The written report should address the biological study of a specific behavioral or mental phenomenon covered in your readings.

The written report should address the biological study of a specific behavioral or mental phenomenon covered in your readings.



The written report should address the biological study of a specific behavioral or mental

phenomenon (normal or pathological) covered in your readings. You should select a behavioral or

mental phenomenon (e.g., language, schizophrenia) and then select a biological strategy

(e.g., hormones, neurotransmitters, physiology, imaging). As an example, the theme of your

report might be imaging approaches to the study of schizophrenia. Your paper should summarize

fundamental issues, questions, and controversies and provide a general overview of the topic. It

should also elaborate on your understanding of the brain processes that are revealed through

imaging research in schizophrenia. To accomplish this, you will have to use research articles to

illustrate relevant points. You may use any of a number of resources to find research articles that

deal with your topic, including the library and the Internet.

This paper is not a "commentary" or "editorial" style paper, but rather a formal research paper using

scientific references as the basis for your topic. Personal experience, while sometimes relevant,

should not be included for this assignment unless these experiences are linked to course concepts

and the brain. Also, you should avoid using personal pronouns such as "I" or "myself" in this type of

paper. The requirement for the research articles that you select is that they must have appeared in a

peer-reviewed (i.e., refereed) scientific journal. (Please contact your instructor to confirm whether a

particular journal is peer-reviewed.) You must use two peer-reviewed scientific articles and they

must be recent, i.e., have appeared in the literature no earlier than 2006. You might use the

online databases from MEDLINE and PSYCH ABSTRACTS as a source of full-text articles from

refereed journals. Newspaper or magazine articles should not be used as your major reference, but

can be useful if they lead you to the appropriate research article. You should avoid simply repeating

the articles in summary form; rather, use them within the text of your paper to illustrate important

points. To ensure that you are on the right track, you should discuss with your instructor the topic

and the research articles that you have chosen.

Your paper is to be 7 to 10 pages, or about 1,600 words in length. It must be typed, double-spaced,

with one-inch margins, and fully referenced in APA format (see Check the

course schedule for your due date. Your instructor will determine a late paper policy.

The text of your paper should be preceded by an abstract (about 100 words) that summarizes the

key points in the paper (i.e., statement of problem, major findings, conclusion). All abstracts will be

posted in a conference for all students to review. You should respond to these abstracts to stimulate

discussion. Your responses will be evaluated and will constitute part of your grade for online

conference participation.

The paper will be graded on (1) content and understanding, and (2) how effectively you have

communicated your ideas in writing. You will receive a separate grade for each of these elements,

weighted equally. Content and understanding are evaluated on the basis of whether the paper (a)

identified important issues, questions, and controversies; (b) used recent and relevant research

literature to illustrate the issues; and (c) demonstrated an understanding of brain processes and how

brain research revealed an understanding of the behavior in question. Effective communication is

evaluated on the basis of (a) organization and structure that help communicate the ideas (e.g.,

headings throughout the text), (b) use of your own language and style (no cutting and pasting), (c)

connecting ideas in the text with research papers, and (d) correct usage of APA format in the text

and references.

Your paper is to be submitted in Microsoft Word format (.doc file) and formatted in APA style (please

consult the APA Style Manual, sixth edition, for proper format). Papers not in .doc file format or APA

style will not be accepted for a grade; in this case, a grade of "zero" will be assigned for the paper. It

is highly advised that you take care to use proper APA style. If you have technical issues related to

Word, please notify the instructor immediately so that an appropriate solution can be found.


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