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Psychology 1010: Assessment

Assessment Guide: Essay


What is the essay topic specifically?
Argue (using scientific evidence) THIS statement is WRONG
people are either born into their prejudice or form their beliefs at an early age. Once they are formed, nothing
will change them
In other words. Argue against the idea that prejudice can not be reduced through experience.
Use ONLY evidence from research studies from "primary sources" (i.e. Journal Articles) on human interaction
and racial bias that includes studies of Social Psychology (Specifically: In Group/Out Group) and Research
studies on Intercultural Psychology (Specifically: Racial Bias).
Your essay needs to be focused around evidence from attempts to change racial bias in children or adults
YOU MUST submit a draft of your essay at least 2 days before the deadline and you must check the
Turnitin Originality Report (not just look at the score). Your Final version must be free of Plagiarism.
Final Versions that contain significant Plagiarism will not be marked.
What specific requirements are there?
A good essay uses multiple types of evidence so if you want to show that Racial Bias can be reduced with experience
you should look at the DIFFERENT types of exposure or training that people have tried and in different target
groups. There will be a lot of evidence based on Racial Bias in the USA. You should not use these studies exclusively
and should look for studies from other countries/cultures. Ideally you should try to link the question to an Australian
context. So the Body of your essay (i.e. the main sections) should have
1.
2.
3.
4.

an overall examination of factors that influence Racial Bias.


Evidence from one type of experiment trying to change Racial Bias
Evidence from a 2nd type of experiment trying to change Racial Bias
Evidence from a 3rd type of experiment trying to change Racial Bias

What kind of essay is it?


There are many different kinds of essay including the 4 main types: simple factual or descriptive (such as "What is
depression"), subjective opinion (such as "Why do you think Coke is better than Pepsi"), Explain/Discuss (such as
"Discuss the factors that lead to the 1st world war"), and Argumentative (such as "Argue against the statement that
Cats are smarter than Dogs". Your essay falls into this last category. It is the type of essay that best fits into the
"scientific method" because you must present evidence to support a position and any opinions you express must be
based on this evidence. Sometimes you may be asked to write an argumentative essay taking a position that you
personally do not believe. For example you may personally believe that cats are smarter than dogs but you are asked
to argue against that position. To do this requires skills in essay writing and these are the skills this assessment is
trying to build in students.
Can I narrow the topic?
You must answer the basic question posed but you can focus on something more specific. In fact that is the 1st skill
students must master when writing an essay. Essay questions are usually posed quite broadly and each student must
then focus it somewhat. Provided you successfully argue the case and meet the requirements above, how you focus the
question to do that is up to you. However, the more narrow the essay, the less it may apply generally to the question as
a whole. You would not narrow the focus so narrow that it only applies in a very specific context.
Where should I start?
Your Burton Writing guide. Read through Chapters 1, 2 and 3 and then carefully follow Chapter 4 on Essay writing.
You will also need Chapter 6 on in text citations (references) and Chapter 7 on the Reference List. Being familiar with
what is in these chapters will help you answer some of your own questions as you start working on your essay. You
should also read the Burton textbook (Chapter 18) on Interpersonal Processes in Social Psychology (in group vs. out
group) and Chapter 19 on Intercultural and Indigenous Psychology. There is a set of readings on Blackboard. They
may or may not be relevant.
When should I start working on my essay?
In theory you should wait until around week 7 to formally get into working on the essay in earnest, you can start
anytime. You can look at building your essay writing skills, do a workshop, learn to use the library, practice reading
Journal articles or start thinking about how you want to approach the topic. Lectures in week 7 and 9 will directly
relate to the topic, Tutorials in weeks 7, 8, 9 and 10 all relate to the essay topic in some way. However, if you have
already made a start and have some knowledge of the topics the lecture and tutorials will help you refine your essay or
redirect you onto a better path. If you wait until after these to start, you likely will not have enough time to carefully
think about the issues, read broadly on the topic and you likely won't have time for multiple drafts of your essay.

