Writing Political Science Papers: Some Useful Guidelines. Peter Liberman, Queens College Political Science Dept. Click here for a Critical writers sites for college version of this document. A write political science course work paper informs and persuades. To accomplish this it must be logically organized, clearly argued, and well documented. The great 18th century British writer Samuel Johnson put it, "What is written without effort is in general read without pleasure.
Answer the assigned question and write on the assigned topic. Even if you are uncertain about the answer, it is better to argue that the available information is too thin or too contradictory to justify taking a position than to duck the question altogether. This is not to say that there is always a single right answer to every political-science question.
But even when intelligent, informed people disagree, they must focus on the question at hand in order to advance the debate. Be sure to follow any instructions write political science course work the assignment, e. Make an argument, supported by evidence and logic. It need not be an extreme or all-or-nothing argument; you should qualify your bottom line as you see fit see 1. Make sure that your claims and support for them are clear in your own mind, and articulate them clearly to the reader.
Explain why the evidence and reasons you present support your thesis, and do this write political science course work your sub-claims as well. Find and use relevant research when visit web page. If the assignment asks you to do research, find sources or other information that is as directly relevant and useful as possible for write political science course work argument.
Minimize unsupported opinion and arguments from authority. An argument from authority is a claim that something is true because a particular expert says so. Address counter-arguments and counter-examples. Put yourself in the shoes of a skeptical reader and ask yourself how they might object to your argument and evidence.
If these objections can be refuted, do so; otherwise qualify your position e. These citations should always include an unambiguous source reference and page number or numbersunless you are referring to the general findings of an entire book or article.
This includes required readings in your courses. Often, a single citation at the end of a paragraph is sufficient, write political science course work the material from that paragraph can be traced to a single source. Citing your sources demonstrates the work you have put into researching your paper, distinguishes your ideas from those of others, informs readers where to find out more about particular points, and strengthens your argument by providing authoritative sources for your factual claims.
Cite only the sources you yourself have consulted. Citing the source of your source, as if you had consulted it yourself, more info misleading and deceptive, unless you explicitly acknowledge it e. For further suggestions on citations, including formatting tips and a discussion of plagiarism, see the Dartmouth website on write political science course work. You must put in quotes, or in indented single-spaced format, any text found in other sources, and the text must be followed immediately by a citation to the source.
Of course, you may not submit all or part of a paper written by someone else as if it were your own work. To avoid plagiarism, be careful in your note taking and writing to mark all ideas, detailed facts, and exact wording taken from other sources, so that you can properly cite and quote them in your paper.
The Political Science Dept. In some cases, plagiarism and other forms of cheating is punishable by dismissal from the college. Thus do not waste space on material that does not advance your main argument, such as:. Organize your major points in logical order. Papers ten pages or longer should be divided by section headings, which tell the reader where you are going, making the argument easier to understand.
Present major arguments first, followed by supporting or subsidiary ones. One write political science course work organizational structure is to lay out and defend your main position, then turn to alternative explanations or counter-arguments and deal with them in turn. Preparing an outline first helps. It is always better to structure your paper around main ideas rather than a sequence of authors or sources, unless you are specifically asked to write a review essay.
This is an abstract of the whole paper, which tells the reader the question or questions you will address, why they are significant, how you are going to answer them, and what your answer is going to be. Avoid obvious or digressive preambles e. A single paragraph should suffice to write political science course work a short page paper; longer and more complex arguments require more detailed summary introductions.
End your paper with a summary conclusion. Conclusions remind the reader of the main points that have been argued and explain their implications. The summary of main points should echo the write political science course work already provided in the introduction, but can more easily refer to specific details or complex issues discussed in the body of the paper.
Conclusions are also better than introductions for explaining the implications of your argument or findings. Explain the significance to your larger argument of your facts and assertions as you present write political science course work. Ideally, you should state the main point in the first sentence of every paragraph. Stick to just one point in each paragraph. Paragraphs should ideally be made up of sentences focused on a single point preferably stated in the first sentence.
Page-long paragraphs usually include multiple write political science course work points that can be more easily digested if esl essay proofreading websites us are given their own paragraphs.
