Engaging in Argumentation



 Engaging in Argumentation

Purpose: In class, we discussed the differences between constructive and destructive forms of aggression—in particular, argumentativeness and verbal aggressiveness—and how the key to engaging in argumentation is by refuting a person’s position on an issue. For this activity, you will practice engaging in argumentation by refuting an argument published in the New York Times about skipping yearly routine doctor visits. Refer to class notes from Unit 2 (Trait-Like Factors that Affect Public Messages) to help you complete this activity.

 Engaging in Argumentation

Read the attached article (“Skip Your Annual Physical”) and respond to the following:

  • Identify three of the points the author makes to support his argument of skipping yearly doctor visits.

First of all the author supports his own belief which having an annual physical checkup is worthless and waste of money, if you desire mortality, you need to build a good diet and exercise frequently. Secondly, a group of scientist ran an annual health program from 1963 to 1999 which reveals that these annual physical exams did not reduce mortality overall or for specific causes of death from cancer or heart diseases. In addition the previous point is supported by the USPSTF (Independent group of experts making evidence based on annual health checkups) did not have recommendation on a routine physical checkup against these exams since 1979. Finally, some healthy patients were physiologically hurt by the physicals because of the exams they do on them such as X-rays and pulling blood that lead to high negative sensations.

 Engaging in Argumentation

  • Provide three points that refute the author’s argument of skipping yearly doctor visits.

Annual physical exam is really beneficial for children reaching puberty because these kids will face enormous amount of changes in their body and they will be wondering how to deal with them. In addition, these exams would help identify deadly symptoms that would be easily to treat before reaching to the actual diseases that would be inflexible to treat as well more costly. Finally, doctor recommendations are so beneficial specifically in diet issues in order to maintain a good blood pressure and control diabetes if you have one.


  • In class we also learned that quickly running out of arguments increases the likelihood of engaging in verbal aggression. Discuss two ways you can prepare yourself ahead of time to engage in argumentation (rather than verbal aggression) about controversial issues.

A well-known solid technique in running arguments that you desire to win and learn from is to listen before engaging in a battle of negotiation without having a solid back ground of the topic that is being discussed. Therefore, first of all it is always beneficial to be prepared and build your ideas in a good sequence in order to deliver any piece of information you desire to. After that, is it really critical to understand the argument from both sides and have a good look outside of the box before you start shooting you points. As a result, that will lead to a good argument that both sides will benefit from.





This activity must be submitted to eCampus as either a text submission or an attached file no later than 11:59pm on January 27th.


(NOTE: You must click on the Activity 2 link in the Online Activities Section to get started.)