Final Project assignment
As part of a graduate level methods course, it is important to practice conducting scholarly research regarding a topic in the communication studies discipline. For this project, students will be asked to conduct a preliminary study of a media artifact for this class, submitting a project proposal, an extended list of references (annotated bibliography), a detailed outline of the project, and a final paper. Students should also present the findings of their original research at the end of the semester.
After conducting your research, you should begin analyzing your artifact. Follow the guidance of the method of analysis you selected in your proposal (i.e. let the chapter that corresponds with your criticism method guide how you go about conducting the analysis), taking detailed notes on the artifact. You should also watch or listen to the artifact several times, getting very familiar with the content. This process should take multiple weeks, starting after you’ve researched your topic and concluding prior to submitting your final draft of the paper. However, as you work on the analysis, and after completing your outline, you will write the final draft of the paper. This paper should include the following:
an introduction that identifies the topic and media artifact
a literature review that summarizes research related to the artifact, the feminist concept you’ve identified, the media theory you’re using, and any other contextual information that may be deemed important to discuss
a methodology section that explains your choice of method and how it will answer your question/support your thesis, including details about how you conducted your analysis (e.g. number of times a movie was watched, how notes were taken, how the critical method guides your research, etc.)
at the end of the literature review, you should clearly state in one sentence what your research question/thesis is
a description of the results found from your research and an analysis of what these results mean
be sure to provide lots of examples as they are relevant to your research; it should not be hard to guess what point you are making based on the richness of examples you provide in your writing
and, a discussion of the implications of your findings
if you believe it is important to suggest ways in which your media artifact (or future artifacts) could be improved in the future, this is the section in which you will present these ideas; you should also propose future research or any limitations as relevant
As noted throughout this description, you are working towards writing a preliminary research analysis by the end of the semester. To complete and submit the Final Project, you should write out all give sections discussed in the assignment instructions above. High quality Final Projects will clearly answer a question or make an argument about a media artifact, using both feminist concepts and media theories to better understand the artifact. One critical method will be identified and used throughout the project. High quality papers will include little to no grammatical errors, will be written using Times New Roman 12 pt font, double spaced, APA style formatting, etc. Undergrads should write no less than five pages, while graduate students should write no less than 10 pages. Page limits do not include reference sheets, cover pages, or abstracts.