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The major writing assignment in IBA 135 is a career exploration research paper. The
paper has five major sections; each section requires a minimum of 1- 2 typed, double-spaced
pages for a total of 7- 10 pages. In addition, you will prepare a Works Cited/References list that
will conform to APA format. Please use the rubric as a guide.
Your paper should begin with a short introductory paragraph that provides an
overview of what you will discuss. Please make sure you use a traditional font (Times New
Roman, 12 point) and indent paragraphs. There should be 1-inch margins on all sides. Using
headings throughout the paper will help you stay focused as you write. Academic essays should
have a structure, be coherent, with logical progression throughout, and cohesive, with the
different parts of the writing clearly connected.
Part 1: Introduction: Self-Assessment
In the introductory section of your paper, describe how you decided on this career for
your research.You should explain how both your educational background and work history have
informed this decision. Using the results of the Career Inventory (and any other career
questionnaires / surveys / assessments that you have taken), why do you think this career is a
match for your personality, abilities, interests and values.
Though you will be writing about your personal experiences please make sure you
maintain an academic writing style. Academic writing should use clear and precise language to
ensure the reader understands the meaning (i.e., do not use slang or informal language).
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Part 2: Employment Sector Data
In this section, detail the education, certificates/licenses and skills necessary for a career
in the employment sector that you have selected. Most of the information you will need can be
found in the data bases included in the IBA 135 Research Guide. Remember to write down the
sources that you use so that you can cite them in this section of your paper. An academic essay
should include relevant examples, supporting evidence and information from academic texts or
credible sources.
Part 3: Job Option(s) in the Employment Sector for College Graduates
You will need to either interview someone for this section of the essay or include
information about the lived experience of someone in your career of interest (e.g., YouTube
video). Imagine that you meet eligibility requirements for one or more positions based on your
educational background (baccalaureate degree) and prior work experience. What might you
anticipate if you accepted a position (working conditions, schedule, salary, benefits, training, and
opportunities for advancement)? If possible, interview someone employed in this field currently.
What do they like and dislike about their job? What advice would they give you?
If you do not have access to someone in your field, you could see if the Career Center
could help you arrange to talk with a Lehman alumnus/alumna. You could also interview a
faculty or staff member who has come from the employment sector that interests you. An
informational interview (conducted in person (if the conditions are safe), on the phone, or via
email) can count as one of your five sources.
Keep complete interview notes (or, with the individual’s permission, an audiotape) and
make sure to get contact information (full name, official job title) since you will need it for your
Works Cited list. Since you may want to include a specific quotation, make sure to indicate
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direct quotations by using “quotation marks in your notes.”
Part 4: Job Outlook in the Employment Sector
This section focuses on: What are some current issues as well as projected changes in this
field? You will need to use something besides an online database to write this portion of the
essay – you will need to find a book, professional journal, news article, or monograph that spells
out challenges as well as opportunities (Farmer, 2004).
Part 5: How I Can Prepare Myself for Success
Outline the steps you will take including specifics on a choice of major, paid or unpaid
work experiences, and extracurricular activities (clubs, organizations, honor societies, and
service learning opportunities). How will you build a resume over the years you spend pursuing
your undergraduate degree? You may decide to conduct an informational interview with an
academic advisor, career counselor, student activities administrator, or faculty member to
develop this part of your paper. However, you should not interview the same person you did
before.
The interview can be counted as one of your five sources. Keep complete interview notes
(or, with the individual’s permission, an audiotape) and make sure to get contact information (full
name, official job title) since you will need it for your Works Cited list. Since you may want to
include a specific quotation, make sure to indicate direct quotations by using quotation marks in
your notes.
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References
Part 6 is the References page. You will need at least five sources that you will paraphrase
or quote in the text (using correct form for in-text citations). At the end of the paper, you will
include a Works Cited/References list. A majority of your sources will be online databases, but
at the very least I expect that you will read and make use of one book, book chapter, or
professional journal article/monograph, or news article.
Please make sure your references are in APA style. For example, all lines after the first
line of each entry in your reference list should be indented one-half inch from the left margin.
This is called hanging indentation. All authors’ names should be inverted (i.e., last names should
be provided first). Authors’ first and middle names should be written as initials. Please check this
site for additional information on how to format using APA style:
https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/research_and_citation/apa_style/apa_formatting_and_style_guide/ref
erence_list_basic_rules.html
Sample APA style references: (note indent, author style, capitalization, italics)
Farmer, P. (2004) Pathologies of power: Health, human rights, and the new war on the poor.
University of California Press.
National Alliance on Mental Illness. (n.d.). Mental health conditions.
https://www.nami.org/Learn-More/Mental-Health-Conditions

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