Outlining Themes and Topics

Instructions

For this activity, start to think about how and why you write as an academic in the scholar-practitioner model of your discipline. Craft a 3–5 page paper that explores how one thinks, researches, and writes in your field.

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Part One: Locate and summarize suitable scholarly articles

Using the three journals from the prior activity and your review essay, select one article from each of the journals (a total of three articles). Carefully read the articles, making notes as you do so.

Note the database and search terms you used and provide the citations for 3–5 articles that you considered, even if you did not use all of them in your final selection. Next, indicate the articles you selected as most appropriate/relevant for further reading.

Identify the main idea of each paragraph, the evidence used to support that idea, and the analysis presented in the paragraph. Craft a short 250–500 word summary of each of the articles.

Part Two: Identify and articulate themes and topics

From what you read, what are the dominant themes or ideas? Explain the topic and describe the purpose of the article. Then summarize what the article is about. Examine the intent.

For example, what type of data or information is being used in your field? Also, What aspects of APA tone, format and style are you seeing in your articles? Is it formal or informal? How would you describe the style, voice or audience for the “conversation” between articles?

Use these steps to guide your identification and selection of themes:

  • Topic: What the main subject is in your text/investigation?
  • Purpose: (Select at least two of the following) define, list, label, relate, contrast, compare, demonstrate, interpret, explain, illustrate, summarize, classify, apply, construct, develop, organize, plan, identify, analyze, categorize, examine, distinguish, compose, formulate, predict, propose, solve, discuss, theorize, change, criticize, justify, measure, recommend, prioritize, support, assess, perceive, value, estimate, deduct.
  • Aspects: Think how you will [insert purpose here] about your [insert topic here]. (Must have at least three.)

Be sure that you:

  • Select reputable academic sources appropriately.
  • Incorporate a tone that is appropriately formal.
  • Write well developed paragraphs with clear topic sentences that are supported within the paragraph.
  • Articulate a working thesis statement with a defined topic, purpose, and aspects of exploration.
  • Include summaries, paraphrases, and direct quotations that you will be using as points of development within the literature review.
  • Include topic sentences for each paragraph of the literature review.
  • Explain points of development for each paragraph of the literature review.
  • Use of APA style and formatting.

Your assignment will be scored on the following criteria:

  1. Identify themes applicable to a topic or thesis.
  2. Support themes with peer-reviewed, scholarly resources.
  3. Acknowledge the use of information through proper citation.
  4. Utilize proper mechanics including spelling, grammar, and APA formatting.
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