Below is a list of broad topics. Select ONE of the topics and use the concept mapping technique from the lecture notes and the videos to develop a more narrow topic in a thesis statement or research question format and a drawing of a concept map for that thesis statement.
Please also review this week's notes to see the sample concept map in your lecture notes and click on the link for a grading rubric for this assignment.
This is a two part .
1.You need to create an actual concept map drawing and
2. Include your thesis statement or research question.
Both parts of the assignment should be submitted as one file.
These choices are NOT the choices that you will be able to use for your research p and are only used for this only.
A. Texting while driving
B. Steroid use
C. Space travel
***Submit your assignment as a MS Word file by 5 PM on Thursday 9/16/2021.
How to Develop a Good Research Topic
User: KStateLibraries - Added: 8/20/13
YouTube URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nXNztCLYgxc
Concept Mapping: How to Start Your Term P Research
User: n/a - Added: 10/19/07
YouTube URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KhgxuNvbNrA
These are the steps in the research writing process:
1. Choose a topic.
2. Plan and schedule time to research and write.
3. Conduct research.
4. Organize research and ideas.
5. Draft your paper.
6. Revise and edit your paper.
Once you have a list of potential topics, you will need to choose one as the focus of your essay. You will also need to narrow your topic. Most writers find that the topics they listed during brainstorming or idea mapping are broad—too broad for the scope of the assignment. Working with an overly broad topic, such as sexual education programs or popularized diets, can be frustrating and overwhelming. Each topic has so many facets that it would be impossible to cover them all in a college research paper. However, more specific choices, such as the pros and cons of sexual education in kids’ television programs or the physical effects of the South Beach diet, are specific enough to write about without being too narrow to sustain an entire research paper.
A good research paper provides focused, in-depth information and analysis. If your topic is too broad, you will find it difficult to do more than skim the surface when you research it and write about it. Narrowing your focus is essential to making your topic manageable.
One way writers may focus a topic is to conduct preliminary research. Like freewriting, exploratory reading can help you identify interesting angles. Surfing the web and browsing through newspaper and magazine articles are good ways to start. Find out what people are saying about your topic on blogs and online discussion groups. Discussing your topic with others can also inspire you.
Your preliminary research has helped you choose a focused, manageable topic for your research paper. To work with your topic successfully, you will need to determine what exactly you want to learn about it—and later, what you want to say about it. Before you begin conducting in-depth research, you will further define your focus by developing a research question and/or a working thesis.
In forming a research question, you are setting a goal for your research. Your main research question should be substantial enough to form the guiding principle of your paper—but focused enough to guide your research. A strong research question requires you not only to find information but also to put together different pieces of information, interpret and analyze them, and figure out what you think. As you consider potential research questions, ask yourself whether they would be too hard or too easy to answer. Include simple, factual questions and more complex questions that would require analysis and interpretation. Determine your main question—the primary focus of your paper—and several sub-questions that you will need to research to answer your main question.
Topic: Workplace Violence
Main Question: How can companies prevent workplace violence?
Sub-Questions: What is workplace violence? How many incidents occur each year? Who are the victims? What causes workplace violence? Are there warning signs of workplace violence? What are the effects of workplace violence on a company?
One legitimate question readers always ask about a piece of writing is “What is the big idea?” (You may even ask this question when you are the reader, critically reading an assignment or another document.) Every nonfiction writing task—from the short essay to the ten-page term paper to the lengthy senior thesis—needs a big idea, or a controlling idea, as the spine for the work. The controlling idea is the main idea that you want to present and develop.
The big idea, or controlling idea, you want to present in an essay is expressed in a thesis statement. A thesis statement is often one sentence long, and it states your point of view. The thesis statement is not the topic of the piece of writing but rather what you have to say about that topic and what is important to tell readers. See the chart below:
The recording industry fears that so-called music piracy will diminish profits and destroy markets, but it cannot be more wrong.
The number of consumer choices available in media gear
Everyone wants the newest and the best digital technology, but the choices are extensive, and the specifications are often confusing.
E-books and online newspapers increasing their share of the market
E-books and online newspapers will bring an end to print media as we know it.
Online education and the new media
Someday, students and teachers will send avatars to their online classrooms.
The first thesis statement you write will be a preliminary thesis statement, or a working thesis statement. You will need it when you begin to outline your assignment as a way to organize it. As you continue to develop the arrangement, you can limit your working thesis statement if it is too broad or expand it if it proves too narrow for what you want to say.
A strong thesis statement contains the following qualities.
Specificity. A thesis statement must concentrate on a specific area of a general topic. As you may recall, the creation of a thesis statement begins when you choose a broad subject and then narrow down its parts until you pinpoint a specific aspect of that topic. For example, health care is a broad topic, but a proper thesis statement would focus on a specific area of that topic, such as options for individuals without health care coverage.
Precision. A strong thesis statement must be precise enough to allow for a coherent argument and to remain focused on the topic. If the specific topic is options for individuals without health care coverage, then your precise thesis statement must make an exact claim about it, such as that limited options exist for those who are uninsured by their employers. You must further pinpoint what you are going to discuss regarding these limited effects, such as whom they affect and what the cause is.
