Part 2: Write up an Argument

After your conversation, you should write up the most charitable possible interpretation of your interlocutor’s arguments and position. This can vary in length, depending on what your partner’s arguments are. But it should probably be about 150 words or so.

Hold on to this summary! You will use it to create an argument map in part 3.

Note: Often at the end of step 2, teachers will ask their students to show their summaries to their interlocutors. Interlocutors are asked to review the summaries to confirm that the write ups indeed reflect their views. If an interlocutor spots any errors, their student partner is asked to go back and edit their write up until it accurately reflects what the interlocutor believes. The interlocutor can then send an email or written note to the teacher confirming that the write up reflects their view.

While we are not asking you (the teacher) to complete this review process with your interlocutor, we highly recommend it for students completing the Disagreement Project. Showing the interlocutor a summary of their argument is a powerful way to ensure that the student has accurately and charitably interpreted the interlocutor’s view.