NOTE****: you are not allowed to write about same-sex marriage or abortion for this paper
Research Paper Rough Draft
Remember that the goal of the research paper is to show the reader to see your perspective on
the topic you’ve chosen, and convince him or her to adopt your stance. You will achieve this by
sharing with the reader the fruits of the extensive research you have performed on this topic.
Through the research process, you should have some advanced level of knowledge about your
topic, and be prepared to answer your research question from the Research Essay Proposal
Discussion Forum (or, some other research question you’ve developed in the course of
research). Make a strong case as you answer this question, one that your audience would
seriously consider. You will use in-text quotations and paraphrasing to support your argument,
demonstrating your understanding of the topic and showcasing the work you put into developing
As always, do not plagiarize. All direct quotations and information taken from your
sources must be credited in APA style. Present all of your research in a responsible,
organized way and make the main ideas in the essay your own. If you plagiarize, you will get no
credit, and there will be no chance to make up the points you lost. Depending on the severity of
the plagiarism, you may not be able to pass the course.
To properly complete the draft, consider the following steps:
• With the benefit of all your research, craft a thesis statement that answers, in 1-2 sentences,
the research question you posed to explore in the Research Essay Proposal Discussion
Forum (or, a thesis statement that otherwise indicates both the topic you’re discussing, and
your attitude toward it). For example, if your research question was, “Is the bird flu a
credible threat, and what can we do to prevent it?” your thesis statement might be, “The
United States can prepare for the possible devastation of a bird flu epidemic by investing in
vaccine research and the infrastructure required to mass produce, transport, and administer
vaccines to a large population. Additionally, average people can prepare for the bird flu by
keeping a stockpile of emergency supplies.”
• Develop an outline, to make certain that your organization of information will effectively
prove your thesis statement. Be sure to account for contextualization; if you used the above
thesis statement example, you must spend some amount of essay space discussing what
bird flu is, and its likelihood of spreading, even though those issues don’t directly answer the
thesis statement. This kind of contextualization is important for longer papers.
• Consider the purpose, audience, and tone of your essay – make sure to bear in mind who
you’re writing for, what you want them to take away, and how to effectively reach them
• Draft topic sentences and body paragraphs for each section in your outline. Make sure that
each paragraph has a topic sentence and an appropriate amount of supporting detail from
your sources. Consider whether the detail in each paragraph relates to the main point of the
paragraph. Remember, your paragraphs should be unified, developed, and coherent, and
have strong topic sentences.
• Make sure that your sources provide adequate support for the points you’re making. If
necessary, do more research. Additionally, make sure that you are using the content of a
source appropriately – not only do you want to make sure that you are citing, referencing,
summarizing, quoting, and paraphrasing properly, but you also want to be sure that you are
not misinterpreting the author’s words, or taking his or her points out of context.
• Incorporate your sources by using quotations and paraphrasing your sources in each
paragraph. You must cite your sources each time you quote or refer to information in them.
Each reference listed should have at least one corresponding in-text citation.
• Take precautions to avoid biased language in your writing. Additionally, employ the concept
of “show, don’t tell” as much as possible in this essay.
• Write an appropriate introduction, conclusion, and title for your essay. Your introductory
section should introduce your reader to the topic and include your thesis statement. Your
conclusion should restate your thesis and your main points.
• Finally, add a title that indicates the main idea of the essay, without restating your thesis
• This essay should be roughly 1250 words in length.
Make sure to carefully consider the Research Essay rubric as you work through this
Remember, your paper should include 5 sources and be at least 1250 words.
RUBRIC BELOW AND DIRECTIONS ARE ATTACHED BELOW: