Research Project, PSYC 220 Instruction Packet Table

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Research Project, PSYC 220
Instruction Packet

Table of Contents

Paper # 1 ……………………………………………………

Page 3

Rubric/Grade Sheet for Paper # 1………………………..

Page 6

Preparation for Paper # 1…………………………………

Page 7

Paper # 2…………..………………………………………

Page 9

Paper # 3…………..………………………………………

Page 10

Research Project Paper #1
Introduction/Literature Review

Psyc 220                ​​​​​​                 

You are to write an 5-6 page literature review on a chosen topic in psychology.  Your selected topic must be approved. 

*You should use your APA Publication Manual as a guide. 

Your job is to research your topic using relevant journal articles and books and then agree or disagree with the debates that coincide with your topic.  There is no correct side of the debate to choose.  You may even develop an opinion that lies somewhere in the middle.  But be sure to support your opinion (back it up with relevant research).  Make sure that you introduce the topic and describe the nature of the debate before you state your argument.  It is important to not only choose articles that support your opinion, but both sides.  You need to research your topic thoroughly, meaning you must be fair to both sides of the argument.  I am looking for well-researched, organized, and logical arguments. 

Research Requirements:
To research (study) your topic, you must use at least 8 resources.  You MUST use at least 6 scholarly journal articles.  The additional two resources can only include books (no websites, and NEVER WIKIPEDIA!!).  You must have the actual articles from SCHOLARLY JOURNAL articles that you locate through a library database system!!  If you are unfamiliar with the research process, you may seek library support.  There are research workshops that should be extremely helpful to you.  To locate scientific articles in psychology specifically, there is a website that you can access through the library resources that is called “psycharticles.”  Ask a librarian to assist you if you have any trouble accessing the website. 


1.) Title page, which includes your name, class meeting time or section number, and instructor’s name
2.) No less than 5-6 pages (but please don’t go over 8 pages either) not including the title page or references.  I will not read or give you credit for anything more than 8 pages.  If you write less than 6 complete pages, your score will be lowered.
3.) Citations – you must give credit to the sources you used to research your topic whenever you refer to an author’s opinion, research, or any other ideas from the author.  The citation format must be APA style (authors’ last name, publication date—see paper preparation sheet for an example).  YOU MUST HAVE A MINIMUM OF 3 CITATIONS PER PAGE.  Points will be lost if you fail to cite sources in your paper.
4.) References (DO NOT TITLE THIS PAGE “BIBLIOGRAPHY” OR “WORKS CITED”) – you must report the sources that you refer to within your paper on a “References” page.  This page is the final page in your document and it is not included in the 6-8 page limit.

1.) Your paper must be written in APA (American Psychological Association) format.  You can achieve this by using the APA format section below in this document or you can access the APA Publication Manual, sixth edition, at the library or elsewhere. 
2.) Please include your pages in the following order:  Title page, 6-8 written pages addressing your chosen topic, and the “References” page (and lastly attached the “Checklist/Grading” sheet). 
3.) Make sure that the first paragraph introduces your topic to a reader that has no previous knowledge of your topic, yet they are experts in the field of psychology.  The final paragraph should summarize your entire paper in a simple way. 

Spelling and Grammar:
1.) Avoid contractions in all formal writing (i.e., use will not instead of won’t and cannot instead of can’t).
2.) Use the present tense voice instead of past or future (i.e., “this topic is widely debated,” instead of “researchers debated”).
3.) Avoid using the first person narrative (i.e., “I agree with…”)  Instead, use third person voice, even when it is YOUR opinion (i.e., “here, it is agreed that…” or “it can be argued that…” instead of “I argue that…”).
4.) Avoid quotations—unless ABSOLUTELY necessary!!!!!!!  See APA format section (below).
5.) Please avoid all spelling mistakes especially since your computer will correct you on most mistakes.  It is a major pet peeve of mine to see you misspell words that are important for your topic (for example, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder must be spelled correctly if that is your topic, along with all associated terminology in psychology).
6.) Finally, ALWAYS CHECK YOUR WORK BEFORE TURNING IT IN.  ALWAYS, ALWAYS, PROOF READ!!!!  Maybe have a friend proof read it for you because often, two pairs of eyes are better than one. 

APA format:

The Publication Manual for the American Psychological Association (7th edition) is the best resource to guide you through an APA research paper. 

Please avoid quoting material!  Paraphrasing is the way to avoid this.  To paraphrase is to put information into your own words.  When you do this, you still need to cite the resource that you obtained the information/ideas, etc. from.  Depending on how long the paraphrased information is, you need to cite after the idea/information from the source ends in your text.  Usually, the idea/information could be one sentence or an entire paragraph even. 

When first moving into an idea that is not yours, you need to introduce the author, if for the first time, by giving the authors name(s) and date before the idea is written. 

