FINAL RESEARCH PAPER SOC 150 SOCIOLOGICAL FOUNDATIONS You must turn in a stapled and double-spaced hard copy of your paper to my office (508R Lawrence Hall) and an e-copy to

FINAL RESEARCH PAPER SOC 150 SOCIOLOGICAL FOUNDATIONS You must turn in a stapled and double-spaced hard copy of your paper to my office (508R Lawrence Hall) and an e-copy to SafeAssign (via BlackBoard) by 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, April 28 (YOU WILL LOSE TEN POINTS FOR EACH DAY YOUR PAPER IS HANDED IN LATE) The Assignment: You are to write a 1,500-2,500-word final paper on a topic of your choice relevant to the course material. Your paper should convey a thorough understanding of at least part of this course. You may expand upon (the readings) and narrow (the focus of) one the topics that we have already discussed in class or write about something that we haven’t gone over (but is clearly relevant to the main themes of the class). Your paper may consist of your own original research or a literature review of previously conducted research on your topic. You must cite at least six scholarly sources (books, book chapters, or journal articles—not websites). A scholarly source is one that includes publications of college/university professors. Under no circumstances should you ever use Wikipedia (or anything similar) as a source. Grading: No two essays are alike, regardless of the grades they merit, but your essay will earn a better grade if you: • Write about something that is specifically relevant to sociology and the material covered in class (you do not have to include everything we read and discussed, but you should relate your paper to the readings and/or discussions in some way, where appropriate). • Be sure to carefully narrow and define the topic you are writing on. You should continually make sure your paper is focused on a specific issue within the larger topic you have chosen. • Take a position in your writing and make an argument. A good paper is one that stakes out a claim and then supports it. Papers that take no positions, or that try too hard “to show all sides,” are boring. That said, papers which take too simple of a stance on something (e.g., “I agree with…” or “I disagree with…”) should also be avoided. Your position should be more than a value-judgment or opinion on something. The logic by which you explain a particular phenomenon or the perspective through which you see it, can be part of your position as long as you explicitly make it so. And this logic or perspective can be one developed by someone else, as long as you cite it. (For example, “Stefan Szymanski and Andrew Zimbalist (2005) present a compelling rationale for the spread of soccer and the isolationism of baseball.” Or, “Szymanski and Zimbalist (2005) provide SOC 150 Syllabus, Page 13 an adequate framework for understanding the globalization of sports, but they do not go far enough. For example…”) • Assume that your reader is intelligent, but that s/he may not have necessarily read or heard all that you have. Thus, you will need to tell your reader enough so that s/he will know what you are talking about, but not so much that she or he gets bored or feels talked down to. • Be sure to support your assertions with both logic and information. For your reader, many things will not be as self-evident as they are to you. Be sure to tell your reader why you are saying what you are saying. Always ask the question of yourself, “why is this important?” Then answer that question in your paper. • Use specific excerpts or ideas from scholarly research sources to make important points about your topic. • Read your paper out loud to yourself or to a friend before you turn it in. If you were listening to it for the first time, would it make sense to you? Have you expressed yourself as clearly as possible? • Proof-read! Typographical errors, spelling mistakes, and bad grammar prove very frustrating for your audience and they will count against your grade. • Double-space your paper. • Staple your paper. • Properly cite your sources (see below) and include them in an alphabetized bibliography (see below). Grading Scale: 90-100 – Clear compelling argument; all parts of the paper are complete and logical; topic is clearly and appropriately defined; sources are appropriate and adequate for topic at hand; evidence from sources appropriately and (mostly) convincingly used to support points being made; concepts and theories from class are clearly and appropriately used; thorough demonstration that you understand your topic and the main themes of the class; free from typographical and grammatical errors. 80-89 – Similar to above, but occasional lapses in logic or argument; use of concepts and theories usually, but not always, clear; occasionally muddled or incomplete description of the topic under consideration; evidence from sources usually but not always sufficient to illustrate point being made; and/or several lapses of grammar and several or more typographical errors. 70-79 – An argument is attempted but is not very convincing because of occasional lack of supporting evidence from sources, or because there are lapses in understanding the concepts and themes of the course; and/or frequent lapses of grammar; and/or frequent typographical errors. 60-69 – Lazy use of concepts and theories from the course; and/or evidence of frequent lapses of understanding of concepts and themes of course or topic of paper; and/or evidence to support argument is frequently absent; and/or lapses in grammar SOC 150 Syllabus, Page 14 and typing are rife; but with some hints that there is at least occasional understanding of the material. 0-59 – Same as above but with no evidence that there is any understanding of the material covered in class or read/researched for the final paper; and/or essay is not turned in on time; material is clearly plagiarized (plagiarism will also result in a zero for the course and disciplinary measures by the university). Citations & Bibliography: use APA style for all citations and your bibliography. You must cite all of your sources whenever you present information or ideas that are not your own (this means a citation must be included for more than just quotations). And you must include a detailed bibliography at the end of your paper, using the APA style. FAILURE TO CITE YOUR SOURCES CONSTITUTES PLAGIARISM

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