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I need a rough draft.

This Research Paper Assignment has four parts and is intended to help you succeed on your final research project. Each step will be submitted to the dropbox with its name. The first two steps will be graded for completeness, but not for grammar or history. The draft will be submitted to the dropbox, where it will be checked for originality, as well as graded for content, grammar, accuracy, etc..

1. A Topic statement and paragraph describing what you plan to research. Also, a preliminary list of at least 4 annotated sources that you have found for your topic will be due in the discussion in week 4. Please note that you can use the textbook as a source, but it does not count toward the required sources. I will OK your topic at this time. You are welcome to ask me questions about potential topics before you turn in this assignment. This assignment is worth 50 points.

2. The next assignment is a research proposal that will consist of a strong thesis statement, a preliminary bibliography containing at least six sources of which two must be primary and two must be print. If you are writing a paper, you should have 2 pages (about 500-600 words) written which will take the form of the first two pages of your paper, or your opening paragraph and a complete outline of the rest of your paper with the preliminary conclusion stated at the end. This step is sometimes called a “rough draft.” .

Proposal due in the assignment in week 8. The proposal and response to a fellow student is worth 100 points toward your writing assignments.

3. A polished draft of your paper/project will be due in week 12, depending on how well students are progressing. Your draft will include a full bibliography and (if your project is a research paper) at least 1600 words of your paper. It must be properly documented in either MLA or Chicago style. The draft is worth 200 points.

4. The final research paper will be due on Friday December 3, in the dropbox. If you would like a chance at a re-write, turn it in by December 1. The paper must be 2200 to 2500 words. There must be 8 sources, including two print and two primary sources. You must have a works cited page. This assignment is 500 points.

How to Select a Topic?

As long as your topic falls within the context of this course and, as long as your topic is historical (that is, it is in the past), you can choose from a plethora of topics to write about:

*Specific Individuals and People * Specific (National) Events, International Events

* Social Issues and Events * Cultural or Artistic Topics and Events

* Political Issues and Events * Diplomatic / Foreign Policy Issues and Events

* Military / Warfare Issues and Events * Economic Issues and Events

* Literary Issues * Reform Issues and Events

* Race Issues and Events * Cultural developments and movements

* Gender and Sex Issues and Events * Male / Female Relations and Issues

* Science and Scientific Issues and Events * Religion and Religious Issues and Events

* Governmental Issues and Events * Legal (Law) Issues and Events

* Primary Source Analysis * Other Possibilities??

Type (Style) of Essay / What Kind of Essay is expected?

Persuasive or Argumentative Essay (make an argument about a past event, issue, or individual using primary and secondary source evidence) Your topic must be narrow enough to cover in 7-8 pages (2200-2500 words).


* It is mandatory that you use a minimum of Eight (8) sources to write this paper. * At least two primary sources. At least two printed sources.

About sources: Online sources must be primary sources or from the Academic databases of Kiefer Library or Gale Library (which is available through the online resource.) You may read Wikipedia,,, Encyclopedia articles, and other such non-academic sources, but you may not use them in your paper. Of course, you may use books from Kiefer Library, or the public libraries. The Kiefer Library Databases can be accessed from any computer.

*A primary source is a person with first-hand knowledge of the topic about which they are writing. In other words, someone who was alive at the time of the person or event about which you are writing. So for Julius Caesar, you need his writings, the writings of one of his contemporaries, or the writing of ancient Roman historians who live while he lived or not long afterward. For The Black death, you need books, letters, stories, paintings made by people who were there at the time. For the Second World War you need sources that lived through it.

* The best sources for writing a history paper (essay) are, generally, books (monographs) and articles from historical and scholarly journals, not articles from magazines and newspapers!! You may only use one source from a magazine or newspaper article. If you are thinking of using more, check with me first.

* If you want to use all books or all journal articles, or a combination of both, that is fine, but you must use some written sources, you may not use internet sites as your only sources.

*Blogs are not generally acceptable sources. The exception is a blog that has been published by a University or that is subject to peer review. Peer review means that scholars in the same field as the writer have responded to correct, agree with, or disagree with the author. Such sites will end with “.edu.”

* Every paper must have a works cited page at the end.

* Craft a single clear, concise sentence as the thesis for your paper. The thesis sentence, typically, is the last sentence at the end of the first paragraph in an analytical (or any formal, historical, or academic) essay!

* Your final paper should take the form of a 7-8 page (2200-2500 words) essay. Your paper must fill the seventh page (Minimum 2200 words). Cover pages and Works Cited pages do not count as pages of text.

* The point of this assignment is to get you to think and write like a historian (or amateur historian) by critically analyzing and assessing historical data (books, documents, etc.). To that end, get right to the point of your analysis/interpretation.

* It must be printed, double-spaced, with one-inch margins, and in 12 point Times New Roman font.

* Late papers will be penalized one full letter grade for every day they are late. Poor spelling and grammar will be penalized, so be sure to read over your paper and always do a spelling and grammar check (but do not count on it catching everything!). Always proof-read your work more than once, or better, have someone else critique it as well.

* The best way to argue a point is by writing a basic analytical essay with an introduction, body, and conclusion. Creativity is encouraged in your use of sources and interpretation of evidence. You should begin with a short introduction that gives a little background information about your subject and ends with your thesis (thesis statement or thesis sentence). The body of the paper, which contains evidence that is as specific as possible, should consist of paragraphs, each of which connects clearly to the point (the thesis) of your paper.

* You should finish your essay with a conclusion. The conclusion should begin with a VERY brief summary of your argument (overall point of the paper). You should try and answer the question: So What? Why is this point (or argument) I just made interesting, exciting, relevant, or important to the study of History?

Style Considerations

* Do not use first person words like I, we, us, and our in historical analysis.

* Do not use personal pronouns like you, them, and me.

* Do not use contractions: instead of saying don?t and can?t, use do not and cannot.

* Avoid sloppy grammar like run-on sentences, comma splices, and poor spelling.


* If you use direct quotes, if you paraphrase, or if you use any portion of any of your sources, you absolutely must cite them! Plagiarism is a very serious offense and can result in failure of the course and further disciplinary action from the Dean of Students. Plagiarism will not be tolerated.

* MLA format (Parenthetical Citation) will be acceptable for this assignment. You may also use Chicago or APA style.