Assignment. Find a topic that derives from something we have studied this year. Choose a major work or an author we have read, a novelist, playwright, or short story writer. Or choose a poem or poet we have studied. Consider literary theories, such as New Criticism, Reader Response, or any that have derived from Deconstruction Criticism. The topic should be suitable for a 5-7 page research paper using a minimum of three legitimate outside sources. Your paper must follow MLA guidelines for manuscript format and citation conventions.
Getting Started. Begin with a topic that interests you. Then follow a “true inquiry” process: ask a difficult question, offer a hunch or hypothesis, test it and ask, What else do I need to find out? Then visit a school-sponsored site (e.g. Bloom or Gale Group) or begin with a book or article. The topic may be one that you have already thought about (female characters in Hamlet), or it may be a question you have not yet considered ( How did a particular closed form – e.g. villanelle – develop over time?)
Read pages 2179-2184 in your textbook. This will give you an overview of what this kind of paper entails. It also addresses important issues like internet reliability and plagiarism.
Mrs. Hatcher will provide you with an overview of school-sponsored sites. She will also be on hand to answer any questions that you may have about work citations.
Review the hand out, “Sample Research Topics.” This will give you some idea of suitable topics for this assignment. It may also stimulate ideas of your own. Whatever topic you choose must be related directly to this course; it should not derive from a class you took previously (e.g., A.P. Language, 11 H, or 10H).
Work will be submitted through Turnitin.com. Some will be done in school, though you will have to do much of the drafting on your own time. Steps along the way will be graded. These grades will count for Quarter 4.*
Schedule. Note: Due dates may vary depending on which teacher you have.
Wed. May 14 Topic due*
Fri. May 23 Tentative thesis statement and Preliminary Works Cited due*
Tues. May 27 Rough draft peer review*
Mon. June 2 Paper due