The final exam/final project paper focuses on identifying solutions to a social problem important to you. Examining social life can be challenging and often defeating, after all “I am only one person,” it seems there is no end in sight for the misery and pain that many people in our society endure. It begs the question, what can I do to address systemic inequality, privilege, oppression, exclusion, and other forms of domination?
Well, we can begin to make inroads if we are willing to learn about our environment and eventually engage in direction action to change social ills (hopefully this class has helped in the endeavor!). This paper (among other experiences and learning tools) can be a stepping stone for someone willing to take that journey. We end the final project/paper on developing new innovative ways to resist and ultimately eliminate asymmetrical power structures.
Demonstrate the ability to apply a basic understanding of sociological perspectives and theories to analyze the social world in order to address pertinent social problems.
Throughout the course of the semester we have covered a variety of societal issues. However, this final project is designed to provide solutions to help solve a social issue of your choice.
Students will choose a serious issue impacting society. You may select an issue outside the scope of the material covered in this course.
You will carefully and succinctly craft solutions designed to alleviate your particular dilemma. Serious well thought-out responses are required.
Paper Outline Guide
Introduction Page (1 page)
- Introduce the topic, discuss the social problem, and briefly provide a preview of the forthcoming solutions.
- There is an assumption the reader understands the social problem, therefore, try to stay away from overly describing the problem.
- Write a clear and concise thesis statement.
- Make sure to include name(s), date, course, professor, and creative title. No coversheet required.
Subsequent Pages (2-3 pages)
Do not simply describe a series of solutions (2-3 solutions), carefully provide details on how to implement the solutions. For instance, the reinvestment in schools to address educational disparities. You may consider the following questions:
- How can society (i.e. communities) implement this “solution”?
- What are the social, cultural, political, and economic mechanisms at work?
- Who are the actors involved? What groups hold the power to create change?
- What are some of the best practices to achieving your “solution”?
- Are there any potential challenges?
- Has this solution been considered before?
Conclusion Page (1 page)
Provide a final analysis. Discuss the main points of the paper and reemphasize your argument (thesis statement).
A minimum of three academic sources required for each solution. Acceptable materials include books, chapters, and peer-reviewed journal articles. Include a Works Cited page.
The assignment is worth 60 points and will be based on the final paper project. The final paper will be a minimum of 4 pages: 1 introduction page (10 points), 2-3 solution pages (40 points), and 1 conclusion page (10 points).
Do not copy and paste. Citations are required if you are using language other than your own. Plagiarized work will result in a zero score – no exceptions.
Times New Roman, 12 pt., double spaced, and use proper MLA format/citation style throughout the paper including the works cited page.
Students will upload a digital copy via Canvas on the day of the final exam.
- Your written response will connect your answers to the broader social structure, ideologies, power relationships, sociological terms/concepts/theories, and to broader society overall.
- When appropriate please add an example and/or quote from the textbook to explain your answer.
- Provide sufficient academic evidence to support your claim. Personal anecdotes are also acceptable but must reflect your overall argument.
- You must bring in at least three outside scholarly sources that help support your interpretation and arguments (i.e. solutions). The assignment should be written in the form of an essay, with well-structured paragraphs. The paper is worth a total of 60 points.
- The paper should be at least 4 pages long with a word count of 1000 words as minimum. Print the word count at the bottom of your works cited page. Do not include a cover page.
- TEXTBOOK LINK: http://open.lib.umn.edu/socialproblems/