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Social Ecology 195 - Kumar Section- Fall 2023

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Liaison Librarian

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Julia Gelfand
Office: Science Library 228

Phone: 949-824-4971


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Background Information

THE SE 195 course can be treated as a cumulative experience, building on the introduction to research methodologies acquired in SE 10 and the Field Observation techniques learned in SE 194 and the Field Placement professional exercise conducted in tandem with this course.  This course introduces you to writing in the professional literature related to disciplines covered in Social Ecology.  You have a research paper assigned in this course and this guide will compliment resources that support the research and writing components, providing a research strategy and how best to incorporate your field placement.

With the result being a research paper you may approach it with some of the following guidelines - it is recommended that you write from an outline and the structure may include the following elements::

  • Introduction - consider how best to integrate your field study experience with broader academic interests - why are you placed where you are conducting this Field Study - how does it parallel your professional interests and goals? 
    • what is the context and background of the hosting unit
    • what are you trying to learn from this experience
    • to whom do you report and what is that person's title and responsibilities
    • can you formulate a major question that can serve as the hypothesis of your paper
    • what is the academic interest or curiosity in the themes you raise about the environment you are working in and thus discussing
    • what kinds of literature or sources of information best serve this topic
  • Conducting a Literature Review - sources may include peer reviewed or scholarly literature - may be from books, book chapters, journal articles, conference papers, dissertations.  There are numerous styles for a bibliography - is it annotated or not?
    • If annotated,  you still have a variety of styles to consider but you will offer the citation and then provide a summary of each of these topics or key issues:
      • what is the subject of the work
      • what is the central argument
      • what methods are used to support the argument - consider how you dissect an article (SE 10 teachings)
      • how does this source contribute to general academic literature in the field
      • how does this work provide insights, information or theories that are directly pertinent to your research focus/topic
  • Literature Review - without an annotated bibliography
    • includes a general summary of how other scholars have addressed the issue at hand and identify which theories and hypotheses from this literature guides your analysis of subject - probably comes from journal literature, conference proceedings, review articles
  • Research Methods - how research is/was performed -
    • do you have data conducted via observations, interviews, documents, newspaper articles, etc
    • explain why these sources of data are well-suited to addressing your topic
  • Observation Notes - in the role of an ethnographer, you may want to share field observations by identifying them as evidence
    • interviews - be prepared and compose questions ahead of time
    • archival research - provide detailed notes and citations for such sources
  • Findings - more about the experience dynamics
  • Conclusions - what did you learn from the Field Studies experience and how does this relate to the Social Ecology degree you are getting
  • Bibliography - delivered in APA format -
  • Final Draft - includes each appropriate bullet - should tie together the experiential part of Field Studies with broader academic applications - this will provide the context and personal essence of the assignment wrapping together the SE 195 process and content

Following APA Style Manual

The Publication Manual of American Psychological Association, 7th edition,2020, is the current style manual to follow. It is available at each library's reference collection at BF76.7 .P83 2020.  There are other tools that help support the manual noted here with more examples of how to cite different information sources.  Please consult often!!