This document is to give directions and requirements for the Policy Issue Solutions Memo assignment. Please read the entire document and subsequent documents before proceeding with the task.
COURSE OBJECTIVES and STUDENT LEARNING OUTCOMES:
This assignment helps the student to progress in the following course objectives and achieve the following Student Learning Outcomes:
1. Course Goals:
a. Viewed current events through the lens of America political, social, and historical precedents
b. Demonstrate practical problem-solving and critical thinking skills through interpreting, present, and evaluating ideas
c. Learn the tools and techniques to critique the American political systems
2. Student Learning Outcomes:
a. Students will apply analytical, oral, and written skills in determining the strengths and weaknesses of the American political system.
b. Students will explain and connect how internal and external factors affect their political opinions, information, and engagement.
c. Students will develop and investigate a policy issue of importance to them and defend the importance of this policy issue against various competing aspects of American government and politics.
SECTION I: SELECTION OF A POLICY ISSUE-10 points
At the beginning of this course in iCollege and via lectures, I informed you all that you will need to select a specific policy issue that is important to you. This issue should adhere to the following guidelines:
· The topic you choose should have an adequate level of specificity, meaning it should not be broad in nature. For example, your issue cannot be education. However, your issue can be the impact of student loans on the wealth gap of Black Americans. (Note: this example cannot be used as an assignment.)
· The issue should apply to the course and the course-related materials, including, but not limited to, the course textbook, supplemental readings, videos, and other posted materials.
· The instructor reserves the right to require the student to be more specific in their issue selection if the instructor deems it too broad or not in compliance with these requirements.
If you have not taken the survey asking for your issue or wish to update your issue, you must submit your final issue to the class instructor via iCollege no later than Friday, October 2, 2020, by 5:00 pm EDT.
SECTION II: RESEARCH AND WRITING OF THE POLICY ISSUE SOLUTIONS MEMO-90 points
After selecting your issue, you will need to construct a policy issue solutions memo. This memo will be addressed to a selected official of any level of government in the United States (federal, state, county, municipal). This memo is not a research paper. However, you will need to research to fully understand your selected issue, the background of the issue, the current trends surrounding your issue, and the previous approaches to address the issue. This memo should demonstrate your passion, knowledge, and observations about the issue. It should also address the needs, concerns, and expectations of the decision-makers(s) that you are addressing via the memo.
1. Research Your Issue-You will need to review and compile background information on your issue. You will need to investigate reputable sources to capture information about your issue.
a. SOURCES: You must use and properly cite at least two (2) reputable sources from at least three (3) of the five each of the following categories:
iii. Reputable News Media (Print, TV, Online)
iv. Government reports, studies, or court cases
v. Academic Journals, and other published research (essay, thesis, or dissertations)
vi. WIKIPEDIA WILL NOT BE AN ACCEPTABLE SOURCE FOR THIS ASSIGNMENT.
2. Define Your Problem within Your Issue-You will need to highlight whatever your research findings have led you to conclude about the issue; do not merely present data. You must “connect the dots” from researching to data to understanding the data to highlighting what the data has revealed to you regarding the issue.
3. Demonstrate How You Arrived-You will need to draw sound conclusions from your research.
4. Summarize Findings/State Recommendation-Provide specific recommendations or findings in response to particular problems and avoid generalizations.
5. Determine Who Best to Address Your Policy Issue Solutions Memo: Based on your issue and your discovery during the research, you will need to determine who best to address your memo. Is the issue best suited for a local official or a state official? Is the issue more suited for the federal government to address?
6. Craft a Policy Issue Solutions Memo: This policy solutions memo must meet the following MINIMUM criteria:
a. PAGE NUMBERING: All pages, except the title page, must be numbered in numerical order.
b. MARGINS: All pages must have 1-inch margins at the top, bottom, left, and right.
c. REFERENCE PAGE STYLE: A reference page must be included with the memo citing your research resources. Unless specified here, all work submitted must adhere to the Chicago/Turabian Style of Writing for footnotes and bibliographies. In other words, you will need to cite any sources being referenced in the memo using both footnotes and a reference page. Failure to use source and not cite them will be considered plagiarism.
d. CONTENT: With this policy issue assignment, you seek to both inform and persuade someone to understand and support your views on a particular issue. As such, the content of the memo should seek to achieve the following minimum objectives concisely:
ii. MAIN POINT OF THE MEMO AND ISSUE: What is your specific issue, the impact it has, and why it is essential to address this issue. This is your thesis statement for the memo and should be the statement that drives the rest of the memo.
iii. BACKGROUND OF THE ISSUE: Convey sound, reputable information about the issue you have selected. Also, convey why it is a critical issue to you and why it should be a crucial issue to the reader. Support this importance with data and other evidence.
iv. DISCUSSION POINTS/EVIDENCE: Demonstrate your analysis of the information about the issue you have selected. This analysis should include a discussion that demonstrates support for your problem and against your case. It should also include a discussion reflecting your comprehension of the material from the course (federalism, politics, civil rights, civil liberties, political institutions).
v. CONCLUSION and RECOMMENDATION: Based on the information you presented, the discussion points you have shared, your conclusion, and what should the reader conclude? What is your ultimate ask related to your selected issue?
e. QUANTITY: You must submit no less than two (2) pages minimum and three (3) to five (5) typewritten pages maximum, fitting the above-referenced criteria.
f. SUBMISSION: All work must be submitted via iCollege by the prescribed due date. NO EXCEPTIONS.
7. All completed essays must be received via iCollege by Monday, November 30, 2020, at 11:59 pm EST. Anything posted in iCollege after this date will be subject to the late work acceptance and point deduction rule.
SECTION III: POLICY ISSUE MEMO TRANSMISSION-25 points
After selecting your issue and the government official for addressing your memo, and constructing and submitting your memo, you will have the memo reviewed by the instructor. If there are any edits needed, you will need to complete them.
After any edits, you will need to transmit your memo to that selected government official and provide proof of transmission. This proof can be an e-mail receipt from that government official, a photo of the properly addressed self-stamped envelope, or any other official mechanism that sustains your transmission of the memo.
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