Research Paper

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Due Dates: 

2 Nov –

Topic proposal (in Blackboard by midnight)

9 Nov –

Research Question/Thesis/Abstract (in Blackboard by   midnight)

14 Nov –

Annotated Bibliography for in-class peer review (10-12   sources)

16 Nov –

Annotated Bibliography in Blackboard by midnight (10-12 sources)

21 Nov-

Research Paper draft 1 for in-class peer review

27-30 Nov –

Research Paper draft 2 for individual conference (with   copies of your source documents)

5 Dec –

Research Paper final revision in Blackboard by midnight

You will be submitting a draft of your research paper to SafeAssignment, a software program that scans student papers to check for instances of plagiarism. Scanning your papers for plagiarism is not meant as a punishment. Rather, my hope is to find any issues to identify them prior to your submitting your research papers for a grade. Should any issues arise, I will notify you by email and to discuss the Academic Honesty Policy 1-34 and your options. However, a second instance of plagiarism will result in automatic failure from the class.

Summary of Assignment

One of the major assignments in English 210 requires you to write a research-based paper on a topic of interest to you.  After introducing your topic in a research proposal, you will develop a research question and thesis statement to write a 2400 to 3000 word (eight- to ten- page) paper.  Your thesis statement will make a valid claim and will reflect your own opinion.

We will be devoting class time to conducting research and developing your arguments to assist you with writing and polishing your research paper. I will grade assignments as they become due, but do not throw away any graded assignments, as you will refer to them as you work on your research project.

Length of Paper2400 – 3000 words (8-10 pages) (NOT including the References list)

Purpose:  To actively participate in the research process by conducting research about a specific topic and by developing an argument in response to a research question.

Audience:  You will choose the audience for your specific topic.  However, keep in mind that your instructor will also be reading your paper.

Voice:  Academic, authoritative, knowledgeable.

Documentation: APA


The text of your research paper will consist of the following:

  • Introduction
  • Thesis statement (included in introduction)
  • Body paragraphs
  • Supported counterargument(s) with supported rebuttal(s)
  • Conclusion
  • References list.

Your research paper should follow APA style guidelines.  Consult your copy of the APA Manual, Blackboard links and handouts, PowerPoint presentations, class notes, etc.

Paper format:

  • Follow APA style format for research papers, as well as guidelines as they are outlined on the sample research papers I placed in the Research Paper folder in Blackboard.
  • Include a title page in APA style. Place “Running Head: shortened title” in upper left-hand corner of title page..
  • Center full title 1” from the top of the first page of your paper.
  • Right justify page numbers 1/2” from the top of the page, with the title page numbered 1.
  • Include a running head (shortened title of the paper) in all capital letters in the upper left-hand corner of each page.
  • Double space throughout the paper.
  • Indent the first sentence of all paragraphs by 1/2”.
  • Use 1” margins throughout the paper except for page numbers which should be 1/2” from the top of the page.

References List (APA format):  The References List is the last page(s) of a research paper and includes only those sources you actually quote, paraphrase, refer to, or cite in the text of your paper.  To receive a passing grade on this assignment you must include at least SIX sources on the References List of your FINAL research paper.  Your six sources must include at least one of each of the following:  two books and two scholarly journal articles.  You will narrow your list down from your annotated bibliography.  You may, of course, exceed the above requirements as long as you meet the minimum number of six sources.  Please note that Web sites must be credible.

Types of sources on your References List:

  • 2-3 books
  • 2-3 scholarly journal articles (scholarly journal articles may come from databases, as well as from the actual hard copy of the journal)
  • 1 newspaper article (newspaper articles may come from library databases as well as hard copies)
  • 1 Web site (include only credible Web sites; Wikipedia is a good place to begin your search, but does not count as a credible Web site)

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