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GEN499: General Education Capstone

GEN499: Week 5 – Final Paper

Global Societal Problem, Argument and Solution

Prepare: Prior to beginning work on this assignment, please review this Sample Final Paper GEN499  downloadfor additional guidance on the expectations of this assignment.

The topic of your essay needs to be a global societal problem from the following list:

  • Climate change
  • Pollution
  • Religious conflict and violence
  • Rise of artificial intelligence
  • Lack of education
  • Unemployment and lack of economic opportunity
  • Government accountability and corruption
  • Food and water security
  • International drug trafficking
  • Poverty and income inequality

Reflect: Based on the topic that you have chosen, you will need to use critical thinking skills to thoroughly understand how this topic can be a global societal problem and determine some logical solutions to the problem.

Write: This Final Paper, an argumentative essay, will present research relating the critical thinker to the modern, globalized world. In this assignment, you need to address the items below in separate sections with new headings for each.

In your paper,

  • Identify the global societal problem within the introductory paragraph.
  • Describe background information on how that problem developed or came into existence.
    • Show why this is a societal problem.
    • Provide perspectives from multiple disciplines or populations so that you fully represent what different parts of society have to say about this issue.
  • Construct an argument supporting your proposed solutions, considering multiple disciplines or populations so that your solution shows that multiple parts of society will benefit from this solution.
    • Provide evidence from multiple scholarly sources as evidence that your proposed solution is viable.
  • Interpret statistical data from at least three peer-reviewed scholarly sources within your argument.
    • Discuss the validity, reliability, and any biases.
    • Identify the strengths and weaknesses of these sources, pointing out limitations of current research and attempting to indicate areas for future research. (You may even use visual representations such as graphs or charts to explain statistics from sources.)
  • Evaluate the ethical outcomes that result from your solution.
    • Provide at least one positive ethical outcome as well as at least one negative ethical outcome that could result from your solution.
    • Explain at least two ethical issues related to each of those outcomes. (It is important to consider all of society.)
  • Develop a conclusion for the last paragraphs of the essay, starting with rephrasing your thesis statement and then presenting the major points of the topic and how they support your argument. (For guidance on how to write a good conclusion paragraph, please review the Introductions & Conclusions (Links to an external site.) from the Ashford Writing Center (Links to an external site.).)

The Global Societal Problem, Argument, and Solution Paper

  • Must be 1,750 to 2,250 words in length (approximately between seven and nine pages; not including title and references pages) and formatted according to APA style, as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center’s APA Style (Links to an external site.) resource.
  • Must include a separate title page with the following:
    • Title of paper
    • Student’s name
    • Course name and number
    • Instructor’s name
    • Date submitted
  • For further assistance with the formatting and the title page, refer to APA Formatting for Word 2013 (Links to an external site.).
  • Must utilize academic voice. See the Academic Voice (Links to an external site.) resource for additional guidance.
  • Must include an introduction and conclusion paragraph. Your introduction paragraph needs to end with a clear thesis statement that indicates the purpose of your paper.
  • Must use at least eight scholarly sources.
    • Source Document Requirements:
      • Multimedia sources (such as videos) may be used, but no more than two such sources may be used. If multimedia sources are used, they must be authored and distributed by credible sources, such as universities, law schools, medical schools, or professors, or found in the Ashford University Library.
      • Government sources may be used, but no more than two such sources may be used. Examples include whitehouse.gov, state.gov, usa.gov, cdc.gov, and so forth. These websites can be used to make a stronger point about your proposed solution within the argument.
      • Where documents are used for source materials, those must be peer-reviewed, scholarly journal articles, and academically published books. Popular media sources (e.g., newspapers, magazines, television and radio shows, etc.) must not be used. Materials from advocacy groups (e.g., Greenpeace, Human Rights Campaign, National Organization for Women, etc.) must not be used.
      • Sites such as ProCon.org and Wikipedia must not be used.
      • Religious texts must not be used.
    • The Scholarly, Peer Reviewed, and Other Credible Sources (Links to an external site.) table offers additional guidance on appropriate source types. If you have questions about whether a specific source is appropriate for this assignment, contact your instructor. Your instructor has the final say about the appropriateness of a specific source for an assignment. The Integrating Research (Links to an external site.) tutorial will offer further assistance with including supporting information and reasoning.
    • Must document in APA style any information used from sources, as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center’s Citing Within Your Paper (Links to an external site.).
    • Must have no more than 15% quoted material in the body of your essay based on the Turnitin report. References list will be excluded from the Turnitin originality score.
    • Must include a separate references page that is formatted according to APA style. See the Formatting Your References List (Links to an external site.) resource in the Ashford Writing Center for specifications.

