Annotated Bibliography, Introduction, and Summary Paragraph: Seeking the Truth
Fact or Fiction?
The final assignment for this course is a paper. The purpose of the Final Paper is for you to explore a topical area and apply critical insight to discern fact from fiction. You will review the available evidence for a commonly held belief and provide a conclusion regarding the merit of this claim by describing concepts in core psychological domains and examining variations in psychological functioning.
You have already selected your topic from the list below in Week Three of the course to complete an annotated bibliography. These sources should inform your thinking and assist you in making a conclusion regarding the “truth” (i.e., scientific validity) of a commonly held belief. You must continue with your selected topic unless you have received permission from your instructor otherwise. Click here for the various topic options that are available.
- Review the sources you gathered for the Week 3 Annotated Bibliography. Visit the Ashford Library to obtain additional scholarly articles as necessary to fully inform your thinking and address gaps in your knowledge of the topic.
- Write a paper in which you summarize psychological theory and research that is pertinent to this topic. Click here for additional information on how to successfully summarize information from an article. The paper should appraise the evidence contained within your articles, supporting and/or contradicting the statement you have chosen to examine. Your task is to distinguish whether or not this commonly held belief accurately represents psychological knowledge of the topic and discuss your conclusions.
- If theory and research in psychology suggest that the statement is false (i.e., it is instead bubba or pop psychology), infer an alternative truth based on the literature.
- If the theory and research in psychology suggest that the statement is true, point out how the research supports the statement.
Note: Using headings within your writing can assist you in organizing your thoughts more successfully. For more information about using heading, please click here.
The summative assignment for this course is a Final Paper, which is due in Week 5. To ensure proper preparation for this cumulative work and provide you with an opportunity for some initial feedback and guidance, you will prepare an annotated bibliography and an introduction this week. In addition, you will prepare a paragraph that includes any questions (etc.) you may have about the Final Paper.
Part I: The Annotated Bibliography: An annotated bibliography is a list of relevant scholarly works along with a descriptive and evaluative summary of each. Your annotated bibliography will relate information relevant to your analysis of the selected option provided for the Final Paper. Utilize the provided template. To view an example annotated biography click here.
- First, review the instructions for the Final Paper, which are located in Week 5 of the course. See also relevant Instructor Guidance and Announcements.
- Select a topic from the approved list.
- Locate a minimum of five relevant scholarly sources that will inform your understanding of the issue that you have chosen from the Ashford Library.
- Create a list of references and thoroughly read each article.
- Before beginning your writing, verify the scholarly nature of the articles you have chosen.
- Summarize each of your sources, appraising the information relevant to your chosen topic (two to three paragraphs). Use your own academic voiceand apply in-text citations. Be sure to consider the following information for each of your selected sources:
- Include a description and critical analysis of the content (e.g., unique information, findings, strengths/weaknesses, biases, limitations, overall conclusions).
- Include a succinct illustration of the relevance of this particular article to the topic you have chosen.
Part II: The Introduction and Summary Paragraphs
- Articulate the information you have learned from your review of the literature in the annotated bibliography by outlining an introduction that previews the paper and concludes with a clear thesis statement.
- Lastly, as a conclusion, compose an overall summary paragraph with questions you have, additional directions you plan to explore through your research, initial thoughts about the final paper, and any problems you are encountering or think you might encounter.
The Annotated Bibliography
- Must be at least three to five double-spaced pages in length (not including title and references pages) and formatted according to APA style as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center.
- Must include a separate title page with the following:
- A header
- Title of paper
- Student’s name
- Course name and number
- Instructor’s name
- Date submitted
- Must begin with an introductory paragraph that has a succinct thesis statement.
- Must utilize academic voice.
- Must paraphrase material, avoiding direct quotes.
- Minimal quotes are used within the writing. (No more than 2-3 sentences.). For more information about how to synthesize your writing, please visit the Ashford Writing Center.
- Must address the topic with critical thought.
- Must include an overall summary paragraph including the required elements.
- Must use at least five peer-reviewed scholarly sources. Additional scholarly sources are encouraged. Be sure to integrate your research smoothly rather than simply inserting it.
- The Scholarly, Peer Reviewed, and Other Credible Sources table offers additional guidance on appropriate source types. If you have questions about whether a specific source is appropriate for this assignment, please contact your instructor. Your instructor has the final say about the appropriateness of a specific source for a particular assignment.
- Must document all sources in APA style as outlined here and here.
- Must include a separate reference page that is formatted according to APA style.
- Must be submitted to Grammarly for review and correction prior to submitting.
- Location: Left Tab “Writing Center” in your course (See Week 2 Assignment for instructions how to access.) If you encounter any problems or technical issues, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
TOPICS TO CHOOSE FROM
- Extrasensory perception (ESP) is a well-established scientific phenomenon.
- The polygraph (“lie detector”) is an accurate means of detecting dishonesty.
- People are either right-brained or left-brained.
- Most people only use 10% of their brains.
- Dreams possess symbolic meaning and can be interpreted accurately.
Sensation and Perception
Subliminal advertising is highly effective.
- Playing classical music to infants will boost their intelligence.
- Using “motherly talk” (i.e., baby talk) with infants will delay their speech and hamper their language skills.
Learning, Language, and Cognition
- Students learn best when teaching styles match their learning styles.
- Punishment is highly effective in changing long-term behavior.
Memory and Intelligence
- Human memory works like a tape recorder or video camera, recording events exactly as they occur.
- People commonly repress memories of traumatic experiences, and hypnosis can be useful for retrieving these
- IQ scores are unrelated to academic performance.
Motivation, Emotions, and Health
- Ulcers are caused by stress.
- A positive attitude can stave off cancer.
- Money can buy happiness (or, happiness is determined mainly by external circumstances).
- Opposites attract: People who are very different tend to be attracted to one another.
- “Venting” is an effective means of cooling off and preventing aggression.
- There’s safety in numbers: The more people present at an emergency, the greater chance that someone will
- Beauty is in the eye of the beholder: People have very different standards of physical attractiveness.
- Low self-esteem is a major cause of psychological problems.
- Astrology (the zodiac signs) can accurately predict people’s personality traits.
- Personality is genetically determined (i.e., nature) and character trains cannot change over time (via nurture).
Psychological Disorders and Therapy
- Depression is due to a chemical imbalance in the brain and can only be treated successfully with medication.
- People with schizophrenia have multiple personalities.