Research Paper 180

Research Paper 180

Guidelines for IW1

Research Proposal and Design

SOC180AW, Professor Yang Su

General Considerations

  1. A research proposal, if it is good, should read very much like a published journal article. Therefore to read a journal article closely is to have a model paper. What are the differences?

· A proposal may have a “methods” that is more extensive and detailed, complete with appendixes

· A proposal may not have real findings to present, although a section is recommended either to show the results from a pilot project,[footnoteRef:1] or, the results as you imagine (in the latter case, the section may be called “Analysis to Come.” [1: See the Shanghai Court Project Proposal by He and Su, pp. 5-6. ]

  1. Therefore, in completing the assignment to present a journal article, you should find guidance by closely reading the journal article.
  2. Study closely the section under the subheading “Studying Chinese Courts Using Documents of Adjudication Decisions” in the published paper by He and Su (pp. 125-30 2013) entitled “Do ‘Haves” Come out Ahead in Shanghai Courts.”
  3. Please also refer closely to “Shanghai Court Project Proposal” by He and Su (available in Canvas “files”). Comparing with that document, what should you do more and what less in your IW1?

· The He-Su proposal is not extensive and detailed enough about the data source, sample selection and coding scheme; you should do more in this area

· Your other sections may be less.

Component One: Too Show the Project is Worth the Investment

Component Two: To State Your Argument in the Form of Testable Hypotheses

i. That is supported by previous work

ii. That is testable by your proposed data

Component Three: To design a data collect plan is so complete that one can finish the work by reading your design.

Study closely the section under the subheading “Studying Chinese Courts Using Documents of Adjudication Decisions” in the published paper by He and Su (pp. 125-30 2013) entitled “Do ‘Haves” Come out Ahead in Shanghai Courts.”

Data Source


Dependent Measures

Independent Measures

Control Measures


· One-page outline and notes due Week 2[footnoteRef:2]; First draft due Week 4; Feedback on a partner’s draft due Week 5; Rewrite Draft due Week 7 [2: Friday 12 PM, submitted to Canvas Assignments; Same for other assignments ]

· 4 pages minimum, double space, plus two appendixes of Codebook and Coding Sheet; longer papers acceptable

· Your project group (of 6-8 people) works together to design the research project, but you write your own paper individually. It is OK if there are significant overlaps in content. But you should not copy each other’s in wording.

· It is your responsibility to constantly keep notes of your group’s discussion and decisions, so your paper will reflect the highest quality possible of the group project.


· IW1 accounts for 30% of the course grade in total. Specifically, Outline and Notes (5%); First Draft (10%); Feedback on partner’s paper (5%); Rewrite Draft (10%)

· Another 10% of the course grade is based on your peers’ evaluation of you. You will be asked to evaluate others during the course of the quarter.

· Each assignment will be graded by two considerations. One half of the grade goes to the quality of the research, and the other goes to the quality of English writing


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