UNLV HIST 422 - Study Guide (6 pages)

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Study Guide



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Study Guide

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Pages:
6
School:
University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Course:
Hist 422 - History Of Russia Since 1825
History Of Russia Since 1825 Documents
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Guidelines for the Research Paper History 422 I GENERAL GUIDELINES These guidelines are relevant if you have chosen the B track for HIS 422 otherwise see the guidelines for article reviews If you have selected track B then you have chosen note the italicized word for this course I offer these guidelines in order to give you a better idea of what I have in mind for this exercise These guidelines constitute a sacred and hallowed contract and covenant I assume that in turning in your papers you have read these guidelines and have agreed to abide by them Those who violate the guidelines will be mercilessly punished The purpose of the assignment aside from enhancing your knowledge of Russian history is to promote your skills in research critical thought synthesis and writing I have left the choice of topic open to you so that you may focus on those questions and issues that you find most interesting and relevant I am open to any topic as long as I am confident that there are sufficient sources in English I ask that you approve and discuss your topic with me so that I can get you started with suggested materials and help you along the way In general consultation with me throughout the process is a good idea since my purpose in being here is actually to enhance as well as to evaluate your performance With this in mind I have developed the following timetable 19 February Choose between A and B tracks 3 March Topics for your paper are due These should consist of a paragraph or so explaining the topic the question s you wish to answer and the ways you plan to go about doing so Before turning in your topic you should have touched base with me at least provisionally about the topic 31 March Preliminary bibliographies due Here you must provide a provisional list of books articles and other sources that you plan to use in your research You must have met with me in my office to discuss the topic and sources prior to submitting the bibliography Failure to do so will result in penalties 21 April At this point you will turn in a first draft of your paper which will be worth 30 of the final grade on the paper The idea here is for you to do the best job you can in putting together the paper with the recognition that you will have the opportunity to do subsequent work I will make every effort to return the first drafts to you as soon as possible though this will depend on how many students have selected the B track 10 May Now the final draft of the paper is due worth 70 of the total grade on the paper Before turning in your final draft you must meet with me to discuss in greater detail the first draft It is up to you to set up such a meeting with me Failure to do so will detract from your final grade The nature of the paper will to some extent depend on the topic But in almost all cases you should strive in your paper to adopt an analytical approach rather than a strictly narrative one The best way to approach the topic is to articulate a question or series of questions that you think your sources will allow you to answer As you read you can then gather notes on that question and formulate an argument that you will make in the paper As a general rule the paper that attempts to make an argument and support it with concrete evidence will be more effective than the paper that attempts merely to tell about an issue without any particular commitments State your argument or thesis early on in the paper and then use the remainder of the text to develop support for that argument Making a distinct argument is always a big challenge because it requires taking a firm stand This does not mean however that your argument has to be crude and simplistic State your argument forcefully and then use the body of the text to introduce the complexities that will add nuance to your assertions In all cases make sure that you support your statements with some kind of concrete evidence My basic expectations concerning the paper are summarized here 1 The paper should be approximately 12 14 pages in length Longer papers 15 pages in the absolute maximum are acceptable but no paper should be under the 12 page minimum These page guidelines assume that margins will be 1 inch on all four sides and that the font is 10 or 12 point Please number the pages 2 Standards with respect to grammar and clarity are straightforward poorly written papers receive poor grades 3 I expect that your paper will be diligently proofread If I find repeated basic grammatical and syntactical mistakes I will be forced to conclude that you did not bother to proofread and this will deeply offend aggravate and antagonize me 4 A bibliography of cited works should be provided at the end of the paper the bibliography is NOT part of the page minimum In putting together your bibliographies I strongly urge to use the style in Kate L Turabian A Manual for Writers of Term Papers Theses and Dissertations Chicago Otherwise you can consult a scholarly book and follow the style used there or see point no 5 below You may also consult the website guidelines for further guidance 5 References within the paper should take the form of either footnotes using a format like this for books 1 and like this for journal articles 2 or internal bracketed references Goldman 217 220 I prefer the first variant but if you must use the second please refer to only the author last name and page number within the parentheses Use an abbreviated title only if you are using more than one work by the same author Goldman Women 217 220 Full references should of course appear in the bibliography The point is that I do not want lengthy citations within the text 6 Do not quote excessively and avoid bloc quotes altogether I am interested in your thought processes The use of quotations is an important part of writing but under no circumstances should you have such quotations do the work for you If you find yourself quoting a lot ask yourself is this really necessary or am I just padding the paper If you answer truthfully that you are padding the paper then I will probably think so too 1 Wendy Goldman Women the State and Revolution Soviet Family Policy and Social Life 1917 1936 Cambridge 1993 pp 217 220 2 Orlando Figes The Russian Revolution and Its Language in the Village Russian Review 56 3 1997 323345 II THE PAPER PROPOSAL I have asked you to submit a short paragraph describing your paper topic for the research paper Along these lines I here provide a brief model for what a proposal like this might


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