The topic for your research paper can be anything pertaining to port security. Choose your own academically rigorous port security focused research question and hypothesis.
Here is the specific format:
- Title Page (APA format)
- Abstract (150-250 words, no quotes or paraphrases. This is your “elevator speech” of the research)
- Introduction (Research Question and Hypothesis)
- Literature Review (Note this is not an annotated bibliography but a Literature Review)
- Methodology – don’t simply state qualitative methodology.
- Analysis & Findings
- Conclusion and Recommendations
- Reference list
Methodology: This section provides the reader with a description of how you carried out your qualitative research project, and the variables you identified and analyzed. It describes any special considerations and defines any limitations and terms specific to this project, if necessary. This section can be brief or more complicated, depending on the project, written in a single page. I want to see more than “I used qualitative methods”….what do you specifically mean? Did you use content analysis? Did you use Case Study? These questions are being asked NOW so that you are not surprised in other courses that require this to be included.
Analysis and Findings: They are not the same as conclusions. In the analysis component of this section you identify how you analyzed the data. The second part is the finding you got from your analysis of the data. The findings are the facts that you developed, not your interpretation of the facts. That interpretation is conducted in the conclusions and recommendations section of the paper. Findings will come from the prior research you examined and your analysis of those prior findings to create new findings for your paper. While there may be some facts that are such that they will stand and translate to your paper, the intent is to create new knowledge, so you will normally analyze the data to create your own findings of what facts that data represents.
Conclusions and Recommendations: This is the section where you give your interpretation of the data. Here you tell the reader what the findings mean. Often the conclusions and recommendations sections will mirror the findings in construct as the researcher tells the reader what that researcher sees as the meaning of that data, their conclusions. Then, drawing on those conclusions, the researcher tells the reader what they believe needs to be done to solve/answer the research question. This section may include recognition of any needs for further research and then finishes with a traditional conclusion to the paper as a whole.
Remember, your paper should seek to answer a question that helps to solve the research question and validates or culls your hypothesis.
- Your paper must be at a minimum of 10-12 pages (the Title and Reference pages do not count towards the minimum limit).
- Scholarly and credible references should be used. A good rule of thumb is at least 2 scholarly sources per page of content.
- Type in Times New Roman, 12 point and double space.
- Students will follow the current APA Style as the sole citation and reference style used in written work submitted as part of coursework.
- Points will be deducted for the use of Wikipedia or encyclopedic type sources. It is highly advised to utilize books, peer-reviewed journals, articles, archived documents, etc.
- All submissions will be graded using the assignment rubric.