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PSCI 4826: Women, War, and Peace

Library research guide for PSCI 4700

Building Peace Project

From the course syllabus:

This project combines aspects of a “traditional” research paper with a problem-solving task. Students will develop a context-specific proposal for a project or program that is designed to create and/or consolidate the prospects for durable peace. The project will pay specific attention to the gendered aspects of peace building.

The assignment will be completed in two installments that each have a distinct purpose as part of the overall project.

Part 1: Research on Current or Recent Conflict

  • Choose a recent or current conflict and investigate how this conflict has affected women and men in different ways. Pay specific attention to the status and role(s) of women before, during, and after the conflict. Pay attention to the multifaceted impacts of conflict: Did women serve as combatants or in supporting roles to combatants? How did the conflict affect civilian women? Was there widespread sexual violence? Did women (and children) experience displacement? How did the conflict affect women’s economic situation? How did it affect their role in governance?
  • Part 1 of the paper must demonstrate thorough research into the gendered aspects of the chosen conflict. Learn as much as you can through a variety of sources and become an expert on the gendered aspects of the conflict.
  • The final section of part 1 should provide an initial outline for a possible program or project that facilitates peacebuilding and which will be developed in part 2 of the paper.
  • You may use books, journal articles, newspapers, and various web-based sources, including those of international organizations and NGOs. However, you must be careful to evaluate sources for bias and avoid columns or opinion pieces, whether printed or on blogs.
  • Cite your sources. Make careful distinctions between your own assessments, and ideas and assessments from your sources. If you summarize or paraphrase material from a source, include a source citation (author’s last name and year of publication). If you quote the exact words from a source (i.e. use a phrase, sentence fragment, full sentence, or longer passage), then include the author’s last name, year of publication, and page(s) on which the quote can be found.

Format and length

  • The final paper, including both part 1 and part 2, should be about 15 pages (or about 5000 words) long.
    • Write for content, not to fill the requisite number of pages or meet the word count.
    • Aim for the two parts to be about equal in length. You will have an opportunity to improve upon part 1 after the graded version is returned to you. As you design the project or program, you may also discover you need additional information about some aspect(s) of the conflict.
    • Although part 1 will have received a grade on its own, the final paper is judged not only in terms of the quality of the proposed project (although part 2 will weigh heavily in the evaluation of the final paper), but also in terms of its coherence and logic as a single, unified paper.
  • Title page.
    • The title page must include the paper’s title, your name, the course for which the paper was written, and the semester you wrote it.
    • All papers will be evaluated for originality using Turnitin.
  • Use subheadings. At a minimum, it must be clear what portion of the paper is part 1 and what is part 2.
  • Use an author-date, in-text citation style, such as APA or APSA.
  • Start your bibliography on a new page.
    • Bibliographies (or reference lists) should contain only those works actually cited or referenced in the text.
  • Number your pages.
  • Edit your paper.
    • Check for any spelling or grammatical errors.
    • Do not rely exclusively on your software’s built-in spellchecker to catch your errors!
  • Double space the text.
    • Use an acceptable font size, such as Times New Roman 12 pt.
    • Use reasonable margins, such as 1 inch on all sides.

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