The purpose of the major paper is to test your ability to explore, analyze, and draw conclusions from the argument (thesis) you first developed in the essay proposal.
This research essay will be between 1500 and 2000 words (6-8 pages) in length. Please remember to keep all your research notes, rough drafts, and essay outlines—I may ask to see these things.
A good essay is a coherent expression of ideas on a single theme and it is organized carefully in paragraphs. It is clearly written, organized, and analytical.
The research paper will each be evaluated according to three criteria:
Referencing your sources with footnotes and bibliography (10%) Writing style and organization (30%) Supporting evidence and analysis (60%).
The essay is to be written in paragraph form. It should contain:
1. A clear introductory paragraph that presents the general topic and context. Generally, the last one or two sentences of the intro paragraph articulate your own argument that will set the tone for the entire paper. This is called the thesis statement. 2. A body that supports the thesis statement with critical arguments, historical evidence, and analysis of that evidence. Ideally, your paragraphs will consider opposing or different opinions. Choose sources that can provide these for you. 3. A conclusion that summarizes the argument and the evidence you used to support it
The quality of your writing matters a great deal and marks will be deducted for poor organization, grammatical errors, or frequent spelling errors. To ensure correct spelling and syntax (sentence structure), use but do not solely rely on spell checkers and grammar checkers. It can also be helpful for another person to read it over. Another strategy is to read your own work out loud to yourself. Doing this can help identify confusing or incorrect expression. Also, when you write, please avoid colloquial or “casual speak.” Using Quotations and Footnotes: In developing your arguments, you will discover and sometimes borrow evidence from others. When you quote directly the words of an author, you must put those words inside quotation marks (“…”) and cite the exact source of the quotation in a footnote. Try not to use a lot of quotations and avoid long ones. Quote an author when you think his or her ideas are essential in order to convey the exact meaning of what they said. If you paraphrase an author or borrow their ideas, you must also acknowledge this in a footnote. It is not necessary, however, to cite general knowledge i.e. The Second World War began in 1939. Wayne Gretzky was born in Brantford, Ontario. Or, the Toronto Blue Jays are awful this year. Bibliography The essay must be followed with a Bibliography on a separate sheet of paper. It must list all the sources you consulted in the assignment, whether they are quoted or not. Formatting must be in Chicago Style. We will explore this early in the semester.