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Developing and Limiting a Research Topic

    Week Two Overview
    Assignment
    Due Date Format Grading Percent
    Developing and Limiting a Research Topic Day 3
    (1st post) Discussion 4
    Your Personal Research Process Day 3
    (1st post) Discussion 4
    Step One of the Final Research Paper
    Day 7 Assignment 5

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    Readings
    1. To successfully complete this week’s assignments, read the following in the text, Writing College Research Papers:
    o Chapter Three – The Research Process
    o 6.3 Types of Research Papers, in Chapter Six – Writing the Research Paper
    2. To successfully complete this week’s assignments, read the following materials:
    o Summary of Expository Writing
    o Summary of Argument Writing
    o Sample Research Paper

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    Discussions
    To participate in the following Discussion Forums, go to this week’s Discussion link in the left navigation:
    1. Determining and Limiting a Research Topic.
    This week you complete “Step One of the Final Paper.” In your initial response to this discussion, reveal the topic you have selected and how you plan to effectively limit the topic. Did you encounter any obstacles while searching for background information or while conducting preliminary research to limit the topic?

    Your initial post should be at least 150 words in length. Support your claims with examples from required material(s) and/or other scholarly resources, and properly cite any references. Respond to at least two of your classmates’ postings by Day 7. When responding to your fellow classmates, offer suggestions on how they can further limit the topic they have chosen and research strategies they can use to help them decide how they would like to limit their topic. (You must create one initial post and at least two responses, for a minimum of three posts for this discussion.)

    TIP: Note that this discussion is asking you to:
    o Reveal the topic you have selected.
    o Explain how you plan to effectively limit the topic.
    o Identify obstacles you encountered while searching for background information or while conducting preliminary research to limit the topic.
    o Offer suggestions to help your classmates limit their chosen topic and overcome difficulties they may have had conducting research in your responses to others.
    Note: It may be helpful if you type each heading first and then complete the information under each heading. This helps the reader quickly identify your activities and helps you know that you cover all of the requirements for this post.
    2. Your Personal Research Process
    Discuss the following elements in the research process:
    o How you plan to manage your schedule to ensure that you have sufficient time to conduct research and complete the written assignments in this course.
    o What strategies you plan to use to record and organize information you gather from your research.
    Your initial post should be at least 150 words in length. Support your claims with examples from required material(s) and/or other scholarly resources, and properly cite any references. Respond to at least two of your classmates’ postings by Day 7. When responding to your fellow classmates, offer suggestions on time management and organizing information. (You must create one initial post and at least two responses, for a minimum of three posts for this discussion.)

    Note: It may be helpful if you type each heading first and then complete the information under each heading. This helps the reader quickly identify your activities and helps you know that you cover all of the requirements for this post.

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    Assignments
    To complete this assignment, go to this week’s Assignment link in the left navigation:
    Step One of the Final Research Paper
    Conduct preliminary research on the topic you identified in the “Developing and Limiting a Research Topic” discussion this week. Then, based on your research and the feedback in the discussion, write a one-page paper based on the following:
    1. State your topic, and provide explanation as to why you selected that topic.
    2. Describe how you plan on refining or limiting your topic selection.
    3. Describe a specific claim related to this topic that you plan to argue in your final paper.
    Your paper should include a separate title and reference page, and should also be formatted to APA style. Be sure to submit your paper as a Microsoft Word document.
    Your Teaching Assistant will provide you with feedback on your assignment to guide you in developing your academic writing skills. You will have the opportunity to revise this component before you include it in your Final Research Paper in Week Five.
    Approved Topic List
    • Drug trafficking in the United States
    • Childhood obesity
    • Values portrayed in popular media
    • Individual privacy vs. national security
    • Government grants for alternative energy research
    • Designating an official language of the United States
    Resources for this Assignment
    For more information regarding:
    • APA formatting: Refer to the Ashford Writing Center.
    • Organizing/Formatting: Reference the Ashford Writing Center for the organization and formatting of your paper.
    • Writing an Argumentative Paper: Review 6.3 Types of Research Papers in Writing College Research Papers, specifically the section “Argumentative Research Paper,” for information on how to write an argumentative/position paper. This will give you an idea of what your final paper should look like.
    • Developing a Claim: Use information in your text and the Summary of Argument Writing in the Ashford Writing Center to help you develop your claim.
    The paper must be one page in length (excluding the title and reference page), and formatted according to APA style. You must use at least two scholarly resources (at least one of which can be found in the Ashford Online Library) other than the textbook to support your claims and subclaims. Cite your resources in text and on the reference page. For information regarding APA samples and tutorials, visit the Ashford Writing Center, within the Learning Resources tab on the left navigation toolbar, in your online course.

    Carefully review the Grading Rubric for the criteria that will be used to evaluate your assignment.