POL 500 Research Methodology

POL 500 Research Methodology

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POL 500 Research Methodology

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POL 500 Research Methodology

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Course Code: POL500
University: Universiti Sains Malaysia

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Country: Malaysia


Analysis of Argument, & Evaluation
The following appeared in a memo from the director of student housing at Buckingham College.

“To serve the housing needs of our students, Buckingham College should build a number of new dormitories. Buckingham’s enrollment is growing and, based on current trends, will double over the next 50 years, thus making existing dormitory space inadequate. Moreover, the average rent for an apartment in our town has risen in recent years. Consequently, students will find it increasingly difficult to afford off-campus housing. Finally, attractive new dormitories would make prospective students more likely to enroll at Buckingham.”
Write a response in which you discuss what specific evidence is needed to evaluate the argument and explain how the evidence would weaken or strengthen the argument.


In the given scenario, the director of student housing at Buckingham College has published a number of arguments supporting the increase of the number of dormitories in the college hostel. However, most of the arguments are based on assumptions and are not true in different aspects. These are explained as follows.
In the first argument, the director has assumed that the number of students of the college will double in the next 50 years at the current rate of growth. However, this is not true as the enrolment of students depend on a large number of other factors that are mainly academic in nature. The growth of student enrolment depends upon the growth of reputation of the college, number of placements every year, availability of reputed faculties, facilities and others. Hence, the rate of enrolment of students will change every year. Again, 50 years is a huge time period and within this period, there may be birth and growth of new colleges that will take away a large number of students. Hence, it cannot be assured that the number of the students in the college will double in the next 50 years.
According to the second argument of the director, the average rent around the college is rising at a considerable rate and hence, more students will prefer the boarding of the college instead of off-campus residence. However, this argument is also invalid as the rents only increase because of the rise in property price. It may decrease when the property price decreases. Moreover, the price of the residences is not the primary factor of the students for choosing the place to stay. Some students may not prefer to use college boarding at all due to several reasons. Hence, this argument presented by the director is invalid.
The final argument presented by the director is that new attractive dormitories will attract more students to enroll in the college. However, this is never the factor behind student enrolment. The growth of student enrolment depends upon the growth of reputation of the college, number of placements every year, availability of reputed faculties, facilities and others. Hence, the rate of enrolment of students will change every year. Attractive dormitories will never be the standard as students seek the academic standard not the design standard inside the college. Moreover, if the new colleges in the future can provide better academic prospects for the students, they will choose those colleges only. Hence, this argument of the director is also invalid.
From the analysis of the arguments, it can be seen that all of the points presented by the director are mainly based on simple assumptions rather than statistics or facts. There are no suitable bases behind these assumptions and the director has also not considered the actual and important factors that are responsible behind the growth of student enrolment in the college. Hence, these arguments of the director can be termed as baseless and can be easily rejected. For the expansion of the residential system in the college, the important factors and proven facts must be used.
Basturkmen, H. and Von Randow, J., 2014. Guiding the reader (or not) to re-create coherence: Observations on postgraduate student writing in an academic argumentative writing task. Journal of English for Academic Purposes, 16, pp.14-22.
Heitmann, P., Hecht, M., Schwanewedel, J. and Schipolowski, S., 2014. Students’ Argumentative Writing Skills in Science and First-Language Education: Commonalities and differences. International Journal of Science Education, 36(18), pp.3148-3170.
Newell, G.E., Bloome, D. and Hirvela, A., 2015. Teaching and learning argumentative writing in high school English language arts classrooms. Routledge.
Sampson, V., Enderle, P., Grooms, J. and Witte, S., 2013. Writing to learn by learning to write during the school science laboratory: Helping middle and high school students develop argumentative writing skills as they learn core ideas. Science Education, 97(5), pp.643-670.

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