Independent Studies Students



1. Reflective Journals: Respond to at least three topics per chapter for every chapter of the book. Post your journals on your website every time you write three chapters. Each topic should be approximately 250 words. Your reflections should encompass the topic and a thought about how it affects life in America. Your journals should be reflective in nature. Comment on what it means to you, your family, your nation. What are its implications? Ask questions. Evaluate its impact and relevance today.

Tell me your URL for the website you have created for your work.

 If you have any questions, please email me at 

2. TERM PAPER: write a 2500 word paper on a topic of your choice. Please clear the topic with me before you begin. Your paper needs to have at least five sources: two book sources specifically written on your topic, two periodical/journal sources, and your text book. (Minimum 15 citations.)

Interact with topics from your text. Show that you understand the material in the text and in your paper.  Demonstrate your mastery of the topics in your text. DO NOT write just an opinion piece that you could have written before your learned from this class.
When you use a source, you are testifying that that source is academically sound and trustworthy. Do not cite it if you are in doubt. Encyclopedia (including Wikipedia) are not academic sources. Authorless websites are not good academic sources. Dictionaries and Quote pages are not academic sources. If you have questions about whether a source is reliable, give it the CRAAP test.

Post ALL your work as web pages, not attachments.



Term Paper Checklist and Evaluation Sheet


                                  2500 words (minimum) - 3000 (maximum)
                                  cite sources by using parenthetical documentation
                                  have a bibliography/reference list 

Please make sure your term paper project includes all of the following items:                                                                                 

Text                                                      15 citations,  good grammar 

Sources                                                 2 books,  2 periodicals/journals, textbook 

Documentation                                       in text/parenthetical 

Reference List                                       alphabetized and in proper format 

Clarity of Argument/Content                  makes a good argument 


                Introduction                          is it effective?
                Thesis                                   is it clearly stated? 

                Body Paragraphs

                                Topic sentence?

                Conclusion                            are results reported?

Rubric 4 3 2 1
Reflective Journal Analyzes the topics found in the text to reflect on how these topics affect the world, nation, family, and/or individual providing effective analysis. Uses the topics found in the text to reflect on how these topics affect the world, nation, family, and/or individual, providing adequate analysis. Summarizes the text more than applying the topics of the text to the world, nation, family and/or individual. The work is thus inadequate. Mentions the text but does not offer insights on how the topics apply to the world, nation, family and/or individual. The work shows little success.


How to write a term paper

Sample Term Paper

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