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ENGL 1101 Perry - Research Paper: Assignment

Research Paper Assignment

Research Paper Assignment

General Overview:  Students will write a 5–6-page (1250-1500 words) research paper using 10 sources that takes a point of view on a topic chosen by the student.  Students should write to persuade their audience (teacher and other members of the class) of their point of view. 

Project Objectives:

  • To practice research methods
  • To incorporate researched information into personal ideas
  • To implement standard documentation styles
  • To follow logical organizational patterns in essays
  • To practice persuasive essay techniques
  • To practice revisions and peer reviews

Students should pick a topic that they would like to learn more about over the remainder of the course, as this project will take the rest of the semester.  They will be expected to perform general internet research AND library research, so the topic should be something that would have scholarly/peer reviewed information as well.

This project has many small assignments and several required assignments as part of the process.  Those are:

  • RA2 Presentation:  1–2-minute(s) presentation on what was found in the first round of research.
  • RA3 Bibliography:  a bibliographic list of 10 sources found uses Google or ChatGPT/ formatted in APA, MLA, or Chicago style and alphabetized.
  • RA4 Research paper content/notes:  a set of notes or early draft of the research paper based on the current research found.
  • SA5 Bibliography of Peer Reviewed Sources:  A bibliography of the 10 scholarly sources formatted in APA, MLA, or Chicago style and alphabetized.
  • RA5 Annotated Bibliography:  A selected bibliography of the 10 BEST sources found, formatted in chosen documentation style and alphabetized, and annotated with a 2-3 sentence summary of the source.
  • SA6 Taking Stock: Students will, in writing, assess how much they have completed and what is left to complete on the project.
  • SA7 Outline: An outline of the current research paper.
  • SA8 Lessons Learned:  An assessment of how the research part of the project went.
  • SA9 Rough Draft for Conference:  A full draft of the paper
  • RA6 Conference:  Students must meet with the professor to discuss their rough drafts. 
  • SA10 Second Draft:  Students will incorporate changes and turn in another draft.
  • SA11 Peer Reviews:  Students will read the papers of two other students and give feedback.
  • RA7 Final Draft:  Students will present their final, polished drafts.

Hints on topic selection:  Choose something that interests you.  Read about the general topic before deciding what side to take.  Let the narrowing of the topic happen as you are reading in the first round of research.  Then dig more deeply in the second round, allowing yourself to get into a smaller area of the wider topic to present in your project. Don’t be alarmed if reading about the topic changes your mind.  That is a normal part of the process, and feel free to change to focus on the new ideas when you find them.


  • 12-point, New Times Roman Font
  • Double spaced
  • 10 sources, 3 of which must be scholarly/peer reviewed, MUST be cited in the paper
  • Correctly use MLA, APA, or Chicago style for formatting citations and bibliography
  • 1250-1500 words is a guideline, but it must be at least 1200 words.