About Us senator Michael Bennet from Colorado

    Outliers Book Report Assignment and Directions This assignment will serve as your opportunity to demonstrate your writing and research skills, while answering a question that is fundamental to democracy: are people successful because of their own abilities and effort, or are people successful because of the sum of the advantages they receive in life. Malcolm Gladwell?s book, Outliers: The Story of Success deals with this theme. You will both recount his conclusions and test them, using a top American public official. It will be necessary for you to lay a research background before drawing your own conclusion. For this assignment, students will write a three-page book report. After a one paragraph introduction with a thesis statement, the first page of the paper will be dedicated to the central themes of the book that you intend to evaluate. If a reader were to only read the first page, he or she should be fully aware of what to expect to find in the rest of the paper. This is not, though, a listing of chapters or even the individuals Gladwell discusses. A three-page paper is not enough to discuss Gladwell?s every assertion. This page must narrow the topic to what the remainder of the paper will test. The final two pages should provide a short look at an American public official and why he or she has been successful. The short discussion of this figure should buttress your position on page one about Gladwell?s book. Because you should research before you write, it is unacceptable for you political figure?s life to dissuade you from your original conclusion. If you change your mind, you will be expected to rewrite your entire paper to reflect that. A final draft of a college-level paper does not discuss a topic in a stream of consciousness style. It is a report of conclusions that have already been drawn. You should finish with a conclusion paragraph. You should try very hard not to extend your paper onto a fourth page. The paper should be double-spaced and in 11-point font with Arial typeface. In addition to the three-page body of the paper, it should have a cover page and a bibliography (works cited page). You should use APSA style, because this is an assignment for a political science course. There are several places to find these. The electronic version of this assignment will have both directions from the political science department at the University of North Texas (which I find very helpful) and the official manual, if you are particularly attached to precision (See below). Do not expect credit for the assignment, if you do not use a proper citation style. At the very least, this must include internal citations (sometimes called attributions) and a bibliography. Every year, a handful of students list only a list of web addresses or do not use internal citations, they receive a F for the course. There is no reason to go an entire semester without learning to do this correctly. You are strongly encouraged to utilize the writing center, located in the English Building. Additional pages will show directions for choosing you political leader and a rubric. HYPERLINK ?http://www.psci.unt.edu/~pmcollins/APSA%20Citation%20and%20Reference%20Guidelines.pdf? North Texas Directions HYPERLINK ?http://www.apsanet.org/portals/54/Files/Publications/APSAStyleManual2006.pdf? Official Style Manual The paper must be submitted as a docx or pdf file to the D2L dropbox. Your submission most be a single file, and the bibliography, cover page, and body of the assignment must all be included. Selecting Your Topic You will select your topic from the current holders of the following list of political offices: Living former Presidents and Vice Presidents of the United States The Current President or Vice President of the United States Current United States Senators Current Members of the United States House of Representatives Current Governors states in The United States Living former Governors of Georgia Current Secretaries in the US Cabinet (this includes the US Attorney General) Any person who is running for President of the United States and is expected to qualify for the ballot in Georgia (for third-party candidates, it is up to you to be correct here). You may submit a list of ten names and the position they hold that qualifies them starting on September 7, 2016 in the Assignments section of the class D2L page. If you have an incorrect name, qualifying office held, or too few qualifying names, your submission will be disallowed. At the end of each day, starting on September 7th, students will be assigned a public official based on their requests. That list will be posted on the D2L class page under announcements. Starting September 8th, students will not be allowed to submit names that are on the list of previously assigned names. The priority order for selections on the same day will be based on a student?s total score for the course at the time of the selection with top scorers having the top priority. The final day to submit a topic is September 26th. Students who do not submit a list of ten qualifying names by this date should withdraw from the course. If not, they will fail. Grading Rubric for Term Paper In order for term paper grades to be objective, it is necessary for an instructor to consider the specific expectations he or she has for a paper before grading begins. It is useful for students to have a solid idea about what those expectations are when crafting a paper. The following will be the standards used to grade term papers in this course. The term paper will be worth a maximum of 50 points. However, 50 points would represent a perfect paper. A perfect paper, by definition, would not only be publishable, but skeptical readers of the publication would be unable to find weaknesses or errors. None but the most common of assertions should stand without valid evidence from respectable sources. Absolutely nothing within the paper should be untrue. Errors in grammar, punctuation, and spelling should be as rare as would be expected in an academic journal, textbook, or a book from a major publisher (certainly less than twice in every four pages). The paper should bring to light at least a few facts or strongly supported claims about the subject that were not known by its readers prior to this research. The reader should not only learn from reading but understand why he or she should care to learn about the subject. The language and tone should be professional. A standard style of citation and attribution should be used. If you receive a 50, it will be a communication from me to you that you have a gift for writing AND that this piece has merit for publication. It is likely that no one will receive a 50 this semester. Most students should set 48 points as their goal on the term paper. Whereas a perfect paper might be the goal of someone who wants to make writing a career, a 48 will represent superior work for an undergraduate student at a respected public university (Kennesaw State University). In crafting a superior paper, students should answer every question presented in the assignment in a clear and concise manner. The paper should be informative and engaging both to a potential audience of other honors students and to the instructor grading the paper. If reported as an A paper from KSU in a newspaper report, it should bring credit the university. The paper should utilize highly respected sources to provide as much evidence as is possible for any