A Critical and Constructive Study on the State of Global Affairs:
A RESEARCH PROJECT
Over the past few months in our study of World Literature, we’ve looked through various lenses through which we analyzed the human experience in different parts of world. Today, the study of multicultural literature is more valuable to the human experience than ever before. Through our analysis of texts that span different parts of the globe and/or different experiences, we have come to discover the fundamental sameness between our own experiences as well as those that may seem unfamiliar to us.
For the remainder of our time together in English 10, you will work towards completing a research project that looks at many of the same questions about the state of our society, but from non-literary approach. More specifically, the research project will ask you to examine the social, cultural, political, and/or economic issues that a particular country faces today, and determine realistic and efficient solutions to help improve these issues on a local scale. We will delve deep into one issue and examine its causes and effects on our society; this will become the thesis that you present and defend in your final paper. Your conclusion will also ask you to consider local solutions for this issue.
You will be responsible for completing all stages of the research process over the remaining weeks in our semester. This project will end in a major research paper that will serve as the culmination of your studies in Honors English 10. The purpose of your term paper is to service three primary needs:
you will become familiar wth college-level research skills, databases and online resources, evaluating critical sources for relevance, and synthesizing multiple sources;
you will select and research a topic (within certain guidelines relevant to the project task) based on personal interest;
you will demonstrate mastery of the recursive writing process, attention to academic writing conventions such as an awareness of audience, use of appropriate language, and adherance to the grammatical rules of standard English, and manage your time appropriately to ensure success on this project.
COMPONENTS OF THE RESEARCH PROCESS
Preparation: You will prepare for this research project by learning about the Four Worlds approach to analyzing a complex issue, and by practicing the key skills that will set you up for success in your individual research. Along the various stages of this project, you will receive support and guidance in the following areas:
How to do effective Internet research, including where to find useful scholarly sources and how to tell if a source is reputable
How to structure an Annotated Bibliography
How to properly cite sources and create Works Consulted/Cited pages in proper MLA format
How to develop a research question
How to formulate a thesis based on your research findings
How to outline and structure a research paper
Tips, strategies, and peer feedback protocol for giving and getting feedback on research paper drafts
Research: You will conduct your own, individual research regarding one problem that you see your chosen country facing and the effects that it is having on their society. While you will be given ample opportunities in class to conduct your research and draft your paper, this project will definitely still require that you are working on this consistently at home. If you do not have Internet access outside of school and/or there are other barriers that will hinder your ability to work on this outside of class, please come see me ASAP so that we can make the necessary arrangements.
Writing & Revision: You will write a final research paper that will present the conclusion that you come to about all of the data that you’ve collected on what has caused the societal issue that you’ve identified and how it’s shaped the current state of our society. We will work through the various parts of the paper in much more detail as we get closer to the drafting stage, and you will receive mini-deadlines for each component of the paper as we work through it. There will be NO LATE SUBMISSIONS accepted for this final paper.
WHAT AM I RESEARCHING?
Each of you will have the opportunity to select a topic—specifically, one social, political, cultural, or economic aspect of our society—that is of interest to you—we will talk specifics and brainstorm together in class. I encourage you to select a topic that you are interested in, but that you are not already familiar with; the goal here is to learn something new about an aspect of a country that you do not yet know much about.
Once you have chosen a topic and done some preliminary research to gain background information about it, you will identify a problem related to your larger topic and study its larger effects on our country. Ultimately, your research will be in service of answering the following general question: What is one social, cultural, political, or economic issue that the country you have chosen faces today, what factors have caused or contributed to this issue, and how has their society been affected as a result? Your research will be broken down into the following stages, each of which will be recorded in a set of research notecards:
** MUST be submitted on Turnitin.com, NO EXCEPTIONS!
Set #1 Set #2
General background info. & context about the problem.
Due: 4-6 entries
The causes that have contributed to the creation and/or worsening of the problem.
The effects that have contributed to the creation and/or worsening of the problem.
Minimum of 2-3 different scholarly sources for Causes
Minimum of 2-3 different scholarly sources for Effects
If you have any questions along the way, please do not hesitate to reach out and ask…
Below is a GENERAL schedule of our pacing for this project, just so you can get a sense of where we’re going (*keep in mind though that this is subject to change, so be alert for updates and specifics as we go through the process together!)
Week 1: Project Prep Week: Four Worlds approach & country/topic selection
Week 2: Overview of basic research skills / Research begins for Annotated Bib. set #1
Week 3: How to formulate a research question; research for Annotated Bib. #2
Week 4: Formulating a thesis statement; Research paper outlining and drafting
Week 5: Research paper drafting
Week 6: Research paper revision and editing. Paper due over the weekend by 11:59pm
Week 7: Finals week—project presentations