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BHS_CAREER Research Essay: 1. Task Definition

Understand your Responsibilities

STEP 1:  TASK DEFINITION

Ask, "What's the task?  What types of information do I need?"

Think about the final product you will need to create, and consider what special requirements you need to follow! 

 

English 11 Career Research Essay

Task details for your project.

English 11 Career Research Essay

 

You must complete the following:

 

Selection of a topic:  Choose a career in which you are interested, already started on the pathway, or curious about its past and future.

 

Use of a variety of credible source types: Most of these credible sources will be provided by your teacher. Each source must be correctly documented in APA format


Essay must be 1400-1950 words in length. Do not go under or over this limit:  You will need to keep track of your word total while writing.  Anything less than 1400 will likely be underdeveloped and/or missing parts as you will not have thoroughly explored your topic. 

Sections: You will be working on and turning in one section of the paper at a time. Throughout this distance learning process, you will be working on one section per week. Your teacher will direct you how to submit your sections - you will compose your essay on a Google doc accessed from the Google Classroom; some instructors will ask you to submit each complete draft of a section into google classroom under the correct assignment heading; some will ask you to submit each part to Turnitin.com; carefully read directions from your instructor to see their preferred submission spot. Make sure you are including outside sources in your writing using APA Format. 

Final draft:  Your final draft will contain all components and show extensive revisions. This should be submitted to Turnitin.com. 

References page:  You will need to correctly cite all sources used within your essay.  You need to have a page entitled References, using correct APA format.  We will be going over this in class and I will provide you with examples. This page is the final one of the whole paper, but you will submit one every time you complete a section, adding references as you add sources to your sections throughout the process.

Paraphrasing, summarizing, or using direct quotes within the essay:  You will need to use examples from your sources within your research essay as support.  However, you cannot simply use direct quote after direct quote. You will need to paraphrase and summarize parts of your information (all three types of notes require in-text citations).  

Third Person Point of View:  Most sections of this paper should avoid personal pronouns (I, me, my, we, our, etc.) until you discuss how you will impact the field (what you will bring, what you hope to accomplish, personality characteristics, etc).

You will need to complete the following within your essay:

Introduction (minimum 5-6 sentences

Main idea:  This is the “big picture” topic of your essay.  It includes an attention getter and context for your reader to make sense of the ideas in your essay. It could include something about making important decisions in your life, how a career can affect your lifestyle and even your very identity. 

Historical background information:  This will give the audience appropriate information about your subject.  Because of this information, the reader will have enough knowledge about your topic to understand any insight or relationship to other topics/events later on in the essay.  Assume you have an intelligent, but uninformed reader This must be one full paragraph minimum but may take more than one paragraph for an adequate job. Max of three paragraphs for the historical context.

Include the who, what, when, where, why this profession began, providing examples of what it looked like in its infancy.

Tasks and working conditions. What is it like to actually BE in this career on a day-to-day basis? (1-3 paragraphs); this is when it would be great to include an interview with someone in the field.

Education/qualifications needed to enter and be successful in this career (between 2-4 paragraphs)

Employment outlook, salary, stats relevant to growth in this field (1-2 paragraphs)

Current events surrounding the profession, including noted advances/accomplishments in recent years that have impacted the profession (not just an individual “star” in the field) (1-2 paragraphs)

How I know I’m right for this profession (the strengths you have academically, personally, or experience you have that will potentially impact the profession). This is where you will include, among other things, quotes from your Myers/Briggs personality results test, etc. (1-2 paragraphs)

Conclusion (typically 4-5 sentences minimum)

Restatement of the thesis statement:  Do not use “In conclusion,” or “As you can see,” to begin your conclusion.  Those are basic transitions that are used to introduce essay techniques and organization when learning basic paper structure.  Restate your thesis in words other than those used in your introduction.  This paragraph serves as a reflection and reminder of what the reader should have learned.  Focus your restated thesis to reflect that idea.

Summary:  Summarize the essay’s main ideas in two to three sentences.  This is the part where you remind the reader of your support to prove your topic.