Good Critical Thinking Tips:

  • Your paper should include academic sources that explain multiple sides of the issue.
  • Your interpretations of the evidence should be objective and state the conclusions and theses presented in the evidence clearly and fairly.
  • Your paper should place the various forms of evidence in relation to one another and demonstrate why one form or perspective is stronger than the other positions that one could take on the issue.
  • Your paper should point out the limitations of current evidence and attempt to indicate areas for future research.

Writing Tools:

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GEN499: General Education Capstone

GEN499: Week 5 – Discussion Forum

Week 5 – Discussion Forum

Your initial discussion thread is due on Day 3 (Thursday) and you have until Day 7 (Monday) to respond to your classmates. Your grade will reflect both the quality of your initial post and the depth of your responses. Refer to the Discussion Forum Grading Rubric under the Settings icon above for guidance on how your discussion will be evaluated.

Reflecting on General Education and Career [WLOs: 2, 3, 4] [CLOs: 2, 3, 4]

Prepare: Prior to beginning work on this discussion forum, read the articles Teaching Writing Skills That Enhance Student Success in Future Employment ; An Inner Barrier to Career Development: Preconditions of the Impostor Phenomenon and Consequences for Career Development (Links to an external site.); and 9 Questions That’ll Help You Find Your Dream Career (Links to an external site.); watch the video Business, Management & Administration (Links to an external site.); and review the General Education Curriculum found in General Academic Information and Policies (Links to an external site.) in the Ashford University Catalog. This catalog addresses the core competencies that the general education courses must cover: Ethical Reasoning, Written Communication, Oral and Interpersonal Communication, Information Literacy, Critical Thinking, and Quantitative Reasoning. 

Reflect: Think about the core competencies as previously mentioned, and ponder your time taking general education courses. Reflect on the specific courses not associated with your college major and determine the level of new information you have acquired that relates to the core competencies. You must also think about a potential job you might apply to once you graduate and determine what skills you developed through general education courses that make you qualified for a specific job.

Write: For this discussion, you will address the following prompts:

  • Review a job description through a job website (e.g., Career Builder (Links to an external site.)Monster (Links to an external site.), etc.) in your desired career field. Please provide the job title and the link to the job description.
  • Identify at least five skills you have obtained through your general education courses that will make you successful at this job.
  • Demonstrate with at least two examples how your newly acquired knowledge and skills have shaped both your personal and professional development.
  • Describe your plans for putting your education to use within your community.

Your initial post should be at least 250 words in length, which should include a thorough response to each prompt. You are required to provide in-text citations of applicable required reading materials and/or any other outside sources you use to support your claims. Provide full reference entries of all sources cited at the end of your response. Please use correct APA format when writing in-text citations (see In-Text Citation Helper (Links to an external site.)) and references (see Formatting Your References List (Links to an external site.)).

Respond to Peers: Review your classmates’ posts, and respond to at least two of your peers by Day 7. In your responses, provided feedback on the different skills your peers have acquired that would make them successful in their chosen career field. Each participation post should be a minimum of 75 words.

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GEN499: General Education Capstone

GEN499: Week 4 – Journal

Rough Draft Review Process Evaluation

[WLOs: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5] [CLOs: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5]

PurposeThe primary goal of this weekly assignment is to enable you to understand the revision process and revise your paper with the help of a writing specialist.

Prepare:

Step 1: Prepare a shortened version of your Final Paper (at least four pages) by including the following:

  • Introduction paragraph and thesis statement you developed for your Week 3 Assignment.
  • Background information of the global societal issue you have chosen.
  • Brief argument supporting at least two solutions to the global societal issue.
  • Conclusion paragraph.
  • Must document any information used from at least five scholarly sources in APA style as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center’s Citing Within Your Paper (Links to an external site.) Note that you will need at least eight scholarly sources for your Final Paper in Week 5.

