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The psychological purpose (Paper overview)

Paper IV: Table of Contents

Item Page #
Title Page 1
Table of Contents 2
Purposes of Paper IV – The Final Paper 3
1.      The psychological purpose (Paper overview) 3
2.      The APA formatting purpose 3
3.      The writing purpose 4
Notes About Paper I – Study One Literature Review 4
Formal Paper Instructions 5
The Title Page (1 point) 5
The Abstract (7 points) NEW SECTION 5
1.      The abstract format 5
2.      The abstract content 5
The Literature Review Study One (6 points) 5
The Methods Section Study One (6 points) 5
The Results Section Study One (3 points) 6
The Discussion Section Study One (1 point) 6
The Literature Review Study Two (6 points) 6
The Methods Section Study Two (6 points) 6
The Results Section Study Two (6 points) 7
The Discussion Section Study Two (1 point) 7
The General Discussion (12 points) NEW SECTION 7
1.      The general discussion format 7
2.      The general discussion content 7
3.      Length requirements for the general discussion 8
References (6 points) 8
Tables (3 points) 8
Overall Writing Quality (8 points) 8
Other Guidelines for Paper IV: The Final Paper 9

 

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Purposes of Paper IV (Final Paper)

1). The psychological purpose (Paper overview)

The psychological purpose behind Paper IV is to present your final paper. Essentially this paper will be similar to any article you would find in an academic journal. It will include a Title Page, Abstract, Literature Review (study one), Methods Section (study one), Results Section (study one), Brief Discussion Section (study one), Literature Review (study two), Methods Section (study two), Results Section (study two), Brief Discussion Section (study two), General Discussion Section, References, and Tables. The good news is that for most of this paper you will simply combine Paper I, Paper II, and Paper III (including any needed revisions) for Paper IV. Two new components for Paper IV include the Abstract and a General Discussion section.

The Abstract is one of the first items readers see. You need to convey a lot of information in this very short paragraph, as the potential reader will decide whether to read your full paper based on the information in the Abstract. There are several elements needed in the Abstract about both of your studies, including information about: a). your research questions, b). your participants, c). your experimental methodology, d). your findings, and e). your conclusions. Being able to write a precise yet succinct Abstract takes some effort, so make sure you go through several drafts before settling on your final version. Make sure to include keywords / key phrases as well (remember entering keywords into PsycInfo when you searched for articles? The authors actually recommended those keywords, so if you want to increase the number of times your paper comes up for readers, use good keywords! I suggest four or five keywords / keyphrases)

Your General Discussion section will also be new in Paper IV. Here, you will summarize your results from BOTH studies and draw conclusions, but you will NOT use statistics again. This section will evaluate both of your studies and see if (and how) they connect and lead you to general conclusions. That is, your general discussion is the end of your story, so make sure to tie it back to information that you presented throughout both of your studies. You can also identify flaws in your study designs as well as propose new directions for future research in this section.

2). The APA Formatting Purpose

Paper IV should follow all APA formatting guidelines. See our feedback on prior papers, use the APA formatting powerpoint presentation presented in this course, and look at the instructions on the next page for help with formatting

3). The Writing Purpose

Paper IV is your final paper in the course, and it should reflect the skills and knowledge you have developed throughout the semester. You should be able to convey information to an educated reader, but one who is unfamiliar with your specific study and the content area. More importantly, many students use Paper IV as their writing sample for graduate school applications, thus your paper should be grammatically correct and easy to read yet informative for a reader who may have little to no knowledge of your specific topic. Thus educate your reader, but keep in mind that your reader is probably intelligent.  

 

Notes About Paper IV – The Final Paper

Note #1: The plagiarism limit for Paper IV is 50%. I expect less overlap in your lit reviews and discussions than in the methods / results. As usual, references, citations, and predictions are not included in the plagiarism limit.

Note #2: The page minimums from prior papers still apply. The Abstract should be 150 to 250 words (generally all in the same paragraph) and the General Discussion should be a minimum of 2 pages (maximum 4 pages). Your final paper will most likely be around 25 pages total, but it will vary from student to student.