At the other extreme, a sentence-long paragraph typically either lacks sufficient explanation or supports a larger point made in another paragraph, to which it should be joined. Write concisely and plainly. You will be able to say more in less write political science course work if you minimize unnecessary prepositional clauses, obvious or meaningless comments e.
Convoluted and run-on sentences are hard to follow. Also, save space by confining article or book titles in the footnotes or bibliography, rather than mentioning them in the body of the paper.
Of course, you must still provide citations to others ideas, even if you have put them in your own words. Quotations are useful when the specific language of the author matters, or when you need to prove that an important source made the point expressed in the quotation.
If you must use quotations, the text and not just the citation should make clear who is being quoted. Use correct grammar and spelling.
This is not an old-fashioned, pedantic requirement. Errors here will muddle the clarity of your argument and lead readers to suspect you have been as sloppy in your research and analysis as with your grammar and spelling. Note: word-processing spell-check programs can catch most spelling errors, but will not find all; write political science course work. Use simple and correct formatting.
All papers should be typed, double-spaced, and stapled together. Use normal font styles and size around 12 pt and normal around 1.
Do not include extra spacing between paragraphs. Include a page number on each page after the first. Use standard citation and bibliographical formats. When citing in footnotes, use the same format as the first footnote below the first time you cite a source.
For subsequent citations to the same source, use abbreviated citations see the examples in the footnote to this sentence. A somewhat easier citation method is to write political science course work a parenthetical reference at the end of write political science course work sentence Snyder If you use parenthetical references, though, you must provide complete citations for every work cited in a bibliography at the end of the paper.
Avoid wasting space by write political science course work bibliographic details such as book write political science course work article titles in the body of the paper; that is what footnotes and bibliographies are for.
Re-read and revise your writing. To improve your writing you will want to read it critically, like most people and your professor will.
Taking a break will help you to get a clearer perspective on your own ideas and prose, to read your own draft as critically as if someone else had written it. Try to finish a first draft at least a few days before the paper is due.
After go here a break from it, review these guidelines or the editorial check-list belowand re-read and revise your draft. Some excellent general sources on writing are William Strunk, Jr.
Great on research papers is Wayne C. Colomb, and Joseph M. Williams, The Craft of Research, and on formatting see Kate Turabian, A Manual for Writers of Term Papers, Theses, and Dissertations.
Do not assume your paper needs no further revisions beyond the problems identified by a fellow student. Queens College Political Science Department Policy on Plagiarism and Academic Dishonesty.
The Political Science Department policy is that incidents of plagiarism, cheating, or other forms of academic dishonesty will be penalized. Penalties will vary from an F in the assignment to a grade of F in the course, and will be reported to the Dean of Students.
Students should be aware that the College may impose additional write political science course work, including requiring special coursework on intellectual honesty, temporary suspension, or dismissal from the college. The following list, drawn from the CUNY Policy on Academic Integrity, includes examples of plagiarism, write political science course work it is by no means exhaustive:.
Cheating is the use or attempted use of unauthorized material, information, notes, study aids, devices or communication during an academic exercise. The following list, also drawn from the Policy on Academic Integrity, includes examples of cheating, but it is by no means exhaustive:.
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The first step toward accomplishing this goal is to develop a basic understanding of political science and the kind of work political scientists do.
Political scientists study such struggles, both small and large, in an effort to develop general principles or theories about the way the world of politics works. Think about the title of your course or re-read the course description in your syllabus. The diverse structure of political science reflects the diverse kinds of problems the discipline attempts to analyze and explain.
In fact, political science Anziehen buy esl reflective essay on pokemon go Cookies at least eight major sub-fields: Although political scientists are prone to debate and disagreement, the majority view the discipline as a genuine science. They see themselves as engaged in revealing the relationships underlying political events and conditions. Based on these revelations, they attempt to state general principles about the way the world of politics works.
Knowing that political scientists value objectivity may help you in making decisions about how to write your paper and what to put in it. Political theory is an important exception to this empirical approach. Since theory-building serves as the cornerstone of the discipline, it may be useful to see how it works.
