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ENGL 1101 McNamara - Process Analysis Research: Assignment

Process Analysis Research Assignment

It never hurts to have the assignment written in more than one place, right?


Process Analysis Research Essay 

Requirements: 3-4 pages with 3-4 sources This is a research paper. Papers without research will not pass.

Good News:   You will get to choose your own topic for this essay! Choose something that you are an expert in, or maybe choose something that you are curious about. For example, if you are about to buy a new car, maybe you could write about the best way to find a good one or how to haggle with sales people to get the right price.


This essay is a Process Analysis. You will tell the reader how to do something, how to complete a process. Additionally, you must persuade the reader that your way is the best way for completing the process; you must consider strategies of persuasion.

Pretend you are a writer for a college magazine that all of the college will read: students, professors, deans, etc. Consider this audience while you are writing.


  • * 3-4 pages, more than 5 paragraphs. A page begins at the top of the paper and ends at the bottom. This is more than 2 1/2 pages and more than 2 3/4 pages. It is definitely and unequivocally a full three pages.
  • Must be submitted professionally with the MLA format guidelines noted in the syllabus.
  • Use at least 3 sources. Two must be from the GSU databases.
  • Must have correct in-text documentation. A works cited page is mandatory.
  • Cannot contain quotes over 2 full lines.
  • Cannot contain more than 6 quotes.
  • Must have at least two paraphrases.
  • * You  may not use 2nd person (you), but you can use first person, "I." Use this sparingly.
  • Use an informative, interesting, and suggestive title for your essay.
               (Do not underline or use quotation marks for your own title
  • Do not introduce your paper with a definition or with trite phrases such as “In our society today…” or the like. Write something new and interesting.

Notes on Sources

  • You may use one Personal Interview as a source. To document this, follow the guidelines in OWL which is linked to our course; type up a formal copy of the interview and cite it in MLA format. The person you interview must be credible; they must be some sort of expert in the field.

When you use an interview in a paper, you won’t introduce it by saying you did an interview. You will introduce it the same may you did a source, with a signal phrase. You will have selected an expert, so simply use their name.

  • Additional sources (besides a Personal Interview) must be found through GPC library resources: GIL, Galileo, EBSCO, etc.
  • Your sources must each be a minimum of 3 pages; they must be book chapters or full essays. Book reviews, small blurbs, encyclopedias, or short how-to lists are not acceptable sources. Shmoop, CliffNotes, or any essay producing websites are not acceptable for ANY college assignment. You should expect to do a fair amount of reading in order to find interesting sources.
  • There are many reasons you might use source material: to provide historical or cultural background information, to define technical concepts or terms, to provide a contrasting point of view to your own, to provide statistics to support your claims, or to provide information from an authority to support your points.

What you will learn from this assignment:

  1. To find and narrow down a topic for a research paper
  2. To learn the research/discovery process
  3. To discern reliable sources from unreliable sources
  4. To learn critical thinking and that sometimes what you thought you knew is not what you knew at all and that you can change your mind
  5. To use sources in your writing and to use proper citations not just for this class, but for every class in the future of your college career
  6. To write even better than you do now 

Sample Topics
You will choose your own topic, but here are some examples of what students have done before:

  • How to modify a Honda for street racing
  • How to put together a strong garage band
  • How to select the best computer
  • How to stop smoking
  • How to invest your money

(Inspiration and pointers for this assignment come from Assistant Professor Amber Brooks and from Steps to Writing Well, 10th edition, Jean Wyrick.)