1. Identify a specific, significant, arguable issue: how can government better handle illegal immigration? 2. Explain the controversy surrounding the issue: how can government better handle illegal immigration? Indicate the larger conversation to which you’re responding (“they say”) Provide a thesis that previews what you will discuss in the proposal (“I say”), and answer the “so what?” and “who cares?” questions. Why is this issue important and why does it matter to a community? 3. Discuss what you already know about this issue. What do you already know about this issue and how did you acquire this knowledge? Be specific. Outside sources, you MUST cite sources correctly and according to MLA guidelines. 4. Explain the research plan in detail • What are the main questions you want to answer in your final project? Be specific. • How would you answer these questions right now? Provide a framework for your subsequent reading and research. • Where will you go to learn more about the issue and to find answers to your research questions? Be specific as possible in describing the sources you’ll turn to first, perhaps even mentioning specific authors, titles, websites, etc. 5. Identify potential audiences Provide detailed profiles of interested audiences, potential allies, and potential opponents, and explain why these stakeholders would be interested in your work. • What audiences would be interested in your ideas on the issue? • What types of scholars, stakeholders, decision makers, and pundits are interested in/affected by the issue? • What sorts of people are likely to be your opponents? Your allies?