This seminar introduces argumentation through a wide variety of controversial public policy issues and social problems. The class explores how the US economy works and how economic incentives and institutions are related to social problems, For each issue or problem, the class develops a theoretical analysis and evaluation of alternative economic policies. A key aspect of the analysis is evaluating the value judgments inherent in many social policies. Depending (to some degree) on the interests of the students, issues and problems the course addresses include: economic growth, the federal deficit, trade policy, monopoly, poverty and welfare, the minimum wage, environmental degradation, health care provision, the economics of higher education, and the economics of crime. This introduction to augmentation is coupled with developing the student's skills in oral and written expression.