GUIDE TO GEOG 208 ESSAY
This research paper (~6 double-spaced pages) requires you to examine some aspects of Canadian Geography in one of the 10 topics below. This will be written as a formal essay, including an introduction, an appropriate number of body paragraphs and a conclusion. The paper will rely on six academic sources, from which a thematic analysis will be conducted in order to identify themes that occur within this body of literature. The body paragraphs will represent these themes. The conclusion will summarize the main findings while also providing critical insights into the methodological approach to this area of study as well as identify current knowledge gaps in the literature and potential areas for future research. When writing this essay, it is best to think not so much in terms of answering a question or presenting information and data as of illuminating a problem. To illuminate a problem is to do such things as: explain what the problem is and why it matters; consider different ways of thinking about the problem; construct arguments and counter-arguments; give examples; assess supporting evidence; explore implications; make relevant connections; and uncover hidden assumptions. So, this essay should be both analytical and descriptive. Your essay needs to be more than a summary of other people’s opinions or published data. Some parts of your essay need to have a persuasive argumentative angle.
Note: All students’ essays will be checked for academic dishonesty. All submitted work is subject to normal verification that standards of academic integrity have been upheld. All ideas presented which are not your own must be properly referenced. While forms of plagiarism may vary, each involves verbatim or near verbatim presentation of the writings or ideas of others as one’s own without adequately acknowledging the original source. Plagiarism includes (but is not limited to) copying from a book, article or another student, downloading material or ideas from the Internet, or otherwise submitting someone else’s work or ideas as your own. All plagiarism offences result in mandatory reporting to the Dean’s office. Students should consult the Academic Integrity Policy: https://www.capilanou.ca/about-capu/governance/policies/
Consult the Library’s web page citation for general help on essay writing, avoiding plagiarism, and citing your sources. Geography scholars often use either Chicago style or APA style. APA would work well for your essay, but MLA is also acceptable.
I always recommend students to purchase a copy of Capilano Guide for Writing Assignments. It is available in the bookstore and is inexpensive. It is an excellent guide. It can help you with every aspect of your essay (in all your courses). I think it is indispensable.
Also, check out the following:
CapU Geography librarian has put together a link of information for you. Please have a look: also, she is available to see you for a scheduled meeting in person or over Zoom –
CapU library Geography research guide:
CapU library citation guide:
And don’t forget the CapU learning commons/ writing centre:
I am suggesting six academic sources. However, five or seven is of course fine. You will likely also have additional non-academic sources. So, in total 8-12 sources would be right.
In general, academic/scholarly sources have the following characteristics:
o They are written by a specific author or authors. In other words, scholarly sources specify who their authors are.
o They contain a title.
o They are roughly a minimum of 10-30 pages in length.
o They contain an extensive bibliography.
o They are published in peer-reviewed journals or by scholarly publishers.
WHAT DOES COUNT AS AN ACADEMIC SOURCE:
· Academic (non-fiction) books or chapters from those books.
· Articles (not abstracts or reviews) from academic journals or quarterlies.
· Some academic articles from academic web sites (i.e., those related to universities sites). The URL should contain “.edu” in it. Some “.edu” web sites and pages could be counted as academic.
WHAT DOESN’T COUNT AS AN ACADEMIC SOURCE:
· Books and articles we use in class.
· Abstracts, book reviews, and most introductions to fictional works (regardless of where they are published).
· Non-academic web pages.
· Fiction books (novels, poetry, and drama).
· Newspaper articles or articles found in popular magazines or magazines such as Time, Newsweek, BusinessWeek, U.S. News and World Report.
· Encyclopedias, Wikipedia entries, and other reference works. (Please, avoid these in your college essays).
· Movies and TV shows.
The big 5 criteria can help you evaluate your sources for credibility:
• Currency: Check the publication date and determine whether it is sufficiently current for your topic.
• Coverage (relevance): Consider whether the source is relevant to your research and whether it covers the topic adequately for your needs.
• Authority: Discover the credentials of the authors of the source and determine their level of expertise and knowledge about the subject.
• Accuracy: Consider whether the source presents accurate information and whether you can verify that information.
• Objectivity (purpose):Think about the author’s purpose in creating the source and consider how that affects its usefulness to your research.
Finally, don’t forget to consult the GEOG 208 achievement rubric on eLearn. In particular, carefully look at the bottom two topics: written work and information literacy
Essay topics (see essay topics explained video on eLearn):
1. What are the three of the most important demographic changes occurring in Canada? Explain what is involved in these trends, and how they will affect employers and workers in the next decade.
2. Work in Canada is strongly shaped by regional location. Discuss how region influences key aspects of the work experiences.
3. An obvious problem is that urban sprawl leads to a car-dependent culture — and driving is stressful for people and for nature. More traffic means more carbon emissions, more smog. But sprawl isn’t inevitable. It is often the result of poor planning and short-sightedness. Discuss how Canada became a suburban nation and what we can do to manage the negative effects of urban sprawl.
4. What are toponyms? How can toponyms take the form of decolonizing the map? Review the insertion of Indigenous place names on the Canadian landscape. Discuss the implications with as many examples as you can find.
5. Arctic sovereignty involves several hotspots. Examine how Canada has managed the Arctic region. What are some of the challenges and potential disputes with other countries?
6. Fishing technology was critical to the destruction of the cod stocks in Newfoundland. What is the state of the Atlantic fishing industry today? What are the challenges and opportunities?
7. Explain how globalization has affected the many small communities throughout Canada. You will need to define globalization and use a few specific examples.
8. Canada’s Indigenous population is struggling. This struggle lies along the Indigenous-non-Indigenous fault line. The large number of murdered and missing Indigenous women and girls is the dark side of this reality. What, in your opinion, are the root causes? Offer solutions to these root causes.
9. The ascendancy of neoliberalism has occurred through a series of interconnected transformations that began with the economic turmoil of the 1970s, the rise of New Right governments across the 1980s, and the deepening internationalization of the circuits of money and industrial capital. Explain how Canada has been impacted by neoliberalism. Use specific examples.
10. In various parts of Europe, multiculturalism has earned a bad name for itself. In most of those instances a key problem has been the host country’s efforts to assimilate immigrants. But in Canada, for the most part multiculturalism has worked. Why? What are examples of how it hasn’t worked? Create an argumentative essay based on the implementation of multiculturalism.