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ENGL 1302 Taggett: Paper 1: Research Proposal

This guide has resources and tips to help you with assignments in Prof. Taggett's ENGL 1302 course.


Paper 1: Research Proposal (required for all grade goals) is due June 11.

Assignment directions are on the left side of this page. On the right side of the page, there is information about how to select a topic, find background information about a topic in the Credo Reference database, and cite something from Credo in MLA format. 

Assignment Directions

ENGL 1302

Assignment 1: Research Proposal

See Syllabus for due dates

At least one full page, MLA format

Meets all objectives


Start here:  This handy guide talks about the basics for putting together a research proposal.


Assignment:  Choose a topic that will guide you through the rest of the semester. What do you care about enough to advocate for? Remember our theme: How the World Works, and that you are eventually going to have a write a persuasive essay in this area, so it’s not too early to be considering what you may want to argue. We will be spending a good amount of time talk about strategies and argument, but make sure to at least choose an area of research that will have some form of argument in it.


Planning and Drafting:

The bulk of the work for this first assignment will be spent figuring out where you want to “land.” Don’t procrastinate on this step. Give serious thought to what you want to research.  There will be some resources for coming up with a topic in D2L under “Assignment 1,” but don’t underestimate how important it is to start on the “right foot” as far as having a solid, more general topic.


Then, in following the link above, your document will include answers to the following questions:

  1. What do you plan to accomplish? Be clear and succinct in defining the research problem and what it is you are proposing to research, with some indication of the action you are eventually going to want your specific audience to take. It’s not too early to consider who that specific audience might be: who has the power to change something?
  2. Why do you want to do it? / Why does this topic matter?  This is in answer to the ever-important "So What?" question.
  3. Include an MLA citation and summary of one credible source within this area of study.**  This ensures you that there is information out there about your topic.

If you choose, later in the semester, to go in a different direction, you need to submit a new, complete research proposal.


**Jane, our content expert in research, can be of particular help on this step. Reach out to her!


The evaluation criteria for this:

  • The proposal answers the assignment questions clearly and specifically, indicating some thought was put into them, providing evidence for any claims made.
  • The author avoids being vague or choosing a topic that is too broad or superficial.
  • The proposal meets the minimum page length and source requirement with the correct paper and citation format.
  • The proposal indicates a critical thinking about the topic and how it might be narrowed, researched and explored going forward.
  • The author expresses themselves clearly with few, if any, grammatical, spelling and punctuation errors.

Research and Citation Help for Assignment 1

You will need to include an MLA citation and summary of one credible source within the area of study of your proposed topic.

We recommend the Credo Reference database for most topics. It's a great place to find credible background information to get you started on a topic for your proposal:

If you use Credo Reference to find a source on your topic for the proposal, click on the Cite Article icon at the top of the page and select MLA from the drop-down box. Copy and paste the citation that pops up, but always be sure to double-check the formatting!


For help finding or citing your source in MLA, post a question to the Research and Citation Discussion Board for Jane the Librarian. 

  The LSC-CyFair Library building is closed until further notice.

  Online References Services are available while we're closed.

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Harris County Public Library

Lone Star College-CyFair Branch

9191 Barker Cypress Road

Cypress, TX 77433

281.290.3214 - Reference Desk, 1st floor

281.290.3219 - Reference Desk, 2nd floor