ENGL 2327 – American Literature I Assignment: Research Paper Due: See syllabus (
ENGL 2327 – American Literature I Assignment: Research Paper Due: See syllabus (Late papers will not be accepted). Assignment: Write a minimum five page (not including works cited) research paper. Papers less than five full pages will not be accepted. You may select as your subject anything written by any author(s) represented in either of the two volumes of our text. If you choose to do research on a work(s) outside the confines of our book, it must have been written by an author who is represented in our text. You are required to use a minimum of five scholarly sources. Our text does not count as one of these sources. When choosing a topic for your research assignment, “make sure it is narrow enough for your paper’s length, the amount of time you have for writing, and the number of sources your instructor expects you to use” (Kirszner & Mandell 83). “To see whether you will be able to find enough material about your topic, you should do some exploratory research by taking a quick survey of your resources. Your goal at this stage is to formulate a research question, the question that you want your research to answer” (Kirszner & Mandell 83). A research essay is still a literature essay. Its core elements are the same—to articulate and develop a debatable, interpretive claim about at least one literary work. And though you will need to add a few new steps, the process of writing a literature research essay still involves getting started, planning, drafting, revising, and editing (Mays 1923). Your argument about the literary text should be the focus of your essay, and sources should function simply as tools that you use to deepen and enrich your argument about the literary text. Your essay should never simply repeat or report on what other people have already said. (Mays 1925) Wikis & Study Aids Do not use Wikipedia or other Wiki websites; they are not reliable. Study aids, while sometimes useful, should not be cited in your paper as scholarly sources. These include, but are not limited to, SparkNotes, CliffsNotes, eNotes, and Shmoop. Basic MLA Format 0. 1” margins 1. 12 pt. Times New Roman Font 2. Double spacing 3. Heading: Name, professor, class, and date in upper left of first page only 4. Last name and page number in the upper right of the header on every page 6. Set the “spacing after” to 0 on the Page Layout tab. (This avoids extra spaces after the title, paragraphs, or any place where you hit the “enter” key). 7. When citing our text and/or outside material in your paper, you must include a works cited page. Remember to include parenthetical citations within the text wherever source material is cited. You must upload your paper to the dropbox in one of the appropriate file formats (doc, .docx, .rtf, .pdf). If you upload your paper in a format other than one of these, you will receive a 0 for the assignment. If you upload the “wrong” file to the dropbox, you will not be able to upload another file after the due date. Please double-check the file, and make sure that you are uploading the correct assignment.

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