Essay Composition

Writing an essay requires an orderly and careful process, however, the pre-writing process is as important as the writing process. This paper will outline the process that has been used in writing the essay on raising the minimum legal driving age. In the pre-writing process, I had a list of topics that I had interest in and narrowed down my choices of topics. (The chosen flow of topics has been highlighted).

Once the topic on minimum driving age was taken, a preliminary topic sentence was created. The topic sentence is: The regulation of the minimum driving age should be changed. Following this topic, the following questions have been formulated:

?      What are the issues on the current minimum driving age?

?      What are the relationships between the minimum driving age and motor-vehicular accidents?

?      Would changing the minimum driving age increase road safety?

I took statistics, books and periodicals to increase knowledge on the topic and be able to answer the questions that have been presented above. I took into consideration certain criteria that would help me choose the best sources possible. The criteria that were used were the following:

?      Reliability of the author- Knowledge on the topic (educational background, etc.)

?      Recency of the source (date of publication)

For example:

 “…Those common factors emerged when USA TODAY examined all the deadly crashes involving 16-to-19-year-old drivers in 2003. About 3,500 teenagers died in teen-driven vehicles in the USA that year — a death toll that tops that of any disease or injury for teens. The South proved to be the deadliest region.[1]”

After reading and rereading my sources, the specific topic that came was about raising the minimum driving age. This topic was chosen since this is an outstanding issue in the state of Massachusetts. Using the sources that I have gathered, I took down the pros and cons of raising the minimum driving age. I wrote the arguments and counter arguments in tabular form so as to look at which arguments were strong.

Pros – Lessen driving accidents, Teenager’s brain can fully develop

Cons  – Might increase illegal drivers

My decision on a stand was based on these arguments as well as the reliability of the given sources. The final thesis statement now stands: The minimum legal driving age should be raised. After which an outline was created in order to serve as a guide for writing the paper. From the sources taken in the previous part of the research process as well as personal experiences, my position was determined: The legal age for driving should be raised from its current age to a higher age level. The reason for choosing such was based on facts and statistics. The facts were based on medical research, as well as experiences in the field of psychology.


Crossman, D;R. Sixteen is too young to drive : taking control when your teen’s behind-            the-wheel. Scotia, NY : Footnote Pub. 2002.

Landsberger, J. Writing Position Papers. The Study Guides and Strategies (02 June, 2006). 20 February 2007. <>

O’ Donnell,J. “Deadly teen auto crashes show a pattern.” USA TODAY, (1 March 2005).

McAleese, D. “Rethink of legal driving age urged by church moderator. “Financial Times Ltd.” (09 October, 2006). 20 Feb., 2006. ;,M. Teenage Roadhogs. New York : Alpha Reference. 1997.

Schnell, D. Characteristics of Adolescence. Minneapolis: Minn.,Burgess Pub.Co.1946.

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