coping with stress

This psychology 1103 enhancement section will include NO quizzes, NO exams, NO research projects, and NO term paper. You will be evaluated based on your participation and three short (2-3 page) insight papers. Writing your insight papers provides you with an opportunity to communicate and to demonstrate your ideas and what you’ve learned.

Rules about insight papers:
• Each paper should be 2 to 3 pages in length
• Formatting:
o Times New Roman font
o Size 12 font
o Double spaced
o 1 inch margins
o No extra spaces between paragraphs
• Include (single spaced, at the top of the first page) your…
o Name
o Date
o Insight paper number
o Section number
• It is important to write…
o Correctly –spelling, grammar, etc (i.e. proofread!)
o Concisely –non-repetitive, organized, clear, etc
o Creatively – good sentence structure, writing style, etc
• Be sure to tie in and cite one peer reviewed journal article.
• All papers should be handed in at the beginning of the class stated on the syllabus.

Details about insight papers:
An insight paper begins with some “a-hah” observation that you have made in class. A good insight paper starts with your experience, and adds some reflection, some integrative thinking, and some application. A good insight paper goes beyond merely reporting an observation – it says more about the observation … by making an applied point or theoretical point, by relating the observation to some in-class or out-of-class experience, by providing a tentative explanation for why something happened, by suggesting when or for whom that something might happen versus when or for whom it would not happen. Before you begin to write an insight paper, you should outline the following components.
1. Experience: Have as a starting point something that has aroused your interest, made you curious, elicited a reaction from you or from others or caused you to question. The “something” should come from a topic discussed in our class. In most cases, any reactions you may have can be the basis for a “good insight.” One common error is to jump around in an insight paper, attempting to talk about several observations, thoughts or reactions. Another common error is to merely describe what occurred during discussion from your point of view. A detailed description of what happened in class does not constitute a good insight paper; however, we you do need to have a clear experience and related insight as the basis for your paper.
2. Reflection: Once you have something to write about—an observation, feeling, reaction—do some thinking, analyzing, exploring, etc. Explore why something might have happened, write about why you noticed one thing more than other things or why this something was of interest to you, write about what fact/theory/notion in psychology might be relevant to this something.
3. Integration: Next, integrate your experience and reflections with any relevant conceptions, ideas, theories, etc. from an empirically reviewed article in the psychology literature. You may also incorporate the text, lecture, or any handouts you receive. Develop your own hypotheses, derive a general rule or principle, think about possible causes, about preconditions and consequences. Explore possible determinants, for example: would this rule always be true, would it be true for everybody, all of the time … for somebody, some of the time? What might be some things that would prevent or alter what you have observed? What are some alternative outcomes?
4. Application: Based on the above three components, suggest a test and explore how you could test your idea by observing yourself or others.
Common Issues:
1. Citations
a. Need full citation in Works Cited
i. Newton, A. & de Villiers, J. (2007). Thinking while talking: adults fail nonverbal false-belief reasoning Psychological Science, 18(7), 574-579.
ii. Kana, R., Keller, T., Cherkassky, V., & Minshew, N. (2006). Sentence comprehension in autism: thinking in pictures with decreased functional connectivity. Brain, 129, 2484-2493.
b. Also need in-text citation
i. (Newton & de Villiers, 2007)
ii. (Kana et al., 2006)
c. See the Citation Guide (will be covered in a future class)
2. Grammar and sentence structure
a. Use proper language – do not use abbreviations or slang
i. I.e say “every day” instead of (24/7)
ii. Write out numbers most of the time – especially when reporting age (i.e. “three years old” vs “3 years old”)
b. Simple and clear language is better – using a rich vocabulary is good, but only when it enhances your point
3. Qwrap up your topic

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