WP 3: Research Journal


Step 1: Choose a conversation regarding a historical argument you wish to join. Ultimately, you'll take a stance and formulate an argument you hope to prove for WP4CSpring2016. One way to do this is to consider our broad Triad C themes:

  • War
  • Revolution/Revolt
  • Citizenship
  • Power & Oppression
  • Equality/Liberty/Order

Since Triad C's focus is on United States history before reconstruction, your research focus must fit this time period and location.

Select one of the broad 5 topics, and then narrow this topic to a specific research focus. Conversely, you may wish to identify a topic you're interested in and see how it "fits" into one of the above themes.
For example, if I chose "Power & Oppression" I might choose to research the removal of the Cherokee. If I chose the XYZ Affair, I would determine that this issue fits under the theme of "Equality/Liberty/Order." Your research topic must be approved by your Triad C instructors.

Step 2: Conduct academic research using the Triad C Library Guide. Keep a list of all your sources on a Research Log. Keep in mind, you'll need at least one type of source for each of the required elements in your MLA assignment detailed below.

Step 3: Complete the MLA Assignment (see below), choosing sources from your Research Log.

Step 4: Write a short reflection describing your research process, then assemble your Research journal. Your final journal will include:

  • Your Research Log
  • Your MLA assignment
  • Your Reflection

The MLA Assignment

In this assignment, you will demonstrate your ability to create a correct citation for an MLA Works Cited page, and an in-text parenthetical citation, and a correct Works Cited page. You are to collect a direct quote from each of the sources listed below, and you are to paraphrase that same quote. You are to do this same step again using all of the following types of sources. Lastly, create a Works Cited page, listing only the citation from each source, in alphabetical order.

  1. A book from the Bell Library. This may be a book written by one or more authors, OR, an edited anthology. Note that books are cited differently than anthologies.
  2. Library database article from a scholarly journal
  3. A non-scholarly periodical (Not an academic journal. For example, Smithsonian, or an article from the Washington Post.)
  4. Web page –credible/reliable source (i.e. The Miller Center.org.)
  5. A Primary Source Document

So, each of these sources should have an MLA citation, an in-text citation, a direct quote and a paraphrase.

First create the MLA citation, then below the citation for each source you must have both a direct quote AND then you must have a paraphrase that same quote (that way I can see if you are paraphrasing correctly!).

  • Citations must be double-spaced, hanging indent format, in other words, in correct MLA format.
  • In order for your citation to paste properly, you must paste into the Word Clean up box by clicking on the Clip-board icon with the Word symbol on it. Paste by pressing Control V. Then click OK.

Direct quote:

The character ‘Jack’ from Fight Club vividly describes how it feels to be disconnected from life due to lack of sleep he says, “This is how it is with insomnia. Everything is so far away, a copy of a copy. The insomnia distance of everything, you can’t touch anything and nothing can touch you” (Palahniuk 21).


 The narrator in Fight Club felt completely disconnected with society due to his insomnia; his life felt like a multiple copy of itself over and over (Palahniuk 21).

MLA Citation:

Palahniuk, Chuck. Fight Club: A Novel. New York: W. W. Norton, 2005. Print.


Create your Works Cited list by copying and pasting your MLA citations at the top of a new page. Citations should be in alphabetical order, per MLA.


Prompts: Make sure and address these prompts in your reflective essay. The purpose of this reflection is for you to share your research process and the discoveries you made about your topic along the way!

  • What article, or part of an article, was the most interesting to you? What fascinating information did you learn?
  • What were the challenges you faced during this research process? How did you overcome these challenges?
  • What steps you took in finding your information.
  • What surprised you about your research? In what ways did your research take you in an unexpected direction?