History 1493-030, Dr. Grinberg

Paper two is an original research paper of approximately 2,000 words, or 6-7 pages, double-spaced. It calls for you to engage in the essential skills of a historian: defining a research question, gathering evidence, analyzing primary and secondary sources, and developing and articulating an original argument based on your research. You have two choices in approaching this assignment:

  1. Select a research topic from one of the six research kits provided at http://explorehistory.ou.edu/research-kits-for-hist-1493/. Each research kit has multiple primary sources and secondary sources. Using these research kits, write an original research paper that includes roughly six to ten of the primary sources and at least two of the secondary sources provided.

Please note that while there are seven research kit topics, there are numerous research questions that you can pursue within these topics. The direction that you can take in these papers is limitless, as long as your argument is supported by evidence.

  1. In consultation with your TA, you may come up with your own research topic. If you choose this option, you will need to find roughly 6 to 10 primary sources and at least two secondary sources on your own. Depending on the type of primary sources used, your essay may include more or fewer primary sources than the suggested range. You must consult with your TA in advance if you choose this option.

For helping finding primary sources, please see: http://explorehistory.ou.edu/1493-primary-source-collections/ or the OU’s library webpage devoted to this course: http://guides.ou.edu/post.

The library stacks and electronic resources are where you should look for secondary sources. For additional help, please see: http://guides.ou.edu/post/secondary.



  • The entire assignment is worth 260 points: 60 of those points come from small assignments related to the paper; 200 points for the final paper itself.
  • Taken together, this is the most heavily weighted grade item of the course. It is therefore imperative that students complete all of the assignments on time. Students should work closely with their section leaders to ensure that they are adhering to the guidelines for the paper.
  • Please note unauthorized collaboration between students on the assignment is considered inappropriate and will be reported to the Office of Academic Integrity. Plagiarism of any sort will not be tolerated. If you plagiarize, you will earn a zero on this assignment. The final work must be your own. If you have questions academic integrity, please consult: http://www.ou.edu/integrity/students#OU-and-Integrity and http://www.ou.edu/integrity/videos

Important Due-Dates:

  • Week 7 (Feb. 27-28): Research topic and question, and preliminary list of primary sources due in section. Your TA will inform you whether they require an electronic or hardcopy, or both. (10 points)
  • Week 10 (March 26-27): Annotated bibliography – a finalized list of primary and secondary sources for your essay and a 2-3 sentence summary for each due in section. More information about this assignment will be provided in sections later in the course. Your TA will inform you whether they require an electronic or hardcopy, or both. (25 points)
  • Week 12 (April 9-10): Introductory paragraph and thesis due in section. Your GTA will inform you whether they require an electronic or hardcopy, or both. (25 points)
  • Week 14: (Friday, April 24): Paper two due. You must upload the paper to your section Canvas site by 5 PM. Your TA will let you know whether they also require a hardcopy. (200 points)