Assessing the Causes and Consequences of Wrongful Convictions

The Independent Research Study will be:

A typewritten, 8-10 page, properly documented Argumentative essay. Endnotes (if that is your method of referencing) and bibliography will add extra pages.
An argumentative essay, which seeks to convince the reader to agree with your particular point of view on an event or issue. You need to take a stand on an issue, provide supporting evidence, and appeal logically, emotionally, and ethically to the reader. Choose your language carefully to sway the reader to your point of view.
The Research Essay

The main purpose of the research component is to provide an opportunity for systematic inquiry into an issue or problem related to law. A list of suggested topics is included. Final topics must be approved by your instructor.
Your Independent Study, like any piece of formal writing, should employ only proper English and conform to standard essay style. Avoid using colloquial language or writing in the first person. Simply put, your essay will include:
an INTRODUCTION which presents the topic, scope, and thesis/position of the paper;
a BODY, consisting of paragraphs which present and document evidence, and arguments to support the paper’s thesis/position; and
a CONCLUSION which restates the thesis, and reviews the major supporting arguments.
The essay should be written in your own words. It should not be a compilation of sections “lifted” or copied out of resource material. You will have to refine your note-taking skills. Be forewarned that PLAGIARISM could and will probably result in a failing grade.

Your essay should be written in the THIRD-PERSON NARRATIVE. Do not use the first person “I” narrative.
Your paper will include a title page, endnotes/footnotes and a bibliography immediately following the research essay. Check with your instructor for proper referencing and bibliography format.
You are encouraged to consult as many sources of information as you wish in your research. The minimum number of sources to be included in the bibliography is five (5). It is best to use a variety of different types of sources.
Your paper will include:
a title page,
in-text referencing, footnotes, or endnotes on a separate piece of paper immediately following the main text, depending on the format for citations required by your instructor,
a bibliography immediately following the endnotes.

The final copy of your paper will be typewritten:

indent paragraphs five (5) spaces, (This is equal to the number of spaces in the “tab” function, which you should use, rather than actually hitting the space bar five times.) and
one space between paragraphs.

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