Final Project: Select one of the following (A, B, or C, below). A-Literature Review/Research Proposal. Utilizing resources available on-line and near to you, identify a research question not addre

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Final Project:  Select one of the following (A, B, or C, below).

  • A-Literature Review/Research Proposal. Utilizing resources available on-line and near to you, identify a research question not addressed in the literature examined in the course*.  Or, select one of the questions we have addressed and use it to “probe” a situation that you believe is worth investigating. Provide background and a Literature Review, as well as a Research Design to seek answers to your question. Share with the class.*NOTE: Do obtain permission/approval of your topic.  You may explore a question that originated in our readings, but you should go beyond the textbooks.  Example: if you wish to explore “Developing Hurricane Messages for Children K-8,” that works.
  • Literature Review Grade Rubric:

    • Style/Grammar: Write well.  Check for sentence structure: Write the paper in active not passive voice; Also check for word choice (be concise and precise).
    • Topic Significance/focus and Coherence:  Describe the significance of the research problem/literature review focus (and it should be focused).  Why is this important to study?  What can we learn from either a literature review of this topic or from further investigation (if a Research Proposal or paper).
    • Organization and Synthesis of the Literature:  Arrange the review into subtopics that can be synthesized from your examination of the literature, rather than listing studies and annotating each study.  In other words, if study “A,” “B,” and “C” are all about creating effective messages for children, you would synthesize the research by stating: “Multiple studies have investigated creating effective messages for children” (then list citations for scholar A, Scholar B, Scholar C).  However, only two authors have investigated children’s responses to messages” (citations for Scholar B and Scholar C), and none of those reviewed in this paper have explored creating messages for children younger than five.
    • Number and Quality of Scholarly articles included.  Gather studies for this paper from multiple, research-based sources relevant to the research question/ problem or academic topic.  Clearly peer-reviewed studies are preferred, but some government sites (CDC is an example) might be included.  You should be able to justify inclusion of the study and the quality of the research for significant findings.  If you have questions, please ask.  As for number of studies, I expect a range of 10 – 15, but these should be quality sources.
    • Format/APA Style; APA has published a new edition of its style manual (7th edition); this includes the plural form of “they/them” for pronouns; As the 7th edition is new, I will accept 6th edition styles.  Most notably, check in-text citations and reference page(s); Make sure authors are identified; use a cover page, running head, and section subheads that conform to APA.  See the Purdue Online Writing Lab APA Style Materials for help https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/research_and_citation/apa_style/apa_formatting_and_style_guide/general_format.html or  go directly to the American Psychological Association page for format guidelines @ https://apastyle.apa.org/index where you can learn about bias-free language, references (all of which should be cited in the text), etc. Use standard margins and font size.
  1. B-Critique of a Crisis (or Risk) Communication Plan.  Locate an organization with a crisis or risk communication plan.  Review the plan and its implementation.  Offer insights about the plan’s feasibility, strengths and weaknesses, utilizing terminology from course readings and on-line discussions. Develop a report on the plan, complete with references to communication literature that support your findings.
  • Crisis Plan Critique Grade Rubric and Considerations:
  • As this is a written critique based upon your research and information gathering, you will want to demonstrate your understanding of the organization, its potential risks and crises, organizational stakeholders, and any additional background that lends credibility to your critique.  In other words, meeting with organizational members responsible for implementation is not out of the question.  As well, you will need to lay out your own evaluation, or “rubric” if you will, that lays out criteria for strengths and flaws in the crisis plan under review.