Ability to be argued. A thesis statement must present a relevant and specific argument. A factual statement often is not considered arguable. Be sure your thesis statement contains a point of view that can be supported with evidence.
Ability to be demonstrated. For any claim you make in your thesis, you must be able to provide reasons and examples for your opinion. You can rely on personal observations in order to do this, or you can consult outside sources to demonstrate that what you assert is valid. A worthy argument is backed by examples and details.
Forcefulness. A thesis statement that is forceful shows readers that you are, in fact, making an argument. The tone is assertive and takes a stance that others might oppose.
Confidence. In addition to using force in your thesis statement, you must also use confidence in your claim. Phrases such as I feel or I believe actually weaken the readers’ sense of your confidence because these phrases imply that you are the only person who feels the way you do. In other words, your stance has insufficient backing. Taking an authoritative stance on the matter persuades your readers to have faith in your argument and open their minds to what you have to say.
In today’s crumbling job market, a high school diploma is not significant enough education to land a stable, lucrative job.
Compared to an absolute divorce, no-fault divorce is less expensive, promotes fairer settlements, and reflects a more realistic view of the causes for marital breakdown.
· A thesis is weak when it is simply a declaration of your subject or a description of what you will discuss in your essay.
Weak thesis statement: My paper will explain why imagination is more important than knowledge.
· A thesis is weak when it makes an unreasonable or outrageous claim or insults the opposing side.
Weak thesis statement: Religious radicals across America are trying to legislate their Puritanical beliefs by banning required high school books.
· A thesis is weak when it contains an obvious fact or something that no one can disagree with or provides a dead end.
Weak thesis statement: Advertising companies use sex to sell their products.
· A thesis is weak when the statement is too broad.
Weak thesis statement: The life of Abraham Lincoln was long and challenging.
Concept mapping is a process of creating a "visual map" or "web" of your knowledge. Creating a concept map is a good way for you to identify key concepts between ideas or topics. It also allows you to show how different pieces of information relate to one another.
Concept maps are visual representations of what we know about a topic and consist of central terms or ideas and labeled links. Concepts are sets of specific objects, symbols, or events that share common characteristics. The meaning of a concept is determined by a list of its properties, which are, in turn, other concepts. Most concepts do not exist in isolation, but rather as part of a set of related concepts. For example, the concept "water" can be defined by other concepts, such as liquid, solid, and gas. The relationship of each concept to other concepts determines its meaning. A concept map is a set of relationships among other concepts.
Labeled links identify the type of relationship. Therefore, the line between a pair of concepts indicates a relationship, and the label on the line tells how the two concepts are related.
A concept map is a visual representation of what you know about a topic. It helps you to organize, analyze, and communicate your studies and research. Now that you know what a concept map is and all of its components, let's see how you would create one for yourself.
The process of concept mapping involves three major steps:
· Step 1: List key concepts/terms related to the topic
· Step 2: Build up concepts to elaborate key concepts
· Step 3: Identify links between concepts
List all the concepts related to the topic which you consider essential to understanding the topic. For example, for the topic "Group Work," Jose determined the key concepts to be:
· Team Responsibilities
· Individual Responsibilities
· Basic Elements
· Expected Behaviors
After defining the key concepts, you then expand on those concepts. Ask yourself the question:
"What are the important facts, ideas, terms, etc. that explain the key concept?"
It is important to show how or why certain concepts relate to one another. This is called linking – explaining the connection between two separate parts of your concept map.
It is important that your linking labels fully describe the relationship between the two concepts. This means making the labels more than simply "relates to" or "is connected to." Labels should indicate the exact nature of the relationship. Links may connect to, or be related to, more than one concept – be sure to link all related concepts together.
By establishing links between concepts you are able to see the "big picture" and gain a deeper understanding of a topic. In fact, your goal is to attempt to link every concept in your concept map to every other one. Trying to establish links helps you focus on which concepts are most important in order to understand a topic and identify areas within a map that you might need to work on a little more. For example, you may need to expand a map by establishing sub-concepts, or you may even need to eliminate concepts that turn out to be unimportant for a particular topic.
Most Common Words Used in Link Labels
· Subset of: is included in, is contained in, is example of, is part of
· Superset of: include, contain, consist of, has example, has part of
· has characteristic/is characteristic of
· has attribute/is attribute of
· has type/is type of
· Function: cause/is caused by
· function as/is used for
· Operation: act on/is acted on by
· generate/is generated by
· regulate/is regulated by
· determine/is determined by
· increase/is increased by
· has process/is process in
· has input/is input to
· has output/is output of
· has step/is step in
· is similar to
· is like
· is opposite to
One way to begin is to list sub-topics and then classify them by ranking them from general to specific. For example, the topic of cats (see the "concept map example on cats" above) might trigger some thoughts about mammals, different kinds of cats, or pets. These general sub-topics will most likely lead to thoughts about even more specific topics such as four legs, tails, spine, hair type, and friends of mankind.
Another way to begin is to simply start brainstorming or "free associating" by jotting down every idea that comes to mind. After brainstorming, you can classify the items.
Regardless of how you decide to approach this map, always keep in mind the central word, concept, question, or problem for which you are building the map. Then, think about the concepts, words, descriptions, subjects, items, or issues that are connected to or associated with your central word or idea.
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