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Assignment | Criminology Research Proposal & Presentation (Phelps): Writing

SOCI 2336 | Prof. K. Phelps (Fall 2019)

Parts of Your Proposal: 5-7 pages total

Parts of your paper

APA Style In-text (Parenthetical) Citations:

  • Words words words (Dunsky, 2018, p. 45).
  • According to criminologist Dr. Peggy Carter (1942), words words words (p. 89).

Writing Better

Avoid the First Person (I, me, my, us, etc)

As the author of your paper, it's implied that everything you're suggesting is your opinion or conclusion: you don't need to insert yourself even more! For example,

  • Avoid: I find this idea to be really interesting because reasons.
  • Also avoid: One finds this idea to be interesting.
  • Instead: This idea is interesting because reasons.

Active Voice (Not Passive)

You can write a sentence in passive voice and be totally correct grammatically. However, it's a weak sentence. It's...well...passive. How do you know you have passive voice? Add "by zombies" to the end. Does your sentence make sense and sound good? You've got passive voice.

  • Passive: Students were eaten (by zombies).

The person/entity/creature actually doing the action is buried way off in the sentence, if you bother to include it at all!

  • Active: Zombies ate the students.

This is more likely to creep into your writing in a more subtle way.

  • Also passive: It's believed that zombies originated in Haiti.

Well, believed by whom?

  • Active: Folklorists believe that zombies originated in Haiti.

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