Research Paper: (2,000 words) TYPED (100 Points)
Final draft due on the last day of class-11:59 PM (PST)
Total Points: (100 points)
1. This research paper should present a thesis that is specific, manageable, provable, and contestable—in other words, the thesis should offer a clear position, stand, or opinion that will be proven with research. You should analyze and prove your thesis using examples and quotes from a variety of sources.
2. You need to research and cite from at least 5-6 sources. You must use at least 3 different types of sources.
• At least one source must be a peer/scholarly article from the Cerritos College Library Database.
• At least one source must be a book, anthology or textbook.
• At least one source must be from a credible website, appropriate for academic use.
• The paper should not over-rely on one main source for most of the information. Rather, it should use multiple sources and synthesize the information found in them.
3. This paper will be 2000 words (approximately 8 pages in length), not including the Works Cited page, which is also required. This means at least 8 full pages of text. The Works Cited page does NOT count towards length requirement.
4. You must use MLA format for the document, in-text citations and Works Cited page. If you are unsure about a particular source, we can discuss it.
5. You must integrate quotations and paraphrases using signal phrases and analysis or commentary.
6. You must sustain your argument, use transitions effectively, and use correct grammar, spelling and punctuation.
7. Your paper must be logically organized and focused.
The goals of this assignment are to help you:
• become more knowledgeable about finding and using varied research sources for your chosen topic.
• further develop your critical thinking skills and back up your points with evidence.
• discipline yourself to follow a scholarly research format to document in-text sources and a reference page (Works Cited).
• compose a well-organized, clear, concise, research paper to expand your knowledge on a particular subject
You have already chosen a topic for this research assignment. The next step is to narrow down your topic to a manageable issue. You should also begin to find sources as early as possible for your topic. Investigate possible approaches to your chosen topic and map out your strategy. Your final product will be judged on how well you succeed in producing a well though-out, clear paper which shows you can interpret and intelligently discuss the issue and how well you can backup your findings with evidence.
Approach: Your paper does not have a chance to be a substantial unless you have enough sources. Find 5-6 varied (NOT all Internet sites, for example) sources – including professional journal articles and professional publications and internet sources. It is a balancing act to find sources that you can understand – that relate to your topic and, at the same time, challenge you intellectually. In this paper I do not want you to try and solve a problem or necessarily reach a conclusion. What I am looking for is evidence that you can gather a body of knowledge on a particular subject, narrow it down to a particular focus, and show that you can synthesize the information and make some intelligent, insightful observations about the subject. A significant part of the paper should be your interpretation of the information and how your knowledge about the subject has been enriched. In other words, do not let the sources speak for you.
Your paper should contain these parts:
Introduction: Your introductory should contain a hook at the beginning of your intro paragraph to grab your reader’s attention. Briefly summarize your findings on the subject – If the sources disagree about the value of or perspective on the subject, point out the areas of disagreement. Your introduction may be more than one paragraph in length. Your thesis should come at the end of your introductory paragraph. State your thesis in the form of one or two sentences. It should not be in the form of a question. Your thesis should be a brief statement, in your own words, that addresses what you have discovered for your research topic. If you can’t articulate in one sentence what your main point is then you probably don’t have a good idea of what you will be writing about. Remember that your thesis is the focal point of your entire paper. It lets the reader know where you are headed, and your sources will support the argument in your thesis statement.
Body of Paper: Use topic sentences to separate different aspects of your paper, which support your controlling idea: your thesis. The body of your paper should provide supporting evidence to support your thesis, in a logical, fully developed manner. Use direct quotes for support. You may only paraphrase once in your paper. Provide transition sentences to move your reader from one paragraph to the next. Keep in mind that a writer of a research paper should synthesize the information gained from sources and weave them into a well-ordered discourse, using the sources as evidence to support key points. A paper which is just a string of quotes shows that the author made no attempt to come to grips with the subject and is relying on the sources to speak for her or him. Be sure to follow proper MLA format for in-text citations (direct quotes from your sources): introduce the quote, state the quote directly and then explain it.
Conclusion: Your conclusion should restate your thesis in a new way at the very beginning, and it should restate the main points you made in your paper. Feel free to share the major significance of the issue, and any unanswered questions, if any, you are still dealing with. You may also offer your opinion on your chosen topic. End with a final thought for the reader that gives your research paper a sense of closure.
Works Cited Page:
Your works cited page must follow MLA form. Begin your Works Cited page on a separate page at the end of your research paper. It should have the same one-inch margins and last name, page number header as the rest of your paper. Label the page Works Cited (do not italicize the words Works Cited or put them in quotation marks) and center the words Works Cited at the top of the page. Only the title of your research paper should be centered. The citation entries themselves should be aligned with the left margin. Double space all citations, but do not skip spaces between entries. Indent the second and subsequent lines of citations by 0.5 inches to create a hanging indent. If you’re citing an article or a publication that was originally issued in print form but that you retrieved from an online database, you should type the online database name in italics. You do not need to provide subscription information in addition to the database name. Entries are listed alphabetically by the author’s last name (or, for entire edited collections, editor names). Author names are written with the last name first, then the first name, and then the middle name of middle initial when needed. If the work was published anonymously, then list the entry by the title of the work.
• Your final draft MUST follow MLA –it should be typed and double-spaced using Times New Roman size 12 font.
• Use direct quotes from your sources throughout your paper. You may only paraphrase once. Paraphrasing consists of using your own words to express someone else’s message or ideas. In a paraphrase, the ideas and meaning of the original source must be maintained; the main ideas need to come through, but the wording has to be your own.
• Your final draft needs to contain a minimum of 2,000 words. This excludes, header, heading, title and the works cited page. Word count begins at the start of your intro paragraph to the very last word in your conclusion paragraph. Any papers under 2,000 words will result in a loss of 10 points.
• Any papers that are incomplete will receive a zero.
• Don’t forget to include your works cited page. Feel free to use citationmachine.net or easybib.com for documenting sources in your works cited page. We will go over documentation when I assign the prompt for the annotated bibliography.
• You will submit your paper to Canvas by or before the day it is due. Cut off time to submit your work to Canvas 11:59 PM (PST). After this time, your paper will not be accepted.
• Consult me when needed throughout the process either by Canvas chat – I’m happy to help. You will also have the opportunity to get direct feedback from me during the research paper workshops.
• No late work will be accepted for the final draft of the research paper.
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