They Say/Isay

Essay 3:   They Say/I Say

They Say/I Say: The Moves that Matter in Academic Writing was an interesting book that gives many moves that can be used in writing. The book is divided into three sections that is; they say, I say, and the combination of the two. This “They Say/I say” approach is most helpful for persuasive papers and argumentative research papers.   As you construct different arguments, the basic template of “They say/I say” can be modified literally hundreds of ways.   Any formulation is fair game so long as it maintains the model of presenting different voices in a written discussion and making clear the distinction between these voices and yours. This paper will attempt to point out some of the different moves by illustrating them in 5 research articles.
They book starts out with what others are saying. The book indicates when it comes to constructing an argument (whether orally or in writing), Graff and Birkenstein offered the following advice: start with “what others are saying,” and then introduce your own ideas as a response. Specifically, they suggest that you summarize what “they say” as soon as you can in your text, and remind readers of it at strategic points as your text unfolds.
I have seen this approach throughout all five of my research articles. The article Moral Distress: a growing problem in the health professions? (Ulrich, Hamric, Grady) begins with the “they say” approach.   The opening paragraph quotes noted author and liver transplant surgeon Pauline Chen. She describes the authoritative system of care. Chen discusses what other physical and psychological burdens medical professionals face. The authors support what Chen has said by giving a case study, then start again with another “they say”. This pattern is followed throughout their article. In Chapter 7 of They “Say, I Say, Graff and Birkenstein explains your paper must answer the questions "So what?" and "who cares?" They explain just stating a thesis and proposition is...