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Task: Write a research paper using evidence to support a thesis that addresses your research question examining a current issue or event in the news from the perspective of your field of study. The audience is people who are generally educated but do not have extensive knowledge of your field or topic.
Length: At least 2000 words
Sources: Minimum of 6. At least 3 of these must be from scholarly journals, and all sources should be selected based on reliability, currency, and level of information/analysis. The UMGC library will be very useful in helping you find appropriate sources. You can, but do not have to, include all of the sources from your annotated bibliography.
Due date and revision: The first draft of the research paper is due by the end of Week 5. Submit your draft as an attachment (Microsoft Word is preferred) to this assignment folder. This should be as complete a draft as possible, in order to receive the most helpful feedback. In working on your draft, you may want to look at the rubric that will ultimately be used to grade your final paper. You can see it when viewing these instructions through the Assignments area of the classroom.
During Week 6, you will receive feedback on your draft.
You will then revise your paper and submit it by the end of Week 7 to the folder "Assignment 3: Research Paper, revised draft." This version will be graded using the rubric and will count for 35% of your course grade.
Your instructor may or may not complete the rubric for your first draft, but only the grade on your revised paper will count toward your course grade.
Outcomes you should achieve by completing this assignment
The outcomes for this assignment are listed below, with the associated course outcomes in parentheses:
Use research to write a paper that will inform or persuade an audience (Course outcome 1)
Form unified, coherent, and well-supported paragraphs in support of the thesis statement (Course outcome 2)
Select sources, use them to inform and support your writing, and document them in APA style (Course outcome 4)
Demonstrate accurate grammar and mechanics in writing (Course outcome 3)
Participate in the process of receiving feedback and revising your writing (Course outcome 1)
This paper is the culmination of your research project, in which you are examining a current issue or event in the news from the perspective of your field of study. Before drafting your paper, you will have chosen a topic, developed a research question, and identified several potential sources in an annotated bibliography. You should write on the same topic for this paper, unless your professor has asked you to make changes to your topic.
Organizing and supporting your paper
As you write your paper, be sure to include the following:
an engaging introductory paragraph that includes an effective and clear thesis statement
any definition of terms or background information that your reader is likely to need to understand your paper
focused body paragraphs that begin with topic sentences and use effective transitions. This is where you will support the thesis using arguments and evidence.
a concluding paragraph that reiterates the thesis, summarizes key points of the paper, and leaves the reader with the "So what?"
Research is a key element of this paper. Take care to support your claims with research throughout the paper. Include APA in-text citations whenever you use sources, whether through quote, paraphrase, or summary. An APA reference list at the end of the paper should list all of the sources cited in the text of the paper.
Point of view
This paper will be written in an academic style. Use third person point of view. Do not use "I" or "you."
Formatting your assignment
Incorporate these elements of APA style:
Use one-inch margins.
Use an easy-to-read font between 10-point and 12-point.
Include a title page with the title of your paper, your name, and the name of your school.
Rubric Name: Research Essay
- Paper addresses a research question examining a current issue or event in the news from the perspective of the student's field of study.
- Terms are defined and background information is provided, making the paper the paper accessible to an audience of people who are generally educated but do not have extensive knowledge of the student's field or topic.
- A thesis statement expresses a position in response to the research topic/question.
- The paper supports the thesis statement using arguments and evidence.
- Paper begins with an engaging introductory paragraph that includes an effective and clear thesis statement.
- Body of paper is composed of focused paragraphs that begin with topic sentences and use effective transitions.
- Paper ends with a concluding paragraph that reiterates the thesis, summarizes key points of the paper, and leaves the reader with the "So what?"
Gramma and Mechanics
Sources and Documentation
At least six sources, including at least three scholarly journals.
Score of At least six sources, including at least three scholarly journal articles.
Sources are of appropriate reliability, currency, and level of information/analysis.
APA-style in-text citations
APA-style reference list.
Sources are woven into the paper effectively.
Format, Length, and Point of View
Format: title page; 1-inch margins, double-spaced, clear 10-12 point font.
Length is at least 2000 words.
Score of Length is at least 2000 words.
Essay is written in third person.