Research Paper Guidelines
Address ONE of the following topics/questions. You must also consult the Islamic studies resources document (located on the course�s website) in order to track down materials essential for your research.
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1. Sufism is often said to be the heart of Islam. Do you agree or disagree?
2. Compare and contrast Prophet Muhammad�s religio-political roles in both Mecca and Medina. How is this reflected in the Qur�an?
3. Drawing on the Qur�an and its interpretive traditions, discuss the portrayal of Jesus in the Qur�an.
4. A topic chosen in consultation with the Professor.
Essays are graded out of 45, and are worth 45% of the total course mark. Each essay will be evaluated in terms of (1) the clarity of its thesis, (2) the coherence of its argument(s), (3) evidence of original research and its careful integration into the fabric of the essay, (4) thoughtful reflection on the subject matter, and (5) faithful adherence to the content and formatting guidelines mentioned below.
The paper must have a clear thesis which is defended consistently throughout. An essay without a thesis cannot receive more than a C+. A thesis essentially summarizes, in one or several sentences, the entire point of your essay. It is simply not enough to say �I am going to talk about x, y, and z�; you must be more specific than that. A good thesis should be concise and straightforward, and must endeavour to prove a point: �In this essay, I am going to demonstrate that x because of y and z.� You may not use the wording of this example in your essay.
Essays are due at the beginning of class on June 12th, 2014. Emailed versions of the essay are not acceptable.
Essays not handed in on the due date will receive a mark of zero. Absolutely no exceptions will be made to this rule. Papers submitted late due to a medical or other compassionate reason must be accompanied by relevant documentation (i.e., a medical certificate, etc.). Plagiarized essays will be assigned a zero, and the issue will be taken up with the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences.
1. Essays are to be between 8 and 10 full pages in length (excluding the title page and bibliography), double spaced, and written in Times New Roman font (size 12). It must use the normal page layout which comes standard on all Word programs.
2. Diction is to be formal, and the essay is to be written in Canadian English. Grammar, syntax, spelling, and style must be impeccable. You may write in the first person.
3. All paragraphs�except the first paragraph of your essay�must be indented.
Every paragraph in your essay�including isolated quotations and footnotes�must be justified. This can easily be done by using the �paragraph� function on your Word program.
4. Use footnotes as opposed to endnotes and/or internal citations. Footnotes are to be single spaced and written in Times New Roman font (size 10). A bibliography must be appended to the essay. Your method of citation must follow the rules laid out in the Chicago Manual of Style.
5. If citing from the Qur�an, an internal citation as follows will suffice: Q 18:5 (i.e., Qur�an, chapter 18, verse 5). In your bibliography, indicate which translation of the Qur�an you used under the name of the translator.
6. Do not put your quotations in italics, bold, or a combination of the two. Sentences which are more than 3 lines long are to be isolated, single spaced, and reduced to font size 11 with their margins indented to 1 inch on both the right and left. This can easily be done by using the �paragraph� function on your Word program.
7. Your essay must have a title page. All pages�excluding the title page and bibliography�are to be numbered at the bottom right corner of the page.