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Guideline for the Research Question Assignment

Guideline for the Research Question Assignment

Guideline for the Research Question Assignment (15 points) (2-3 pages)

The research question assignment should include the following items:

· The topic of the research, the research question, your tentative hypotheses that you will specify the details in the conceptualization part.

· You should specify why you, as a group, want to work on a specific topic, in other words your idiographic approach to the issue (if you have not send me the information about your group please do it as soon as possible).

· You can choose every topic that is related to political science and international relations and “important’ in the real world”, as King et al. (1994, 15) set a requirement for a scientific research question. Also you need to specify why this topic is important for “you” to explore, in other words your motivation.

· Your research must also fulfill the second criterion of King et al. (1994) which is “specific contribution to an identifiable scholarly literature” (15), hence you should choose your question accordingly. The details of how you can do it are described in detail in the article, it would be good for you to read it carefully. Do not forget that the importance of the questions you ask is evaluated by their contribution to social science (it is not interesting to work on a topic which is widely discussed in the literature unless you bring something refreshing to the topic with your research. So choose your topics carefully and process the idea thoroughly).

· The only way to know whether your topic make any contribution is to make a basic literature review to previous studies and locate your research accordingly. In this assignment, you do not need to include a comprehensive literature review, you only need to find at least three scholarly works (journal articles, book chapters, reports etc.) on your topic and you need to tell what your contribution to these works might be. For this assignment only a reference to these resources is enough.

· The next step of the first assignment is “conceptualization”. You should define in detail in your research what specific “concepts” contains, and “identify indicators and dimensions” (Babbie 2007, 124-133). You will not choose or describe your specific method, this will be a part of next assignment, your research proposal. At this stage you will establish your topic of interest following specific steps in order to move forward in the next assignment.

The research interest assignment should be 2-3 pages-long, written in the academic writing format (double-spaced, proof-read, 12 front size, Times New Roman, justified) ( Check the format of this document). Your documents will be uploaded to Turnitin, which is the program that checks plagiarism, so avoid copying any other work without proper referencing. You can use any reference format generally accepted in social sciences (Chicago, APA, MLA, APSA etc.). You should also state your reference articles, books etc. at your Bibliography (which you must have in your research question assignment.

· If you are working as a group, please upload only one copy of your paper (one of the members of your can do it) but make sure that you write the names of all the members of your group at the beginning of the paper.

Grading Rubric for this assignment:

Based on the details provided above, your first assignment will be graded according to the following criteria:

1. Your research topic, research question and tentative hypotheses (5 pts)

2. The idiographic perception of the issue (1 pts) and importance of the topic with regard to social science (1 pts)

3. Your planned contribution to the existing literature/discussions on your topic (for this assignment, very shortly, you do not have to write a complete literature review) (please carefully read King et al.’s chapter) (3 pts)

4. Conceptualization (please carefully read chapter 5 in Babbie) (5 pts)


Babbie, Earl. 2014. “Conceptualization, Operationalization, and Measurement”. in The Basict of Social Research, 6th eds. Belmonth: Wadsworth, 127-161.

King, Gary, Robert O. Keohane and Sidney Verba. 1994. “Chapter One: The Science in Social Science”. in Designing Social Inquiry: Scientific Inference in Qualitative Research. New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1-33.


Helpful links for referencing:


For plagiarism:

https://www.um.edu.mt/__data/assets/pdf_file/0018/261324/avdplagiarism.pdf (A concise handbook for avoiding plagiarism)

https://www.bilgi.edu.tr/media/uploads/2019/01/29/bilgi-credit-system-bachelors-degree-and-associate-degree-education-a_9KGPdfC.pdf (if you want to check legal sanctions of plagiarism)