FHS Composition
Research Paper -- Bowen

Due:   Friday, January 8, 2016. 
This is a DEADLINE. Whatever you have completed will be collected on that date.

Type:  Formal research paper with parenthetical documentation

Genre: Expository

Subject: International problem / solution

Sources: At least ten (10) different sources, assessed for credibility

Length (total of all sections) -- 1000 words (D) to 2000+ (A)
eCards – 25 cards (D) to 50 eCards (A)

Supplies Needed:
Library / database access
Typing (Writing Center, etc.)
White paper, black ink, boring font

To Be Turned In:
Typed, double-spaced, stapled in this order:
     Title page
     Body with parenthetical documentation for EVERY fact
     Works Cited
Completed self-check evaluation
Completed checkpoint sheet with teacher initials
Email:  ALL eCards to bowena{at}sd5.k12.mt.us

REQUIRED TO PASS:  Responsible management of information

FOR A/B GRADE: Effective presentation of information

Research Step 1: Topic and Sources

Research Step 2: Start eCards

To create MLA bibliography in Global Issues, two steps:

Select Citation Tools. Copy/Paste MLA 7th edition citation.

To create MLA bibliography in Ebsco, four steps:

Select Print.

Choose MLA citation format.

Cancel Print (weird, I know, but trust me).

Copy/Paste citation.

Research Step 5: Thesis

Your thesis is a one-sentence answer to your research question. For a problem-solution paper, your thesis will probably have two parts.

Example research question:Is there a problem with illegal or improper harvest of trees, and what steps can be taken that ensure that the music industry doesn’t contribute to it?
Example thesis from this question: Traditional methods of guitar manufacturing have contributed to improper logging and shortages of exotic woods, but some companies are successfully experimenting with new materials as well as different kinds of wood.

The thesis statement is one sentence describing the main idea or  question that will be answered by the information given in the paper (Menasche 30-31).

Your thesis should be an informative or persuasive statement, a one-sentence answer to your research question. 

"Properly worded, the thesis should:  (1) be clear, comprehensible, and direct;  (2) predict major divisions in the structure of the paper;  (3) commit the writer to an unmistakable course..." (Winkler and McCuen, 96) 

Examples of thesis statements:

When people retire they have to resolve economic problems, search for new activities, and develop new social roles.

Nuclear power technology has taken important steps since the early 1970s and, as a result, a new major source of energy has been developed.

The primary cause of murine muscular dystrophy may be demyelination of nerve fibers.
                                          (Menasche 34)

Charlie Chaplin's "Tramp" has remained a favorite international character because he is a character with whom the average person can empathize.

An unfavorable fetal environment, such as can be caused by malnutrition in the mother or her use of drugs, is a primary cause of many kinds of birth defects.

The simple vocabulary and rhyming lines of Dr. Seuss's books make them easy for children to read, but the author's illustrations are primarily responsible for the imaginative flair in his work.

                                    (Winkler and McCuen 100-101)


Menasche, Lionel.  Writing A Research Paper.  Pittsburgh:  University of Pittsburgh Press, 1984.

Winkler, Anthony C. and Jo Ray McCuen.  Writing the Research Paper:  A Handbook.  New York:  Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1979. 


Research Step 5: Outline

See p. 276 in Writers Inc. for an outline example. You do NOT need to include the Introduction and Conclusion in your outline, but you DO need your research question at the beginning of the outline.

If it fits, feel free to use the outline provided here.

Please use a simple "topic outline" (p.108) rather than the full "sentence outline."

One rule of outlining:  If you have a 1, you must have a 2 (and/or 3, etc.).  If you have an A, you must have a B (and/or C, etc.). 

It is NOT recommended that you go beyond five subsections in any area (no more than A-B-C-D-E) for a basic outline such as this.

Example Thesis: Traditional methods of guitar manufacturing have contributed to improper logging and shortages of exotic woods, but some companies are successfully experimenting with new materials as well as different kinds of wood.

Example Outline:

I.  The problem of improper logging                           (Problem & Cause)
     A.  Legal & illegal
     B.  Lacey Act
     C.  Recovery

II.  Does guitar production contribute?                         (Problem/Cause)
     A.  Sitka spruce & Mahogany
     B.  Going green/Composite

III.  Going Green                                                        (Solution)
     A.  Guitar Center
     B.  Martin & Co.

IV.  Composite guitars in the industry                           (Problem/Cause)
     A.  < 1% of industry
     B.  Players are stubborn
     C.  Expensive

V.  Meeting in the middle                                             (Solution)
     A.  Spruce and composite
     B.  Great sound, great feel
     C.  Environmentally friendly

Research Step 7: Write Bibliography and Title Page

Research Step 8: Write Body with in-text citations

There are two ways to commit plagiarism and receive a failing grade for this project:
          A. Use someone else's ideas without giving credit (parenthetical documentation), even if the ideas are put into your own words.
          B. Use someone else's words without giving credit (EITHER without parenthetical documentation OR without quotation marks around source's words).
          ALL FACTS must be cited in your paper, unless they are common knowledge or your personal experience.
                        Common knowledge = the sky is blue, there are 365 days in a year; your personal experience = things you have personally done.
          Parenthetical documentation should be inserted immediately after the fact, even if that comes in the middle of a sentence. It is fine to have more than one parenthetical cite per sentence. If you found the same fact in two different sources, the parenthetical may include both references.
          Also, you may contact MsB when you see this line. For extra credit, be one of the first to give the word below to her.

Some Must-Do's to remember for writing and citing:

--eCards should include the ORIGINAL TEXT (direct quotes) of facts used in body.
--All facts in body must clearly come from your eCards you include with this assignment.
--Do not include facts you've seen "somewhere" other than the eCards you include with this assignment.
--All writing in body should be YOUR words (summary, paraphrase) with parenthetical documentation; you may use ONE direct quote per paragraph (with " "), but only if you can explain why it is essential to keep the original wording.
--You must cite EVERYTHING except common knowledge (such as, the sky is blue) and your personal experience (such as, when I traveled to Croatia it rained every day.
--Works Cited must be in MLA format, with sources in alphabetical order.


Complete project submission includes:

          Typed paper, stapled in this order: 
                    Title Page (incl. word count)
          Paper-clipped on top of stapled paper:
                    Completed Self-Checklist
                    Completed heckpoints sheet
          Emailed to MsB:
                     Complete and accurate eCard file (address bowena{at}sd5.k12.mt.us, replace {at} with @)
           Review your Self Checklist to be sure you've earned the grade you expect.


Final research project is due at the end of the period Friday, January 8, 2016.




Complete project submission will include:
          Typed paper, stapled in this order:  Title Page (incl. word count), Outline, Body, Bibliography
          Paper-clipped on top of stapled paper: Completed Self-Checklist and Checkpoints sheet
          Emailed to MsB: Complete and accurate eCard file (Address bowena-at-sd5.k12.mt.us, replace -at- with @)

See your Self Checklist for details. Grade requirements for final project: view here.