Step 2: After you have completed a rough draft of your paper, submit that draft to the Ashford Writing Center by using the instructions found in the Paper Review (Links to an external site.) page. Your paper will be returned within 24 hours, so give yourself enough time to complete and submit it prior to the due date.

Reflect: Carefully review the revision letter and the margin comments that you see on your returned paper. Consider each of the suggestions provided to help you to revise your paper.

Write:

What You Need to Submit to Waypoint:

  • Upload the PDF document that contains the feedback from the Writing Center specialist.
  • Submit the journal assignment answering the following questions in at least 400 words:
    • Identify the top three issues your writing specialist focused on in your rough draft (e.g., paragraph structure, proper use of quotations, thesis statement, etc.).
      • In what ways were those issues surprising?
    • Describe what you learned from some of the feedback your writing specialist provided as explanations.
      • Was this feedback helpful?
    • Evaluate the usefulness of the paper review tool.
      • In what ways did this activity improve your academic writing skills?
      • Will you use the Ashford Writing Center to review your work in the future? Why or why not?
    • Identify Writing Center Video Tutorials (Links to an external site.) that you find most useful and explain why. Also, identify tutorial(s) you found least useful and explain why.

The journal part of the assignment does not need to be formatted in APA style; however, correct grammar, spelling, and punctuation is required.

Carefully review the Grading Rubric (Links to an external site.) for the criteria that will be used to evaluate your journal.

Categories
GEN499: General Education Capstone

GEN499: Week 4 – Discussion Forum

Week 4 – Discussion Forum

Your initial discussion thread is due on Day 3 (Thursday) and you have until Day 7 (Monday) to respond to your classmates. Your grade will reflect both the quality of your initial post and the depth of your responses. Refer to the Discussion Forum Grading Rubric under the Settings icon above for guidance on how your discussion will be evaluated.

  Elements of Critical Thinking [WLOs: 2, 3, 4] [CLOs: 2, 3, 4]
Prepare: Prior to beginning work on this discussion forum, in preparation for discussing the importance of critical thinking skills, Read the articlesCommon Misconceptions of Critical ThinkingCombating Fake News in the Digital Age6 Critical Thinking Skills You Need to Master Now (Links to an external site.)Teaching and Learning in a Post-Truth world: It’s Time for Schools to Upgrade and Reinvest in Media Literacy LessonsCritical Thinking and the Challenges of Internet (Links to an external site.)Watch the videosFake News: Part 1 (Links to an external site.)Critical Thinking (Links to an external site.)Review the resourcesCritical Thinking Skills (Links to an external site.)Valuable Intellectual Traits (Links to an external site.)Critical Thinking Web (Links to an external site.) 
Reflect: Reflect on the characteristics of a critical thinker. Critical thinking gets you involved in a dialogue with the ideas you read from others in this class. To be a critical thinker, you need to be able to summarize, analyze, hypothesize, and evaluate new information that you encounter. 
Write: For this discussion, you will address the following prompts. Keep in mind that the article or video you’ve chosen should not be about critical thinking, but should be about someone making a statement, claim, or argument related to your Final Paper topic. One source should demonstrate good critical thinking skills and the other source should demonstrate the lack or absence of critical thinking skills. Personal examples should not be used.Explain at least five elements of critical thinking that you found in the reading material.Search the Internet, media, or the Ashford University Library, and find an example in which good critical thinking skills are being demonstrated by the author or speaker. Summarize the content and explain why you think it demonstrates good critical thinking skills.Search the Internet, media, or the Ashford University Library, and find an example in which the author or speaker lacks good critical thinking skills. Summarize the content and explain why you think it demonstrates the absence of good, critical thinking skills.Your initial post should be at least 250 words in length, which should include a thorough response to each prompt. You are required to provide in-text citations of applicable required reading materials and/or any other outside sources you use to support your claims. Provide full reference entries of all sources cited at the end of your response. Please use correct APA format when writing in-text citations (see In-Text Citation Helper (Links to an external site.)) and references (see Formatting Your References List (Links to an external site.)). 
Respond to Peers: Review your classmates’ posts, and respond to at least two of your peers by Day 7. When responding to your classmates, please provide feedback on their examples of good and poor critical thinking skills. Discuss additional ways one can think more critically. Each participation post should be a minimum of 75 words.
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GEN499: General Education Capstone

