PLSC 083 Lobbying the Federal Government


October 10, 2001


Feedback on papers:


Very good generally. Some pointers:


Be specific, refer to facts, statistics, use quotes. Precision in the argument and direct reference to hard evidence is always more convincing. Donít just give your own conclusion; show how you get there.


Cite your sources. (Jones 1999, 21).


Donít take sides. Explain and analyze things neutrally. Make me have to guess which side you personally favor. The point is not to justify one side or the other, but rather to understand what causes policy outcomes to come out the way they do.


Donít use informal style in a term paper. OK in your Light discussion papers, but a term paper should be written formally.


Pay attention to the writing. After you have the paper fully drafted, there are three things to do:


1) Re-write the first and last paragraphs so that they correspond with each other and clearly state the point and conclusion of the paper.


2) Read the paper for organization. That is simply to double-check that everything is presented in logical order. Provide transition sentences where appropriate. Make sure the logic clearly flows and comes in a logical order. Introduce an idea, present the evidence. Make a transition to the next idea and its evidence. Then the next, etc.


3) Read the paper for grammar, one sentence at a time. Rather than fix things word by word, when you have a sentence that has no verb, or one that is too long or confusing, just delete it and restate what you were trying to say. Often itís easier to start over than to revise. Check here that you have a citation every time you should.


Feedback from Light: Too much writing! But all agree on the importance of learning it, so weíll focus on that consistently.