Outline example

Mrs. Kirk
11(1) Composition
December 12, 2011
Teacher’s note: Notice this
student chose to begin her paper
by first addressing
counterarguments. For her issue,
an issue that many people are
against, she made an effective
choice in deciding to begin by
refuting the ideas of the
opposing side before developing
reasons why her position is
Space Exploration: Money Well Spent
Thesis: The money the government apportions to space exploration is not wasted. This
expenditure is necessary to expand our knowledge of the universe and fund new technologies
which can benefit life on earth.
I. In this time of economic uncertainty, many people incorrectly believe that we are wasting
money on space exploration.
A. Outspoken critics of the space program call it a needless expenditure and even blame
the space program for crippling the economy.
1. They believe that this money would be better spent on Earth, helping the
people of Earth and their solvable problems with hunger, shelter, inadequate
schools (Hangsterfer 28-32).
2. Space exploration is “not worth bankrupting the country” or driving the
government further into debt (Pop).
3. “Whatever the potential benefits may be, they cannot offset the
enormous cost of space programs” (“At the End of the Century, Will US
Space Exploration Be Grounded?”).
B. Money doesn’t necessarily solve all earthly problems
1. “It is not the exploration spirit that Americans need to give up in order
to alleviate poverty. It is the consumerist spirit” (Pop).
2. All people, and the government, tend to spend on things that we want in the
moment and will not really benefit us in the long run. We are looking for the
immediate satisfaction of getting something tangible, here and now.
3. Even while paying for the space program, we have the resources to aid the
hungry and the homeless (Hangsterfer 28-32).
4. “It seems that money isn’t the answer, or perhaps the money isn’t getting spent
in the right places” (Thompson)
C. More money is spent on trivial and unnecessary items than on space exploration
1. Studies have shown that more money has been spent on pet supplies, alcohol,
or tobacco than on space exploration (Pop).
2. “Wide-scale inefficiency in government spending wastes millions of dollars
per year that could be better spent to improve the country’s present and
future” (Hangsterfer 32).
II. In today’s economy, it is important to cut costs as much as possible.
A. Space exploration programs have already cut their expenses enormously and are
looking into even more price cutting techniques.
1. Replacing humans with robots have decreased the price of space exploration
2. NASA is considering sending astronauts on a one way trip to Mars to reduce
the cost.
III. There are a vast amount of benefits that can be reaped from the space exploration program.
A. Space exploration satisfies our curiosity
1. “Space exploration…fulfills a basic human ambition to explore the
unknown” (“At the End of the Century, will US Space Exploration be
2. People, from the first humans to today’s explorers, have always sought to
discover the unknown and uncharted areas of the world.
3. Space is the new Manifest Destiny—it represents our pioneering spirit.
B. What’s learned in space can be applied to Earth.
1. Examples include water purification, advances in medicine, environmental
benefits, etc. (Thompson).
2. Technology developed for the space program has applications on earth.
C. Who knows where our discoveries will take us? The possibilities are endless.
1. Discovery of another life form will expand our knowledge of the universe
2. NASA has already discovered a planet (Kepler-22b) in the habitable zone
which has the potential to support life (Krieger).