In your references section, you need to cite complete information about the sources.  List your references alphabetically by first author’s last name.  Put the titles of journals, books, and magazines in italics.  A GREAT WEBSITE THAT WILL DO THIS FOR YOU IS:  under “Free Software Tools,” select “NoodleBib Express”, then select APA.  Alternatively, “Purdue Owl” is another helpful site (the website is: ).

GOOD LUCK!!!!!!!


This is the rubric I will be using to grade your literature review (paper # 1)
Review before starting your literature review AND again to edit before submitting

Literature Review

Deals in appropriate depth and focus on the topic.  Title page along with 5-6 pages of double-spaced, type-written text, 12-point font is a guideline for the depth of coverage.

Research:  A minimum of three sources per page are cited in the paper and listed in References.  There must be an exact match between references cited in the paper and those listed in the reference section of your paper.  Avoid using encyclopedia and/or Internet sources.

/7 pts.  Sources are cited in the body of the paper with the author’s last name followed by a comma and the year of publication, e.g. (Ciccarelli and White, 2015).

/6 pts.  The reference section is also in APA style.

General Writing Style:  Use a spell checker on the computer and/or have someone proofread your paper for errors in spelling and grammar.



Bring to class on due date for class/lab participation

To give students feedback in preparation of the Literature Review, I am asking that you complete the following:  1) the name of the topic you chose, 2) a listing of three appropriate references in APA style, 3) practice in paraphrasing so as to avoid plagiarism, and 4) an outline of your paper listing the topics and subtopics.  A sample outline sheet is attached to this sheet (next page).  This will be completed as an in-class activity. 

1.) Name of your paper topic:

2.) List three appropriate references (ONLY SCHOLARLY JOURNAL ARTICLES) in APA style.  Remember to list the sources alphabetically by the author’s last name, to use a hanging indent for the first line of each reference, to use initials for the authors’ first and middle names, and to not include titles such as Dr. or Ph.D.

3.) Practice in paraphrasing:  From one of your sources write a sentence or two as a direct quote, using quotation marks and citing your source in the following way: (Author’s last name(s), publication date, p.__).  Then paraphrase the same material and cite your source but do not include the page number.  For example, (Hockenbury & Hockenbury, 2001).

Quoted material:

Paraphrased material:

Sample Outline
I. Introduction
a. Background
b. Thesis Statement: II (A)________ + III (B)________= IV(C)________
II. __________
III. __________
IV. __________
V. __________
a. Summarize
b. Conclude

Research Project Paper #2
Correlational Study and Experiment Proposal– worth 60 points

Psychology 220​                ​​​​​​              N. Barbari

For Paper #2, you are required to do the following:

1.) Revise the Introduction/literature Review, now that you are more familiar with citation format and general APA writing style.  You should improve grammar and/or organizational errors detected in paper # 1. (Worth 10 points)
2.) Write an APA methods section for TWO STUDIES (Worth 50 points):
a. STUDY 1:  The correlational study you conducted (you will write in the past tense –i.e., “participants were instructed…”) AND;
b. STUDY 2: A proposed experiment (for this one you write in the future tense –i.e., “participants will be instructed…”). 

You will submit a paper that includes the following APA paper sections:  Introduction and Methods

Using the APA publication manual as a guide, you are to include the two major sections listed above, detailing the appropriate sections for each (i.e., for the “Methods” section, you will include the subsections:  “Study 1” (which is your correlational study) and “Study 2” (which is a proposal for an experiment).

NOTE:  A great example of two studies in one paper, is the recent homework reading assignment in Canvas (the article about stress).  You can locate many more examples as well.  For each study in your methods section, follow the APA Publication Manual primarily to understand what to include and the precise formatting. 

Research Project Paper #3
Final APA Manuscript – worth 80 points

Psychology 220              ​​​​​​                  N. Barbari

For paper # 3, you are required to do the following:

1.) REVISIONS: Revise graded sections, if necessary.
a. Title page
b. For intro, only revise hypothesis
c. Methods
i. Study 1 (Correlational Study)
ii. Study 2 (Experiment)
d. References
2.) Include ALL sections of an APA manuscript:
a. Title Page
b. Abstract
c. Introduction
d. Methods
i. Study 1 (Correlational Study)
1. Use past tense, since you already conducted the study.
ii. Study 2 (proposed experiment)
1. Use future tense, since you have not yet done it, but are instead proposing it.
e. Results
f. Discussion
g. References
h. Appendices (only for Study 1 – Correlational)
i. Appendix A, Appendix B, etc.
ii. Surveys, tests, etc.
i. Tables (only for Study 1 – Correlational)
i. Table 1, Table 2, etc.
ii. Correlation matrix
iii. Crosstabs
j. Figures (only for Study 1 – Correlational)
i. Figure 1, Figure 2, etc.
ii. Bar graph
iii. Histogram
iv. scatterplot


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