Assignment – Coursework Geeks

Assignment 1

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No directly quoted material may be used in this project paper.
Resources should be summarized or paraphrased with appropriate in-text and Resource page citations.
A little background:  One of the most important aspects of finding out more about crime and “why people do what they do” is to understand what Criminologists have already determined. Research raises our awareness of the things that we should pay close attention to.  It creates a photo of what has happened, what may happen and what we can do to prevent things from happening (from a policy perspective).
Criminologists, and other scholars, tell us these things by publishing their research findings in academic peer reviewed journals.  The idea is to know what research exists and to find gaps in the content areas that are in need of further research in an effort to conduct research to help create yet an even more comprehensive picture of a crime, criminal behavior, policy, and to suggest a policy!
For this assignment, you will start the process of research and identifying a gap in the literature (i.e. an area in need of further research)!  Your goal is to synthesize information that exists about a topic and then identify a research question that would help a Criminologist to explore the topic further. You will carry this topic throughout this course – so be sure to pick a topic that interests you!
You are to do the following for this assignment:
1.    Pick a broad topic area about crime that interests you (for example, homicide)
2.    Pick a demographic variable that you think may affect that topic (for example, where one lives)
3.    Identify 2 variables (one independent variable (IV) and one dependent variable (DV)).One of the variables will be the demographic variable that you chose in the question above.  For example, in the example above, Homicide would be my dependent variable and where one lives would be my independent variable.  You can think of a “cause and effect” relationship to determine which is your independent and which is your dependent variable.
4.    Now create a research question.  Research questions are frequently used in  Criminology.  This is because we often cannot “prove” anything, but we can suggest relationships.  Research questions assess the possible relationship between variables. They are often in the format of: “To what extent, if any, is X related to Y.”  Of course, the wording may be a little different, but hopefully you get the idea!
5.    Log into the UMGC library and pick a data base (Sage, for example) to start researching what research exists about your topic and the other variable you have chosen. You are to use academic peer reviewed articles only.
6.    Choose 3 peer reviewed academic articles for each of your variables (you will have six articles total- 3 for your IV and 3 for your DV).  Write an annotated bibliography for each of your articles.  Pay special attention to the similarities and differences in regards to what they are saying about your topic. Provide a brief summary of the article, and spend at least a paragraph discussing the similarities and differences between the topical articles.
 Format Requirements

Paper must be double spaced, 11 or 12 pt font and 1”margins all around.
All APA 7th edition format requirements must be followed (cover page, in text citations, reference page). Refer to APA/UMGC – learning resources found in the content page of this course.
You must have resources to support your thoughts/opinions/information.  These must be cited both in text as well as at the end of the document. Your paper should not contain direct quotes, sourced material must be paraphrased.

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