Philosophy Moral Behavior Lea

Claim: A single well-worded declarative statement. You will have to come up with your own claim that is appropriate to the content of this class.

The claim must have moral significance.  Factual claims do not have moral significance.

Common problems: Vague claims; claims posed in the form of a question; too broad or too narrow claims; non-moral claims; more than one issue in the claim. 

Explanation of the claim: You should explain very carefully and in common-sense vocabulary what you mean by the claim itself and by the terms involved in the claim.

Common problems: assuming that the terms your use are self-explanatory.The reader of your paper will assume no prior knowledge of your subject on his part,If your do not explain your terms, concepts, relationships you will start losing points.Arguing in the explanation part of the paper, rather than explaining what you mean by your claim.

Reasons For the Claim: Each reason for the claim should be numbered with Arabic numerals (1), (2), (3), (4), (5).You should provide at least four reasons for your claim. Each reason must be unpacked in a whole paragraph.Each reason must have moral significance.

Common problems: sketchy arguments; pragmatic rather than moral arguments; insufficiently developed arguments; argument borrowed from other sources (even if documented); arguments that appeal to psychological rather than moral considerations, weak or not well-thought out arguments.

Reasons Against the Claim: Here you step into the shoes of your hypothetical opponent and think of reasons why your claim doesn’t hold.Each reason against the claim should be numbered with Roman numerals (I), (II), (III), (IV).You should provide at least four reasons against your claim. Each reason must be unpacked in a whole paragraph.Each reason must have moral significance. The arguments in this section should not mirror the arguments in Reasons For the Claim. Otherwise, you are preempting the Rebuttals section.

Common problems: same as above; attempting to rebut the arguments presented in Reasons For the Claim – this belongs to the Rebuttal section.

Decision: At this point in the paper you must decide which set of reasons (i.e., Reasons For or Reasons Against the Claim) is a stronger set.You must explain why you think a particular set of reasons is stronger.This part must be a full paragraph rather than a couple of sentences.

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