    • Please note:  If you select this option, Please let me know the name of the organization for which the crisis plan is written.
    • Style/Grammar: Write well.  Check for sentence structure and clarity. Write the paper in active voice, not passive; Also check for word choice (be concise and precise).
    • Provide Background and Focus the Critique: Describe the significance of the critique, and its review; Focus the critique, but provide background information and describe important constituencies/primary audiences.  Identify the crisis/plan decision makers/approvers? What additional considerations need to be incorporated?  Some examples: Are hazardous materials on the property that need to be identified and handled? If electricity goes out, what publics might need to be supported (those on oxygen, monitors, etc.).  Additionally, cite key sources you rely upon for the criteria (CERC manual? Ulmer, Sellnow, Seeger? Sandman? Covello? Etc.)
    • Organization:  Arrange the critique into logical subtopics that help readers follow your review of materials in the crisis plan smoothly. A the least, you should have strong introduction and conclusion, and you should provide a section that explains key facts/background on the organization for which the plan was developed, as well as a section on the criteria you  are using for your review/critique.  Moreover, make sure that should you see flaws in the plan you can offer recommendations for improvement,
    • Quality of the Critique.   You should base your insights on text readings and other expert resources.  Make sure to cite these (and yes, include a reference page).  I look for claims that you make about the crisis plan, as well as your supporting “evidence.”  If you tell me that the plan needs to be updated – and it may seem obvious if the plan is dated in 2010 – you still will need to explain, describe etc. what specifically needs to be update.
    • Format/APA Style; Yes, the critique will need some citations, and will need to be formatted.   APA has published a new edition of its style manual (7th edition); this includes the plural form of “they/them” for pronouns; As the 7th edition is new, I will accept 6th edition styles.  Most notably, check in-text citations and reference page(s); Make sure authors are identified; use a cover page, running head, and section subheads that conform to APA.  See the Purdue Online Writing Lab APA Style Materials for help https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/research_and_citation/apa_style/apa_formatting_and_style_guide/general_format.html or  go directly to the American Psychological Association page for format guidelines @ https://apastyle.apa.org/index where you can learn about bias-free language, references (all of which should be cited in the text), etc. Use standard margins and font size.
  1. C-Model Crisis Communication or Risk Communication Plan.  Locate a crisis, risk, or emergency communication need for an organization/geographic area near you.  The project can fit within your work assignment provided it fits the goals of the assignment and that this is not a duplicate plan for another course or work you have already completed.  Develop a plan that can be implemented.  If possible, seek feedback from a professional communicator.

*Considerations:

    • As you develop this plan, you will need to show the research and information gathering that goes into your written plan.  For instance, provide background information about the organization, its potential risks and crises, its key stakeholders and any additional information that lends credibility to your plan.  In other words, you may want to meet with key members of the organization who will be responsible for implementing the plan.  As well, you will need to lay out your own “rubric,” if you will, of criteria for the contents of the plan; what will standards will you use as you write a plan to meet the needs of a particular organization? What flaws will you try to avoid?
    • Please note:  If you select this option, Please let me know the name of the organization for which the crisis plan is written.
    • Style/Grammar: Write well.  Check for sentence structure and clarity. Write the paper in active voice, not passive; Also check for word choice (be concise and precise).  Because you are likely to use a template for the crisis communication plan, identify where the plan is pulled from another resource (like the CERC manual) and where you have modified/edited/adapted the plan to meet specific goals (i.e., show me what is “original” here).
    • Provide Background and Focus the Plan: As mentioned above, describe the significance of creating and using the plan, and its review; provide background information on the organization and describe important constituencies/primary audiences.  Identify the crisis/plan decision makers/approvers? What additional considerations need to be incorporated?  Some examples: Are hazardous materials on the property that need to be identified and handled? If electricity goes out, what publics might need to be supported (those on oxygen, monitors, etc.).  Additionally, cite key sources you rely upon for the criteria (CERC manual? Ulmer, Sellnow, Seeger? Sandman? Covello? Etc.)
    • Organization:  Arrange the plan into logical subtopics that help readers follow your crisis plan easily. You should have strong introduction and conclusion, and you should provide a section that explains key facts/background on the organization for which the plan was developed, as well as a section on the criteria you are using for plan.
    • Quality of the Plan.   Base the plan on your insights and on text readings and other expert resources.  Make sure to cite these (and yes, include a reference page).  Review the CERC manual for guidance, and make sure to reference this as you develop the plan.   Make sure as well to specify the key points about the plan you think I should notice/reference.
    • Format/APA Style; Offer the plan as it would be formatted ala templates in the CERC manual;  However, you will also want to include some context that should be formatted according to APA (for standardization).  If this provides challenges in your plan and the presentation of that plan to me as a classroom project, let me know.
  • PS, as noted above: APA has new (7th edition) of its style manual; this includes the plural form of “they/them” for pronouns; As the 7th you can use 6th edition recommendations.  Most notably, check in-text citations and reference page(s); Make sure authors are identified; use a cover page, running head, and section subheads that conform to APA.  See the Purdue Online Writing Lab APA Style Materials for help https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/research_and_citation/apa_style/apa_formatting_and_style_guide/general_format.htmlor  go directly to the American Psychological Association page for format guidelines @ https://apastyle.apa.org/index where you can learn about bias-free language, references (all of which should be cited in the text), etc. Use standard margins and font size.
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