking skills, thorough analysis or assigned readings, presentations, and leadership skills demonstrated through class participation. Meets the IGETC critical thinking requirement. 54 lecture hours.

Course Objectives

  • Write soundly reasoned essays on topics of personal choice that effectively address critical positions and problems and that exhibit Aristotle's three appeals: the appeal to logic (inductive and deductive), the appeal to emotions, and the appeal to ethics.
  • Effectively employ the rhetorical strategies of analysis, synthesis, persuasion, evaluation, refutation, interpretation, advocacy of ideas, and definition.
  • Make explicit arguments, recognize good evidence, marshal strong evidence in support of a claim, and assemble clear support and present it compellingly.
  • Read and critically evaluate (for meaning, purpose, strategy and style) argumentative essays from a variety of classical sources and multicultural perspectives and use these discoveries as models for writing their own essays.
  • Distinguish between the denotative and connotative power of language and between judgment and knowledge.
  • Recognize and practice deductive and inductive reasoning\\nidentify and apply the structure of arguments underlying the essays read and written.
  • Evaluate the validity and soundness of arguments.
  • Identify fallacies of language and thought in multiple forms of media and avoid using them in writing and other forms of argument.
  • Understand classical rhetoric and the writing process: analysis of purpose, invention of ideas, writing and revision.
  • Define the relationship between the writer and the reader.
  • Collaborate to form analysis or to refute argumentative claims.

Major Course Content

  1. Critical Reasoning
    1. Study the nature of fact, informed opinion or justified belief, and knowledge in general
    2. Focus on the elements of argument, including claim, support, and assumption
    3. Identify reasoning fallacies
    4. Evaluate evidence and claims of fact and value
    5. Study the relationship between logical argument and rhetoric, including the role of the reader in argument, and the elements of ethos, logos, and pathos in classical rhetoric
  2. Critical and Argumentative Writing Assignments
    1. Construct argumentative papers that include the use of narration, description, comparison and other rhetorical modes for argumentation as well as exposition
    2. Write effective prose that avoids fallacies and that exhibits a strong thesis, adequate development, sound organization, effective sentence variety, and appropriate word choice
    3. Supply valid evidence for claims
    4. Refute the opposing point of view
    5. Confirm the original argument
    6. Write essays using causal analysis, persuasion, evaluation and advocacy of ideas
  3. Critical and Argumentative Reading Assignments
    1. Read critically a variety of expository and argumentative classic essays, including the use of critical reasoning skills identified above
    2. Analyze inductive and deductive arguments
    3. Evaluate the validity and soundness of arguments
    4. Evaluate claims and authority
    5. Draw inferences from available evidence
    6. Distinguish between denotative and connotative language
    7. Evaluate diction
    8. Identify the rhetorical devices of satire, irony, hyperbole, understatement, and paradox
    9. Identify fallacies in the text
  4. Research Topics
    1. Use critical reading and reasoning skills to incorporate research and documentation in the majority of the papers
    2. Locate and use sources, including reference works
  5. Argumentative Presentations
    1. Develop and present multimedia presentations in support of an argumentative claim providing sufficient and appropriate support and a refutation of opposing viewpoints while avoiding logical fallacies.

Suggested Reading Other Than Required Textbook

Assigned texts and texts resulting from research

Examples of Required Writing Assignments

Journals/reading responses, in-class essays, out-of-class essays, research paper.

Examples of Outside Assignments

Write 4-6 expository and argumentative essays of increasing complexity and difficulty which may use the results of research and analytical reading.
For each essay the student will be expected to complete the following steps: analysis of purpose, pre-writing and invention of ideas, rough drafts, peer response workshop, revision, editing, and a final draft.
A minimum of 8,000 words will be required for the course.
Read and critique reading assignments and apply the strategies learned to the writing assignments.

Instruction Type(s)

Lecture, Online Education Lecture

IGETC Area 1: English Communication

1B. Critical Thinking/English Comp

IGETC Area 2: Mathematical Concepts and Quantitative Reasoning


IGETC Area 6: Languages other than English