This is the "Social Problems" page of the "Sociology: Social Problems" guide.
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Sociology: Social Problems  

Last Updated: Jan 29, 2014 URL: Print Guide RSS Updates
Social Problems Print Page


Is the assigned social problem controversial?  What are the various viewpoints?


Identify the Problem & Ask Questions

Why is the assigned topic considered a social problem?

  • What is the scope of the problem?
  • What are the causes?
  • What are the effects?
  • What preventions and/or solutions exist? Are they effective? Are they affordable?

    Assignment Specifics

    What is the best way to communicate the information?

    Final Products:

    Part I (Audience: Teacher)

    • 4-5 page paper (12 pt, double-spaced, organized, logical sequence, informative)
    • Works Cited (MLA format, 7th edition)
    • Cover sheet

    Use evidence to support/defend your reasons!

    Part II (Audience: Classmates and Teacher)

    • PowerPoint Presentation (images, video, graphs, charts, key ideas)

      Search Strategies

      • Locate and search appropriate resources
      • Vary search terms (don't use the same search terms over and over again)
      • Think of synonyms
      • Use Boolean searching
      • Use "quotation marks" to search for exact phrases
      • Be creative

      Some search terms to try:

      • scope, range, extent
      • causes, reason, origin
      • effects, results, consequences
      • prevention, deterrence
      • solution, answer
      • statistics, data




        Usernames and passwords for subscription databases and ebooks are located under the Contents section of the Edline homepage.



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        Facts on File Databases


        Opposing Viewpoints (Gale/Cengage)


        Student Resources in Context (Gale/Cengage)


        ProQuest Databases

        Free Online Resources

        Take a moment to read the 'About Us' information.

        • Who is providing the information?
        • Where did the author find his/her facts, data, information?
        • What is the purpose of the site?
        • When was the site last updated?
        • What is the possible bias?


        When you use someone else's words, work, thoughts, and/or ideas, you need to give the person credit. It doesn't matter whether you quote the person word-for-word or put it in your own words (paraphrase), you need to acknowledge where the words, work, thought, or idea originated. Otherwise, you are passing it off as your own.

        Be responsible.

        Be honest.

        Show integrity.


        Record Bibliographic Information

        Don't forget to record the following for each source you use:

        • Author/creator
        • Title of article, chapter, film, webpage
        • Page number
        • Name of magazine, newspaper, journal, book, website
        • Publication date
        • Name of subscription database (if used)
        • Format (web, print)
        • Date of access (if found online)


        • NoodleTools
          NoodleTools is a bibliographic software tool to assist you in creating accurate source citations in MLA and APA formats.

        Citation Resources


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