This activity is assigned in Week 2 and due by 11:59 pm EDT on Thursday of Week 8 in the corresponding Assignment area and Discussion forum.
Maximum possible points: 25
Your paper should be approximately 2500-3000 words in length
All references should be cited and formatted according to APA style (if you’re not familiar with APA style, search on and consult OWL: The Online Writing Lab at Purdue University). However, the paper itself does not have to be formatted in APA style; again, just the in-paper references and end-of-paper reference list need to be in that style.
Introduction to this Extension
I am providing this “extension document” to provide clarification about the relationship between the Problem-Solution Paper Rubric and the Guidelines for the Problem-Solution Paper. The Rubric is posted in the Course Policies area and the Grade Center. The Guidelines for the Paper are posted below in the Course Documents area.
In short, the extension should help you to better understand where to focus your efforts (time and energy) and what to focus on (academic content) in writing your Paper.
Where to Focus Your Efforts and What to Focus On
At the very highest level, the Paper is obviously divided into two parts: one about the social problem and the other about the solution to this social problem. But that does not mean your Paper should be divided into two parts of equal length and complexity. A more effective approach, one that combines the Rubric and the Guidelines, is to organize your paper according to the scholarly and writerly actions needed to persuade your readers. The “Goals for the Paper” section of the Guidelines outlines these actions, which lead to the following strategies for organizing your Paper and focusing your efforts and academic attention in effective and proportionate ways.
Section I: Why [your selected social problem] Deserves More Attention as a Social Problem
Level of effort: 1200-1300 words
Goals: to clearly define and explain: (1) this problem as a “social problem,” (2) the causes of this social problem, and (3) the factors that contribute to this social problem.
Section II: Solutions Considered
Level of effort: 600-700 words
Goals: To (1) to research the academic literature, serious journalism, and other reliable sources in order to (2) critically compare and contrast a range of proposed solutions (e.g., ways of reducing or mitigating the negative impacts) of your selected social problem.
Section III: Recommended Best Solution to [your social problem]
Level of effort: 500-600 words
Goals: To explain why your “one best” solution is “better” (more promising, feasible, helps more people, least costly, etc.) than the competing solutions addressed in the previous section.
Section IV: Implementation Plan
Level of effort: 300-500 words
Goals: to provide a reasonably detailed and comprehensive plan for implementing (bringing about) your selected solution to the selected social problem.
Note on Two Criteria in the Rubric
While planning and writing your Paper, bear in mind that two “criteria” in the Rubric—Application of Sociological Theories and Concepts and Standard Written English and Use of APA—variously extend across the other four Rubric criteria and consequent apply to the Paper as a whole. As a result, the “level of effort” weights in this extension document will not necessary match those in the Rubric.
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