Research Paper

The research paper is an opportunity to discuss a topic from the suggested list which will be provided or of the topic of your choice (with instructor’s approval) and to develop required writing skills at the college level. Therefore, this paper is expected to be an original work in typed format. The paper is worth 20% of your grade. All assignments must be submitted on time. Papers must be typed/printed on 8 ½ x 11″ white paper using double spaced 12 point type fonts and 1″ margins. All papers should have a cover page with the Name of the Student, the Title of the paper & other relevant course information. All papers must include a works cited page (bibliography). Identify your topic from the suggested list or speak with the instructor about your preferred research topic. You can use these sources: online journals, newspaper articles, journal articles, pamphlets, or books. Feel welcome to supplement with course materials or the text, if you are able to do so. I am very flexible with topic selections that are closely related to this course. A brief written commitment to a selected topic including at least one or two of the sources you will use is due on.

General Guideline for your paper:

  • Briefly describe the type of issue (e.g. legal, administrative, policy, and any crime related issues such as victimization or injustice) that you have chosen.
  • Identify the most important Constitutional/ Bill of Rights provisions and court cases pertaining to your topic from the U.S. Supreme Court, and lower courts, if relevant. Describe the facts, holdings and significant impact of those cases.
  • Describe several issues or problems that you have discovered regarding your topic, and discuss what you feel about them.
  • Explain the theory or position you have taken in your paper.
  • Conclude: what is the most important point(s) that you have learned from this research. Students are encouraged to use the Lloyd Sealy Library.

The research paper should be eight to ten (8 to 10) pages, double-spaced, including cover and works cited page. Further details will be discussed in class. Written assignments must be handed in as a hard copy and submitted through the TurnItIn software. It is easy to download from the internet, but that is not only morally dishonest but educationally counterproductive, since you are defeating the purpose of writing and thus cheating yourself as well. See, also, Statement of College Policy on Plagiarism. All papers must be formatted in the APA citation method. Students will use the American Psychological Association (APA) style for written assignments, as appropriate. APA guidelines can be found on the John Jay College Library website http://www.lib.jjay.cuny.edu/ under “Library publications.

Please do not cut and paste material directly from a site or source. I am interested in your own ideas and thoughts, backed up by resource. Cutting and pasting directly from a source that is not your own (except for properly cited brief passages) is Plagiarism and the paper will receive a grade of zero.

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