More advanced students might do well to read Philosophical Writing: An Introduction, by A.
, an ever-growing set of original 1000-word essays on philosophical questions, figures, and arguments.
That is because it is neither a research paper nor an exercise in literary self-expression.
It is not a report of what various scholars have had to say on a particular topic.
This means that you have to fully understand the concepts that you read about and you have to do some philosophy of your own to respond to these concepts.
While writing a philosophy paper may be challenging, it is possible with some careful planning and hard work.
Most philosophy assignments will ask you to demonstrate your understanding of the subject through exposition of arguments and theories, and many will also test your ability to assess these arguments and theories by writing a critical evaluation of them.
Write your paper so that the reader understands how your exposition and evaluation answer the questions and address all parts of the assignment.
If you cannot formulate your thesis this way, odds are you are not clear enough about it. At this point, students frequently make one or more of several common errors.
The next task is to determine how to go about convincing the reader that your thesis is correct. Sometimes they feel that since it is clear to them that their thesis is true, it does not need much argumentation.