Solution Proposal Guidelines

Arguing Crisis

A crisis, according to Mauk and Metz, “is a crucial or decisive situation in which things are about to change with potentially severe or intense consequences” (242).

Our arguments about crisis will involve three layers:

The crisis
The cause(s)
The solution(s)

Your task is to build on your causal argument and write a proposal essay. A proposal is an argument that calls for a particular course of action. The proposal argument has no universal formula, but usually contains the following elements:

  • Description of the situation that warrants action (the crisis): evidence for, or appeals about the crisis situation and its causes.
  • Counterarguments: why people should accept that the situation is a crisis, despite other portrayals of the issue.
  • Description of the proposed solution: how it would address the situation, how life would look once it was implemented.
  • Support (evidence and appeals) for the solution: why it should be implemented.
  • Counterarguments against other solutions: how other solutions fall short. Remember people, concede and refute. Concede and refute.

See Solution Proposal Organizational Outline for more details.


  • You are to build on the causal argument that you have already written.
  • You must support this argument with at least seven outside sources.
  • You must cite these sources appropriately within your writing and in a works cited page, using MLA formatting.
  • Your audience is intelligent and sophisticated. In formal academic argument blatant personal attacks or outright aggression are not valued, nor are empty phrases and mean-spiritedness. Avoid logical fallacies.
  • Use Standard Edited American English. Proofread!
  • The voice or register of your writing must be formal in tone. No yous, but you may use first person where appropriate and purposeful. Avoid contractions and idiomatic language in your writing.


Your writing must be:

  • On a page titled 'Solution Proposal' followed by your name or initials;
  • A minimum of 2,000 words in length;
  • Worthy of a title, that is not in all caps and is heading level 1

Due Dates

A thesis statement and visual organization is due Tuesday, April 14.

A working draft of this project is due for peer review workshop Thursday, April 23.

This project in its entirety is due Tuesday, April 28.

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