Research and Writing

Course Description: 

The goal of this yearlong course is to provide a forum in which students propose, develop, and complete a research project that produces a journal-length paper of publishable quality. This paper will typically serve as students' second-year M.A. essay, and the course is intended as a complement to that requirement. This course is primarily oriented towards second-year Ph.D. students in any subfield (students in other years may participate with the professors’ consent). The course meets regularly during parts of the fall semester and irregularly during the spring semester. In the first few weeks of the course, we discuss the process of moving from research topic to research question; and we survey published articles by recent Ph.D. students/assistant professors, focusing on the structure and nature of the writing and presentation as well the quality of the argument and evidence. We then move to students’ research proposals for the rest of the fall semester. During the spring semester, students meet individually with the course instructors and their advisors, develop and revise drafts of their papers, and present their work at a department “APSA-style” conference. In order to complete the course and receive credit, students must complete the requirements for both semesters.

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