Form: 300-500 words (include word count), double-spaced, 12-point font, Times New Roman. After writing your memo, revise it, to make sure that it makes a valid point, it is well supported with evidence, and that the writing is strong.
1) BRIEFLY summarize the article in a few sentences
2) Formulate clear thesis statement (In this memo I argue thatâ€¦), which identifies a flaw in the logic of the argument, a problem with the evidence, limited generalizability to other cases, unforeseen or problematic moral consequence of the argument, or some important policy implications not discussed by the author.
3) Back up your thesis statement with evidence. This evidence may be based on what is already in the article (give specific page references or quotes), or may draw on evidence from elsewhere (cite your source).
4) Brief summary of argument in the conclusion.
Article Summary: A strong memo shows a precise understanding of the article.
Argument: A strong memo tells me something about the article that the author has not. It shows that you not only understood the argument, but also that you can go beyond it in some way. It provides an interesting and important argument.
Evidence: The evidence nicely matches and supports the argument.
Writing: The thesis statement of a good memo is clear, while the writing is eloquent and well-structured.
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