Decades Project - US History HonorsAmerican Indian Project - US HistoryGCHS Ends the Stigma - PsychologySocial Controversy Debate - Current IssuesJunior English Research PaperJunior Film Research PaperAP Literature Literary Criticism AssignmentWriting an EditorialThe Roaring TwentiesBudgeting ProjectSophomore Honors English - Research SpeechNational Political Convention 1848Dystopian Independent Novel Assignment2016 Mock Election ProjectWorld History Unit 2 ProjectEmpathy with an OutletPower of OneThe Student's Choice Public Service Assignment20% Passion Project
This is the "Junior English Research Paper" page of the "Grayslake Central LRC" guide.
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Junior English Research Paper Print Page

Online Databases

SIRS Researcher (username: grayslake, password: rams)

Opposing Viewpoints (username: rams, password: rams OR username:gnhs10, password: knights)

Student Resources in Context (username: rams, password: rams OR username:gnhs10, password: knights)


Password Sheets are available at the front desk in the LRC


Online Newspapers

BBC World News


Proquest Newstand (username: grayslake, password: rams)
includes Chicago Tribune, New York Times, and other newspapers from around the world

NY Times Topics Page


Library Resources


Use the link above to search the catalog -- we have 100's of books on topics that relate to this project -- and WALK the SHELVES!  Ask for help if you need it!!

Here is a list of books on CONTROVERSIAL TOPICS that we have in the LRC!!  

*We will have a book cart available for students with commonly used books for this project.  There might be something we missed though, so please check the catalog anyhow!  We might be able to borrow a specific book from North as well.



The Assignment

The Assignment:

Your task will be to explore a modern American societal problem of your choosing. The research topic you select must be controversial in that it must have (at least) two opposing sides.

After selecting a problem, you will do the following:

  • Educate your reader about the issue
  • Introduce the multiple lenses of the problem
  • Propose a solution, and provide support as to why your solution would help resolve the problem

Topic Selection:

When choosing a topic, keep the following tips in mind:

  • Your topic will need to be argumentative. You will be writing a thesis statement about this topic; therefore, it must be something controversial.
  • When choosing a topic, remember that you shouldn’t just choose the first thing you come across. You’ll need to opt for a topic that will be rich and fit into the various lenses provided for your research.
  • Ask yourself, can I write 6 pages about this topic? Can I find 5-6 documents about this topic from reliable sources? Can I spend several weeks reading and writing about this topic? …If you answer “no” to any of these questions, go back to the drawing board!

Keyword Searching

Think about what keywords you are searching for on the databases.  You will want to create a short list of keywords that will help you try different ways of finding the information.

Example:  If I am researching China and social structure.  I might do some of the following keyword searches:

  • China social structure
  • China family
  • China class
  • Han family
  • Han class
  • etc

To help come up with different keywords to search, use GALE's Topic Finder.

Type your main search term in the GALE PowerSearch box and then scroll down on the results page until you see Topic Finder at the bottom of the right hand cololumn.  Click on Topic Finder to see a wheel of keywords that you can use to help guide your research.




When using the online databases, citations are automatically created.  Copy and paste the source citation into a GoogleDoc and check that it is formatted correctly.  You can build your bibliography as you do your research!

Click HERE to see a sample bibliography!

Things to Remember about creating a bibliography:

  • each citation should have a hanging indent (for help on creating a hanging indent in Google Doc, click HERE)
  • citations should be in alphabetical order

Here are some other sources that can help create a citation if you are using a source that doesn't have one created.

*Just a reminder that we are using MLA 8th edition for this assignment.



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