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For the research paper you are expected to research an American social issue or problem from a sociological point of view, develop a thesis/ research question/ hypothesis and present a strong well-balanced paper that discusses the issue selected. All ideas presented or main points made must be fully explained and supported with evidence from academic sources. Make sure your topic is not too broad, as this will distract from the main purpose of the paper. In addition, you are required to apply what you have learned from this course into the paper. This means, you are expected to use one sociological perspective and 3 social concepts or theories within your paper. Furthermore, in order to successfully complete this activity you must fulfill all the requirements on the paper check list before you submit the final paper.
Research Paper Check List
____ APA Format is used
____ 6 – 10 pages (This does not include cover page, reference/ bibliography page or reflection section). You are not required to include an abstract with your paper.
____ Cover page (Has proper page heading, the tile of the paper, student’s name, instructor’s name, name of class, date–all information on the cover page must be centered and properly spaced)
____ There is an introduction, thesis statement, four main points, a body and conclusion to this paper. Within the introduction you must present an overview of the topic, thesis statement and four main points (the four main points should not be in the form of questions). The conclusion must restate the main points addressed within the body of the paper
____ There are no extra space between paragraphs and the proper page headings is on each page. Do not use subheadings within the paper, triple space or quadruple space between paragraphs. There should be no extra spaces within the body of the paper. There should not be any tables of charts within the body of the paper.
____ Paper has at least 4 main arguments or ideas. Ideas/arguments are clearly explained, outlined and supported by research. You must use your own words to explain the main point before presenting evidence to support the idea/ main point/ argument. In addition, you need to explain how the evidence supports the main point being presented.
____ Identify and explain the sociological perspective used. Be sure to define the perspective selected and show how it related to at least one of the ideas you are presenting. You can only use the structural functionalist, conflict or symbolic interactionist perspective in order to fulfill this requirement. You will also need to underline the perspective used
____ Used 3 Sociological concepts. Be sure to underline the concepts used, define each concept, cite the source of each definition, and explain how the concept is relevant to the point being presented.
____ Define all key terms used within the body of the paper and document source of definition
____ Do not use Wikipedia or any internet source related to Wikipedia as a source within the body of the paper
____ Do not use any dictionaries or encyclopedias as sources in the body of this paper
____ Do not use any youtube videos as a source(s) within the body of this paper
____ Use 6 Research Sources (Maximum of 2 websites can be used)
____ At least 1 academic research article must be used to support at least one of the main points presented within the paper. The Article used must be properly documented within the body of the paper and on the reference page
____ All sources used are properly cited and documented within the body of the paper and on the paper and on the reference page.
____ Proper Parenthetical documentation (when used). Quotes longer than 4 lines must be properly formatted (block style)
____ The paper is written using 12-point font, Times New Roman font, 1-inch margins, the information is double space and the paper is free from grammatical errors
____ Paragraphs are properly indented.
____ Bibliography/Reference page (properly formatted–APA style)
____ Research paper is not plagiarized (this includes a portion of entire paper). At least 80% of the research paper must be in your own words.
____ Application/Reflection Section on a separate page – what did you learn from this research? This is not part of the 6-10 page requirement. This is an additional page.
Topic Ideas: Affirmative Action; Changes in Education, Bureaucracy, Urbanization, Differences in Social Class, Transition to a Biotechnical Economy, Joblessness, Aging and the Elderly, The Impact of Globalization, Social Security, Death and dying, Population Changes, Market Changes, The Impact of the Economy on Social Life, Dating. Environmentalism, Foreclosures, Stigma, Deviance, Cultural Differences etc.
The topics listed above are just a few ideas and are very broad in nature, hence if you select one you need to narrow it down when writing your paper. Remember you are looking at the social aspects of the topic.
Acceptable research materials include: books, newspaper articles, news reports/documentaries, and journal articles. Keep non-academic Internet sources to a minimum. 90% of research should come from academic sources. Points will be deducted for using non-academic sources. Papers are expected to be typed, double space, with 12-point font and written in the APA style.