Critical Thinking

Module 1 – Case

Academic Reading, Critical Thinking, and The Writing Process

A nuclear war has been declared and you are a civil defense committee member appointed by the President to make decisions on fall-out shelter occupancy.  Computers have calculated that the shelter can guarantee survival for only 6 people.  Your committee is to decide which 6 are to be included from the following list of 12.  Therefore, 6 people will die while the remaining 6 must go on to rebuild a new society.


  1. 36 year-old female physician, known to be racist
  2. Army drill instructor
  3. African-American militant, biological researcher
  4. biochemist
  5. Olympic athlete, all sports
  6. movie star
  7. third year medical student, homosexual
  8. 16 year-old pregnant female
  9. 30 year-old Catholic priest
  10. 38 year-old male, “Mr. Fix-it,” served 7 years for drug offences, has been out of jail for three months
  11. 22 year-old Army nurse and midwife, homosexual
  12. 15 year-old boy, first year apprentice carpenter


In a well-organized and well-supported essay, support your selection of the 6 individuals who must go on to rebuild a new society.

A well-organized essay has a beginning, middle, and an end.  The beginning, or introduction, should include an opening sentence to grab your reader’s attention.  Follow the opening sentence with a brief background on the topic or situation.  In this case, it would be an explanation of the Fall-out shelter.  The last sentence of the introduction is the thesis statement.  The thesis states the main point of the essay, which in this case, would be a statement affirming the six individuals you believe to be the ones to go on to rebuild a new society.

A well-supported essay includes supporting points, details, and examples.  For this essay, you must decide the best way to organize the body of the paper.  Will you have a paragraph for each individual?  Will you divide the body of your paper into two paragraphs, one for health and one for survival?  Will you pair your survivors and have three body paragraphs?  In any case, each body paragraph must support (explain) your reasoning (rationale) using specific details.  Each body paragraph must have a topic sentence that states the main point of the paragraph.

The conclusion typically summarizes the main points of the essay and closes the essay with a lasting impression.

Be sure to proofread your essay and edit for proper grammar, punctuation, diction (word choice), and spelling, as errors in sentence skills will lower a final grade.  A grade will be determined based on the Module 1 Case expectations and Trident University General Education rubric for English.

Papers must be double-spaced in Times or Times New Roman font (12 cpi) with standard one-inch margins.

The first person “I” is not used in a formal essay, nor is the passive “you.”  In place of “you,” “one” may be used.


  • Write an informative essay (no less than two pages in length) that states and supports your selection of 6 individuals who must go on to rebuild a new society.
  • Include an introductory paragraph with thesis statement.
  • Include body paragraphs (each with a topic sentence that states the point of the paragraph) that support the thesis through examples and details.
  • Include a conclusion that summarizes the main points of the essay.

Proofread your essay for errors in grammar, diction (word choice), punctuation, and spelling.

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