Review the Research Paper instructions found within the Research Paper link. The Research Paper is due in Week Five. To help with preparation, complete the following and submit to your instructor for feedback.
- Topics: Select five topics that interest you, as provided in the Research Paper guidelines.
- Thesis: Develop your thesis statement—the point or perspective you will argue for, prove, and defend throughout the paper. Please see the Ashford-approved grammar handbook for information on how to develop a solid thesis.
- APA Reference Page: For this paper you must conduct research in peer-reviewed journals or other sources that are considered reliable and academic. In addition to the textbook, you need to incorporate at least five professional scholarly sources for support.
Academic research and papers must meet certain standards of quality recognized by the academic community. What constitutes quality, academic research?
- Primary sources written by experts in the field of study
- Secondary sources supported by research in primary sources
- Credible sources (experts in the area of study)
- Relevant research (materials are pertinent to the area of study)
- In graduate work, the use of peer-reviewed journal articles (journal articles reviewed by recognized experts in the relevant field of study) is required.
- Educational and Government websites may be appropriate in some cases but should be evaluated carefully.
What sources are not acceptable for academic research and referencing?
- Wikipedia, other wikis, or blogs
- Websites and other sources that do not provide quality researched materials—that is, the site does not employ credible sources to support the information in the document)
All research must be documented according to APA standards (see guidelines for avoiding plagiarism) and reflect professional, academic protocol.
- The purpose of the APA Reference Page is to assist you in developing research analysis skills including: critical thinking, writing, and literature research skills. The reference page should include the following information for each source:
- Name of the article, including the complete citation
- Summary/abstract of the article – annotation. Sometimes, it is helpful to ask yourself the following questions in synthesizing the information:
- Who is the author?
- What was done? For example, was it an experimental study investigating the interaction of short term memory and attention?
- How was it done?
- What were the major findings?
- What were the contributions (new findings, applications, etc.)?
The paper must be two-to-three pages in length (excluding the title and reference page), and formatted according to APA style. You must use at least five scholarly sources (at least two of which can be found in the Ashford Online Library) other than the textbook to support your claims and subclaims. Cite your sources in text and on the reference page. For information regarding APA samples and tutorials, visit the Ashford Writing Center, within the Learning Resources tab on the left navigation toolbar.
Each student will submit an eight-to-ten page paper (excluding the title and reference page) that is sufficiently supported by research, data, and substantiated theory or application. In addition, and most importantly, the student’s paper must incorporate five of the topics from the list below:
- The relationship between a strategic plan and the budgeting process.
- The impact of a recession on a law enforcement agency’s ability to plan a budget.
- Apply a specific budgeting process: line item or zero based budget.
- Who is involved in the budgeting process?
- Impact of budget decisions in maximizing operational effectiveness and community trust.
- Priorities in the budget cycle.
- Types of alternative funding.
- Significance of a cost benefit analysis in program evaluation.
- Resource prioritization.
Using the topics above as a guide, address the following within the Research Paper:
- Examine current problems, issues, and factors that influence present and future budgetary decisions.
- Evaluate each selected topic with regard to law enforcement administration, leadership, and management.
- Apply budgetary theory to a realistic budgeting process and describe the relationship between the two.
- Analyze the budgeting process and reference research and data as support.
Writing the Research Paper
The Research Paper:
- Must be eight to ten double-spaced pages in length (excluding the title and reference page), and formatted according to APA style as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center.
- Must include a title page with the following:
- 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 address the topic of the paper with critical thought.
- Must end with a conclusion that reaffirms your thesis.
- Must use at least five scholarly resources, including a minimum of two from the Ashford University Library.
- Must document all sources in APA style, as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center.
- Must include a separate reference page, formatted according to APA style as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center.