Requirements:Page length: 3 ½ – 4 pages, double-spaced, TNR 12pt fontNumber of sources (i.e. scholarly, peer-reviewed journal articles in the communication discipline): 6 – 8This essay should follow APA formatting guidelines, which means that it should include all of the following: Title/cover page, Running Head with name, title, and page numbers, one-inch margins, appropriate headings per each section (see more below*), in-text citations, and a reference page.Assignment:Since you have already completed an Annotated Bibliography (i.e. found, read, and summarized 5 articles on your specific topic), your job now is to synthesize that information. Yes, you will need to find at least one more source in order to reach the minimum number of sources for this assignment. If one or more of your sources is not closely to the others, eliminate it and find a better option. If you have received feedback about inappropriate sources on your Reference List, replace those sources with better options. Once you’ve found appropriate sources, read them, re-read them, find the important findings from the study, identify what the article contributes to the communication research about your specific topic, and figure out how each source relates to one another (i.e. strengths and weaknesses, questions that still need to be answered, problems with the study, positive contributions of the study, etc).Then, complete the following:First and foremost, understand that general steps for creating a Literature Review are as follows: Collect research (you’ve done that), Analyze (i.e., figure out connecting themes or ideas between articles), Arrange (i.e. figure out how to organize your essay based on sections from what you’ve analyzed) and Summarize (i.e. tell us about each idea you choose to arrange). Remember, you are giving an overview (summarizing) of your topic or a concept relating to your topic. You are NOT summarizing the article.Make a rough draft or outline in which you make connections between the sources/research/articles. [I won’t collect this, and I know some of you will want to skip this step, but as a writer and as someone who has written LOTS of essays, trust me when I tell you that a good outline is the first step in writing a good paper]. If you’d rather not write a rough draft, consider making an outline of which common themes in the research you’ve read you want to discuss in your literature review. What are things that each article points out? What are things that are strikingly different? Is there something missing in the research?Use your rough draft or outline to divide your paper into the necessary sections/*headings, which include the following:Section/Heading 1: IntroductionRemember to follow APA formatting guidelines. [Consult the APA OWL at Purdue website or the APA manual to see sample papers with headings]. Instead of typing “Introduction,” you should give your essay a title that incorporates your research topic. This means that the “Introduction” section doesn’t have a title as “Introduction,” but is rather the first section that comes after your essay title. This should be a Level 1 heading (see APA OWL website). See the sample paper here (Links to an external site.) (Links to an external site.) to see what I’m talking about. Section/Heading 2: Literature Review, which means that this section summarizes all of the literature on a specific topic. Within Section 2, include the themes/concepts/ideas you decided to arrange from your research. Each of these sections should be divided into Level 2 headings and they will likely be a few paragraphs each.Your introduction should be general. Do not reveal research findings or arguments from the selection of articles you have chosen to discuss. The Introduction should give us a brief description and a little insight into the specific communication topic that you’ve chosen. Your introduction should be absolutely no longer than 1 page.The Literature Review section should do the following:Synthesize the research from your selection of articles. Basically, it should give your reader a complete overview of the foundational communication research on the topic you’ve chosen. Synthesizing information means that you weave all of the articles into one over-arching explanation and analysis about the research done on your topic. You should identify major concepts, theories, assumptions, findings, and problems or criticisms with the research you’ve found. [See the article from Week 5 on Academic Argument].It should AVOID summarizing your articles one-by-one. [i.e. The article by ____ found that _____. This article’s strength is _____, but a weakness is _____. Another article by _____ found that _____. It was a qualitative study.] This is your chance to show your writing and analysis skills.It should also avoid using language that isn’t your own. It is okay to use vocabulary from the articles, but for the most part, you should be summarizing/paraphrasing in your OWN language.It should be well written. You should not think of this assignment as a place where you should not write creatively. Instead, you should write creatively! You’ll learn soon enough—if you haven’t already—that the communication discipline is one in which your writing skills should be above average.In this section, don’t focus too much on methodology, qualitative/quantitative/rhetorical study, researcher credentials, etc. That information can be briefly mentioned in some cases; however, it shouldn’t be your main focus. Instead, focus on the big takeaway points, and put that information into perspective along with the other articles in your selection. Don’t feel like you need to re-iterate every detail about every article because you won’t have time to do that in 4 pages. Instead, think of the big picture. Don’t get bogged down with minutiae.Your essay should include in-text APA citations. See Section 6 of the APA Publication Manual for a review on this practice.For this assignment, it is OK if your essay does not have a conclusion since it is just a draft.
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