Western Civilization


 Biographical / Historical Argument                                    Due date: 2/13 – 2/17


Purpose: To learn to research and write an argument paper in history. Each person on this list are on the top 50 most influential people in Western History, and indeed play a major role in our course topic this year. Aside from learning to write a historical argument, objective of this report and presentation is for you to gain a greater understanding of an individual that has made a great impact on the History of His/Her country or organization. It will also clarify the reasons and causes for the events of a specific country that occur before and after this person’s life.



1) 1250 words +/- 10%


2) 1” margins


3)  in Times New Roman or Arial font


4) Double spaced


5)  Must include a properly cited Bibliography (Chicago Manual of Style Format) of at least three different resources this includes web sites, books, magazine articles, journals, no encyclopedias please. Websites should be credible, ie. Usually but not always, ending in “.edu” or “.org” or “.gov”


6)  Properly cite at least 15 endnotes (Chicago Format)


7)  This paper must answer a question of your own design. This question will start with the word “Why”. It will require a little research beforehand.  

                a. a brief Biography emphasizing their achievements and accomplishments

               b. Answer your question! (This is the argument phase, prove your point!)


8) Cover Page (Chicago Format)


9) Poster, Time line, Diorama, Power Point (choose one)


10) 3-5 minute oral presentation - you will demonstrate the knowledge you have gained on this topic by giving a mini-lesson to the teacher and your peers, actively use your prop (ie. Poster, power point etc) to get your message across. Following your presentation there will be a question and answer period. This is where you show what you know, don’t let yourself down. You will also be my “go to” person when we reach the era in history in which your person lived, you will give the class your knowledge once again.


11) See page 2 for the stages and timing of the assignment



We will draw lots to determine who your Historical figure will be. Potential biographies will be:


1. Sigmund Freud  2.Joan of Arc                   3. Ulysses S. Grant            4. Napoleon Bonaparte


5.Mohandas K. Gandhi       6. Elizabeth I (ENG)     7. Henry Ford


8. Karl Marx        9.Edward I (ENG)             10. George Washington       11. Simon Bolivar


12.John Calvin   13. Mary Wollstonecraft                  14. Christopher Columbus


15. Louis XIV      16.Thomas Jefferson         . 17.Frederick the Great    18.Charles Darwin


19.Elizabeth Cady Stanton


  21. Rene Descartes  22. Eleanor of  Acquitaine


23.Martin Luther               24.Leonardo Da Vinci      25.Jean Jacques Rousseau     26. John Locke


27. Magellan       28.Peter the Great



Timeline and stages of the assignment


Week 1: 12/14 – 12/21       “Pre - search” the topic and find some facet you find interesting

                                                Due: 12/21   Approval of “Why” Question


Week 2:  12/26 – 1/ 2         Collect Materials from local library, through CWMARS, or the online databases through our Library


Week 3: 1 /2 – 1/6  Begin Note taking from source material


Week 4:  1/9 – 1/13 Study for Midterm Exams ( If possible continue Note Taking from source material) 


Week 5:  1/16 – 1/23    Study / take Mid Term Exams!

Due : 1/16  Initial Bibliography


Week 6:  1/24  - 1/27  writing the rough draft of your argument                     


Week 7: 1/30 – 2/3 Edit Rough Draft, reread, Edit again. Begin Final Draft


Week 8:  2/6 – 2/10   Finish Final Draft, Work on Powerpoint, poster, etc.


Week 9: 2/13 – 2/17    Finished arguments and presentations due