Legal analysis of Human Trafficking in NC

Professional Paper

Guidelines & Rubric


Description of Assignment:


The professional paper is required of all students and serves as a capstone, applied-learning experience.
The professional paper will present an examination of a criminal justice policy, program or a general question related to crime or criminality.

Students should draw from their internship, professional employment or research in choosing the topic and completing the professional paper. The paper can take many forms such as, but not limited to, a case study, policy analysis, program evaluation, program or policy implementation plan, empirical study, legal analysis, or a synthesis/meta-analysis of existing research. The final product will be a structured similar to a manuscript being submitted to a professional journal for publication (20 – 25 pages in length).


Organization and Clarity (10 points)


Follows formatting guidelines provided in the syllabus
Adheres to APA manuscript, citation, and referencing style
Employs proper grammar and punctuation
Statement of the Problem/Introduction(2-3 pages; 10 points)
Clearly defines problem/issue to be studied
Provides justification for the study in terms of its importance
Provides historical background/context for study
Overviews range of issues related to problem
Delineates specific issues to be covered in the current study

 Presentation of Existing Evidence (6-8 pages; 30 points)


Reviews findings from empirical studies, best practices, case law, etc. related to each aspect of the problem/topic under examination
Includes a description of the underlying methods and analysis in addition to the findings from those studies
Reports original findings from authors who conducted actual studies (as opposed to relying on secondary citations)
Relies mainly on peer-reviewed scholarly sources within the field of criminal
justice/criminology or related fields in addition to government and agency reports
Sources selected on the basis of importance, recency, and relevance
Identifies methodological weaknesses and limitations of the existing research

 Method of Evaluation (4-6 pages; 20 points)


Specific to type of study being conducted. Additional handouts specific to each analysis or evaluation will be provided.
e.g. for empirical paper: describes the source of data, including where it came from, how it was obtained, and the method of data collection; describes the sample, including the total potential pool of subjects, the method of selection, and the total number of cases included; describes the measures/methods of evaluation relied on in the current study; describes analytic procedures followed
in examining the research question/hypothesis

Results (4-6 pages; 20 points)
Provides descriptive information for cases included in the study
Summarizes findings of the study in relation to the research question/hypothesis
Employs tables, statistics, diagrams, and/or other methods of comparative assessment
Discussion and Recommendations (2-3 pages; 10 points)
Brings findings to bear on previous studies described in the literature review
Identifies limitations/weaknesses of the method/results in the current study
Recommends preferred policy options/laws/procedures/approaches
Discusses implementation strategies and possible unanticipated outcomes related to
the recommended course of action
Suggests directions for future research

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