GEN499: Week 3 – Assignment

Introduction, Thesis Statement, and Annotated Bibliography

[WLOs: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5] [CLOs: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5]

Prepare: Prior to beginning work on this assignment, review the Introductions & Conclusions (Links to an external site.) and Annotated Bibliography (Links to an external site.) web pages, and Evaluating Sources (Links to an external site.) and Annotated Bibliography (Links to an external site.) tutorials.

Reflect: Reflect back on the Week 1 discussion in which you shared with the class the global societal issue that you would like to further address. Explore critical insights that were shared by your peers and/or your instructor on the topic chosen and begin your search for scholarly sources with those insights in mind.

Write: For this assignment, review the Annotated Bibliography Formatting Guidelines  downloadand address the following prompts:

  • Introductory paragraph to topic (refer to the Final Paper guidelines for your topic selection).
    • Write an introductory paragraph with at least 150 words that clearly explains the topic, the importance of further research, and ethical implications.
  • Thesis statement.
    • Write a direct and concise thesis statement, which will become the solution to the problem that you will argue or prove in the Week 5 Final Paper. (A thesis statement should be a concise, declarative statement. The thesis statement must appear at the end of the introductory paragraph.)
  • Annotated bibliography.
    • Develop an annotated bibliography to indicate the quality of the sources you have read.
    • Summarize in your own words how the source contributes to the solution of the global societal issue for each annotation.
    • Address fully the purpose, content, evidence, and relation to other sources you found on this topic (your annotation should be one to two paragraphs long—150 words or more.
    • Include no less than five scholarly sources in the annotated bibliography that will be used to support the major points of the Final Paper.
    • Demonstrate critical thinking skills by accurately interpreting evidence used to support various positions of the topic.

The Introduction, Thesis Statement, and Annotated Bibliography

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GEN499: General Education Capstone

GEN499: Week 3 – Discussion Forum 2

Week 3 – Discussion Forum 2

8585 unread replies.9999 replies.

Your initial discussion thread is due on Day 3 (Thursday) and you have until Day 7 (Monday) to respond to your classmates. Your grade will reflect both the quality of your initial post and the depth of your responses. Refer to the Discussion Forum Grading Rubric under the Settings icon above for guidance on how your discussion will be evaluated.

  Scholarly Sources and Research [WLOs: 1, 2, 3, 4] [CLOs: 1, 2, 3, 4]
Prepare: Prior to beginning work on this assignment, view the videos Scholarly and Popular Sources(1) (Links to an external site.)Why Can’t I Just Google? (Links to an external site.), and Effective Internet Search: Basic Tools and Advanced Strategies (Links to an external site.). 
Reflect: Good research is a combination of many types of sources. Prior to taking this course, did you understand the differences between these sources and the importance of finding one type of resource over another? 
Write: For this discussion, you will address the following prompts:Explain at least five differences between popular and scholarly sources used in research.Locate and summarize one peer-reviewed, scholarly source from the Ashford University Library and one popular source that pertain to your Final Paper topic. In your summary of each article, comment on the following: biases, reliability, strengths, and limitations.From the sources you summarized, list and explain at least five visual cues from the peer-reviewed, scholarly source that were not evident in the popular source.Your initial post should be at least 250 words in length, which should include a thorough response to each prompt. You are required to provide in-text citations of applicable required reading materials and/or any other outside sources you use to support your claims. Provide full reference entries of all sources cited at the end of your response. Please use correct APA format when writing in-text citations (see In-Text Citation Helper (Links to an external site.)) and references (see Formatting Your References List (Links to an external site.)). 
Respond to Peers: Review your classmates’ posts, and respond to at least two peers by Day 7. In your responses, review at least one of the articles provided by your peer and expand on their description. Each participation post should be a minimum of 75 words.
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GEN499: General Education Capstone

GEN499: Week 3 – Discussion Forum 1

Week 3 – Discussion Forum 1

Your initial discussion thread is due on Day 3 (Thursday) and you have until Day 7 (Monday) to respond to your classmates. Your grade will reflect both the quality of your initial post and the depth of your responses. Refer to the Discussion Forum Grading Rubric under the Settings icon above for guidance on how your discussion will be evaluated.

