Statement of Research Gaps or Unanswered Questions
The final project for WRTG 391 will be a statement of research gaps or unanswered questions.
In this assignment you will describe the topic on which you wrote your synthesis essay, or literature review. You will then state what gaps you found in the research on your topic, areas in which further research might be appropriate on the topic, or any questions have opened up for you or remained unanswered as a result of having researched this topic.
This paper will be approximately 500-750 words.
Organization of the Paper
In this paragraph, you will explain the topic which you researched. The final sentence will be a thesis statement arguing for further research in specific areas.
Body section of 2-3 paragraphs. This section would describe any one of, or a combination of, the following. You would want at least two areas in which you felt there were gaps, needs for further research, or new or unanswered questions as a result of your research.
-gaps you saw in the research
For example, let us imagine you wrote a literature review on the effectiveness of one-on-one laptop programs in high schools. You may have noticed that little research has been done on how non-native speakers of English respond to one-on-one laptop programs. No studies analyzed the effects of such programs on the writing, reading, and critical thinking development of non-native speakers of English. This could be a gap in the research that you would point out in your paper.
-areas in which further research could be conducted that would shed more light on an issue
For example, let us imagine you wrote a literature review on the effectiveness of one-on-one laptop programs in high schools. You may have noticed that research has been conducted on the impact of such programs on the writing skills of non-native speakers of English. However, the studies did not focus on particular language groups. You feel that further study specifically on Chinese speakers and further study specifically on Spanish speakers is warranted. This could be an example of an area in which further research would be warranted that you would point out in your paper.
-questions that remained unanswered for you or new questions that opened up for you as you read the current literature on your topic
For example, let us imagine you wrote a literature review on the effectiveness of one-on-one laptop programs in high schools. You noticed that, as you were reading through the literature, you had questions on how schools determined what types of laptops to purchase. Did they purchase Hewlett-Packards computers, Dell computers, Toshiba computers, Acer computers, or computers from some other vendor? You found yourself wondering how business decisions with vendors are made when implementing a one-on-one laptop program. This could be an example of a question that opened up for you as you read through the literature. You could note this question in your paper.
In one paragraph, summarize your points in the body section. Re-state and succinctly explain any gaps, areas of further research, or unanswered questions.
The following is a suggested rubric. Instructors may adjust the rubric as desired.
|Features a strong thesis stating the gaps and/or unanswered questions.|
Presents at least two areas that feature gaps or unanswered questions.
Presents clear, well-supported, and reasonable arguments for the argument that there are gaps or unanswered questions.
Maintains unity among the paragraphs.
Maintains coherence among the paragraphs.
Employs a fluid writing style and an appropriate vocabulary.
Maintains accurate grammar and punctuation.