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Posted: July 12th, 2023
In Unit 1 we took our first step towards our term paper, and now in unit 2 we are constructing rough drafts of the rest of the paper. The full paper will be a 1500 word essay pertaining to either Joseph
Plumb Martin’s “A Narrative of a Revolutionary Soldier” or Thomas Paine’s “Common
Some of you may have thought it would be hard to come up with 1500 words, but we’ve taken small steps towards five 300 word paragraphs each time you marked a writing assignment step complete in one of the unit 2 modules. The steps are summarized here for easy reference:
A: You will need to have answers to each of the following questions in order to write your term paper. It is possible to write your paper using just the reading selection and lessons from this course for most of the term paper options, and so most students do not need outside sources for this paper.
This list includes four options; you will only need answers to one set of questions. Jot down quick answers to the questions in the set that you select, and make notes about any evidence you find to support those answers from your reading:
Describe Joseph Plumb Martin’s military career. Why did he enlist in the Continental Army? What kind of training did he receive? Which major battles and campaigns did he take part in? Did he receive any wounds or injuries? What was his attitude to the Officers who commanded him? How did he feel about having served in the Continental Army?
Do you feel that Joseph Plumb Martin’s memoir is a reliable account of his services? Is he trustworthy? Recount any particular incidents in the ‘Narrative’ which you believe confirm or undermine his reliability. How accurate is Martin in recounting the events of the Revolution in general?
What are Thomas Paine’s most persuasive arguments for American Independence? Which arguments are based on Paine’s general political philosophy and understanding of history? Which are based on specifically American circumstances? What is Paine’s attitude to monarchy in general and to the rule and character of George III in particular? What type of government does Paine wish to see established in the United States? Make sure to cite numerous examples from the text itself in writing this essay.
Describe the historical influence of “Common Sense.” What impact did Paine’s work have on the struggle for American Independence? What was the intellectual background to Paine’s work? Who influenced him? How did his ideas compare to those of the other Founding Fathers? Did Paine’s ideas influence American government after independence? What was Paine’s impact in Europe? How did Paine’s arguments influence the French Revolution? You will need to use sources other than the text of ‘Common Sense’ to complete this essay. You may use the sources listed in textbook student site’s online reader and documents tabs. Follow the instructions in the tabs below for these (or any other) outside sources.
In addition to responding to one of the above question sets, please also include a response about the question that matches the book you are writing about:
What is the nature of support for the “doctrine of reconciliation” by the groups Thomas Paine describes in Common Sense (1776) as “…weak men, who CANNOT see; prejudiced men, who WILL NOT see; and a certain set of moderate men, who think better of the European world than it deserves…” (p.13)
What is the substance of this passage from Joseph Martin’s 1777 A Narrative of the Revolutionary Soldier? What is Martin’s attitude to the adulation of “great” men in military history? What does Paine mean by the American soldiers having “nothing but their bravery and good conduct to cover them…”?”Here ends the account of as hard and fatiguing a job, for the time it lasted, as occurred during the revolutionary war. Thomas Paine, in one of his political essays, speaking of the siege and defence of this post, says, ‘they had nothing but their bravery and good conduct to cover them.’ He spoke the truth. I was at the siege and capture of lord Cornwallis, and the hardships of that were no more to be compared with this, than the sting of a bee is to the bite of a rattlesnake. But there has been but little notice taken of it; the reason of which is, there was no Washington, Putnam, or Wayne there. Had there been, the affair would have been extolled to the skies. No, it was only a few officers and soldiers who accomplished it in a remote quarter of the army. Such circumstances and such troops generally get but little notice taken of them, do what they will. Great men get great praise, little men, nothing. But it always was so and always will be;—said the officers in king David’s army, when going out against rebel Absolem, ‘thou shalt not go out with us—for if half of us die they will not care for us. But now thou art worth ten thousand of us.’ And this has been the burden of the song ever since, and I presume ever will be.” (p.69-70)
B: The next step is to organize those details:
You already began your term paper by writing a book summary. Your summary will be your introduction paragraph! Your introduction should be about 300 words, so if you wrote more than that, look for ways to make your summary more concise. Can you move any of these details into one of your main topics? If you wrote less, you will need to expand your detail a bit. Have you summarized the beginning middle and end of what you read? This SmarThinking Guide should help you refine your book summary into an Introduction: SmarThinking Introduction guide
Organize the rest of your details into about 3 main topics. This SmarThinking Guide should help: Smarthinking guide for preparing and organizing answers before you start writing
Once all your details are organized into three topics, write a thesis statement that introduces all three topics. This SmarThinking Guide should help: Smarthinking Thesis Statement Guide
Your thesis statement will become the last sentence of your introduction, and the details you have collected in each of your main topics will become body paragraphs that will follow after the thesis statement.
C. Now it is time to write the body paragraphs!
Your first sentence in each body paragraph should be a topic sentence that introduces the topic. This SmarThinking guide should help: Smarthinking Topic Sentence Guide
Next pull the answers in each topic together into a paragraph based on that topic sentence. One paragraph (roughly 300 words) for each topic. Here’s a SmarThinking guide that should help: Smarthinking Body Paragraphs Guide
At the end of your paragraphs your closing sentence should transition from the topic of one paragraph to the topic of the next. Here’s a SmarThinking guide that should help: SmarThinking Transitions Guide
D. It’s time for a conclusion!
The first sentence of your conclusion paragraph should be similar to your thesis statement. Your concluding statement should not be identical to your thesis, but it should mention your three main topics just like your thesis statement did.
Like your other paragraphs your conclusion should be about 300 words long.
