Sessions / Critical Thinking

09:45 Sat

Inventing persuasive arguments for writing and discussion #206

Presentation
Finished
Sat, Jun 20, 09:45-10:20 JST

Whether students are ranking Marvel movies from best to worst or debating the potential value of increasing foreign workers, what they are doing in both cases is relying on general argument forms to persuade their audiences. Argumentation—the art of persuasion—is a skill with both social and academic validity for EFL students, but it has proven difficult to define, teach and learn (Hirvela, 2017). However, rhetoricians have taught that arguments take stock forms irrespective of their content (Keith & Lundberg, 2008), and these forms can be discovered by applying Aristotle’s common topics of conjecture, degree and possibility. The common topics are a generative heuristic that enable students to move beyond take-it-for-granted truisms and invent their own original, persuasive arguments on meaningful issues. In this presentation, participants will be shown how to apply the common topics to both general issues (e.g. Should discrimination be allowed?) and specific ones (e.g. Should Japanese medical universities be allowed to discriminate against applicants based on gender?) situated in Japan. Participants will then be able to generate persuasive arguments by applying the common topics to issues relevant to their own learners and contexts.

Whether students are ranking Marvel movies from best to worst or debating the potential value of increasing foreign workers, what they are doing in both cases is relying on general argument forms to persuade their audiences. Argumentation—the art of persuasion—is a skill with both social and academic validity for EFL students, but it has proven difficult to define, teach and learn (Hirvela, 2017). However, rhetoricians have taught that arguments take stock forms irrespective of their content (Keith & Lundberg, 2008), and these forms can be discovered by applying Aristotle’s common topics of conjecture, degree and possibility. The common topics are ... more