Revise & Argument

  1. Organizing Principles
  1. Time / Chronological – shows a series of events or steps in a process
  2. Comparison – similarities and/or differences between points or concepts
  3. Contrast – highlights the differences between items and concepts. 
  4. Cause and Effect – establishes a relationship between two events or situations, making the connection clear.
  5. Problem and Solution – state the problem and detail how  it was solved. This approach is effective for persuasive speeches.
  6. Classification / Categories – establishes categories 
  7. Biographical – examining specific people as they relate to the central topic 
  8. Space / Spatial – parts of something and how they fit to  form the whole 
  9. Ascending / Descending – involves focusing on quantity and quality. 
  10. Psychological – focusing on the audience inherent needs and wants 
  11. Elimination – outlining all the possibilities
  12. Example – vivid, specific examples 
  13. Process and Procedure – steps or phases that lead to a complete end goal 
  14. Point Pattern – presentation of diverse assertions to be aligned in a cohesive argument with clear support  
  15. Definition – clear introduction of terms and concepts while reducing the likelihood of misinterpretation 
  16. Testimonial – document around a testimony, or first person account of an experience 
  17. Ceremonial – Thanking, The importance of the event; The relationship of event to audience

2. Classical Rhetorical Strategy

  1. Get the Attention
  2. Explain the General Background or Context
  3. Propose – idea, etc – primary messages
  4. Argument – provide arguments for your proposition
  5. Refutation – provide counterarguments to your proposition and refute those arguments if you can
  6. Summary/Closing

3. GASCAPT – Argumentation Strategies

 Argument byClaimExampleEvaluation
GGeneralizationWhatever is true of a good example or sample will be true of everything like it or the population it came from.If you can vote, drive, and die for your country, you should also be allowed to buy alcohol.STAR System: For it to be reliable, we need a (S) sufficient number of (T) typical, (A) accurate, and (R) reliable examples.
AAnalogyTwo situations, things or ideas are alike in observable ways and will tend to be alike in many other waysAlcohol is a drug. So is tobacco. They alter perceptions, have an impact physiological and psychological systems, and are federally regulated substances.Watch for adverbs that end in “ly,” as they qualify, or lessen the relationship between the examples. Words like “probably,” “maybe,” “could, “may,” or “usually” all weaken the relationship.
SSignStatistics, facts, or cases indicate meaning, much like a stop sign means “stop.”Motor vehicle accidents involving alcohol occur at significant rates among adults of all ages in the United States.Evaluate the relationship between the sign and look for correlation, where the presenter says what the facts “mean.” Does the sign say that? Does it say more? What is not said? Is it relevant?
CCauseIf two conditions always appear together, they are causally related.The U.S. insurance industry has been significantly involved in state and national legislation requiring proof of insurance, changes in graduated driver’s licenses, and the national change in the drinking age from age 18 to age 21.Watch out for “after the fact, therefore because of the fact” (post hoc, ergo propter hoc) thinking. There might not be a clear connection, and it might not be the whole picture. Mothers Against Drunk Driving might have also been involved with each example of legislation.
AAuthorityWhat a credible source indicates is probably true.According to the National Transportation Safety Board, older drivers are increasingly involved in motor vehicle accidents.Is the source legitimate and is their information trustworthy? Institutes, boards, and people often have agendas and distinct points of view.
PPrincipleAn accepted or proper truthThe change in the drinking age was never put to a vote. It’s not about alcohol, it’s about our freedom of speech in a democratic society.Is the principle being invoked generally accepted? Is the claim, data or warrant actually related to the principle? What are the practical consequences of following the principle in this case?
TTestimonyPersonal experienceI’ve lost friends from age 18 to 67 to alcohol. It impacts all ages, and its effects are cumulative. Let me tell you about two friends in particular.Is the testimony authentic? Is it relevant? Is it representative of other’s experiences? Use the STAR system to help evaluate the use of testimony.


This task is all about putting some of the materials covered previously into practice. Each team is to prepare one letter together where the team will be asking Mr. Stern for additional $20,000 investment to further develop the business. You can think of your own arguments and specific business needs.

  1. Please kindly use the strategies mentioned in this module and draft the letter (maximum 2 pages)
  2. When showing your letter on screen, only one of the team members will speak on behalf of all team and the speaker is to explain which are some of strategies or organizing principles used in the letter.
  3. Other teams may comment and provide their feedback too on each letter presented.

Looking forward to an interesting discussion!