ESSAY #2: Exploratory Essay Length: 3-4 pages Format: typed, double-spaced, 10-12 point font, 1-inch margins The purpose of this essay is to begin examining an issue that will become the focus of your Advocacy Proposal project later this term. It is important, therefore, to choose a topic that interests you, as you will be spending a significant amount of time on it. In an exploratory essay, you may not necessarily know how you feel about a subject or what you want to say about it. Your research and extended analysis will lead you to a detailed and substantial essay. In other words, your mind shouldnt be made up before you begin your research & analysis. An important part of your job in this Exploratory Essay is to examine/analyze arguments from opposing sides about an issue of interest. Starting Out: Choose a topic/issue that interests you and at the same time invites inquiry. What do you already know about this topic? What would you like to explore? Why are you drawn to this subject matter? What is problematic or confusing about this topic? What needs clarity? How can you advance the readers understanding of this issue in a way that is engaging and thoughtful? Why is this subject important to you? To your peers? To society? Clearly, you cannot write a successful exploratory essay without curiosity. Whatever your topic, you must come up with questions that open up lines of thought and carve out research opportunities. You should, of course, look for/offer tentative answers to these questions. Be sure to analyze the differing arguments from your research. What are the core cultural values at play with the issue? An exploratory essay should reflect your thoughtful engagement with a subject and your subsequent research. It should be organized in a logical and effective manner, and it should utilize grammar and style to communicate with clarity and precision. There are multiple ways to organize an exploratory essay, but the following components should be present: Intro: introduce topic; identify controlling question (perhaps a problem that needs solving) Personal Engagement with the topic (establish your credibility by explaining why you are considering this topicwhat led you to this point? why is it relevant and important to you?) Questions (10-12, including potentially a controlling one) that reveal your ability to identify relevant and interesting aspects of the issue Research Potential: how will you go about moving forward on this topic? What sources already exist that will help you advance your knowledge or solve the issues you have identified? Evaluate these sources and arguments. What potential problems might you encounter as you move forward? Conclusion: make an attempt to justify why this is a valid realm of inquiry; explain why the questions (and the potential answers) are relevant to the reader Ultimately, I want you to walk away from this essay with a much deeper understanding of a complex situation/issue, ready to tackle your Advocacy Proposal.