Assignment Title:
Current Event Paper: Apply Sociological Theories and Research Methods to a Current Event
Purpose:
The main purpose of this essay is to allow you to demonstrate mastery of the theories, perspectives, and social research methods presented in the course by selectively applying them to a current event.
Instructions:
Pre-Writing
Look online or at a library for a current event covered by a credible news source. For this assignment, a current event is any specific occurrence from the past year that has a social, political, cultural, or economic impact on the nation, state, or world. Examples include any news related to recent elections or voting; a new state or federal law, bill, or policy; an important rally, protest, or gathering; or a new cultural phenomenon sweeping the state, nation, or world.
Credible news media sources include:
The New York Times
The Washington Post
The Wall Street Journal
The Guardian
The Economist
USA Today
Google News
Bloomberg
The New Yorker
The Atlantic
Major news networks (such as CNN, MSNBC, ABC, NBC, CBS, BBC, NPR, and PBS )
This list of credible news media sources is based on Business Insider’s list of most trusted news sources (http://www.businessinsider.com/here-are-the-most-and-least-trusted-news-outlets-in-america-2014-10 (Links to an external site.)). If you are not sure whether a news source is credible or not, or whether a recent occurrence counts as a current event, please check with your instructor.
Next, select three social theories you read about in this course that you believe apply to the event you chose. You may want to take notes on how each theory can be applied in interpreting the event.
Your last pre-writing step is thinking of a social research project you could conduct to determine which of the three theories best explains the event. Whom or what would you sample for the research? What data collection method would you use and why?
Section 1: Introduction
Begin your paper by describing the current event you chose: Who was involved? What happened? When did it happen? Where did it happen? Provide some background information and include citations and references from your credible news source.
Then briefly state which three theories from the textbook apply to the event and why.
End with a brief description of a social research project you think should be conducted to determine which of the three theories best explains the event.
Section 2: First Theory
Analyze and interpret the current event according to one of the three theories you chose from the textbook. How does this theory help to explain the occurrence of the event? Include citations and references from the textbook.
Section 3: Second Theory
Analyze and interpret the current event according to another of the three theories you chose from the text. How does this theory help to explain the occurrence of the event? Compare what this second theory helps us understand about the event with the first theory you wrote about. Include citations and references from the textbook.
Section 4: Third Theory
Analyze and interpret the current event according to the third and final theory you chose from the text. How does this theory help to explain the occurrence of the event? Compare what this third theory helps us understand about the event with the first and second theories you wrote about. Include citations and references from the textbook.
Section 5: Proposed Research
Propose a research project that would help determine which of the three theories you wrote about best explains the current event. Whom or what would you sample for the research? Why? What data collection method would you use? Why? What are the ethical considerations when conducting this type of research if any? How will you ensure the safety and confidentiality of the participants if any?
Section 6: Conclusion
What do you expect the specific results of your proposed research project to be? Based on your prediction, which one of your three social theories best explains the current event and why.
Assignment Checklist
• Make sure the essay is 3-5 pages 12 point standard font –Times New Roman or Arial– double spaced, 1 inch margins top and bottom, and 1 or 1.25 inch on the sides) in APA format. The cover sheet and reference sheet do not count toward the page total.
• Make sure you include citations and references in APA format. Citations and References in APA format.pdf
Actions
• Be sure your introduction begins with a brief description of a current event from a credible news source.
• Be sure your introduction briefly mentions three theories that apply to the current event.
• End your introduction with with a brief description of a social research project that could help determine which of the three theories best explains the event.
• Make sure the next three sections explain how each of the three theories you chose help to explain the current event –one section per theory.
• Check to see that your next section describes a research project that would help determine which of the three theories best explains the current event.
• Also, check to see that this section describes the sample, data collection method, and ethical considerations for this proposed research.
• Check to see that your conclusion predicts the results of your proposed research as well as how these results will help to determine the best theory for explaining the current event.
TEXT BOOK FOR THIS CLASS WHERE THEORIES HAVE TO BE CHOSEN FROM IS: