Each student will be randomly assigned to a group whose goal is to create a program that assists refugees to the United States. The group will conduct research on refugees and then select a particular issue that the group will address. The finished project requires that each group demonstrate a thorough awareness of the refugee issue, understand and evaluate solutions that other organizations have proposed, and develop the group’s own solution and argue why it will work.
Each group will have its own Blackboard group page that will allow members to communicate with one another outside of class and to share thoughts, research, and other relevant information with one another.
Each group will be supplied with a progress report form. At the end of each class group meeting, the group is required to submit the form detailing the work they have done. Additionally, each group should also outline their plans for the next meeting. The reports are a collaborative effort and the responsibility falls equally on each group member. The task of writing these reports should be shared among the group members with each member doing at least one of the reports.
Below are the components required for this project. While each group will work on these components together, each group member’s individual research paper must also include all of these elements.
Research Annotated Bibliography
As the name suggests, an annotated bibliography has notes for each entry. These notes are specifically geared toward using the source in your research paper. Each entry should cover the following points:
The kind of source
The thesis, if there is one
If it is substantiated by evidence
How it might fit into your research
Possible references to other valid research
For this project, the annotated bibliography must include at least three scholarly sources. As a group, you may collaborate on the sources and drafting the annotated bibliography, but each member is responsible for submitting an individual annotated bibliography. This will be turned in two weeks before the paper is due.
The history/previous solutions outline the current history of the refugee issue. It will start with a general summary that provides a historical overview of the refugee issue, and then it will move to the particular issue that you are addressing, such as education, medical coverage, children, or so on. After the introduction of the issue, there should be a summary of at least two solutions that have already been proposed and an evaluation of their effectiveness (their strengths and weaknesses). For the research paper, this section should be two to three pages in length.
The targeted solution is your plan to address the particular issue that you have identified. It should state clearly what your solution is, how it is different than previous solutions, and a rationale as to why it will be more effective than previous solutions. As targeted solutions will vary widely among groups, there is no set way in which this information needs to be presented. You should, however, answer the following questions in your representations of your materials.
What are you going to do?
Why are you doing things the way you are?
What other alternatives have you ruled out?
In essence, you are giving a detailed plan with a justification that anticipates possible criticism. For the research paper, this section should be at least two pages in length.
12-point Times New Roman font, double spaced
Broad overview of the refugee issue (general)
Explanation as to why this issue needs to be addressed
What particular issue is the focus of the plan/paper?
A more detailed look into the issue (specific)
Overview of the challenges posed by the issue
D. Targeted Solution
Who are you targeting and why?
What are the benefits of your plan?
How does it continues to build upon what has worked successfully in previous solutions?
How does it address the weaknesses of previous solutions?
What objections do you think others might raise to your solutions (at least one), and how do you address those objections?
How will you measure your solution’s effectiveness?
If your solution works, what do you expect to see?
Ways that the solution can be improved after the first year
Works Cited Page
After the last page of the research paper, there must be a Works Cited page that accurately lists all the sources that were quoted within the body of the paper.
At the end of the project, your entire group will give a presentation on your targeted solution. This presentation has the dual function of showcasing your research and pitching your targeted solution. Your group must, therefore, aim to strike a delicate balance between being informative and engaging in showmanship. How you choose to do this is up to you; however, I suggest that you spend about 20 percent of your presentation on your foundational research, pivot toward your targeted solution for about 60 percent of the presentation, and close with your evaluative measures and conclusion. Resist the temptation to include everything. There will be questions at the end, and an opportunity to explain your project more thoroughly in that format. The group presentation must be a minimum of 10 minutes and no more than 20 minutes. During the presentation, you may use any media that you see fit: flyers, video, audio, PowerPoint, Prezi, and so on.
The Refugee Program Project is worth a total of 40 percent of your final course grade. The grade breakdown is as follows:
Group Meeting Progress Reports 5 percent
There will be seven of these reports due, one after each group meeting. The grade will be determined based on the following: the submission of all seven reports and the thoroughness of forms submitted. This is a group grade, and all members of the group will receive the same grade.
Research Annotated Bibliography 10 percent
While group members may work together on the bibliography, each student will receive an individual grade based on how well she or he has completed the assignment.
NEH Reflection Assignment 5 percent
Each student must attend at least one of the NEH events hosted this fall. Both are held on Wednesdays during club hours. The first is on November 16, and the second is on December 7. After attending an event, students will have a reflection assignment to complete. This is an individual grade.
Refugee Program Project Presentation 10 percent
This grade is based on the thoroughness of the group presentation. Each member of the group will receive the same grade. If a group member is not present during the presentation, that member will receive a 0 for this component unless the rest of the group who did present writes a one-page argument explaining why the absent group member should receive credit. The argument must explain the absent member’s level of participation in preparing the presentation and what grade, if any, the member should receive. The final decision, however, is that of the instructor.
Paper 3 (Research) 10 percent
This is an individual grade based on the quality of the research paper that each student will submit on December 1.
Group Bonus Points
Students may earn up to 10 bonus points to be added to each group member’s Refugee Program Project grade (this excludes the research paper grade) if they devise a name and a logo for their organization. If the group does decide to satisfy this option, the name and logo must be presented during the presentation.
Individual Bonus Points
If a student attends a second NEH event and completes the associated reflection assignment, the student may earn up to 15 additional bonus points. These points may be added to any grade over the course of the semester.