Part I Thesis Statement Rubric
You may have heard teachers in the past talk about the thesis statement. The thesis statement is a sentence that summarizes the main point of your essay and previews your supporting points. The thesis statement is important because it guides your readers from the beginning of your essay by telling them the main idea and supporting points of your essay.
Generally, the thesis statement is the final sentence of your introduction. Sometimes, it is a good idea to use two sentences. For example, you might identify your main point in one sentence and then identify your supporting points in a second sentence. (Some might call this second sentence a preview sentence.) Other times, your thesis statement will only be one sentence. Either is acceptable, but remembers that you need a clear thesis statement at the end of your introduction so that your reader understands your main point and knows what to expect from the rest of your essay.
To create your thesis statement, consider the following.
What is the essay prompt asking you to do? (It will be helpful to look at the key words that you’ve underlined). Are you being asked to describe something, compare the advantages of disadvantages of a topic, argue an opinion, or something else?
Think about each of these questions in relation to the sample essay topic.
What is the essay prompt asking you to do?
The sample essay question asks the writer to identify one goal and explain how she or he will achieve it.
What is your main idea?
For example, if you’re writing an essay about your career goals and you’re in the middle of a career transition, your main idea might on getting a better job.
What are your subpoints?
Our example writer has chosen three subpoints to support her main idea: (1) finish school, (2) prepare a resume, and (3) search for jobs.
Your thesis statement should respond directly to the essay prompt and sum up your main idea. It is also helpful to preview your subpoints in the thesis statement. So, once you have everything identified (what the essay prompt is asking you to do, what your main point is, and what your subpoints are), you can put it altogether.
Part II Annotated Bibliography:
Provide a list of at least six sources that you have identified for the paper. Two of these must be a primary source document and two must be an academic journal article. These should be specific sources, not just places where you can find sources.
Part III Abstract:
Prepare a short abstract (less than one page) with a brief overview of your paper and a summary of the main arguments of your paper.
|Criteria||Excellent||Very Good||Good||Acceptable||Does Not Meet Key Standards|
clearly explains the problem the paper will address and provides supporting details
explains the topic of the paper and provides adequate supporting detail
explains the topic of the paper, but lacks clarity and adequate supporting detail
unclear explanation of topic, and lacks supporting detail
no clear topic or supporting details
thesis and supporting details organized into a concise and effective argument
thesis and supporting details need to be tightened to make a better argument
thesis and supporting details disorganized and do not contribute to an effective argument
thesis and supporting details provided, with no effective argument attempted
complete lack of clarity
|Spelling, grammar, and punctuation||5 points
abstract has no spelling, grammar, and/or punctuation errors
abstract has no more than one spelling, grammar, and/or punctuation error
abstract has no more than two spelling, grammar, and/or punctuation errors
abstract has no more than three spelling, grammar, and/or punctuation errors
abstract has four or more spelling, grammar, and/or punctuation errors
Part IV Final Paper:
Analyze the group’s capability regionally and globally as well as the threat it poses to the United States’ homeland security in the 21st century. What is the group’s threat to stabilization of the region of the group’s home base? What recommendations would you make to the Secretary of Homeland Security for improving the United States’ response to your group? What are the most significant challenges in emergency response towards your group? Can the United States establish a dialog with your group? What are the risks? What are the advantages?
The final paper must contain 10-12 full pages of content, double-spaced, with standard 1-inch margins and 12-point standard font. You may use APA style for the citations. All papers must use a minimum of five primary and five secondary sources. You may use the sources assigned for this course, but you may not count them toward the minimum sources for your project. At least two of your secondary sources must be academic journal articles.
Your paper should have a minimum of 10 sources, five primary and five secondary sources. (If you are unfamiliar with this distinction, check out the information here: http://subjectguides.library.american.edu/primary.) Restrict your sources to newspaper articles from major national and international papers, published journals and magazine articles, academic sources, and websites from major organizations and government agencies. Course materials may be used as a reference, but it does not count toward the minimum number of sources. Encyclopedias and dictionaries are not appropriate sources for college level work. Online sources are fine, but they must be authoritative sources. Wikipedia, About.com, and other nonacademic websites are not acceptable sources. (Bear in mind that anyone can submit an article to Wikipedia.)
If you are unsure about how to determine whether an online source is a good one, consult the Online Writing Lab at Purdue University has an excellent resource guide:
https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/553/1/. If you still have doubts as to whether a source is acceptable, send your instructor an e-mail.
Citations: All direct quotes from any source must be in quotation marks or indented and identified as a quotation in APA .
When you use quotations in your paper, you must cite the source, using the standard APA or format. The general rule of thumb for the ratio of original writing to quotes is at least four lines of analysis for any line that you quote. For the most part, you should paraphrase your sources, instead of quoting directly. Remember, as well, that you must cite your source for any sections that are paraphrased or from which you used specific information. Generally speaking, unless the paragraph consists solely of analysis or your own opinion, you should be citing a source (or sources) at the end of the paragraph.
If you are unfamiliar with the rules on when and how to cite, consult this website: http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/560/01/.
Plagiarism: All work submitted must be original.
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