wrongful convictions: identify a research topic within the field of

Sources do not include your textbook or any supplemental readings from class. (I encourage everyone to use their textbook as a source; however, it does not count as 1 of your 6 outside sources.)
No .com sources will be allowed
Must submit NEW work, no old research papers will be accepted
NO Abstract required. If you decide to write an abstract for your paper I will not include this portion of the paper in the 4-page minimum.

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Your paper will be graded the content of your paper, your citations (both in-text and references), the organization/structure of your paper, clearly defined thesis, and the over level of writing skill: grammar, punctuation, and sentence structure. See Research Paper Grading Rubric on BB for complete breakdown.

Sites to Reference for APA Format


Research Paper Breakdown

Paper Topic: Identify a research topic within the field of Criminal Justice that interests you. Topics that interest you are going to be easier to research and subsequently write about. Keep in mind; your research topic should not be too obscure or too broad. Obscure research topics will be more difficult to research. For instance, I had a student who was interested in writing about the recent South Carolina Church shooting. There is almost no empirical research on this particular incident, making it extremely difficult to write a paper on. However, a research paper on the CJS’s ambiguity in applying hate crimes to certain criminal cases, specifically against race or religion, would be a much more suitable research topic and you could use the Charleston church shooting as an example. Conversely, broad paper topics are over researched and offer a lot in the way of empirical research. However, they can also overwhelm a writer and make it difficult to hone in on a specific theme within the topic, which is your ultimate goal in writing this research paper. (10 points)

References: Using Google Scholar and FIU Online Libraries, identify articles that fit your research topic. You need to include a minimum of 8 articles on your topic. These articles should be cited in  in APA format and the document should be titled “References”. No .com sources will be accepted. .org, .edu, and .gov  will be accepted only if you cannot find an article that is citing this same information.

This part of your Research Paper is critical so take this assignment seriously. It is important to find articles that fit the criteria of your paper topic since these papers are going to be the crux of your research paper. Remember, when writing a research paper you are always suppose to be objective, not subjective. This means that you must use the prior research on the topic to speak for you. If you believe strongly about a specific point of view on a topic, it is your job to find research that supports your point. You cannot simply state information as fact without finding research that supports your argument. (20 points)

Thesis/Research Question: Your thesis is the overall premise of your paper. Usually just a sentence or two, the thesis of your paper establishes the argument you are making based upon the research you have done on the topic. This requires the student to read through the research on their topic, and find the themes within the research to identify what research question you wish to answer. Your research paper should not be subjective. You are required to use the research to simply answer your research question, NOT to support your own personal opinions. If you feel passionate about a specific theme or point of view on the topic, and you feel that you have an interesting direction to take your paper, you can use this passion to create a thesis, but YOU MUST make sure that there is a suitable amount of research that supports your passion/direction. Be creative, the more creative your thesis the more interesting your paper will likely be. (20 points)

Rough Draft: Your rough draft is the foundation of your final paper. Your rough draft should be a completed draft, meaning that you are not leaving any portions of your paper incomplete. However, you may need a second draft to put the finishing touches on your paper based on the comments you receive from your Instructor. Your Rough Draft should include a cover page, reference page, and all written work should be cited properly in APA format. You paper should be broken down into corresponding sections: Introduction, Literature Review, Limitations/Recommendations, and Conclusion. (50 points)

Final Draft: All of the above information is done properly, according to format and grading rubric. All of the critiques left by the Instructor on your rough draft were taken into consideration and fixed properly. (100 points)

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