It's worth discussing with your students what they find to be compelling evidence. Encourage them to include multiple types of evidence and not become reliant on any one form.
Try walking your students through an example, such as:
What evidence might you want to see in investigating why Walmart is or is not a socially responsible company?
If you wanted to convince your parents to let you spend spring break in Cancun, how would you allay any fears they may have?
"Statistics borrow from mathematics an air of precision and certainty but also call on human judgment and so are subject to bias and imprecision." From Making Sense of Statistics
Familiarize yourself with the below resources if you would like to incorporate this discussion into your teaching.
Your students do not have a full understanding of scholarship - What counts as research? What do professors do when they are not teaching? Where do researchers work? How do I find their research? I'm being asked to pay for this research article - why? (p.s., never pay for articles - you already do - ask a librarian for help finding the article through our subscriptions)
Personal stories and experiences can be compelling as evidence and are found in newspapers and magazines. They may also come about as a result of your students interviewing subjects.
These databases are good places to search for personal stories typically found in magazines and newspapers.
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