Writing@CSU: Composition Teaching Resources

Portfolio 2: Issue Analysis Report

Overview: To complete this analysis, you will define the primary approaches writers have taken in their writing about your issue. Then you will analyze the diverse purposes, audiences, historical events, social factors and cultural contexts shaping the debate about this issue.

Purposes for this Report: To convince your readers that the issue you are examining is more complicated than a pro/con debate.

Audience: Address your issue analysis to readers of the online journal, Talking Back (https://writing.colostate.edu/gallery/talkingback/). You can assume that this audience will be unfamiliar with theories of writing situations and, as a result, will appreciate some explanation of what specific terms mean. In general, this audience will expect you to explain the points you are making and to demonstrate (using evidence) how you have come to understand your issue as complex.  

Portfolio Content: Please submit your report in a folder clearly labeled with your name and email address. Your portfolio should include:

  • The final draft of your issue analysis report, formatted with one-inch margins, double-spaced lines, and a readable (e.g., not in italics or script) 12-point font
  • A works cited (MLA) or references page (APA)
  • Rough drafts of your issue analysis reports
  • Any homework you completed as you worked on this portfolio.
  • Workshop comments you received from your classmates on your drafts
  • The final draft of your annotated bibliography.
  • The final draft of your audience exploration report.
  • Your interview or survey questions
  • A record of responses to your questions
  • Printed copies of your topic proposal and my reactions to it

Report Requirements: Your issue analysis report should be between 1,000 and 1,250 words in length. In your report, clearly identify (following MLA or APA style) the sources to which you refer. Your report should:

  • Define the issue addressed by the sources.
  • Explain why it is important to understand the complexity of this issue.
  • Show that your issue is complex by describing the primary approaches taken by writers addressing the issue
  • Analyze the writing situation shaping these approaches (e.g., writers’ purposes, readers’ needs, interests, values, beliefs and attitudes, historical influences, social factors, and cultural contexts) to show readers that there are various factors determining the shape of the debate.
  • Use information from individual sources as evidence to support your claims and your analysis.