View Full Version : First AWA argument task

05-25-2010, 06:43 PM
i planned to get this writing graded by scoreitnow but i think i did not master AWA yet, so i decided to share it with you
please post your comments on it:

The University of Claria is generally considered one of the best universities in the world because of its instructors' reputation, which is based primarily on the extensive research and publishing record of certain faculty members. In addition, several faculty members are internationally renowned as leaders in their fields. For example, many of the faculty from the English department are regularly invited to teach at universities in other countries. Furthermore, two recent graduates of the physics department have gone on to become candidates for the Nobel Prize in Physics. And 75 percent of the students are able to find employment after graduating. Therefore, because of the reputation of its faculty, the University of Claria should be the obvious choice for anyone seeking a quality education.

The reasons mentioned in the statement supporting the claim that University of Claria or UC is one of the best universities in the world because of its instructors' reputation should be discussed carefully. Many of them are either too general or not relevant to the claim. There are some indicators of the quality of either faculty members or education in general but they are not connected correctly with the claims mentioned.
First of all, is instructors' reputation the only measure to rank universities in the world? Even if this assumption is accepted, how can reputation of the faculty members linked exclusively to extensive research and publishing records? Are all of extensive researchers widely reputed? and is their research the only element that created such reputation or are their achievements and inventions responsible for such reputation? These questions should be answered before making generalizations.
Similar questions are raised regarding leadership and reputation. Many faculty members are rotating around the world to teach in other universities but they cannot be considered "leaders” in the field. Universities choose professors from other countries because of many reasons such as diversity of education or even superior quality of education but not necessarily because these professors are the "leaders" of the field. Also, becoming a candidate for Noble Prize may be an indication of a personal achievement that can be related to the quality of education received in the university but not to "leadership" in the field. Finally, there is no point to support the claim mentioned earlier with the assumption that faculty members are leaders in their field.
Employment rate of graduates should be compared to that of other universities for proper comparison. Also, are graduates matched to jobs in their fields? And whether offers they received are better than those received by graduates of other universities. At the end, employment statistics may attract more students and add something to the university's reputation, not the instructors' reputation. The final conclusion is based on a vague reasoning. Anyone interested in a quality education will search for such education not the reputation of the faculty. For example, a student with a dream of becoming a dentist will seek a program of a heavy clinical practice and a comprehensive didactic teaching but not highly reputed instructors. The author of statement should study other measures of excellence and compare them, under controlled conditions, to their counterparts in other universities in the world to find whether the UC is one of the best universities in the world.

05-27-2010, 01:53 PM
i was not convinced with this topic, so i chose another one and scored it using scoreit now

"According to a recent report from our marketing department, fewer people attended movies produced by Silver Screen during the past year than in any other year. And yet the percentage of generally favorable comments by movie reviewers about specific Silver Screen movies actually increased during this period. Clearly, the contents of these reviews are not reaching enough of our prospective viewers; so the problem lies not with the quality of our movies but with the public's lack of awareness that movies of good quality are available. Silver Screen should therefore spend more of its budget next year on reaching the public through advertising and less on producing new movies."

Before dedicating a larger percentage of the budget to the advertisement and a less percentage to the production, the claims in this memo should be revised thoroughly. Decisions regarding budgets should not be based on unsupported claims and dry pieces of information without figures or numbers.
The memo started with the claim that fewer people attended silver screen movies (SSMs) last year, but did not mention the percentage of reduction of these movie viewers. Is the reduction significant? Also, more information should be mentioned about causes of such reduction. It could be that the movies were released in a low season or there was a reduction in the number of movies produced that could explain the reduction of the viewers. A better measure of the attendance of the movies would be how many people attended per movie since movies with few viewers affect statistics of movies with much more viewers.
The second claim can be analyzed similarly. Is the increase in the positive comments significant? And can we base the movies' quality solely on what viewers have commented on? The number of these comments should be mentioned to consider this information. In addition, the increase in positive comments could be due to the fact that people who continued to attend SSMs would more likely comment in a positive way compared to those who disliked SSMs and, as a result, would stop attending these movies and, thus, commenting on them.
As mentioned earlier, the quality of the movies should not be based only on viewers' comments. Other factors, like opinions of critics, should be evaluated as well. The last assumption of lack of awareness is no longer valid due to the previous discussion and lack of supporting evidence. Where there any surveys carried out among movie viewers that confirmed such lack of awareness?
Finally, a decision to change the budget expenditure should not be based on assumptions that are not supported by evidence. The key words mentioned in the memo are too vague to be meaningful. The director should have conducted well-designed, controlled studies and surveys to identify specific reasons for the reduction in number of viewers of SSMs.

Score: 4

Explanation of Score:

A 4 paper presents a competent analysis of the issue and conveys meaning adequately.

A typical paper in this category

develops the position on the issue with relevant reasons and/or examples
is adequately focused and organized
expresses ideas with reasonable clarity
generally demonstrates control of the conventions of standard written English but may have some errors