STUDY OF STUDIES Doing a study of studies involves three things; identifying a problem area of interest to you, reading and abstracting about eight to ten original research reports which describe investigations related to this problem, and studying these reports carefully to determine what conclusions are warranted, and then preparing a paper reporting your study. THE PROBLEM AREA: You may select one of the problem areas on the list provided by your instructor or any problem area concerning social behavior of African Americans, European Americans, or any ethnic group. In all probability you will have to read several research reports to get a feel for the kinds of studies that have been done, but this may not be necessary.

READING AND ABSTRACTING STUDIES: Read original research reports or specialized essays/reports. Published opinion, descriptions of current practice, and idea articles are not research, but may be used if the topic is specific and focused. An original study states a precise problem very carefully, outline the exact procedures and techniques that are employed, and reports results in specific, exacting terms. It is very important that you learn to differentiate research from these other types of writing. After you identify an article, summarize it very carefully, including as accurate a statement of the problem, the procedures, and the results as possible. In general, this abstract should not exceed 300-400 words (one page, single spaced). Avoid distorting the author’s ideas by sticking as closely as possible to his/her terminology, etc.

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STUDYING THE STUDIES: After you have done your research, read all of the abstracts several times and note the consistencies and inconsistencies that occur. In what way do the reports agree? What problems are still unexplored? What generalizations can you make that are supportable from the research you have read? Evaluate why the problem persists or why the solutions are appropriate in light of situational and/or cultural influences. This should be a depth type study in which you seek to become very familiar with some of the best research available on a given topic.

WRITING THE REPORT: In preparing a report of your study of studies, first indicate a brief statement of the problem area involved, then report each abstracted study, and finally prepare a final section (Summary and Conclusions) in which you point out what this research means. A researcher should be able to read your abstracts and study your conclusions to see whether or not your generalizations are supportable by your data (the abstracts). This is not a term paper in the usual sense of the term in that you do not need a reference page. Do include all pertinent bibliographic references at the top of each abstract, but the general style and format of the paper should differ considerably from a conventional term paper because here you will be reporting in detail on other people’s researc

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