Search Essay Instruction Sheet
An I-Search paper is written to explore and communicate information learned about a particular topic of interest to you. Your goal for this essay is choose a topic that you have a strong desire or need to know more about. Use the library, the internet, “experts” in the field, observations to find out all you can about your topic. You should the craft an essay that has five parts:
? Part 1: Introduce your topic, discuss what you already know about this topic and what experiences you have relative to this topic (personal history with the topic)
? My topic is PennHip and the success of increasing the median range for DI and thereby decreasing the occurrence of hip dysplasia.
? Part 2: Specific question that your I-Search attempted to answer and an explanation of why that question is important to you. Why does this question need an answer? Further, this section should speculate about what you expected to find in your research before you began and what you believed others think about this issue;
? Part 3: What is/are the answer(s) to your question(s) now that you have completed this research? (Thesis statement with a “blueprint” of the direction your blueprint will take). This will be the “broad stroke” answer; the remainder of your essay will further explore your research findings.
? Part 4: (Optional as you might choose instead to integrate this into Part 4): What was your methodology? How did you go about your quest? Discuss the steps you took to complete this essay. Where did you look to find information? Who did you interview? Where did you observe?
? Part 5: What are your research findings?: What did each source tell you? How do the sources relate to each other? Do they agree? Conflict? How do they “add up” to help you answer your research question? Use a combination of quotation and paraphrase to explain what you see as the answer to your question. Put together all of the information you learned in organized, readable paragraphs. Be careful to document your sources. (THIS WILL BE THE BULK OF YOUR PAPER)
? Part 6: What are your concluding thoughts? Did you satisfactorily answer your question? Are there new areas stemming from your original question need further exploration?
You must use at least three sources to create this paper. Remember to quote and paraphrase the information that furthers your own thinking about the topic, and discuss how that information has furthered your thinking about the topic. The bulk of the paper should be your synthesis of your sources—that is, how do you make sense of what you are learning?
How has your understanding changed as a result of these sources?
How do you see these sources fitting together?
Explain how the quotations and paraphrase from each secondary source adds to your understanding of the issue under consideration.