Swamped with your writing assignments? Take the weight off your shoulder!
Overview: For this short paper, you will first develop a hypothesis about smiling at others and then develop a corresponding research design. Once you have established your hypothesis and research design, you will then collect data by smiling at 10 people. Please make sure to adhere to this requirement — DO NOT approach or interact with any of the people that you smile at, as this would constitute human subjects research and require COCE Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval. Finally, you will write up your study and conclusions drawn from the research. Please see the following detailed instructions:
Begin by doing a quick literature search around smiling or some sort of smiling behavior. This paper requires at least one peer-reviewed article cited in the introduction.
Next, develop a hypothesis statement. Think about what you have read in your literature search and what you experience in the world around you. What might you want to know about smiling? Make sure to use the “If . . . then . . . ” format.
Then, develop your methodology—what exactly are you going to do to test your hypothesis? Rigorous science starts with and sticks to a plan, so you should think through various challenges and how you might address them if they arise. If you start collecting data and then determine your methodology needs to change, you should discard all data collected to date and begin fresh with the new methodology.
Once you have the hypothesis and methods, you can go in one of two directions. Typically an experiment is carried out over a period of months or even years and the paper is written at the end. However, this is a week-long assignment and you might want to sit down and write the introduction and methods while everything is fresh in your mind.
In whatever order you decide to do them, the remaining two tasks are:
Collect the data. Implement your methodology and see how it goes. Remember, if you are both the person smiling and the person recording the data, you should have some discreet way of recording the information as you go. You do not want people seeing you measuring them or that will change their behavior. You also do not want to count on remembering all the details at the end of the day. Be sure to record some basic observations about who the participant was, as well as what their response was. Again, as stated earlier, DO NOT approach or interact with any of the people that you smile at.
Write the report. Using the standard APA format (see Chapter 2 of the APA manual), write up the experiment. There is an exemplar available for you to review in the Assignment Guidelines and Rubric folder. This is meant to help you. However, you should understand that it is the work of a fellow student. That means that this should be used more for ideas than as an example of the absolute gold standard of classwork.
Be sure your submission includes the following critical elements:
Introduction: Title pages and abstract (required to be 250 words or less). Provides a research explanation that is appropriate for use based on the evidence in social science research, within APA word limits
● Introduction: Peer-reviewed resources—Include at least one peer-reviewed article for support.
● Introduction: Hypothesis—End with your hypothesis.
● Method: Development/description—Describe what you did. This should be detailed enough that you could hand the paper to a stranger and they could
replicate your study exactly.
● Method: Data collection and analysis—Describe the data collection and analysis procedures in detail.
● Method: Participants—Describe your participants. Descriptions must be an estimation only (such as estimating age). DO NOT approach people asking for
● Discussion: Supports/rejects—Write up what you found. Include a table or chart illustrating all of the participants’ responses. State if the data supports
or rejects your hypothesis.
● Discussion: Larger conclusion—What larger conclusions could you draw from this data? Are the results generalizable? What are the next steps if
someone wanted to continue this research? (Note that this section is not present in the current exemplar but is still expected for this assignment.)
● Discussion: Limitations—What are the limitations of the study that your reader needs to be aware of?
● References: Another section you are hopefully comfortable with by now. Your references should be in APA style format.
Guidelines for Submission: Your paper must be submitted as Microsoft Word document with double spacing, 12-point Times New Roman font, one-inch margins, running head, title page, and at least three sources cited in APA format. This submission should be approximately 3–5 pages (not counting title or reference page).