GENERAL INFORMATION ABOUT PAPER ASSIGNMENT:
The paper assignment is designed for you to demonstrate critical thinking skills and thoughtful reflection on the assigned topic within social and/or personality development field of study.
Be sure to write in your own words. This requires you to read the material and then present the information in your own words to demonstrate understanding without using quotes or lifting material from your sources.
To maximize your points for the paper, be sure to read this document thoroughly so that you understand what is expected for the assignment
It is important that you put quality thought into the assignment as this is what is being looked for. You are not being graded on “opinion”, but rather on how well you support your insights and arguments (pro or con) with respect to the issues, so be sure to provide evidence for your positions to show critical thinking evaluation.
Papers must be / include: Typed
Double-spaced 12-point font (Times or Times New Roman) 1-inch margins Minimum of five pages (not 4 and 3⁄4) but not more than 8 pages for the body of the paper. Cover page and references page are not part of final page count.
Minimum of 8 references (final paper) – first page of each source (with journal, author, abstract, etc) needs to be submitted with paper.
Correct grammar and punctuation is required so if you need help with writing skills, be sure to contact the writing skills center on
PAPER ASSIGNMENT: ONLINE VS. OFFLINE IDENTITIES, PERSONALITIES AND/OR BEHAVIORS
Highly recommended you draft an outline ASAP to prepare for and writing your final review paper. The outline will also help you in asking the instructor and/or TA for help in structuring the paper. See section IV (page 5 – 6).
- The topic that you will explore within the social and/or personality fields involves online (internet) vs. offline identity, personalities, and behaviors (social, moral, relationship etc).
This will be challenging topic as it is still relatively new for social and/or personality development. There are research that looks at how the internet influences social interactions, relationships, moral development, personality expression, etc.
You will explore similarities and/or differences in their online vs. offline personalities and/or behaviors. You can approach this by exploring different types of social media (e.g. facebook, online games, discussion forums, etc) and how the type of social media influences individuals in their online behaviors. Given there are different types of social media, it is recommended you narrow the focus on a specific type and evaluate the unique context of that type of social media.
- Conduct a literature search of empirically based sources
- Number of sources to use: For the final paper assignment, you will need a minimum of 8 references, But, in general, a good review paper has more (minimum of 10-15 sources). It depends on assignments and instructors.
- Writing your review paper (all parts in APA format).
- This section is generally one or two paragraphs (1/2 to 1 page). In this section you will introduce and explain what the topic is. You will also describe what the social and or personality development issue that is being explored and why the topic is important. In other words, state the thesis that will guide your review. The thesis statement outlines your topic and provides a focused direction for your paper.
- Literature review (main body of paper)
- Using your outline as a guideline, summarize each of your sources under subheadings that address a particular aspect of your overall topic being reviewed. More about using APA style for subheadings is presented later in this assignment instructions.
- When summarizing the empirical articles you are using, be sure to note important information about the study such as the research objectives (i.e., research interest or question, hypotheses), information about the participants (sample) such as age, demographic breakdown, etc. Research design (e.g. longitudinal, cross-sectional), how they collected the data, key findings of the studies and conclusions about the findings. It is important to include a critical evaluation of the sources you used. So each study should be evaluated regarding strengths and weaknesses of the study that should be part of summarizing the empirical article. The more you do a critical assessment of the sources you use, the stronger your paper will be.
- Be sure to explain how your sources (primary and secondary) that you reviewed in each of your paper sections is connected to your thesis statement that was remind the reader about how the articles, books, and chapters you review in each section relate back to the thesis you stipulated the introduction section of the paper.
- Often while searching for, evaluating and writing about the sources used in your paper, areas of conflict (disagreement) or controversy about a topic are encountered. When confronted with such conflict or controversy, you should objectively and accurately address the different sides of the issue in separate subsections of your paper. It is acceptable to make conclusions about which side based on your evaluation has stronger supporting evidence. But make sure the conclusion(s) you make are evidence based and not your opinion or what you personally prefer as a conclusion
- You must include APA formatted in-paper citations for all of your sources. Per APA guidelines, all sources must be cited.
- a) Only include and cite sources that you actually read.
- b) If you see a citation in another paper that you think might be useful and you want to include into your paper, then you need to retrieve that source and read it Once you have read it, then you can cite the source directly.
- c) If you have not read a source in its original form, do not use it as a reference for your paper even if it was in another article.
- d) Unless you actually came up with a new idea on your own, every knowledge, thought or idea that came from a source needs to be cited.
- e) Avoid using direct quotes from sources as much as possible. It is very difficult for a reader to follow a paper that uses too many quotes, nor does it reflect your own thinking and processing of the information. Your paper will be much better written if you paraphrase your sources instead of using quotes. Please see pages 170-174 in the APA Publication Manual (6th) on paraphrasing.
- f) More information about citing references will be provided later in these instructions.
- Conclusions / Discussion
- For this last section of your paper, you will give a brief summary of the main points of your review.
- Discuss the conclusions that can be made from your review of the topic and be sure to relate these conclusions to your thesis statement that was presented in the introduction section.
- Make sure the conclusions you make are accurate and logically made with respect to the sources you uses. Don’t overstate your conclusions meaning that you should not make assumptions that can not be adequately supported by the findings of studies you reviewed.
- Implications / Directions for future research
- Discuss any important implications that the conclusion you made about the topic may have on individuals, families, and/or society such as policy decisions, educational / awareness programs, prevention, intervention, etc.
- Also briefly discuss any unresolved issues that you feel needs to be addressed in future research. Such as were there any groups that were not studied that should have been? Other research designs
that might be useful? New research questions to consider that could provide information on other possible explanations of the issues?
- Every information that was used in your paper that came from a source needs to be included in your references page (at the end of the paper), so readers are able to follow up with the actual source of information cited if interested.
- See section on APA Formatting about formatting references.
Attach a copy of the first page of all primary sources (showing journal, abstract, date etc) that were used. Do not attach entire articles!! If you used secondary sources, you need to attach a copy of the book title page with author, date of publication and name of publisher