Paper for your final exam

So I am really looking forward to your final papers. Having talked to many of you, I know that you are choosing interesting topics about issues that matter.  This is exactly what one should do with in the liberal arts environment.

As promised, I am summarizing here, with a bit more detail, what is expected of you for this project (which comprises 50% of your final exam grade and is thus 15% of your final grade):

  • The topic should fit into one of two categories: the current national and global turmoil around inequality and unemployment, manifested (I believe) in both Occupy Wall St. and the extended Arab Spring; or issues related to poverty, the environment, and human rights (as exemplified by long-term challenges in the Niger Delta and the Appalachian region here in the US.)
  • You should pick a research question to guide your paper: for example, what is the most cost-effective way for NGOs and governments to distribute malaria nets in East Africa?
  • You should use between 6 and 12 citations: this library page will give you lots of resources for finding top-quality references. It’s also a good idea, if you are having trouble finding references, to be in touch with Brenda Ellis at the Davis Library: bellis at and (802) 443- 5497.
  • Your paper should be between 5 and 10 pages long; you should use footnotes and also include a list of references in the back.  Use a consistent approach to citations (various formats can be found on this library page)
  • One straightforward way to organize your paper is to (a) introduce the research question and discuss briefly why it’s an important question, then (b) present the ‘positive economics’ part of your research, followed by (c) the ‘normative part.  Finish with (d) a brief conclusion.

Of course, let me know how you’re doing on all of this.


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