This assignment requires you to compare and/or contrast two complex, related
topics. The essay must incorporate at least three different citations (2 quotes
and 1 paraphrase) from 2 – 3 separate, published sources. The final paper
should be approximately 3 – 3 1/2 double- spaced, typed pages long, excluding
the Works Cited.
DEVELOPING YOUR TOPIC
The main point of this essay is to present a detailed, well-organized
comparison/contrast, ensure that the essay has a clear purpose, and makes a
point. Avoid separating the two subjects and simply presenting facts to describe
them. Instead, use the facts to shape a clear, balanced discussion that
juxtaposes one subject against a second subject. Isolate 2 – 3 clear categories
of comparison that can shape the analysis. Avoid thesis statements that say
“There is no right or wrong answer” or “There are many similarities and
differences between X and Y; ultimately, one must decide for oneself.” Argue a
point and show your preferences. Finally, make sure the topic sentences are
strong and make a point. Avoid topic sentences that say “Another thing the two
have in common is Z.” Your topic sentences should say something significant.
If possible, choose a topic related to your final research paper. This will only
help you conceptualize your research. Below are some general topic
Augmented reality vs. virtual reality
Mega farms/high tech farms vs. family owned farms
Social media activism vs. traditional activism
Email vs. snail-mail
Iris scans vs. card swipes for security
Online versus traditional classroom learning
Twitter vs. Instagram
Using online writing tools vs. live tutor
Online dating vs. real dating
Virtual sports/gaming vs. live sport
Traditional commerce vs. brick-and-mortar commerce
Virtual newpaper vs. print newpaper
Holographic concerts vs. live concerts
For this essay please examine reliable sources which discuss your topic such as
books, local newspapers, The New York Times, or scholarly journals in JCC
databases. Include in your essay 2 direct quotes and 1 paraphrase. Sources
must come from 2 – 3 different published, print sources, only ONE of which
can be a virtual website with no print counterpart. Remember to establish clear
boundaries (e.g. signal phrases) around your references and to cite the author
and page number in MLA style. Discuss the citations in the context of your body
paragraphs. For this essay, do not place these citations in the introduction or
An outstanding paper will have the following elements:
A creative introduction and conclusion
A clear thesis presented at the end of the introduction
Clear topic sentences, coherent paragraphs, and detailed examples
Transitional words linking examples within a paragraph and between
Proper word choice
1-2 direct quotes and 1 paraphrase from different print sources (not just
Correct internal MLA documentation
Correct external documentation in the form of a Works Cited page listing the
full bibliographic information for each separate sources. Refer to Purdue
Online Writing Lab for details.
Few or no grammatical errors
MATERIAL TO HAND IN
On the due date, hand in the following materials as a single Word attachment:
-The final version of the essay in MLA format.
-The Works Cited page in MLA format following the written text.
NOTE: Failure to hand any of these items will result in a deduction of points
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