Solution Exploration Assignment – PSYCHOLOGY 101 Professor Herring 100 points Due: 11:59 pm Friday, November 20 (through Canvas assignment link only) No late work accepted Minimum of 1000 words (papers under the word count will be given a zero) 12 point type, double spaced Files must be saved as: .rtf, .doc, or .docx ONLY. If I cannot open your file, I cannot give you a grade. For this paper I would like you to methodically analyze a problem in your life. The problem itself could be major, or it could be relatively trivial. Some possibilities: you are having conflict with your ex-spouse, you cannot find a job, you recently experienced a death in the family, you are having trouble sleeping well, you are addicted to a substance, you have just returned from military service and having difficulty integrating into civilian life, you have recently moved, you are struggling with sexuality issues. After you introduce the topic, create a paragraph or two on the effects of the problem—what its consequences are. Consider both short and long term consequences. Next, create a paragraph or two on the causes of the problem— what created it and how. Consider both remote and immediate causes. Then, write a few paragraphs on how you might approach the problem. What are the possible responses to the problem? What are the benefits and drawbacks of each response? What are the costs or trade-offs? (there is no free lunch!). To conclude the paper, identify and defend what you believe to be the best response to the problem. Present your best writing by revising and editing carefully. Feel free to utilize the Learning Center online for help with your writing. Your work will be completely confidential and will not be shared with anyone in or out of the class. Please keep in mind that the SYMPTOM is not the problem. The symptom is simply showing up saying, “hey! pay attention to me! Something’s going on!” What do I mean by this? I mean things like: – stress – substance abuse – trouble falling asleep – time management issues are not problems. Yes, they are things you have to deal with, but they are behaviors that are signaling that there is a deeper issue. For example, stress, if you look at chapter 3 in our book, is a stimulus-response relationship. So that means there is a trigger (the stimulus) which results in the response (a stress related behavior like smoking, overeating, high blood pressure, trouble sleeping ,etc). So if you’re wanting to write about “stress”, I’m going to tell you that the stress is the signal of the problem, not the problem, so follow that stress-behavior back to find its trigger point. Behaviors can rarely change long-term if the underlying triggers of the behavior are not also addressed and resolved in some way. This assignment addresses learning outcomes 3, 6, 7 and 9: 3. Identify scientific methodology including observation, correlation, and experimentation. Emphasis will be placed on understanding how these methods can be used to test hypotheses concerning behavior, thought, and feelings. (BS 2) 6. Examine and critically analyze various psychological perspectives relating to development, interpersonal relations, motivation, personality, and adjustment. (BS 3) 7. Describe and explain multiple causation, with an emphasis on environmental, biological, cognitive, developmental, and social/cultural determinants. 9. Describe how psychological concepts relate to self awareness and everyday experience. (BS 4) This assignment is worth 100 points. No Late Work Will Be Accepted. Sample Outline Structure Paragraphs 1 & 2: Introduce the problem (set the stage, provide any background information necessary, and clearly identify the problem you are evaluating) Body Paragraphs 3-5: Explore the effects (consequences) of the problem. In other words, how has it impacted your life? Be specific. Body Paragraphs 6-8: Explore possible causes of the problem. Look inward as well as out. What/who created the problem? How did the problem come to be? Paragraphs 9-11: Responses for taking action on this problem. Include at least 2 possible courses of action. Be very specific here. What could you do? Why? (the ‘why’ is really important!) What would the benefits and drawbacks be for your responses? (There’s no perfect answer to anything. There’s always a price.) Paragraphs 12-13: Select and defend the ‘best’ possible course of action. Be sure to explain why you’ve chosen your option. Your paper doesn’t have to be exactly 13 paragraphs. This is a guide to show you approximate ratios of the significant points required in the paper. You can use our textbook and supplemental materials (Creativity & Death & Dying) as a resource for possible solutions and possible causes. Draw on what we’ve been discussing in class for help. Our focus has been on contemplating who you are as you relate to yourself, your family, your friends, your workplace and the inevitable outside stressors that accompany any life. Worksheet for Solution Exploration Paper Here are some questions to help you get started with your Solution Exploration paper. If you answer these thoroughly (feel free to use lots of additional paper!) you’ll have the content you need to write your paper. The questions follow the logic structure of the paper’s requirements. 