 

 

Instructions for Paper IV: Final Paper (Worth 75 Points)

Note that these instructions relate to the whole paper, but I concentrate on the Abstract and Discussion below since those are new Paper IV elements. Refer to the instructions for Papers I, II, and III for information on the study one literature review, methods, results, and discussion and the study two literature review, methods, results, discussion, and references.

The Title Page (1 point)

  1. Title page format: This title page is a lot like the title page on your Papers I through III. See the “Title Page” section of those instruction documents as an example or reuse your title page from prior papers (but modify your title given your new variables in Study Two).

The Abstract (7 points) NEW SECTION

  1. The abstract format
    1. The Abstract starts on its own page, with the word Abstract centered and bolded
    2. Make sure to include your header and page number for abstract page (Page 2)
  2. The abstract content
    1. The abstract should be between 150 and 250 words, and must include ALL of the following elements
      1. Identify your general problem or research question
      2. Note your participants
  • Note your experimental method
  1. Note your findings for both studies
  2. Note your conclusions about the studies as a whole
  1. Keywords / phrases are required for your paper (at least 5 keywords or phrases)

The Literature Review Study One (6 points)

  1. The literature review study one format and content
    1. Include your revised literature review from Paper I: Study One Literature Review. Those instructions continue to apply to this section
    2. The study one literature review must have minimum of two (2) full pages of text (not including the hypotheses) and a maximum of five (5) pages

 

The Methods Section Study One (6 points)

 

  1. The methods section study one format and content
    1. Include your revised methods section from Paper II: Study One Methods, Results, and Discussion. Those instructions continue to apply to this section
    2. There is no set minimum or maximum on the length of the methods section, but I would expect at least a page as you detail your materials and procedure. Missing important aspects of your IVs and DVs or presenting them in a confused manner will lower your score in this section
    3. Make sure to callout the tables and then include them immediately after the callout

 

The Results Section Study One (6 points)

 

  1. The results section study one format and content
    1. Include your revised results section from Paper II: Study One Methods, Results, and Discussion. Those instructions continue to apply to this section
    2. Like the methods section, there is no page minimum of maximum for the results section, though I would expect it to be at least a paragraph or two for each of the dependent variables you analyzed
    3. Make sure to callout the tables and then include them immediately after the callout

 

The Discussion Section Study One (1 point)

 

  1. Discussion section study one format and content
    1. Include a brief description of your study one findings (but avoid using statistics)
    2. I expect a paragraph or two, revised from Paper II: Study One Methods, Results, and Discussion.  

 

The Literature Review Study Two (6 points)

  1. The literature review study two format and content
    1. Include your revised literature review from Paper III: Study Two. Those instructions continue to apply to this section
    2. The study two literature review must have minimum of two (2) full pages of text (with or without hypotheses) and a maximum of five (5) pages

 

The Methods Section Study Two (6 points)

 

  1. The methods section study two format and content
    1. Include your revised methods section from Paper III: Study Two. Those instructions continue to apply to this section
    2. There is no set minimum or maximum on the length of the methods section, but I would expect at least a page as you detail your materials and procedure. Missing important aspects of your IVs and DVs or presenting them in a confused manner will lower your score in this section

 

The Results Section Study Two (6 points)

 

  1. The results section study two format and content
    1. Include your revised results section from Paper III: Study Two. Those instructions continue to apply to this section
    2. Like the methods section, there is no page minimum of maximum for the results section, though I would expect it to be at least a paragraph or two for each of the dependent variables you analyzed
    3. Make sure to callout the tables and then include them immediately after the callout

 

The Discussion Study Two (1 point)

 

  1. The discussion section study two format and content
    1. Include a brief description of your study one findings (but avoid using statistics)
    2. I expect a paragraph or two, revised Paper III: Study Two Lit, Methods, Results, Discussion

 

The General Discussion (12 points) NEW SECTION

 