You may be wrestling with theories or proposing your own as you write your paper. Consider how political scientists have arrived at the theories you are reading and discussing in your course. Most political scientists adhere to a simple model of scientific inquiry when building theories. The key to building precise and persuasive theories is to develop and test hypotheses.
Hypotheses are statements that researchers construct for the purpose of testing whether or not a certain relationship exists between two phenomena. To see how political scientists use hypotheses, and to imagine how you might use a hypothesis to develop a thesis for your paper, consider the write political science course work example. Suppose that we want to know whether presidential elections are affected by economic conditions. You could test the relationship between the independent and dependent variables by collecting data on unemployment rates and the reelection of write political science course work presidents and comparing the two sets write political science course work information.
If you found that in every instance that the national unemployment rate was greater than 7 percent at the time of a presidential election the incumbent lost, you would have significant support for our hypothesis.
However, research in political science seldom yields immediately conclusive results. To explain this important exception and to make certain that other factors besides high unemployment rates were not primarily responsible for the defeat of incumbent presidents in other election years, you would need to do further research.
So you bibliography sites ghostwriter annotated uk see how political scientists use the scientific method to build ever more precise and persuasive theories and how you might begin to think about the topics that interest you as you write your paper.
Since political scientists construct and assess theories write political science course work accordance with the principles of the scientific method, writing in the field conveys the rigor, objectivity, and logical consistency that characterize this method. Thus political scientists avoid the use of impressionistic or metaphorical language, or language which appeals primarily to our senses, emotions, or moral beliefs. In other words, rather than persuade you with the elegance of their write political science course work or write political science course work moral virtue of their beliefs, political scientists persuade through their command of the facts and their ability to relate those facts to theories that can withstand the test of empirical investigation.
In writing of this sort, clarity and concision are at a premium. To achieve such clarity and concision, political scientists precisely define any terms or concepts that are important to the arguments that they make. Fortunately, you will generally not be expected to devise or write political science course work key concepts entirely on your own.
For this reason, it is always a good idea to explore what research has already been done on your topic before you begin to construct your own argument. See our handout on making an academic argument. Reading through this example should clarify the level of analysis and precision that you will be expected to write political science course work in your writing.
But, in order to evaluate whether or not a particular government is fully democratic or is more or less democratic when compared with other governments, we would need to have more precise criteria with which to measure or assess democracy. Most political scientists agree that these criteria should include the following rights and freedoms for citizens: By adopting these nine criteria, we now have a definition that will allow us to measure democracy. Thus, if you want to determine whether Brazil is more democratic than Sweden, you can evaluate each country in terms of the degree to which it fulfills the above criteria.
Two link the most common kinds of writing assignments in political science are the top rhetorical analysis essay ghostwriting for hire for college paper and the theory paper.
Your instructors use research paper assignments as a means of assessing your ability to understand a complex problem in the field, to develop a perspective on this problem, and to make a persuasive argument in favor of your perspective. In order for you to successfully meet this challenge, your research paper should include the following components: 1 an introduction, 2 a problem statement, 3 a discussion of methodology, 4 a literature review, 5 a description and evaluation of your research findings, and 6 a summary of your findings.
In the introduction of your research paper, you need to give the reader some basic background information on your topic that suggests why the question you are investigating is interesting and important. You will also need to provide the reader with a statement of the research problem you are attempting to address and a basic outline of write political science course work paper as a whole.
The problem statement presents not only the general research problem you will address but also the hypotheses that you will consider.
In the methodology section, you will explain to the reader the research write political science course work you used to investigate your research topic and to test the hypotheses that you have formulated. For example, did you conduct interviews, use statistical analysis, rely upon previous research studies, or some combination of all of these methodological approaches? Before you can develop each of the above components of your research paper, you will need to conduct a literature review.
A literature review involves reading and write political science course work what other researchers have written on your topic before going on to do research of your own. There are some very pragmatic reasons for doing this work.
First, as insightful as your ideas may be, someone else may have had similar ideas and have already done research to test them. By referring to what other researchers have found on your topic, you will have established a frame of reference this web page enables the reader to understand the full significance of your research results.
