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This is a guide for Sociology 1 students researching topics related to sociological concepts and theoretical ideas. Tips for locating reference sources, books, periodical/journal articles, and web resources are recommended.
Please contact a reference librarian if you need further assistance.
Final Research Paper
For the final research paper, demonstrate comprehension of relevant sociological concepts and theoretical ideas and then apply them to a sociological example.
Select a theory or concept and explain it in detail.
Discuss the key question for the theory or concept and use it to develop your thesis further.
Find empirical data to answer the key question pertaining to your theory or concept.
Examples of empirical data:
quantitative data (e.g., US Census data, CDC reports)
research findings (e.g, academic journal articles)
social trend reports (e.g., Pew Research)
Sources: 4 sources to be cited in APA style.
2 scholarly supports for analysis and discussion (not from required reading list) that may be scholarly journal articles and academic books. These sources may be used to:
support your discussion of the theory or concept of your choice, or
support your argument
Durkheim’s theory of suicide (i.e., Suicide rates can be explained by other social facts.)
Weber’s theory of social action (i.e., We behave more and more rationally.)
Marx’s theory of class struggle (i.e., Capitalists exploit workers.)
Functionalist and conflict views of social stratification and social inequality
Weber’s theory of domination (i.e., Power is authorized for effective usage.)
Read and understand your research assignment
Think about what you already know; review lecture notes and course textbook
Do some preliminary research to get a sense of what resources are available for possible topics
Get more background information using reference books
Use books for detailed in-depth analysis and history of issue
Use magazine and journal articles for current reporting of issue
Use the Internet for additional information (don't forget to evaluate your sources!)
Cite your sources (create a reference list or works cited page)