  1. The general discussion format
    1. Write the word General Discussion at the top of this section; center and bold
      1. This section comes directly at the end of the brief discussion section from study two, so the general discussion section DOES NOT start on its own page. See the example paper for some formatting visual hints.
    2. The general discussion content
      1. At the beginning of this section, give a brief reminder of your predictions from both study one and study two. Then provide a discussion of your results. In English (not statistics), tell me what you found. In this discussion, you should talk about all of the following:
        1. An explanation of your findings – Across both studies, did your results support or not support your hypothesis?
          1. If you found support, tie it in with the prior research you cited in your literature review as well as your predictions. You may want to refer back to your literature reviews (for both study one and study two), and even re-cite some of the studies you mentioned there
            1. I REALLY recommend re-citing and discussing some of the research you mentioned in your literature reviews here
          2. If you did not find any support for your hypotheses, contrast your findings with prior research. You can highlight differences in your methodologies. You may also find other studies that either support your results or help explain why you found what you found.
          3. If one study found support and the other did not, try to explain the discrepancy.
          4. In a nutshell, tell me how both studies help inform the reader about the nature of your variables and how they impact human behavior.
        2. Examine the study limitations
          1. Would other methods have been better?
          2. Were there study problems that a follow-up study could fix?
          3. Did you fail to include some relevant DVs?
  • Propose future directions for research
    1. If you could do your studies over again, what would you change?
    2. Is there a different area or a different independent variable that you think future researchers should look at in connection with your study topic?
  1. Optional: Talk about the ethics of your study
    1. Did you follow ethical guidelines?
    2. Were participants harmed in any manner
  2. Length requirements for the general discussion
    1. The general discussion section must have minimum of two (2) full pages of text and a maximum of four (4) pages.

 

References (6 points)

 

  1. The references format and content for Paper IV
    1. Include your revised references from Paper III: Study Two
      1. Include any new references you may have cited in the discussion section
    2. References start on their own page
    3. Follow all APA formatting rules for the references
    4. We will mark off per error, so really make sure to proofread this. The same error six times will leave you with zero points in this section!

 

Tables (3 points)

 

  1. Table format, content, and placement for Paper IV
    1. Although your tables will be embedded within the text (immediately following each callout in your participant and results sections), we will give them a 3 point grade independently of the methods and results sections.

 

Overall Writing Quality (8 points)

 

  1. Writing quality for Paper IV
    1. Make sure you check your paper for proper spelling and grammar. The FIU writing center is available if you want someone to look over your paper (an extra eye is always good!) and give you advice. I highly recommend them, as writing quality will become even more important on future papers.
    2. NOTE that this writing quality is nearly 10% of your final paper grade, so I suggest you proofread!
    3. You can also visit the Research Methods Help Center for some help or just someone to glance over your final paper.

 

Other Guidelines for Paper IV: The Final Paper

 

  1. Paper length: Pay attention to the page length requirements. Refer to prior paper instructions for lengths regarding the lengths of the literature reviews, methods sections, results sections, and discussions
    1. For the general discussion, must have minimum of two (2) full pages of text and a maximum of four (4) pages.
  1. Page size: Use 8 1/2 X 11” with all 4 margins set at 1”. You must use a 12-point font with Times New Roman font. EVERYTHING in the paper (including references) is double spaced
  2. Paraphrasing and Direct Quotes
    1. When summarizing articles for your literature review and doing so in your own words, you still need to cite the original source. Always use proper referencing procedures, which means that:
  1. If you are inserting a direct quote from any source, it must be enclosed in quotations and followed by a parenthetical reference to the source. “Let’s say I am directly quoting this current sentence and the next. I would then cite it with the author name, date of publication, and the page number for the direct quote” (Winter, 2013, p. 5).
  2. Note: We will deduct points if you quote more than three times in the paper, so keep quotes to a minimum. Paraphrase instead, but make sure you still give the original author credit for the material by citing it or using the author’s name (“In this article, Smith noted that …” or “In this article, the authors noted that…”)
  1. Spelling and grammar
    1. Use a spell checker to avoid unnecessary errors. Proofread everything you write. I actually recommend reading some sentences aloud to see if they flow well, or getting family or friends to read your work.
  1. Supporting documents: Finally, go look at the supporting documents for this paper. Like prior papers, there is a checklist, a grade rubric, and an example paper for Paper IV. All will give you more information about what we are specifically looking for as well as a visual example of how to put it all together in your paper. Good luck!