Debate (Emerging Issues) Paper
Instructions and Tips
The instructor will select an emerging issue in abnormal psychology and assign you to either
the "pro" or the "con" side of the debate via email. This assignment addresses the following
Student should demonstrate the ability to evaluate emerging issues in abnormal
psychology and determine their practical application in diagnosis
Student should demonstrate the ability to differentiate between methodologies and
evaluate ethical considerations used in maladaptive behavioral research
Here is the rubric for this assignment:
Rubric for Debate
The student showed a basic understanding of the
emerging issue and of the research findings.
The student displayed an ability to criticize aspects 10
of the emerging issue and to present a side of the
debate in a rational manner (for example, in
justifying the use of a method with a selected
The student identified at least two critical 10
dilemmas and/or points related to the issue (for
example, ethical/socio-cultural concerns).
Accurate and consistent use of APA Style for
citations and references when referring to that
support supporting their side of the debate. Student
referenced at least 2 scholarly, peer-reviewed
psychology related journal articles. Page
requirement met and not greatly exceeded.
The student defended his or her position with
compelling arguments and predicted future trends.
Total: 60 points
Additional Tips for the Debate/Emerging Issues Paper
• Locate at least 2 scholarly, peer-reviewed psychology related journal articles that
address the emerging issue that you were assigned. Research should be fairly
current (e.g. last 4-6 years.) If an older article is selected it should be balanced
with a more recent article.
• Read the articles carefully and pay particular attention to findings that support
and oppose your position.
• Carefully review the rubric—these are the criteria that will be assessed. Your
paper should demonstrate critical thinking and compelling support for the
position that you were assigned.
• Papers should be typed, 3-5 double spaced pages. APA Style format (e.g. cover
page, reference page and in-text citations etc.)
• Cover page and reference page do not count toward the 3-5 page requirement;
avoid exceeding the page requirement.
• Need help with APA citations? Visit:
• Need help finding articles? Chat with a Librarian or email a librarian your
question. (Links located on Library Home Page)
FYI: The emerging issue= the topic and position you were assigned
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