geol 214 fossil fuel reflection paper

Your essay should consider the following question:

Discuss advantages and disadvantages of using fossil fuels as primary energy sources.

Think of your audience as being a non-scientists who wants to be well-informed about this topic. You can refer to concepts or ideas covered in lecture, but you are expected not to rely on these alone. Online material is a fine resource, as long as you can verify its accuracy. Stuff from the Muller book (especially Chapters 3-6) may also be helpful. Make sure you cite your sources appropriately and fully. For citation formats, use APA style:

Upload your essay on Blackboard, via the tab for this assignment (3-4 pages typed; formatting details below). Please upload a file in PDF format and make sure your name appears on the top of the first page.

As a reminder about what is expected for this assignments, from the syllabus:

This assignment asks you to engage with the class material beyond the exams and labs; this essay is an opportunity for you to think about and independently explore the topic of this class. A detailed question prompt will be announced closer to the time. The essay will be due on the Friday before Spring Break (Friday, March 13th), no later than 5pm. You will be responsible for uploading your assignment in electronic form (as a PDF) by that time. Late submissions will be penalized by a 5 pt deduction for each week, beginning immediately after the due date (e.g., the deadline is 5pm, so if you submit at 5:01pm, you will be penalized by 5 pts). The essay should be between 3-4 pages typed, double-spaced, either 11 pt Arial or 12 pt Times New Roman font, and with 1-inch margins. Deviations from this format, including going beyond the 4-page limit or not uploading in PDF format, will lose you points at the discretion of your TA. The list of references cited is NOT included in the page limit.

Grades for your essay assignment will be assigned by your TA based on the following six elements:

  • Thesis/argument – Is the main argument clearly stated, interesting, and incisive, and carried consistently throughout the essay?
  • Structure – Is the structure of the essay logical? Does the argument develop progressively through the text? Are the points linked together coherently? Are the paragraphs well organized?
  • Evidence/Content – Is the content sufficient and appropriate to substantiate the arguments being made? Is the evidence presented in a way that can be easily understood?
  • Analysis – Does the essay establish how the evidence being presented supports the thesis? Does the analysis include novel insight, beyond paraphrasing prior work?
  • Sources – Are the sources well-chosen to support the argument? Are they used in more than one way? Are they cited appropriately?
  • Style – Is the writing clear, and free of typographical and grammatical errors? Is the essay a pleasure to read? Does it conform to the formatting guidelines, including the page limit?
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