Research paper

For Sections I – V: you must submit a typed, double-spaced paper, in APA format that is approximately five to six pages in length. Please include a title page and an abstract at the beginning of your paper (but these do not count toward page length requirements). Thorough, thoughtful and well-organized papers will receive the highest grades. **Within the paper, sections I – V must be covered and included. The questions are included only for guidance, to make sure that you address each of the sections thoroughly and thoughtfully by answering the questions of your choice.**

Section I: (20 points; suggested page length is 1 – 2 pages) Information about a specific career in which you are interested. You should include information such as: the nature of the work, the environment, the education, skills, training and personality traits required to be successful, average salaries, the labor market outlook, related position, typical employers, etc. Sources to use include: books, periodicals, newspapers, professional journals, and websites. Suggested questions to answer include but are not limited to:

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■ What special skills, talents, or personality traits are necessary for this occupation?

■ Where could you gain experience?

■ In what ways are you suited for this career?

■ What personality characteristics or skills do you currently possess that you believe will benefit you in this career?

Section II: (20 points; suggested page length is 1 – 2 pages) Information about a specific employer who would hire someone with your chosen career interests. You should approach this part of the assignment as though you were preparing for a real job interview. Topics covered should include the size of the organization, its history, the organizational structure, its culture and/or mission, branches or subsidiaries, clients or customers, products or services, opportunities for promotion, etc. Most medium to large size organizations have this information on their website. However, you are encouraged to research information from other resources other than the organization itself (example: Hoovers, Uniworld). Suggested questions to answer include but are not limited to:

■ What is the prospect for employment in this occupation?

■ What factors influence the availability of jobs in this field?

■ What is the growth potential for this job?

■ What health benefits are available to employees?

■ What health and safety issues are involved in this occupation?

■ What other benefits might this occupation include: vacation time, retirement plan, perks?

Section III: (20 points; suggested page length is 1 – 2 pages) A description of the typical career path one follows as he/she advances in this career. What is an entry level position? What are other names of entry-level positions? Is there more than one path one could take? What are the middle and upper-level positions? Suggested questions to answer include but are not limited to:

■ What is the minimum education required for this job? Maximum?

■ How many years of study are involved? At what cost?

■ Where would you obtain this education? (On-the-job training, junior college, technical school, college, or university?)

■ What are the entrance requirements for these training schools? How many years? Postgraduate?

■ What is the standard beginning wage for this job? In this area? Elsewhere?

■ What is the maximum salary you can expect? Here? Elsewhere?

■ What factors affect the salary range?

■ What expenses are involved in setting yourself up in this profession?

■ How can the “startup” costs be financed, underwritten, or deferred?

Section IV: (20 points; suggested page length is 1 – 2 pages) In order to complete this project, you must conduct an informational interview with a person who works in your field of interest. Ideally, it will be an employee with the researched employer. Take a risk and look for someone new. Please see the attached Word document for more information. The interview form (to include their information) is included on the last page; it should be included as an Appendix item after the References page. Use the questions and answers from the interview to compose Section IV. Do not list the interview questions and answers for this section.

Section V: (20 points; suggested page length is 1 page) Finally, you will need to conclude your paper by reflecting on the research and experience. For instance, reflect on how well you think you would fit in with this employer. You may need to describe your satisfaction in working in the career field that you have investigated. Remember, you must refer to yourself in 3rd person. Suggested questions to answer include but are not limited to:

■ What personality traits/skills do you possess that would make you suited for this job?

■ What “real life” experiences have you had that have prepared you?

■ How has this research confirmed or changed your plans and why?

■ Are there any areas in which you need to continue to develop skills?

■ Which aspects of the field/position do you like/dislike and why?

■ Which aspects/characteristics do/do not fit you as a person and a potential employee?

References & Citations:

The paper must include references from at least six different resources consisting of the informational interview, two traditional print sources or academic sources found in LRC’s database (eBooks, academic journals, periodicals, newspapers), and remaining three from the web or other sources. To avoid plagiarism, you must cite information gained from other resources using standard, APA format. Refer to your handbook or your instructor for further information and guidance.


1. Your paper must include the informational interview form provided below with this information.

2. A copy of a thank you note (or email) you sent to the person interviewed is to be included, as well.


Each section represents a percentage of the total points available for this project. Omitting a section will have a significant impact on the final grade.

Informational Interview Form (to be completed and attached as an appendix to paper):

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