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Major Assignment: Pitch Proposal


While technical professionals are process-oriented and enjoy examining intricate details, many audiences need the message to be broken into actionable bits that help them understand where they play a part. People want to know what they are supposed to dowith the information.

pitch drives your audience to a specific action through a brief snapshot of a larger idea. This information is delivered in a compressed period, typically 1-3 minutes or 500-750 words. For a pitch to be successful, it is best to think of the ideas you want to present as an argument. You must understand how to build a compelling argument and then assemble pieces that bring your argument to life.

For this assignment, write a persuasive summary of secondary research and a proposal for a primary research project. This is an individual assignment; however, you will eventually pitch your proposal to your team. Team members will discuss all the proposals and choose which to explore further via a survey.


Before you write and deliver your pitch, you have to have something to pitch. For this assignment, identify a workplace issue that you are interested in learning more about. Your Canvas section includes links to sources on variety of workplace issues, including leadership styles, collaboration techniques, interviewing approaches, and technological advances. You’re encouraged to identify other sources, but these links should get you started.

Identify two secondary sources that you believe are useful in understanding the topic as well as makes you curious to learn more about that topic. Your pitch will (1) convey what you learned as well as (2) propose a project that extends and deepens what you learned.


Your long-term goal is to convince your team members to accept your proposal and further explore it via a survey. To achieve this goal, consider the following:

Lead with meaning.Successful pitches begin with a statement or idea that leaves a memorable first impression. Leading with meaning is about putting the most essential piece of information—the nugget and overall synthesis of the entire presentation—into a clear and recognizable statement. It is distilling the complicated web of ideas, facts, and figures into a simple sentence your audience recognizes as the main point. From there you can expand your ideas, adding more detail and helping bring your audience into shared understanding.

Identify the problem.Successful pitches need to identify a problem. Your pitch should identify a complex, nuanced issue that impacts workplace communication. Consider what the essential driver is in creating this problem.

Use evidence to tell your story. Once you’ve captured your audience’s interest and identified a problem, provide evidence that offers details and establishes your own credibility.

End with a call to action Successful pitches build to a call to action. An effective call to action offers a clear direction to your audience of exactly what you want them to do. For the purposes of this assignment, you want your team members to accept your proposal and develop it into a primary research project/survey.

Cite your sources. The pitch should also include a proper citation for the two sources that you used.

Your pitch should be no longer than 750 words—these are intended to be concise, persuasive appeals

Rubric 4180 Pitch Proposal Rubric4180 Pitch Proposal Rubric

Criteria Ratings Pts
This criterion is linked to a learning outcomeClarity and Purpose
25 to >21.0 PtsExcellentEstablishes a significant and clear purpose addressing a specific audience following the best practices of technical communication. The thesis is clearly stated in the beginning. 21 to >17.0 PtsStrongMostly establishes a purpose for a specific audience but lacks specific detail (or details come too late) to fully connect to the audience. 17 to >13.0 PtsDevelopingPurpose and audience are stated, but the document remains too broadly written for a specific and significant argument to form. 13 to >0 PtsFailingPurpose/audience is ineffectively communicated or is not consistent with this assignment.
25 pts
This criterion is linked to a learning outcomeDevelopment and Support
25 to >22.0 PtsExcellentPresents sufficient detail to fulfill rhetorical purpose. Use of sources highlights and supports argument. Citations are correct throughout. 22 to >17.0 PtsStrongUsually presents sufficient detail to fulfill rhetorical purpose. Use of sources obscures or overtakes argumentative purpose. 17 to >13.0 PtsDevelopingDetails are redundant or extraneous to the argumentative purpose. Discussion of sources overtakes author’s purpose. 13 to >0 PtsFailingOverall, development or support is ineffective, is not consistent with this assignment. Does not meet the requirements for the number or types of sources. Incorrect use of sources, such as unattributed text or missing quote marks around text.
25 pts
This criterion is linked to a learning outcomeStructure, Design, and Organization
20 to >17.0 PtsExcellentPresents content in a logical and effective arrangement. Document design elements are present (if required) and aid the readability of the document. 17 to >14.0 PtsStrongContent is mostly effectively arranged. Document design elements may be present, but do not drive the argument or purpose forward for the reader. 14 to >10.0 PtsDevelopingNeeded information is present but not in the correct position. Document design elements do not serve a rhetorical purpose. 10 to >0 PtsFailingOverall, the structure of the document or the design of the visual elements is ineffective or is not consistent with the assignment.
20 pts
This criterion is linked to a learning outcomeMechanics
10 to >9.0 PtsExcellentClear, concise, and appropriate in tone for audience and purpose. No errors that impact readability or clarity. 9 to >7.0 PtsStrongClear, concise, and appropriate in tone for audience and purpose. There is a need for minor revision in inconsistency of tone, topic, phrase, or a lack of formal voice. Errors may impact readability. 7 to >6.0 PtsDevelopingGenerally effective, but the overall quality is diminished by issues such as imprecise wording, inconsistency in tone, abrupt changes of topic, wordy phrases, overly complex sentences, overly formal language, or passive voice. 6 to >0 PtsFailingOverall, the Professional Ethos is ineffective or is not consistent with the assignment
10 pts
This criterion is linked to a learning outcomeFulfilling the Prompt
20 to >17.0 PtsExcellentPitch presents a clear argument that is reader/listener focused. Problem and proposal are both clear. 17 to >14.0 PtsStrongPitch presents a central idea but does not provide a clear justification for problem or solution. 14 to >10.0 PtsDevelopingArgumentative ideas are inferred rather than explicit 10 to >0 PtsFailingOffers no proposal.
20 pts
Total points: 100

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