Research Paper Assignment

Write an essay about a controversial topic, taking an arguable stance about the topic. (Yes, you pick the topic and you develop the claim on your own after weighing all the options.) Provide evidence from the research sources and explain in your own words how the evidence supports the main claim of your thesis.

Essay Specs:
1000-1300 words (approximately 4-5 pages of essay). The 1000 word minimum will be strictly enforced. That count does not include the heading or the works cited page.
Write in scholarly third person point of view. You want to take on the tone of an educated professional writing subjectively about a topic. This means avoid the following words: I, me, you.
Use at least four research sources (from Opposing Viewpoints) as evidence to support the claim in the research paper. You may agree with the source, disagree with the source, or respond to an idea in the source. The sources must be used directly as quotes, paraphrase, or summary with in-text citations either in the idea of the sentence or in the parenthetical citation of the sentence.
Evidence should be as short as possible but include expansive and thorough explanation of how the words of the source supports the claim of your paper. Remember, your own words and ideas are far more valuable than the words in the evidence. You must piece it all together.
Do not put quotes in topic sentences. Use a topic sentence of your own words.
A works cited page must be added to your assignment after the end of the essay. Use the “Page Break” feature to add it to the end of the essay. (Look up the directions to do this if you are unfamiliar.) As a courtesy on this assignment, I have provided the correct bibliography entries for these sources. Your responsibility is to properly format the whole page in MLA 8 formatting including but not limited to spacing, indents, margins, font, and special formatting.
When quoting or paraphrasing the primary sources above (Du Bois and Rowling) in the essay, make sure to use in-text citations, naming the author, either in the sentence or in the parenthetical citation (but not both). As neither of the sources are paginated (has page numbers), you will not need to cite page numbers, paragraphs, or lines. Just cite the author’s last name because that is how it connects to the hanging indent in the bibliography entries on the works cited page. For example, Rowling says, “Every day, I saw more evidence about the evils humankind will inflict on their fellow humans, to gain or maintain power.” Or you could write, she says, “Every day, I saw more evidence about the evils humankind will inflict on their fellow humans, to gain or maintain power” (Rowling). Note that the author’s name appears only once in the sentence regardless of where it is.
The essay should be written in standard essay organization, with certain types of information in certain places in the essay because essays in English have certain style expectations. This–essay organization–will be strictly reviewed during grading. The sentence numbers are suggestions for an essay this length. (Longer essays require proportionally longer sections.)
Introduction Paragraph:
Hook to grab the reader’s attention (1-2 sentences)
Background information to give a basic overview of the topics in the thesis (3-4 sentences)
Thesis to state the specific claim of this paper (1 sentence). It will directly answer the prompt.
Body Paragraphs
Topic sentence that connects to the thesis and sets up the main claim in this paragraph (1 sentence, usually short)
Explanation of the topic in the paragraph in your own words (3-6 sentences, can be mixed up with evidence)
Evidence from the research sources that demonstrates or exemplifies the claim you making, must have citation (3 or less sentences, can be mixed up with explanation)
Conclusion Paragraph
Recap of main claims from the body paragraphs, drawing all your conclusions together (3-4 sentences)
Contextualization to explain how this topic is relevant and fits into the wider world (1-2 sentences)
Use a variety of sentence types–simple, complex, compound.
Use correct punctuation particularly periods, commas, semicolons, and quotation marks.
Use correct grammar (wording).
MLA 8 formatting is required throughout the entire document including but not limited to spacing, indents, margins, font, special formatting, heading, and page numbers.
This assignment will run through the originality detector (a.k.a plagiarism detector), Turnitin. Papers with originality scores over 30% will receive a manual plagiarism review. Obvious plagiarism will receive a grade of zero for the assignment with no opportunity for resubmission. Plagiarism of full or partial documents will be reported to the Academic Dean for review and serious consequences.

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