Final thought, idea, or lesson learned:  This is the final impression left on your audience.  How will they remember the importance of all of the hard work you have done?  Why do they think you have written this essay?  What has been learned? So what? Why is this significant? Why should we care? Convince us this topic is interesting without using the word interesting!



Writing good papers:

  • Transitions/Topic Sentences:  These sentences connect your paragraphs together smoothly.  You need to write one to two sentences that allow the ideas and paragraphs to flow, rather than abruptly stop and start. Try to avoid the “ka-chunk” feeling of tripping over a curb into the next paragraph.
  • Supporting details (in all paragraphs):  You should use more than one source to support your main ideas in your paragraphs.  You will need to synthesize your information and share what is learned from looking at more than one source on the topic.  You will need to draw conclusions from your research to form new ideas.
  • Citations:  You will need to correctly document, in APA format, any information that is not your own within the paragraph.  We will be going over this in class.



 

11th Grade Common Performance Task: Research Paper

Prompt: Choose a legitimate profession.  Trace the historical context of this profession and the intricacies involved in becoming part of it today.  1400 word minimum, not including title page or reference page.

50% of your grade is based on the process in writing this essay

50% of your grade is based on the quality of your writing (see below)

 

 

Sophisticated - 4

Skilled - 3

Sufficient - 2

Insufficient - 1

Thesis &

Organization



 

Sophisticated development of a clear and supportable thesis.

Organizes complex ideas and concepts.

Includes informative and illustrative details that support the thesis.

Skilled development of a clear and supportable thesis.

 

Organizes complex ideas and concepts.

 

Includes informative details that support the thesis. 

Sufficient development of a clear and supportable thesis. 

 

Attempts to organize ideas and concepts.

 

Includes details and information that sometimes support the thesis.

Thesis is unclear or unsupportable.

 

Unclear organization creates confusion.  

 

Includes details unrelated to the thesis. 

Synthesis of Research

Synthesis of research from   multiple sources is sophisticated and thoroughly develops topic.

 

Research from sources is paraphrased accurately and supplements author’s thesis and ideas.

 

Direct quotations are carefully selected and skillfully integrated into author’s own writing.

Synthesis of research from multiple sources skillfully develops topic.

 

Research from sources is paraphrased and connects to author’s thesis and ideas.

 

Direct quotations are mostly carefully selected and skillfully integrated into author’s own writing.

Majority of research is cited from one source and somewhat develops topic.

 

Research is not carefully paraphrased.



 

Excessive use of direct quotations.

Research is not connected to the assigned topic.

 

Source origin is unclear.

No attempt to paraphrase research.

 

Direct quotations are not integrated into author’s own writing.

 

Language Use



 

The use of language enhances the explanation. 

 

Sophisticated use of varied syntax and purposeful transitions.

 

While a few minor errors in grammar, usage, and mechanics may be present, they do not impede understanding.

The use of language conveys the explanation with clarity, and word choice is adequate and sometimes precise. 

 

Skilled use of varied syntax and purposeful transitions.

 

While errors in grammar, usage, and mechanics are present, they rarely impede understanding.

The use of language is basic and only somewhat clear, and word choice is general and occasionally imprecise. 

 

Sufficient use of varied syntax and transitions.

 

Distracting errors in grammar, usage, and mechanics may be present, but they generally do not impede understanding.

The use of language fails to demonstrate skill in responding to the task, and word choice is imprecise and often difficult to comprehend. 

 

Sentence structure is repetitive, and transitions are insufficient or are missing. 

 

Errors in grammar, usage, and mechanics are pervasive and often impede understanding.

APA Formatting

(in-text citations, references page, cover page, page numbers, running header, etc.) 

Sophisticated use of APA format; all elements are present and correct.

Skilled use of APA format; all elements are present, but there may be some minor errors.

Sufficient use of APA format; in-text citations and reference page are present, but there may be many errors; other elements may be missing or flawed.

Insufficient use of APA format; errors detract from overall product; missing one or more major elements such as in-text citations or references.