Academic Research Essay

The final research paper assignment combines the analytical/interpretive skills you have honed throughout the semester with academic research practices. In this paper you will demonstrate how conducting cultural, historical, and/or literary-critical research enhances your understanding of a story or stories assigned in class. Your focus should still be on a close reading and interpretation of literary texts, and you will still need to make an argument about the deeper meaning or significance of that literature. The research will act as supplementary material and/or background information.

For example, you might conduct research into the Vietnam War to better understand what O’Brien is writing about in “The Things They Carried.” Or, you might conduct research into the Harlem music scene to better understand what Baldwin is trying to convey in “Sonny’s Blues.” Another viable option would be to research different critical interpretations of the short story you’ve chosen to write about, and then respond to that criticism (agreeing, disagreeing, or expanding on these ideas), thus adding your voice to the critical conversation. The best papers will employ a combination of historical, cultural, and critical sources. In any case, you must include at least five credible outside sources. The primary source—the short story itself—does not count toward these five.


·       To demonstrate the value of considering context when conducting textual analysis

·       To familiarize you with academic databases and research

·       To develop your ability to critique and analyze sources for credibility and relevance

·       To continue to sharpen you analytical and interpreting reading and writing skills


·       10 double-spaced pages plus Works Cited page in MLA style with at least five credible outside sources

·       12 point Times or Times New Roman font

·       1-inch margins on all sides

Writing Guidelines (These will also be used as grading criteria):

1.     Fashion an introduction that alludes to the research that will inform your essay

2.     Employ a thesis statement at the end of the introduction that makes an interpretive claim about the primary text; this claim should clearly arise from your research. 

3.     Formulate topic sentences that tie directly back to the thesis. Topic sentences should not be summary or quotations.

4.     Support those topic sentences with evidence from the primary and secondary texts. To be safe, quote directly from textswhenever possible rather than paraphrasing. This will help you avoid “accidental” plagiarism.

5.     Effectively organize paragraphs and research, so that any necessary background/foundational research is provided before your literary analysis.

6.     Keep summary to a minimum: only quote/paraphrase from primary and secondary sources in the interest of proving your larger interpretive point.

7.     Integrate sources smoothly: avoid long block quotations, use attributive tags, and cite using MLA style. Accurate and appropriate citation is incredibly important for this paper.

8.     Employ an authoritative voice with an academic tone that avoids conversational or casual language; use first person sparingly (for example, only when you want to emphasize your stance on a key issue in the essay).

9.     Use clear transitions between sentences, correct grammar, and appropriate vocabulary.

 The complete 10 page paper is due on 04/25/17 at 12:00, Although i need the first four page in next 7 hours and i need a seperate outline and annoted bibliography with the paper.  Aleast 5 credible outside sources. 

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