Proposal for Final Paper Assignment

Due Date: Monday, October 8, 2018

Submission Instructions: Submit digitally (on Box) and bring printed copy to class

Assignment Description:

For this assignment, you will write a two-paragraph research paper proposal. Karen Kelsky, writing for The Professor is In, describes the paper/conference proposal abstract "highly formulaic." Most proposals have the same approximate length (200-500 words) and follow a well-known structure. The general format goes something like this:

Note that my version is a bit different from Kelsky's. Most importantly, because you're writing this proposal before conducting any analysis, it's more sensible to articulate a research question than to try and formulate an answer. If you were proposing a conference paper, you would generally include your paper's main argument because you've already done your analysis and presumably have a finding to report. Alternatively, in a traditional humanities context, you tend to know what your argument is going to be before you have drafted your paper.

If you don't yet know all of the things listed above (such as your specific dataset or which measures you will use), that's not necessarily a bad thing. The idea here is to include at least a sentence describing the thinking you've done so far in these areas and what your current approach looks like. A thorough discussion of what you have considered so far is sufficient for this assignment, as long as you demonstrate that you have put significant work into exploring your options.

Work Cited

Kelsky, Karen. "How to Write a Paper or Conference Proposal Abstract," The Professor is In. 12 July 2011.