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Deciding on a topic for the capstone project can be a challenge. However, it is important to be as precise and specific as possible; this will allow you to investigate your topic with sufficient depth. Reflect on the courses you have taken to identify issues that have sparked ongoing concern or interest for you. While this project does not require you to make an original scholarly contribution to your field, it does require you to develop a deep acquaintance with your topic. You are expected use a high level of academic rigor to locate and analyze published academic sources in your exploration of your topic. Please refer to the Capstone Project section of the course website for full details and requirements. Written Assignment 1 is the first step toward completing the project. [MO 1.1, MO 1.2, MO 1.3] Please Note: Original research is not expected of this capstone project. In the rare event that you believe that your research requires collecting data from human subjects, you must obtain Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval as indicated below. Because it can be a lengthy process to obtain IRB approval for original field research, the University discourages the use of surveys, questionnaires, and other forms of obtaining data from human subjects. Please note that this research should only be undertaken if absolutely necessary, and you will be responsible for all course deliverables in addition to the approvals, participant selection, assessment tool development, data collection, and data analysis required by field research. Instructions Write an introduction to your topic that incites interest and depicts the need for the study. Why should the reader be interested in this topic? What should the reader hope to gain from this project? Find a quotation, anecdote, news item, or some other element on the topic that can incite such interest as you open your paper. Then, briefly describe the reasons for this choice of the topic and study, along with the other elements required as indicated below. Keep in mind, academic writing is supposed to be as objective and dispassionate as possible, which means you should avoid a conversational tone, all slang, and writing in the first or second person. Try wherever possible to write in the third person throughout academic writing. Even if there is some personal aspect that is to be addressed, there are ways to format such writing that do not involve using the first person. This written assignment must include the following: Introduce the topic. Discuss your topic selection. Explain its background and your rationale for choosing it. Describe your personal interest in it. Explore its relevance to professional life and of such a research project. List the key words used to refine your topic or problem statement. Provide the purpose of the paper (explain, analyze, or argue). Identify intended audience (general or specialized). Indicate your voice as the writer (informer or advocate). Identify key points or main question to be studied. publish a preliminary problem statement, thesis statement, or opening hypothesis that includes mention of the context of your topic. Provide a summary. Guidelines Organize your thoughts in such a way that every aspect of your work has the preliminary thesis statement or main question in mind. Do not allow yourself to be sidetracked by tertiary issues. All written assignments are initial publishs of the final capstone project, so your mentor will provide you with the necessary feedback best suited to the development of your ideas and the formatting of your work. Include a title page. All formatting should be in accordance with APA or MLA, depending on your discipline. Formatting conventions for each may be found at the Online Writing Lab of Purdue University. Your assignment must be submitted as a Word document. Do not submit your work as a PDF. Note: Any student choosing to conduct original field research requiring human subjects must read all pertinent information about IRB Forms and submit the following IRB application by the end of Module 1. You must receive IRB approval before conducting original field research. Any student who chooses to pursue an IRB application is also required to read Chapter 6 of Writing Research Papers. Keep in mind, original field research is not a requirement of this capstone project. Submit Written Assignment 1 to your mentor for grading. Consult the Course Calendar for due dates. Note: This assignment corresponds to or addresses the following Bachelor of Arts (BA) outcomes: Students apply critical thinking skills to problems in an area of study in the arts and sciences. Students communicate effectively in written form. Your work on this assignment should reflect your ability to: Identify a focused and manageable topic that appropriately addresses relevant aspects of the topic. [BA 2.1: Topic selection] Construct a problem statement with evidence of most relevant contextual factors; problem statement is adequate. [BA 2.2: Define problem] Demonstrate adequate consideration of context, audience, and purpose and a clear focus on the assigned task. [BA 3.1: Context of and purpose for writing] Use the Add Submission button below to submit your assignment.