. The aim
The aim of the research paper, which is a requirement in the second term of the academic year for the advanced students, and sometimes for the intermediate students too, is to equip our students with precious skills of conducting research using various sources and then putting up all the data they have gathered into one meaningful whole and interpreting the results. They also learn how to format papers, how to present information, how to cite works and write bibliographies. In short, they learn those skills when stakes are not too high. Starting with their freshman year, the students will have to conduct research and will be graded on their work. In their prep year they can do that to practice.
2. What can be done as research projects:
2.1. Lifting or plagiarism: A common complaint of all prep school teachers is that students use material available on the internet, or in library books, copy information from these sources and without any acknowledgement, modification, analysis or paraphrasing submit the paper to their teachers. In such cases, many teachers are led to believe that doing research papers is pointless if not futile.
2.2 What topics lead to lifting: The most important step to prevent lifting is choosing the research question carefully. When the research question is not well formulated or when the student goes for information that can be found in encyclopedias, lifting becomes inevitable.
e.g. “ The History of Prince Islands”
With a topic like this, our students are bound to come up with encyclopedic information. A prep school student, who is no expert in history, cannot interpret the history of Prince Islands using the sources he has found. He is going to find some books from the library, visit a few websites, find a few tourist brochures, put them together and write a paper, which is 90% plagiarized.
e.g. “Environmental Pollution in the Mediterranean Region”
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