During this course we only scratch the surface of many important topics. The final paper requires you to go deeper into one of the energy related topics from the course and tell us what you learned.
Research Paper is to have you present in-depth information on a topic related to energy. This paper is not a persuasive paper or first-person narrative of your actions or thoughts. Consider this a formal research paper that will help you develop an awareness of how your chosen career passion and interest relates to energy. Everything we do has a connection to energy, and we want you to explore this.
Your topic must be on energy and related to your major. Here are some questions that may help you think about energy:
Where is the bulk of the energy being used in your field?
What are some technologies or practices being done to change or reduce energy use?
Are there some start-up businesses that are helping to change or reduce energy use?
What is driving the change? (Is it policies? Economics? Consumers?)
What are some of the road blocks or barriers to adapting changes to reduce energy use?
How can these barriers be overcome?
Discouraged topics: ATP, energy for the body, internal batteries recharged by the body, water use or water treatment, recycling, general sustainability,
Communication is most effective when you have a specific audience in mind. For this assignment your audience is either peers in your major or professionals in the field. You are writing to inform them of all the cool things going on that connect your major to energy!
Required Structural Elements and Organization
Use ALL of the following headers in your final paper:
Cover Page (10 pts)
Paper title, your name, your major, date
2-3 sentence overview or summary of your topic
Executive Summary (10 pts)
An Executive Summary is a roughly one-page document that presents the most important points associated with a topic, and is intended as a stand alone summary. It is usually written for a manager who is very busy and may only have time to read the Executive Summary (and not the full report) to get all the key points.
Your Executive Summary should be comprised of three parts representing each of the main sections of your report: introduction (including quantified energy context), discussion, and specific future predictions (or if you submitted a conference session: introduction, proposal, and speakers).
Introduction and Background (10 pts)
Provide a brief introduction to the issue and tell us why it is important to your field or chosen major. Provide background and quantified energy context for the reader to better understand the issue and its significance for how your topic fits into the larger energy picture. Provide historical information and national and/or global energy data where appropriate. Why is energy an issue for this sector or field? (This is a section where you will likely need citations.)
Discussion of the Issue (25 pts)
Go into more depth about the specifics of your topic. What technologies or practices are being implemented? Likely you will have some examples or case studies in this section about real events going on and the impact they are having. Include quantification as much as you can. Is the technology or practice resulting in major energy savings, cost savings, or reduction in carbon? What is driving the change? Who is involved? (This is a section where you will likely need citations.)
Future Actions Needed (15 pts)
Based on what you have studied and learned, students should provide some specific strategies that need to take place to move this topic forward by the year 2025. Support your ideas with information you have researched for this paper. In other words, your ideas should have some grounding in data and evidence that you found in your research.
Tell us the barriers that need to be overcome in order to advance the topic you have reported on.
Propose some specific strategies or actions that will help overcome the barriers you have mentioned above.
What would need to change to advance your topic for the future and make it more viable?
Bibliography (10 pts)
This final section of your paper should include the references used in your paper. You must also include in-text citations that refer to these references. You must use at least three sources (two of them primary)—see Sources section for more information.
Quality of Your Writing (20 pts)
We reserve 20 points to assess the quality of your writing. See Writing Resources section. Good writing quality includes:
Proper spelling, sentence structure and punctuation.
Use proper tense (third person, except for future predictions section).
Use of required section headings.
Paper flows well between sections and is easy to follow and read.
Layout makes sense and is professional and clear.
Please limit the use of direct quotes. We are looking for assimilation of information by you.
Documenting and Referencing Your Sources
Use a minimum of three (at least two from primary sources) sources for your paper (English only please!). You can use more, of course. Be sure to include in-text citations for your references. You are encouraged to use peer reviewed journal articles, books, and government sources for the main or primary sources for your paper. Popular press articles such as magazines and newspapers are not considered primary sources. You can use information from “advocacy groups” or non-profit sources, but only to describe their position on the issue. Don’t use these sources to provide key facts about your issue. (We reserve the right to deduct points if non-reliable sources are used incorrectly.)
You can use web-based sources, as long as they are from a reputable source, such as a government entity. Make certain that you use a document or report, and not just a general page
from their website. Remember to cite properly, don’t just provide a web URL.