The conclusion should reinforce all of your main ideas (with out repeating exactly the same thing) and pull everything together. This guide from smarthinking should help: Smarthinking Conclusion Guide
PULLING IT ALL TOGETHER AS A ROUGH DRAFT
Use 300 words from your book summary as an introduction with your thesis statement as the last sentence.
Include your three 300 word body paragraphs in the order they were introduced by your thesis statement, and include transitions between paragraphs.
Finish with your 300 word conclusion, the first sentence of which should mention each of your three topics.
Remember, plagiarism rules apply!
WHAT TO AVOID
HOW TO FIND SCHOLARLY SOURCES
HOW TO CITE SOURCES
While you do not need outside sources, many students choose to supplement the answers they collect from the book with information from other sources. That is OK! It is essential, however, that any and all outside sources are documented to avoid plagiarism and that only scholarly sources contribute to your writing.
If you plan to use outside sources, click through the tabs on this page to make sure you understand how to use sources without being accused of cheating or plagiarism.
First, let’s review sources that are not scholarly sources:
Pages that offer “help” with homework that amounts to doing it for you are not allowed. This is cheating, and plagiarism software detects this easily.
Believe it or not, the people selling completed assignments are not very honest! The purchased paper often includes plagiarism (copying without credit to the source) of material that occurs in numerous online sources, and it is never sold to only one student.
Using work completed work by previous students is both cheating and plagiarism. If the student whose work is sold/shared is a SLCC student both students will be reported.
Examples include (but are not limited to): coursehero, justdomyhomework, myhomeworkdone, assignmentgeek, hoeworkdoer, paymetodoyourhomework, unemployed professors, homework market, essay writing service, dumps leader and chegg.
All instances of cheating and plagiarism will result in a zero for the assignment and may be forwarded for additional sanctions.
Pages that offer study guides or summaries are not scholarly sources (we call these tertiary sources) and quoting from such sources is also not allowed. To avoid cheating, simply read the book and respond in your own words.
If you find a summary that cites a source, that specific detail requires a citation of the original source. In that case, look up the scholarly source that has been cited in the summary, read it for yourself and cite the scholarly source.
Examples include (but are not limited to): textbooks, ducksters, wikipedia, history.com, historynet, encyclopedia Britannica, thoughtco, khan academy, prep scholar, super summary, spark notes, cliff notes, hist notes, pink monkey, book rags, grade saver, studygs, questia, bartleby, study world, free book notes, bibliomania, cummings study guides, shmop, student hacks, enotes, school bytes, antistudy, jiffy notes, study lit, literature summary, the best notes, monkey notes, barrons book notes, books summary, book wolf, mad notes, summary central, coolsta, wiki summaries, novel guide, all readers, 4 literature, homework online, nimble spirit… The list goes on and on! Most websites are tertiary sources.
No credit will be given for content that is directly quoted from a tertiary source! You will be graded as if that section was deleted from your paper.
Use of pre-written essays from any source is cheating (even with a citation) and will result in a zero on the assignment, which may also be forwarded for additional sanction.
So now that we established most of the internet is filled with tertiary sources (summaries) that cannot be used, I’m sure everyone is wondering how to find sources that can be used.
All sources must be scholarly sources, and scholarly sources for history projects are in two categories:
Primary sources are first-hand accounts. This means they were written by someone who saw or participated in the events they are writing about (at any time), or that they were written at the time of the event.
Examples include letters and diaries from participants and observers, and news articles reporting about events that happened that day.
Secondary sources draw conclusions about events by analyzing multiple primary sources.
Examples include peer-reviewed academic journal articles and books written by historians who specialize in the topic they wrote about.
The most effective way to find scholarly sources is through an academic research database. These are websites specifically designed to give you access to scholarly sources, including academic journals that the library subscribes to.
As you consider which sources to use consult these SmarThinking guide for tips:
Smarthinking guide for evaluating sources
Smarthinking guide for using outside sources
We established that any and all outside sources must be cited, and now its time to cover citation requirements
After you have selected the sources that you will use, it is important to collect the details you will need in order to cite those sources. Those details include the author’s name, the title of the source, the publisher, and the publication year. If you are using an article or chapter within a larger source, you also need the title of the article and its page numbers.
IF you find a use for an outside source, the following is the proper form for bibliography citations at the end of your essay:
Author’s Last Name, Author’s First Name, Title of Book (City of Publication: Publisher, copyright date)
These same sources should match endnotes or footnotes that match any content (even ideas you have paraphrased) The following form is to be used for books cited in footnotes/endnotes:Author’s Name, Title of Book, Publisher, copyright date, page number.
Remember to enclose any direct quotes in quotation marks, and record the page number where you found it. A good rule of thumb is to put quotation marks around anything more than 3 words in a row that match the source, and also any short phrases that are unique or unusual. This OWL page offers tips for paraphrasing content into your own words.
This is particularly important when you use outside sources (see how to cite your sources above), but even with your selected reading it is important not to present another author’s words as your own. Identifying what you have quoted in your notes will help you avoid plagiarizing unintentionally later on. This smarthinking guide explains in more detail: Smarthinking Documentation Guide
Your Rough Draft will be graded on grammar and length alone.
The rubric attached here is for your peer reviewer to offer feedback using the same rubric that will apply to your final paper.
Note: This rough draft assignment is set to accept late submissions for two calendar days after the due date. However, an automatic late penalty of -10% per day applies. Make sure you turn this in before the due time! Canvas calculations of lateness are final and begin to take effect the instant the assignment is late.
Thomas Payne “Common Sense” topic.
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