  Final Paper Progress [WLOs: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5] [CLOs: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5]
Prepare: In preparation for this discussion forum, make a list of what you learned most throughout the process of researching your final essay topic, as well as difficulties you may have encountered along the way. 
Reflect: Think about what you have learned in the development of your research findings on the global societal issue you chose in the Week 1 discussion forum, your proposed solution and its ethical outcomes, and share with your classmates why this specific issues requires further research. 
Write: For this discussion, you will address the following prompts:Identify the global societal issue you have chosen to research for your Final Paper, an argumentative essay, and explain why further research on this topic is important.Provide a clear and concise thesis statement that includes a solution to the global societal issue (see Writing a Thesis Statement (Links to an external site.) for assistance).Explain how this global societal issue impacts a specific population.Locate a peer-reviewed scholarly source and provide statistical data that you found surprising on the topic.Your initial post should be at least 250 words in length, which should include a thorough response to each prompt. You are required to provide in-text citations of applicable required reading materials and/or any other outside sources you use to support your claims. Provide full reference entries of all sources cited at the end of your response. Please use correct APA format when writing in-text citations (see In-Text Citation Helper (Links to an external site.)) and references (see Formatting Your References List (Links to an external site.)). 
Respond to Peers: Review your classmates’ posts, and respond to at least two of your peers by Day 7. Comment on your peer’s explanation of how their chosen global societal issue impacts a specific population. Each participation post should be a minimum of 75 words.
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GEN499: General Education Capstone

GEN499: Week 2 – Assignment

Information Literacy

[WLOs: 3, 4] [CLOs: 3, 4]

Prior to beginning work on this assignment, review the Research Guides and Tutorials under the Getting Research help tabs in the Ashford University Library.

Prepare: Knowing how to thoroughly research a topic is extremely important while achieving your education. You may be asked to support your information with peer-reviewed scholarly resources, but how can you find this type of resource? The Ashford University Library allows you to search through different avenues to find the requested types of resources. You can narrow your search by the author, year published, title, subject, and by indicating what type of resource you are looking for. You even have access to a librarian if you need some guidance in finding more resources on your topic.

Reflect: Given that you have been in college for awhile, it’s time to reflect on what you have learned through the use of the Ashford University Library in relation to how you learned to acquire new information from a variety of sources.

Write: This week, you will take the Threshold Achievement Test for Information Literacy (TATIL) (Links to an external site.). This test is not graded, and your results are anonymous. The TATIL assesses students’ ability to recall and apply their knowledge and their metacognition about core information literacy dispositions that underly their behaviors. Through this combination of knowledge and dispositional assessment, TATIL offers a unique and valuable measure of the complexities of information literacy. The results of this assessment will guide Ashford University in developing the best possible library resources and research methodologies training.

After completing the TATIL (Links to an external site.), in a two- to three-paragraph response with each paragraph consisting of five or more sentences,

  • Describe your experiences using resources, including concerns encountered when conducting academic research through the Ashford University Library. Areas of concern may include developing a research strategy, using the search function within a database, or evaluating sources.
  • Explain how using the Ashford University Library has improved your experience in conducting research. For example, you could identify and explain how specific tutorials that you have used have helped improve your ability to conduct research.

The Information Literacy paper

  • Must include at least two paragraphs (of at least five sentences each) that respond to the two prompts, and that are formatted according to APA style as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center and formatted according to APA style as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center’s APA Style (Links to an external site.) resource.
  • Must include a separate title page with the following:
    • Title of paper
    • Student’s name
    • Course name and number
    • Instructor’s name
    • Date submitted
    • Running header with page numbers

For further assistance with the formatting and the title page, refer to APA Formatting for Word 2013 (Links to an external site.).