assertions made. Absolutely nothing within the paper should be untrue. If the grader is left doubtful as to the validity of an assertion, the grade will be lowered unless the paper provides strong evidence for the claims made. Errors in grammar, punctuation, and spelling should be very rare (certainly less than one per page). Thorough proofreading is expected. The language and tone should be academic in nature and avoid non-standard expressions. Neither breathless excitement nor skulking negativity are acceptable tones. A standard style of citation and attribution must be used. If you receive a 95, it will be evidence that you have done a superior or exceptional job on your paper. This will be strong praise for your talent. I strongly hope to give a few grades of 48 in each class, but it will not be common. A grade of 45 will be much more common. As the lowest of the ?A? grades, it would neither help nor harm a student who seeks to receive an A for the course. A grade of 45 reflects excellent work for a college student in a political science course for a term paper on the course subject. Clearly, this means that the paper should follow all of the instructions set forth by the assignment. This would include answering all of the questions asked by the assignment. The paper should be informative and engaging to fellow college students and bring to a potential classmate reader?s attention information that is not generally known to those who did not do the assignment. The paper should utilize respectable sources to provide as much evidence as is possible for any assertions made. Absolutely nothing within the paper should be untrue. If the grader is left doubtful as to the validity of an assertion, the grade will likely be lowered unless the paper provides evidence for the claims made. Errors in grammar, punctuation, and spelling should be very uncommon and never glaring. The paper should be free of typographical errors. Proofreading is expected. The language and tone should be considered to avoid sounding either na?ve or uninterested. The APSA style of citation and attribution must be used correctly. If you receive a 45, it will be a communication from me to you that you have done an excellent job on your paper, given the expectations of the course. A grade of 40 or 42 will reflect that you have done a good job on your term paper. However, it will also indicate that a few mistakes in presentation have been found or somewhat weaker research is evident. All of the important questions in the assignment will have been addressed, but this grade possibly indicates an evidence of slightly weaker critical reasoning. While nothing in the paper is demonstrably untrue, a paper of this quality might present an assertion without clear and convincing evidence. Still, the paper will need to have respectable sources that generally support its conclusions. If the paper fails in places to be engaging and informative to a potential student reader, who has not studied this subject, the grade might also fall into this range. Errors in grammar, punctuation, and spelling might be present, but in order to receive an 80 or 85, they cannot be in any way disruptive, common, or repeated. There should still be evidence of proofreading. Typographical errors that make reading difficult must be avoided to maintain this grade. The language and tone should indicate that you have considered your word choice. A standard style of citation and attribution must be used. The difference between an 40 and a 42 will depend in large measure on whether your paper has only a few or whether it has most of the problems listed above. These grades should still give you some satisfaction, as it will be an indication that you have done a good job considering the expectations of this course. A grade of 35 or 37 will reflect a satisfactory or even only a minimally satisfactory job on your term paper. However, it will also indicate that there were serious weaknesses in your research and/or your writing. Perhaps, you will have failed to address one of the major questions?though you should note that failing to address a major question makes a failing grade quite possible. Similarly, a demonstrably untrue statement in your term paper would make this the highest grade possible. If you have addressed all of the major questions, you used correct citations, and did not make any untrue statements, then a score of 35 or 37 might indicate a fairly weak quality for your sources. If everything else is okay, errors in grammar, punctuation, and spelling are likely common and disruptive to the effort to understand your paper. The language and tone might be inconsistent with college-level work. If a paper makes more than a mistake or two when using a standard form of citation and attribution style, but without ignoring it entirely, you should expect at best a C. The difference between a 35 and 37 will depend on whether the paper has a few of these problems or many. This grade will indicate a satisfactory, if somewhat disappointing level of performance, but at least minimally college-level work. A grade of a 32 will reflect a sub-par but passing job on your term paper. This will indicate that serious mistakes were made in your research and writing. Perhaps, you will have failed to address one of the major questions?though you should note that failing to address a major question makes a failing grade quite possible. This will be the most common grade for someone who has made a demonstrably untrue statement in his or her term paper. If you have addressed all of the major questions, used correct citations, and did not make any untrue statements, then a score of 32 probably indicates very weak research. Errors in grammar, punctuation, and spelling are likely common and disruptive to the effort to understand your paper. The language and tone might be inconsistent with college-level work. This will be the most common grade for any paper that strays from the standard form of citation and attribution styles (while still having a bibliography and an appropriate number of internal citations). This grade will indicate a poor level of performance, but at least it is passing. Students who complete a term paper that does not meet the standards above will receive a grade between 0 and 30 based on the degree to which they fulfilled any of the goals of the paper. The following are specific areas of concern that will cause a failing grade not withstanding any other merits the paper has. They might be conceptualized as leading to a deduction of 20 points. However, these problems might lead to losing all points, and a second problem among these might lead to a still significant deduction of up to all remaining points or even failure of the course. Any paper that is noticeably longer than or shorter than 3 pages. Any paper that does not have a works cited page and/or use internal citations (this will result in a 0 and failure of the course) Any paper that is found to include plagiarism, either of a fellow student?s work or of an outside source (this will result in a 0, and failure of the course). Any paper that uses Wikipedia (or any source that uses Wikipedia as a source), Answers.com, or any similar website (be skeptical of any online encyclopedia). Any paper that advocates violence. Failure to include a cover page will result in a 10 point deduction. Late papers will lose twenty points immediately and ten points each additional day

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