A research paper is a written report that presents the results of a purposeful, focused, in-depth study of a specific topic. Research is about extending the range of what you know. A simple definition of research is “close, careful study.” Research can be Primary—where you generate new ideas and information on your own. It can also be Secondary—meaning you gather together and analyze the primary research of others. Using combination, these two types of research create a new angle, slant, point-of-view on a topic.
Your task is as follows. Focus:
Using your prior knowledge of American history and American literature, choose a significant literary movement, such as the Puritans, the Age of Enlightenment, the Romanticists, Transcendentalists OR a particular author from one of these eras and show how it (or they) have had a lasting impact on American culture. You task is to thoroughly research your topic and present a written report that logically persuades your reader to share your opinion of why this literary era or the particular author has had a lasting impact on American culture. Use the list on the back board for ideas on areas of our culture that the literature or author has affected the most. Quite simply, your job is to explain how (a) a particular literary era has had an impact on American culture, or (b) a particular American author has had an impact on our culture.. I will ask for your choice on February 22nd and the essay itself is due on February 27th.
This essay will be approximately 3 to 5 pages in length in 12-point font double spaced with 1” margins all the way around. You will be required to have a minimum of 2 sources of research.
Modern Language Association (MLA) Style.
As a junior, you should be familiar with MLA style by now. The proper use of MLA style shows the credibility of writers; such writers show accountability to their source material. Most importantly, the use of MLA style can protect writers from accusations of plagiarism--the purposeful or accidental use of source material by other writers without giving appropriate credit. Be sure to go to the MLA web site at http://www.mla.org. for detailed answers.
Here are some basic guidelines for formatting a paper in MLA style. For additional help with formatting a document in MLA style, visit the previously mentioned PRIVATE HREF="http://www.rockfordschools.com/" MACROBUTTON HtmlResAnchor www.rockfordschools.com.
Type your paper or write it on a computer and print it out on standard-sized paper (8.5 X 11 inches).
Double-space your paper.
Set the margins of your document to 1 inch on all sides.
Create a header that numbers all pages consecutively in the upper right-hand corner, one-half inch from the top and flush with the right margin. (Note: Your instructor or whoever is reading the manuscript may ask that you omit the number on your first page. In our case, omit it.
Use either underlining or italics throughout your essay for highlighting the titles of longer works and providing emphasis.
Formatting your Works Cited list
Begin your works cited list on a separate page from the text of the essay.
Label the works cited list Works Cited (do not underline the words Works Cited nor put them in quotation marks) and center the words Works Cited at the top of the page.
Double space all entries and do not skip spaces between entries.
Making reference to works of others in your text
Referring to the works of others in your text by using MLA style is done in two ways. When you make reference to someone else's idea, either through paraphrasing or quoting them directly, you provide the author's name (or the title of the work) and the page (or paragraph) number of the work in a parenthetical citation and provide full citation information for the work in your