  • Must have no more than 15% quoted material in the body of your essay based on the Turnitin report.
  • Must include a separate references page when citing specific sections and/or tutorials of the Ashford Writing Center. See the Formatting Your References List (Links to an external site.) resource in the Ashford Writing Center for specifications.
Categories
GEN499: General Education Capstone

GEN499: Week 2 – Discussion Forum 2

Week 2 – Discussion Forum 2

Your initial discussion thread is due on Day 3 (Thursday) and you have until Day 7 (Monday) to respond to your classmates. Your grade will reflect both the quality of your initial post and the depth of your responses. Refer to the Discussion Forum Grading Rubric under the Settings icon above for guidance on how your discussion will be evaluated.

  Ethics and Moral Development [WLOs: 1, 2, 3] [CLOs: 1, 2, 3]
Prepare: Prior to beginning work on this discussion forum, review the Week 2 required resources that focus on ethics and morals. This will assist you in examining your own development of ethical and moral responsibilities.Read the articles:A Global Ethics for a Globalized WorldVirtue Ethics and Modern SocietyClassical Stoicism and the Birth of a Global Ethics: Cosmopolitan Duties in a World of Local LoyaltiesResponsibilities of an Educated Person (Links to an external site.) [Blog post] by jwood00Moral Education for a Society in Moral Transition (Links to an external site.)Decision Procedures for Ethics: DEAL Carrying on Without Resolution (Links to an external site.) 
Reflect: Take a deeper look at your own life and determine which experiences have inspired ethical and moral reasoning. Were there any huge influences in this process? 
Write: For this discussion you will address the following prompts:Explain what it means to be ethical as it relates to personal, academic, and professional growth.Provide at least one ethical dilemma you have encountered, and describe how the issue was resolved.Describe how your general education courses have influenced your ethical values.Your initial post should be at least 250 words in length, which should include a thorough response to each prompt. You are required to provide in-text citations of applicable required reading materials and/or any other outside sources you use to support your claims. Provide full reference entries of all sources cited at the end of your response. Please use correct APA format when writing in-text citations (see In-Text Citation Helper (Links to an external site.)) and references (see Formatting Your References List (Links to an external site.)). 
Respond to Peers: Review your classmates’ posts, and respond to at least two of your peers by Day 7. In each response, provide comments that prompt further critical thinking and insight on your classmate’s perspective on ethical values as they relate to their personal, academic, and professional lives. Each participation post should be a minimum of 75 words.
Categories
GEN499: General Education Capstone

GEN499: Week 2 – Discussion Forum 1

Prepare: Prior to beginning work on this discussion forum, review the following Week 1 and Week 2 required resources that focus on globalization, ethics, and moral reasoning. This will assist you in examining your own development of ethical and moral responsibilities as they relate to your Final Paper and its topic.Read these articles from Week 1:From Globalism to Globalization: The Politics of ResistanceGlobalization, Globalism, and Cosmopolitanism as an Educational IdealTransnationalism and Anti-globalismRead these articles from Week 2:Introduction to Global IssuesA Global Ethics for a Globalized WorldVirtue Ethics and Modern SocietyClassical Stoicism and the Birth of a Global Ethics: Cosmopolitan Duties in a World of Local Loyalties
Reflect: The change of our world from a local economy to a national economy to a global, international economy means that increasingly diverse populations will have to work together to achieve common goals. However, as the economy becomes increasingly global, local economies and people may suffer economic disadvantage or may find themselves marginalized from the rest of the world. Globalization creates ethical dilemmas for which we will need to find solutions.
Write: For this discussion, address the following prompts:Explain the implications of globalization.Identify at least two ethical issues that go along with the global societal topic you have chosen for your final essay.Explain how globalization contributes to or affects these ethical dilemmas.Propose solutions to these ethical dilemmas that are feasible financially, socially, and culturally.Your initial post should be at least 250 words in length, which should include a thorough response to each prompt. You are required to provide in-text citations of applicable required reading materials and/or any other outside sources you use to support your claims. Provide full reference entries of all sources cited at the end of your response. Please use correct APA format when writing in-text citations (see In-Text Citation Helper (Links to an external site.)) and references (see Formatting Your References List (Links to an external site.)).Respond to Peers: Review your classmates’ posts, and respond to at least two of your peers by Day 7. In each response, provide comments on your classmate’s topic idea and ask a question that prompts your classmate to think more critically about how to explore the research topic in more detail. Each participation post should be a minimum of 75 words.