Your research prospectus should demonstrate that you have clearly identify your research topic through your exploratory research. It is essentially the sales pitch for your project. It should convince your

Your research prospectus should demonstrate that you have clearly identify your research topic through your exploratory research. It is essentially the sales pitch for your project. It should convince your reader (the instructor) that you have an interesting research topic and a plan to investigate it. Your prospectus should include: Your research paper should demonstrate the culmination of your work investigating your topic. It should be thorough and polished enough such that you could confidently submit it to an undergraduate research journal. It should present a strong central thesis that is clearly, logically bolstered by successive supporting points. It should to existing literature. That is, your discussion should demonstrate that you are familiar with the academic conversation that surrounds your research topic, and you are explicitly entering that conversation with knowledgeable, fresh, and well-thought-out contributing ideas. You want to be careful and deliberate in your writing. Are your terms clear and unambiguous? Do they refer accurately to what you are trying to communicate? Do you need to explicitly define terms in your paper? You also want to make sure you are specific in your writing. It’s not enough to say that the New York School abstract expressionists “had a very significant impact on the art world.” How did they influence the art world? How does their movement situate in the overall context of art history and the development of art movements? You also want to be concise in your writing. Fluff only weakens your ideas. After all, why do we need to say the New York School “had a significant” influence on the art world? Isn’t it enough to just say it was significant. Or maybe we want to use a stronger term than “significant.” Maybe we want to say it was the “foremost influence on art in the mid-20 century.” Of course, you would then want to defend that point with evidence from your research. Lastly, make sure you have not missed a major consideration in your research. Sometimes were through omission as much as commission. For example, if you were discussing the influence of Cézanne on Picasso and the birth of Cubism, you would be remiss if you did not include some mention of the work of Georges Braque, Picasso’s contemporary and fellow pioneer in the Cubism movement, as well. At least , typed, double-spaced, a Works Cited or References page Use APA or MLA style for formatting (including your heading or separate title page with your name, instructor’s name, course, date of draft, and title of essay) Parenthetical in-text citation of sources according to your chosen style (APA or MLA). All in-text citations should have a corresponding citation in the Works Cited or References page. Likewise, all entries in your Works Cited or Reference page should have a corresponding in-text citation. Times New Roman, 12-point font, standard margins (top/bottom = 1”, left/right = 1.25”) Clear thesis statement Paragraph breaks with indentation as appropriate Page numbers in the lower-right corner of the page footer (no page number for separate title page). You are free (and I would even encourage you) to break up your research paper with section headings if you would like. Make sure to follow your chosen (MLA or APA) style for formatting these section headings. Clean, polished writing (spelling, grammar, punctuation, etc.) Clean, clear syntax (logical phrasing sequences, no awkward sentence constructions, fluid transitions from one sentence to the next, one thought to the next, one paragraph to the next) Concise writing (no fluff, say more with less) Careful treatment of your terms (Make sure your reader is clear what you mean when you use a particular word, especially if this is one of the main supporting points of your argument.) Sophisticated, nuanced analysis (Watch out for broad overgeneralizations. Parse out the specifics of your argument. Consider potential counterarguments.) A fresh perspective that upon the arguments presented in your cited sources. It is not enough to simply regurgitate the arguments of others. It also not sufficient to offer your opinion without reference to existing scholarship.

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