By completing journal entries for this course, I learned how to look for rhetorical situations and tools in others’ writing and to incorporate rhetoric in my own writing. I learned to think about personal situations and examples that I could include to help in persuading my audience. Prior to this course, I had never thought about the art of persuasion in my own writing. While in the past I have had to write papers designed to convince an audience of something, I was not aware of any specific rhetorical tools that I could use to help in my persuasion. I had only applied the “what’s in it for me?” concept, where I tried to persuade the audience to agree with me because it would somehow benefit them also. I now realize how much I was missing in my persuasion. I had not considered ethos, logos, or pathos prior to this course. Completing these journal entries help me to fulfill the course learning outcomes for “understand the nature of public discourse/debate as determined by purpose, audience, and context” and “analyze the effectiveness of your own texts and processes for specific rhetorical situations.” The journal entries also helped me to review many different tools that can be used in persuasion, the definition for each of the tools, and specific examples of how those tools could be incorporated. I tried to think of personal examples for each tool included in the chapters when writing my entries. For example, in my entry for chapter 4, I included this example to describe my understanding of pathos: “Parents may employ pathos to get their children to feel bad about wasting food when there are starving children in other countries.” I practiced the use of pathos quite a bit in my writing. I think I was effective in convincing my audience by making them feel like they were “walking in the shoes” of someone else so they could share that person’s feelings. I had more trouble practicing the use of ethos. I had to force myself to use that tool so that I would be able to tackle my persuasion from different angles.



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