Thus, once you have conducted your literature review, you will be in a position to present your research findings. In presenting these findings, you will need to refer back to your original hypotheses and explain the manner and degree to which your results fit with what you anticipated you would find. If you see strong support for your argument or perhaps some unexpected results that your original hypotheses cannot account for, this section is the place to convey such important information to your article source. This is also the place to suggest further lines of research that will help refine, clarify inconsistencies with, or provide additional support for your hypotheses.
Finally, in write political science course work summary section of your paper, reiterate the significance of your research and your research findings and speculate upon the path that future research write political science course work should take. Political theory differs from other subfields in political science in that it deals primarily with historical and normative, rather than empirical, analysis.
In other words, political theorists are less concerned with the scientific measurement of political phenomena than with understanding how important political ideas develop over time. And they are less concerned with evaluating how things are than in debating how they should be. A return to our democracy example will make these distinctions clearer and give you some clues about how to write well in political theory.
Earlier, we talked about how to define democracy empirically so that it can be measured and tested in accordance with scientific principles. Political theorists also define democracy, but they use a different standard of measurement.
Their definitions of democracy reflect their interest in political ideals—for example, liberty, equality, and citizenship—rather than scientific measurement. So, when writing about democracy from the perspective of a political theorist, you write political science course work be asked to make an argument about the proper way to define citizenship in a democratic society.
Should citizens of a democratic society be expected to engage in decision-making and administration of government, or should they be satisfied with casting votes every couple of years?
In order to substantiate your position on such questions, you will need to pay special attention to two interrelated components of your writing: 1 the logical consistency of your ideas and 2 the manner in which you use the arguments of other theorists to support your own.
First, you need to make sure that your conclusion and all points leading up to it follow from your original premises or assumptions. If, for example, you argue article source democracy is a system of government through which citizens develop their full capacities as human beings, then your notion of citizenship will somehow need to support this broad definition of democracy. A narrow view of citizenship based exclusively or primarily on voting probably will not do.
Whatever you argue, however, you will need to be sure to demonstrate in your analysis that you have considered the arguments of other theorists who have written about these issues. In some cases, their arguments http://piernassexy.co/professional-letter-ghostwriting-sites-nyc.php provide support for your own; in others, they will raise criticisms and concerns that you will need to address if you are going to make a convincing case for your write political science course work of view.
If you have used material from outside sources in your paper, be sure to cite them appropriately in your paper. In political science, writers most often use the APA or Turabian a version popular resume writing service nyc the Chicago Manual of Style style guides when formatting references.
Check with your instructor if he or she has not specified a die article writers services uk gГnstige style write political science course work the assignment.
For more information on constructing citations, see the UNC Libraries citation tutorial. Although all assignments are different, the preceding outlines provide a clear and simple guide that should help you in writing papers in any sub-field of http://piernassexy.co/professional-dissertation-introduction-ghostwriting-sites-gb.php science. If you find that write political science course work need more assistance than this short guide provides, refer to the list of additional resources below or make an appointment to see a tutor at the Writing Center.
We consulted these works while writing the original version of this handout. Please do not use this list as a model for the format of your own reference list, as it may not match the citation style you are using.
For guidance on formatting citations, please see the UNC Libraries citation tutorial. Writing for Write political science course work Scientists: How to Start and Finish Your Thesis, Book, or Article.
Chicago: The University of Chicago Press. A Short Guide to Writing about Social Science, Fourth Edition. Politics: Who Gets What, When, How. New York, London: Whittlesey House, McGraw-Hill Book Company, inc. Upper Write political science course work River, New Jersey: Prentice Hall, Inc.
A Manual for Writers of Term Papers, Theses, and Dissertations, Sixth Edition. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2. You may reproduce it for non-commercial use if you use the entire handout just click print and attribute the source: The Writing Center, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Print PDF.
College of Arts and Sciences. The Writing Center at Write political science course work Hill. Submit a Draft Online. Tips on Teaching Writing. Tips on Teaching ESL Students. Teaching Assistantships in the Writing Center.
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