This guide is designed to assist first-year students in the Executive Fire Officer Program with finding the resources they need to fulfill the requirements of R0123, Executive Development. Specifically, these resources will help you to understand the four step research process and how to write an effective argument essay. Mastering the art of the argument will help you to organize and evaluate resources for your applied research project.
The Library also offers a rotating schedule of research classes on Wednesday evenings and Sunday afternoons while EFO students are on campus.
There are three basic models for constructing an argument: the Classical Argument, the Rogerian Argument, and the Toulmin Method.
How you develop your argument — and the model you choose to use — depends in large part on your audience and your objective. An advantage to the Toulmin model is that you can also use it to evaluate sources and test the validity of your own ideas. Developed by a logician, the model shows you how to break an argument down into components and analyze each piece.
The Qualifier doesn’t always need to be present when making an argument. It’s a modification of the claim, so if you’re using the argument to evaluate sources, you don’t necessarily need it.
You can use this same approach when crafting your research paper.
See also: Evaluating reference sources related to your research topic