1) Brainstorm some problems that you’re currently experiencing. Choose one that feels particularly problematic J and/or one that you’d really like to see start to shift in your life. 2) Write down that problem here. Be clear. Be specific. 3) What are the effects of that problem in your life today? In other words, how are you impacted by this problem? Be specific. 4) What’s the background/backstory of this problem? When did you first become aware of it? Can you identify a source? 5) What are 3-4 possible courses of action you can take that may have an impact on shifting the burden of this problem? What might you try? Why? Remember there is no perfect answer. Psychology is not an exact science. We explore. We experiment. And we adjust based on what we observe happening next. 6) Identify the ‘best’ solution of your examples. Be very specific. Write the solution down here. 7) Why do you think that’s the best solution? Defend it. 8) What’s one action step you can take now to try and address the problem? Write that down. Now you’re ready to write a draft of your paper. Don’t worry about the way it fits together in your first draft. Your first draft is just to gather your content and ideas. Just get it done. After you’ve written your first draft, set it aside for a few days. After a few days, go back and re-read it, looking for: – organization – clarity – surface cohesion (punctuation, spelling ,etc) – content: Did you address the items required for the paper? (Is there a clearly stated problem, possible causes, effects of the problem, and a solution?) Revise your paper. Yes, revision is part of the writing process. J After you’ve revised, set the paper aside for a few more days. Go back and re-read it again, looking for the same items. Do another draft if necessary. Submit your final paper through Canvas before the deadline. PSY 101 Assessment Rubric for Solution Exploration Paper This guide evaluates content, logic, voice/expression, unity, coherence, focus, awareness of audience, formatting and assignment-specific requirements for your solution exploration paper. The Solution/Exploration paper is worth 100 points. Late work will be given a zero. Work under the stated required minimum word count of 1000 words will be given a zero. Excellent – A score of 95-100 indicates that the paper: • – Establishes and maintains a clear, insightful focus • – Demonstrates a mastery of problem/solution solving skills • – Exhibits a distinctive, appropriate, and authentic voice • – Has careful but subtle organization • – Demonstrates high level of reflective thinking skills • – Maintains control of all surface features (grammar, punctuation, etc.) Very Good – A score of 90-95 indicates that the paper: • – Establishes a purpose and focus with the thesis paragraph • – Demonstrates an advanced awareness of problem/solution solving skills • – Exhibits an engaging voice • – Has predictable organization and coherence • – Demonstrates reflective thinking skills • – Has few errors in surface features relative to length and complexity Good – A score of 80-89 indicates that the paper: • – Attempts to maintain a focus • – Demonstrates an awareness problem/solution solving skills • – Exhibits evidence of an engaging voice • – Has predictable organization and coherence • – Demonstrates reflective thinking skills • – Has few errors in surface features relative to length and complexity Satisfactory – A score of 70-79 indicates that the paper: • – Contains minimal focus and evidence of purpose in each paragraph • – Demonstrates minimal awareness of problem/solution solving skills • – Exhibits some evidence of voice • – Exhibits minimal organization and coherence • – Demonstrates minimal reflective thinking skills • – Has some errors in surface features that do not seriously interfere with communication Poor – A score of 61-69 indicates that the paper: • – Lacks focus • – Lacks awareness of problem and solution solving skills • – Has random or weak organization and coherence • – Demonstrates weak, illogical reflective thinking skills • – Has errors in surface features that are seriously distracting Not Passing – A score of less than 60 indicates that the paper: • – Has little or no awareness of focus and purpose • – Shows no awareness of problem/solution skills • – Shows little to no organization • – Demonstrates no reflective thinking skills • Under Required Word Count • – Displays errors in surface details that preclude communication
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