The research paper should not exceed 25 double spaced typed pages (minimum number of pages is 15), and must include
footnotes and a bibliography. You must use APA style manual as guide for documenting your sources.
?You must have a demonstrable thesis/proposition as the last sentence of your introductory paragraph, and you must
prove or demonstrate this thesis throughout the paper. Papers without a clear thesis will not generally receive a
higher grade. Papers without clear analysis of ideas will also not receive a higher grade. Use quotes and paraphrasing
appropriately, backing up your views and opinions.
?In your paper you must state all three major elements of the paper: (a) the problem, (b) research question(s), and (3)
the hypothesis, early in the paper.
?The hypothesis should be simple. The following is an example of a thesis statement:
o”The simpler the thesis, the easier the paper writing.”
?This statement shows DIRECT relationship between thesis simplicity and paper writing. Also,
o”The more effective interagency collaboration regarding (1) disruption of terrorist Internet communications and (2)
intelligence gathering from terrorist Internet communication, the better US prevention of, and deterrence against,
?Here, also, we have DIRECT relationship between disruption/intelligence gathering (variable A) and prevention and
deterrence (variable B).
?Another example is “The more effective (1) disruption of terrorist Internet communications and (2) intelligence
gathering from terrorist Internet communication, the less effective terrorist planning and execution of terrorist acts
by international terrorists (This hypothesis contains an INVERSE relationship between variable A
(disruption/intelligence gathering) and variable B (terrorist planning and execution).
?For examples and formats of proposition/hypothesis statements, look also at Donald P. Moynihan, Combining Structural
Forms in the Search for Policy Tools: Incident Command Systems in U.S. available under Resources.
?You should provide analysis of at least one case to support or reject your thesis. Rejecting the thesis as the
conclusion of your analysis in the paper is also academic and acceptable. Rejecting your own thesis in the conclusion
of your paper also enhances your and reader’s understanding of the issue/problem and contributes to the body of
?REMEMBER, if you get lost while writing the paper, and you are not sure what direction you should take at that point,
ALWAYS go back to your research question at the beginning of the paper. The research question is your “guiding post.”
It will “tell you” how to continue, and “where to go”, to reach the end. This is why it is very important to formulate
a good and effective research question. Again, your paper title can be (in the form of) a research question.
?You may use existing mass casualty case/incident (terrorism-related or nature-caused) in the U.S. or overseas, and
analyze what went wrong in response and/or planning.
?You may examine an existing or hypothetical mass casualty case/incident in the U.S. or overseas, and analyze
transportation, mass casualty or interagency management (or mismanagement), i. e., what went wrong in response or
planning within or between local, state, or federal agencies, and/or between the government and non-profit, faith-based
organizations or the private sector.
?You may approach it as policy/issue problem by using Policy Issue Paper Policy Issue Paper Elements Template
(available under Resources). You need to state/structure the problem, the hypothesis, and research question(s) at the
beginning of the paper.
?You can also write your paper as critical literature review on a pertinent course topic.
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