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An four page research essay on a social issue - I chose the death penalty, which I am against

I have to write a 4 page research essay on a social issue and i chose the death penalty, which I am against. The only problem I have is creating my own research question and relating it to sociology, which is the class that this paper is for. help please im stuck!!!!! thanks!!!

Sarah, I think you better click "Similar Discussions [+]" in this thread. You will find various answers/feedback from other members or contributors. What I can say is that 4 page research essay is not that complicated at all if you just divide the chapters clearly. For instance, the first page should consist of introduction that will take up to 400-500 words related to how death penalty can be related to social issue such as human rights. Elaborate those ideas by citing people's writing/journals/books that you find appropriate to your paper. Usually, the research question will be like whether death penalty is justifiable or not. Then, the second and the third page will be the discussion about whether death penalty acceptable/justifiable according to some cases and experts. Lastly, the fourth page will be your conclusion. Concluding paragraph is usually the summary of what you have written so far and what is actually the result of your research paper. State the answer, if you think that you are against the idea of death penalty, you can just mention it in the conclusion based on several facts and arguments that you have explored in the whole essay.

However, all of those suggestions would be beneficial if you start working NOW. Try to READ and WRITE all the necessary information. It is not necessarily in the form of paragraphs, but at least, you will have some knowledge or understanding about the issue.

Hope this helps :)
Nov 28, 2016   #3
Hi Sarah, look, the best way to learn what topic you would want to write about in opposition to the death penalty would be to read about the sociological ramifications of the death penalty. One my suggested reading materials on this topic would be Dr. Lisa Wade's paper titled "The Death Penalty, Race, and the Victim". The reason that I am suggesting you read this material is because it focuses on racial discrimination in society as a reason to oppose death penalty. There are times, when a capital punishment case goes to trial, that the jury becomes predisposed to vote for the death penalty in the event of a guilty verdict based upon certain social conditioning or prejudice in relation to race or color of the accused. Other sociology relevant sources for your preliminary research can include Ben Ambridge's article "Sociologists Test Six Arguments for and Against Capital punishment" That title alone sounds like you can additional research on the topic in continuation of Ambridge's work. Finally, Ted Goertzel also wrote about "Capital Punishment and Homicide: Sociological Realities and Economic Illusions". All 3 of these papers are sociology based discussions in relation to the death penalty. I am sure you will find your research topic within one or all 3 of these articles.

You could use that as the starting point of your research. Once you find a definite topic of interest to you within the research material, you can pursue developing that for your actual research paper. Keep in mind that you should start with a broad topic for research. That way, you can slowly narrow down the focus to something that you will have ample reference material for and also, show a particular interest in discussing. If you can provide that foundation for your paper, writing 4 pages will come easy for you. Good luck with your research. I know you can develop a single topic to research once you become more familiar with the connection of sociology with the death penalty.

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