Research Essay Prompt
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Introduction: For this paper, you will learn to conduct research using the library database about a current societal or environmental issue. You will write a cause-effect essay explaining the issue in detail AND a possible solution to this issue. You will incorporate evidence from credible sources to support your points. You can choose from a wide range of topics—however, the issue must have global implications. I have provided a list of possible topics below. If you would like to write about any other topic, please consult me for approval.
Assignment: Your final paper will be at least five (5) pages long including the Works Cited page. You must have at least two causes, one effect, and one solution in the body of your paper. You must use examples from the readings and research to illustrate your points. Although you will be citing research for this paper, you must also include your own ideas. Do not merely restate ideas from your sources.
- Environmental issues: animal poaching, illegal hunting, endangered species, global warming, pollution, clean energy, conservation, resources and development
- Social Issues: homelessness, addiction, access to education, poverty, immigration, aging population, police brutality
- If you have any other topic you would like to research, please consult with me to get approval
Keep in mind that this is a five-page paper and you cannot possibly cover all aspects of a given topic. For this reason, you must narrow your focus. For example, if you are interested in analyzing homelessness, you might research about “student homelessness in California.” Researching “homelessness” in general can produce too many results that will not fit into the scope of this paper.
- Background information about the topic. Background information should provide enough information to give your readers an understanding of the issue at hand. It should answer the following question: What’s the history of this issue? In other words, how long has it been going on and how has it progressed? It should logically lead to your thesis.
- Thesis statement. Your thesis paper must include the causes and effects discussed in your paper. An example would be “Student homelessness in California is increasing because of rising tuition costs and decreasing public assistance programs. Because of these difficulties, students amass large amounts of debt and drop out of college.
- Causes/Effects The main body paragraphs should include causes (why is this problem happening?), effects (how is it affecting society and/or individuals? Why should people care about it?). You must also include evidence from the class readings and research to support your claims.
- Solutions. Toward the end of your paper, you should include viable solutions to the issue (what should be done about it?). You must also include evidence from the class readings and research to support your claims.
- Conclusion. Your conclusion should give an overview/summation of your main points in the essay. End with a call to action/statement of implications.
- Works Cited. You must cite all sources using MLA style. The sources should be listed on a separate sheet of paper.
- The final essay draft must consist of FIVE pages of text, double spaced, and formatted according to MLA conventions. The five-page limit includes the Works Cited page. In other words, you must have a minimum of four pages of prose and a Works Cited page.
- Include at least three appropriate in-text citations. This means citing the author’s last name and page number in your essay.