At this level, you are learning the core concepts of the discipline and you will produce a graduate level paper that presents a research “puzzle” relevant to the subject matter of this class. The paper will be 10-15 pages in length.
The requirements for this project will mirror the requirements for all graduate papers. The paper will be typed in 12 pt. Times New Roman font, with margins of 1” all around. It will be double-spaced except where the format calls for single spacing, for example, block quotations and the list of complete citations. Citations will conform to the Turabian format whether you choose to use the Parenthetical/References style or the more traditional Foot- or end-notes/Bibliography style.
To recap the Format of the Paper:
• Title Page of the Paper. The title of your paper should be brief but should adequately inform the reader of your general topic and the specific focus of your research. Keywords relating to parameters, population, and other specifics are useful. ALWAYS use a Title Page for graduate work! Your title page will include the title, name, course name and number, and Professor’s Name.
I. Introduction (1-2 pages): This section shall provide an overview of the topic that you are writing about, a concise synopsis of the issues, and why the topic presents a “puzzle” that prompts your research questions, which you will include. In addition to the research puzzle and question, make sure you clearly state your research hypothesis. This section can be preceded by an epigraph that creates interest in the topic. We encourage the use of epigraphs, but please follow the proper format for epigraphs!!
II. Review of the Literature (3-5 pages): All research projects include a literature review to set out for the reader what knowledge exists on the subject under study and helps the researcher develop the research strategy to use in the study. A good literature review is a thoughtful study of what has been written, a summary of the arguments that exist (whether you agree with them or not), and are arranged thematically. The literature review is not an annotated bibliography and should be written in coherent narrative style. At the end of the literature review, you should discuss the current knowledge gaps that exist and how your study will help fill those gaps.
III. Methodology and Research Strategy (1-2 pages): This section provides the reader with a description of your strategy to conduct research for this paper. It identifies your variables and how you operationalized your research approach. It describes the data you found and how you analyzed it for your Analysis and Findings. This section describes any limitations you discovered about your strategy and how you overcame them. Given the length of the class, this section usually identifies the independent and dependent variables and describes how the researcher plans to analyze them to arrive at reasonable findings.
IV. Analysis and Findings (3-4 pages): This section provides the results of your research and the analytical arguments that the paper makes as a result of an analysis of the variables. In a quantitative project, this section would provide the results of the data collection and an analysis of what it illustrates in empirical terms. However, given the length of the term, most projects will be qualitative. This section should also provide the evidence that proves (or disproves) the hypothesis.
V. Conclusions (2 -3 pages): This section will contain the concluding analytical arguments based on what research has revealed to answer the research question. Like any conclusion, it should provide a synopsis of the project, the strategy, and the results and what they add to the body of knowledge. This section should also offer suggestions for avenues of future research for other scholars, as all knowledge is evolutionary.
VI. References (or Bibliography): This section will contain all references, cited in Turabian format, properly indented, and alphabetically arranged. Entitle this section as either “References” or “Bibliography” depending on the type of citation you use in the rest of the paper. You should compile these and add to them as you’ve gone along. They should be error free!!!
Note, the references that you selected WILL be evaluated for their academic rigor. The use of Wiki and similar online references that are not supported by academic rigor will not be well received. ALL references will be evaluated using the CRAAP model which is employed throughout academia.
The acronym CRAAP defines the 5 criteria used for the evaluation: