From the choices provided by the instructor, select a peer-reviewed article that most closely aligns to your interests. You will utilize the article to assist you in formulating an argument. Choose at least three other peer-reviewed/academic resources (use JSTOR through the library’s website) from your selected subject area or discipline in tandem with your selected article to prepare a critical analysis of the topic being discussed. Please prepare a somewhat detailed outline similar to the one below to help get your thoughts in order. After preparing your outline and selecting subtitles and appropriate information, you are ready to write your paper. When you submit your materials, please include your outline separately from your final paper but submit them at the same time to the same link. The purpose of an outline is to create a working document that you can then use to compose your paper. The more detailed the outline, the more easily you can write your paper. Make your outline as detailed as you can, so you can almost write your paper entirely from using your outline. It is a good habit to get into.


I. Title of Paper – Your paper title should be descriptive of your topic: For Example: The Positive and Negative Aspects of Welfare Reform


II. Introduction to paper – Your subtitle to this section of the paper should be Introduction. Your introduction should indicate something similar to the following: Utilizing the article “The End of Welfare as I knew It,” (Spatz, 2013), and selected sociological literature, this paper will conduct a critical analysis of the welfare system past and present followed by recommendations of how to best revamp the system.


III. The End of Welfare as I Know it (Your subtitle for this section could be Article Summary or the name of the article you selected). Be sure as you write the summary, you cite the author of the particular article that you have selected intermittently within your review.

In this section, provide a summary of the contents of the article to be analyzed.


IV. Literature Review

In this section you will discuss your literature from your field or fields of choice to discuss the issue. Be sure that you cite (using APA formatting or whatever the appropriate formatting is for the discipline that you have selected…research your discipline to determine the appropriate formatting). Cite each of the three sources that you have selected each time that you them in the body of the paper and be sure that you include a reference page as well with the full citation at the end. Please use Purdue Owl for details on how to cite appropriately. The website is:


V. Critical Analysis

In this section, you will use your literature (at least three separate resources) to discuss the points made by the article mixing in your own point of view (but professionally and not directly). That means, do not use personal pronouns. Do not say I, we, etc. Explain how the literature that you found discusses, agrees with, disagrees, with etc. the points made by the article that you selected from the text. When discussing the text, do not refer to it as text, refer to it by the name of the author of the article (not the editor ‘Finsterbusch’ but the author of the particular article that you selected). Do not use the first name of authors. You should references them using only their last name(s) and the year (and pages) in your paper.


VI. Summary, Conclusions and Recommendations

In this section, provide a summary (two to four paragraphs) of the entire paper and then provide conclusions and recommendations based on the argument you have made substantiated by your sources.

Additional Writing Directions

After you complete your outline and all of your facts and details are in order with citations, you are ready to write your paper. Since the Social Sciences Master’s degree is composed of a variety of disciplines each with their own selected writing format, you will want to look up the appropriate writing style for your discipline. In general, Anthropology and History tend to follow the Chicago style writing format while Sociology, Political Science and Psychology tend to follow the American Psychological Association (APA) format. Whichever style you select, please look up the details and be consistent. I am particularly interested in appropriate citations used in the body of the paper (to avoid plagiarism) and your reference/bibliography page.

Please read the attached document to refresh your memory and clarify plagiarism. Plagiarism is taken very seriously in the academic community and especially so in graduate school. There is no leniency when it comes to plagiarism; it is considered stealing property. In brief, plagiarism means using any information other than your own without giving appropriate credit to the source. Even if you paraphrase (put materials into your own words), if this material was composed by someone else, you must provide the citations. Most citations should include author of article, date of publication, website, journal, book, etc. that it came from. Please see your appropriate discipline’s documentation on proper citations. The internet contains excellent documentation for all popular writing style formats.

In beginning your paper, please include a separate cover sheet with your name, date, name of course, assignment and title of paper. On the first page of your paper please provide the title of your paper and then jump into your introduction. As you write your paper, follow your outline, providing the information that you indicated you would be providing in each section. I have a preference for use of subtitles, so please use subtitles as indicated in the outline. Citations should be included in the body of the paper each time information is utilized from publishes sources. Additionally, you are to have either a Reference page, Bibliography page or whatever citation page is used by your selected style format.

Please let me know if you have any questions regarding your paper.

You must follow these directions, to get the full amount of points. If you do not follow the directions, I will not grade the outline/paper and will return it to you immediately. In graduate school as in the career world, the most important thing is following directions. It can make all the difference.

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