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Assignment (Choose ONE Option):
Option 1) Research an educational issue from the perspective of a researcher in your own major field. (In my case, Psychology) For example, a major in sociology might investigate how a certain educational policy could affect society. A psychology major could examine a particular role of psychologists in schools or academic institutions. A computer scientist might research how computers or online classes are changing the face of education. A history major could present an historical look at an educational issue. A math major could look at the applications of big data to education. Business and economics majors could examine education as an investment or look at how a business model could be applied to educational institutions. Political science and world cultures majors could compare different education systems. An art major could look at the importance of art as part of the general requirements in an education system.
Option 2) Look at how your own major views education within that discipline, like how your own major should be taught or how it could attract more students. For example, a major in engineering could look at how people in that discipline view the way the new generation of engineers should be taught or trained, or a business major might discuss the issue of whether business ethics should play a bigger role in MBA programs. Any major could look at a) whether a key component is missing from their curriculum or b) how to attract more students to that field or c) how to better prepare students in that field for grad school or a career.
Your research may result in an argumentative essay depending on your topic, but it does not have to. Instead, you may focus on informing your reader about a relatively unknown aspect of the education debate and its significance. The goal of your essay is to inform your audience (your classmates) about one way that your field is connected to education or an educational issue that you choose to focus on. During the process of your research, you may find yourself taking up a position on your topic that you wish to argue, or you may prefer to maintain an informative approach, highlighting the significance and implications of your topic.
This essay will require you to conduct research and acknowledge sources using the MLA research format. It will also require you to submit a paper proposal (in the form of a discussion), a first draft, and a final draft and to participate in peer review.
You will need to provide background information or context for the educational topic you have chosen. You will also need to present and integrate research on this topic and its connection to your field of study. You may include class readings among your sources. However, no more than two sources can be from class readings. You will need to develop a thesis or central claim that is supportable with your research. It does not have to be an argument or arguable thesis, but it should highlight an issue which would not be common knowledge to your readers (your classmates).
You must use a minimum of six sources by the final draft. The final draft will include a Works Cited page and will be submitted to turnitin.com via Canvas.
8-10 pages (approximately 2,500-3,000 words), not including heading, header, title, and Works Cited page.
The Final Draft must meet the minimum length, have a well developed conclusion and have a Works Cited page with at least six sources. Draft 1 will not receive a grade but is a required part of the Research Paper. Failure to submit draft 1 will affect the grade on the final draft.
Your essay should include the following general structure:
Introduction: Briefly define or describe the issue that you are investigating and explain 1) how it relates to your field of study, 2) what makes it important and 3) what makes it controversial or worth researching. This is the section where you contextualize your topic.
Thesis: At the end of your Introduction, assert your position regarding the issue you have chosen to focus on and provide a rationale or reasoning for this position (this only applies in an argumentative essay). Note: A well-written thesis should be complex and is usually articulated in more than one sentence.
Option a. If you are writing an informational essay, provide credible sources that support your information. These sources should encompass the opposing views on the issue you have chosen.
Option b. If you are writing an argumentative essay, provide credible evidence that supports your position and refutes opposing arguments. Use appeals (logos, pathos and ethos) to strengthen your argument. Make sure to also acknowledge or anticipate and respond to the opposing argument/s.
Conclusion: Bring your paper to a satisfactory end by recapping the information you have presented (for an informational essay) or by reasserting your position using different wording (for an argumentative essay) and (for both essays) emphasizing the relevance of your information or position to your field of study as well as to your audience (the big picture). An argumentative essay may end with a call to action, while an informational essay may leave the reader with something to reflect upon or take away from your discussion.