English 101; Using Stats and Facts as Support

This next lesson, and the next few lessons will be typed. So, I will try to make them
Statistics, facts, data are the main types of support for an academic essay. Remember, the anecdotes, and scenarios, the analogies too are supplements!

How do you decide what stats and facts to use?
First, you probably want to start with questions.
So, if your thesis is that everybody should have a month off for the winter holidays, then….
What are the benefits?
People work hard, and have a lot of stress; a good long recharge can be good for them, and good for the world.
What does stress do to us?
Probably lots of bad things! Will find out!
Who else has done this?
Don’t know. I will find out!
How would this work?
I don’t know. Find out how other countries have done it!
What would happen to the economy?
Then, you might look for your STATS, and FACTS…..example: Find out how other countries do it. Find out what sort of stress people suffer from too much work. Find out what that stress does to their minds and bodies. Find out what the benefits of a recharge are.

Then, you need to know where to research. So, you want to use viable sources. That is, Google can have lots of good stuff, as well as stuff that looks good, but may just be colorfully coated junk!

Soooooo, you want to stick with the following….
The Valley College library database
Google Scholar
Well-established magazines and newspapers (The New York Times, Atlantic Magazine, Time, Newsweek, etc.)
Wikipedia is also good these days!
If you are not sure, you should research the following….researching it on Wikipedia is fine.
How long has the publication been around?
Has it won any awards?
Is it affiliated with a political or religious group? If so, it is not unbiased reporting?
Is the content repeated on other sites?
When evaluating a research study in an article, look at where it was done? (Happy University? or Harvard?) Look at how long it lasted. Look at how many people were involved in it.
When evaluating statistics in an article, ask: are the sources cited? Do they need to be cited? (Example: 98% of climate scientists say that man-made climate change is real….this doesn’t need a citation, as it’s now common knowledge.)
NOW, for the assignments on this….BELOW.

1. Look for the stats and research studies that Carr uses in “Is Google Making Us Stupid?” Are they good, strong stats that support his essay? Answer in about five sentences. here is the link to this assignment https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2008/07/is-google-making-us-stupid/306868/
2. Look at the following article-is it a legitimate source? Should you quote it? Why or why not? Answer in about five sentences.
here is the link to this one too

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