SOC-242: JUVENILE DELINQUENCY: explain and critique major theories relevant to JUVENILE DELINQUENCY

SOC-242: JUVENILE DELINQUENCY: explain and critique major theories relevant to JUVENILE DELINQUENCY 150 150 Affordable Capstone Projects Written from Scratch

Upon successful completion of this project—consisting of a Proposal (10%) and a Position Paper
(30%)—you will be able to:
● explain and critique major theories relevant to the issues addressed in the course;
● evaluate various theories in light of existing research and your own experience;
● research (i.e., find and identify) the relevant literature on a particular criminal justice topic; and
● write a Position Paper that is excellent in content and appearance.
Your objective in writing this assignment is to define a current issue related to juvenile delinquency and to
formulate and clarify your position on that issue by reacting to a controversial statement.
N.B.​ The death penalty for juveniles is NOT a current topic. In a 2005 decision called Roper v.
Simmons, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled that the execution of people who were
under 18 at the time of their crimes violates the federal constitutional guarantee against cruel and
unusual punishment.
Completing this assignment requires accomplishing the following six tasks:
1. Select a suitable reaction statement​. Your first task is to find or write a statement to which to
react. Reaction statements are provocative declarations. They are controversial assertions that
beg for either a negative or positive response. Where do you find good reaction statements? A
good way is to think about subjects that interest you. When you read about something in this
class that sparks a reaction because you either agree or disagree with it, you know that you are
on the right track.
2. Explain your selection​. After you have written your reaction statement, write a paragraph that
explains why it is important to you. Be as specific as possible and provide three reasons for
choosing this topic. Writing “I like it” doesn’t tell the reader anything useful.
3. Clearly define the issue addressed in your reaction statement​. What is the most important
issue addressed in your statement? Perhaps some aspects of the statement are more important?
As you define the issue addressed in your statement, you provide some clarification of the
statement that will help you state your position.
4. Clearly state your position on the issue​. The reader of your position should have no doubt
about where you stand on the issue you select.
5. Defend your position​. You should present several arguments to support your stand on the
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issue. When evaluating your paper, I will consider the extent to which you:
○ Identified the most important arguments needed to support your position.
○ Provided facts and information.
○ Presented your case accurately, coherently, logically, consistently, and clearly.
6. Conclude concisely​. Your conclusion should sum up your argument clearly, persuasively, and
Please keep in mind that your Position Paper must demonstrate your knowledge and understanding of
the theories and concepts discussed in this course, and your familiarity with various library and internet
sources of criminal justice literature.
You will complete the final project in two stages (see below for guidelines and details):
● Part 1: Proposal for Position Paper
● Part 2: Position Paper
Provide a proposal for your Position Paper (see Part 2: Position Paper for specific paper guidelines).
Your proposal must include a complete (fully formulated) reaction statement and a list of all references
(scholarly books, articles, and other sources of information) you will use to write your paper. The mentor
will review your proposal to make sure that you are on the right track.
The goal of the proposal is to help your mentor understand why you are doing what you are doing:
Why did you select this topic?
Why is it important to you?
What are the key issues you will address?
What is your position on the issue?
The more information you provide in the proposal, the better your mentor will be able to follow your intent
and help you complete your final paper.
Please use the following guidelines to create your proposal:
● It should be 1–2 pages in length and present the structure and content of your paper, as well as
the references used to support your position.
● Include a complete, fully formulated reaction statement that clearly states the problem and
defines the key issues you are addressing.
● Present the structure and basic content of your paper—the sections it will have and the areas,
ideas, theories, issues, etc. you will present.
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○ Abstract
○ Statement of the problem
○ Analysis and defense of your position
○ Conclusion
● List all the references you will use in proper APA format. Remember, a minimum of five
references, excluding the course textbook, is required. Use a variety of references, not just one
type of reference. You need to show that you can access documents, web pages, texts, people,
The Position Paper must meet the following minimum requirements:
1. The Position Paper must be between 1,750 and 3,000 words (7 to 10 pages) in length. The
Position Paper length does not include the title page, table of contents page, or references page.
2. The Position Paper must have a title page. The title page must have the title of the Position
Paper, the student’s name, the student’s address, and the name of the course.
3. The Position Paper must have a table of contents. The table of contents must indicate the pages
on which each portion or section of the paper begins. This will look like the table of contents of a
4. The Position Paper must have an “abstract.” An abstract is a short statement of the central ideas
in the Position Paper. The abstract must be between 25 and 50 words in length.
5. The Position Paper must have a “statement of the problem.” The statement of the problem
identifies the topic discussed and the issues pertaining thereto. For purposes of this Position
Paper, it is a discussion of the topic, your reaction statement, your reasons for selecting this
issue, identification of the major issues relating to the topic, and your position on the issue.
6. The “statement of the problem” section of the Position Paper might identify many issues relating
to the topic. However, after the “statement of the problem” section, discuss only the major issues
you identified.
7. The Position Paper must have a conclusion section. It should briefly summarize the issues
raised in the Position Paper, discuss your recommendations, and note how your
recommendations are or are not supported by the facts and expert opinion to which you refer in
your paper.
8. There must be a reference section of the Position Paper, using the APA citation format. If you do
not know what the APA citation format is, then look at your textbooks and see how these authors
cite the works on which they relied to write their documents. Check the Writing Resources at the
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bottom of this document for links about APA style. If you still are confused, visit a library and ask
a reference librarian to show you an APA citation style document.
9. The Position Paper must rely upon relevant facts and expert opinion. You must cite at least five
sources: peer-reviewed journal articles, scholarly books (excluding the course textbook), and
scholarly Web sites. The only references you may cite are peer-reviewed, professional journal
articles (e.g., articles published in Crime and Delinquency, Police Quarterly, Social Problems,
American Psychological Review), law review articles, scholarly books, federal and state case
law (i.e., appellate court decisions), state or federal statutes (including references to their
legislative history), and government publications (e.g., Uniform Crime Reports, National Institute
of Justice publications, U.S. Census data). Do not cite newspaper or magazine articles.​ Use
this helpful list of peer-reviewed journals that are available to you through TESU as you conduct
your research.
10. Of the references cited, there must be: a) at least one from a scholarly book (i.e., an edited
volume or full-length book) published within the last 3 to 5 years – this will show that you are
familiar with current research and data in this field; and b) at least one from a criminal justice
professional journal published within the last 3 to 5 years – this will show that you know how to
find the latest information in this field.
11. Each section of the Position Paper must have a separate heading and same must correspond to
the page numbers noted on the Table of Contents. Placing a heading at the beginning of each
section of the paper makes the discussion in the paper easier to follow. Headings also improve
the paper’s visual presentation. Among the headings your paper should have are: a) Abstract; b)
Statement of the Problem; c) Analysis and defense of your position (including an analysis of
theories, concepts and facts); and d) Conclusion.
12. The Position Paper must use the proper grammar, spelling, and punctuation​. If a direct
quotation is more than two lines long, make certain you single space and indent it.
13. The Position Paper may not contain any plagiarism. Plagiarism occurs when a person
represents someone else’s words, ideas, phrases, sentences or data as one’s own work. If you
submit work that includes such material, the source of that information must be acknowledged
through complete and accurate references. All verbatim statements must be acknowledged by
means of quotation marks. Your goal should be to use only one or two quotations in a 10-page
paper. Please strive to paraphrase and cite your sources. Excessive use of quotations will result
in grade deductions.
Examples of plagiarism include, but are not limited to the following:
○ One person quoting another’s words directly without acknowledging the source;
○ Using another’s ideas, opinions or theories without acknowledging the source, even if
they have been completely paraphrased in one’s own words;
○ Using facts, statistics or other illustrative material taken from a source, without
acknowledging the source, unless the information is common knowledge;
○ Using words or work of others taken from the internet without acknowledging the
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For this assignment, academic misconduct will consist of submitting written work to fulfill the
requirements of more than one course without the explicit permission of the instructors and will
result in a zero grade.
If any part of a Position Paper contains plagiarism, no matter how small that part is, the
student will receive a zero on the Position Paper assignment.
The Position Paper is due at the end of Week 12. Please consult the Course Calendar
The following links provide online writing aids to help you with your paper assignments.
● Examples of In-Text Citations and References
● OWL (Online Writing Lab) at Purdue University
● Writer’s Handbook, the Writing Center at the University of Wisconsin–Madison
● APA Guidelines
● Thomas Edison State University’s Writing Style Guides
● You can access online research databases such as ProQuest and EBSCOhost by logging into
the myEdison portal. Links can be found in the My Resources block under the Educational tab.
Copyright © 2018 by Thomas Edison State University. All rights reserved.