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Readings
You should start by attending the Lectures in Week 7 and 9 on Social and Intercultural Psychology. You should also
read your textbook Burton Chapters 18 and 19. These should not be used as references in your essay but are just to
give yourself some background before reading the more complicated Journal Articles. Similarly, you should NOT use
Wikipedia or any other website that is for general information as a source in your essay. But feel free to read them to
help you understand concepts.
Readings to get you started (note these are listed here without following proper citation format. You will have to
format the citations properly if you use the article in your essay). You do not have to use all of these or any of
these. You must find your own articles to add to your own essay references but that will depend on how you narrow
the essay topic (i.e. what you want to focus on)
You should also know that you do not include sources in your Reference list unless you actually refer to them in your
essay. So you may read all 9 of the papers below but if you only make use of 6 in your essay, you only include those 6
in your reference list. You would then of course need to find additional relevant references!

These are on Blackboard in the Essay section in a ZIP file. You can download them and unzip them or find each one
yourself using Google Scholar or the Library databases
Effects of situational power on automatic racial prejudice.Richeson, Jennifer A.; Ambady, Nalini Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, Vol
39(2), Mar 2003, 177-183.

Devine PG, Forscher PS, Austin AJ, Cox WT. Long-term reduction in implicit race bias: A prejudice habit-breaking
intervention. Journal of experimental social psychology. 2012 Nov 30;48(6):1267-78.
Jennifer A Richeson, Richard J Nussbaum, The impact of multiculturalism versus
color-blindness on racial bias, Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, Volume
40, Issue 3, May 2004, Pages 417-423, ISSN 0022-1031,
Levin, Shana, et al. "Assimilation, multiculturalism, and colorblindness: Mediated and moderated relationships
between social dominance orientation and prejudice." Journal of Experimental Social Psychology 48.1 (2012):
207-212.
Dasgupta, Nilanjana, and Anthony G. Greenwald. "On the malleability of automatic attitudes: combating automatic
prejudice with images of admired and disliked individuals." Journal of personality and social psychology 81, no. 5
(2001): 800.
Blair IV, Ma JE, Lenton AP. Imagining stereotypes away: the moderation of implicit stereotypes through mental
imagery. Journal of personality and social psychology. 2001 Nov;81(5):828.
Rudman, L. A., Ashmore, R. D., & Gary, M. L. (2001). " Unlearning" automatic biases: the malleability of implicit
prejudice and stereotypes. Journal of personality and social psychology, 81(5), 856.
Brewer, M.B. and Kramer, R.M., 1985. The psychology of intergroup attitudes and behavior. Annual review of
psychology, 36(1), pp.219-243.
Lebrecht, Sophie, et al. "Perceptual other-race training reduces implicit racial bias." PLoS one 4.1 (2009): e4215.
Engberg, M.E., 2004. Improving intergroup relations in higher education: A critical examination of the influence of
educational interventions on racial bias. Review of educational research, 74(4), pp.473-524.
Denson, N. (2009). Do curricular and cocurricular diversity activities influence racial bias? A meta-analysis.
Review of Educational Research, 79(2), 805-838.

Movie
In Tutorials in week 7 we will watch and discuss the Jane Elliott movie called "The angry eye" you can reference the
movie. To help you out... here is the exact APA reference format for the movie.

Elliott, J., Golenbock, S. A., Talmadge, W., Elliott & Elliott Eyes, Inc., & PA Production Associates.
(2008). The angry eye: With Jane Elliott. Cambridge, MA: Enterprise Media.

Faculty of Science and IT, School of Psychology Copyright, 2016

What is the Word Limit?


The maximum is 1400 words. This includes everything after your title up to the start of the Reference section. This includes
in text citations. The University allows you to go over the word limit by 10% before penalties are applied.
Word limit Penalties
< 1400 = no penalty but can you really write this essay in less than about 1200 words?
1400 to 1540 words = no penalty (this is the +10% the Uni allows)
1550 to 1600 words = - 5 points
1601 to 1650 words = - 10 points
1651 to 1700 words = - 15 points etc.
Why is there a Word Limit?
The word limit gives you a general idea of the scope of the topic. If the word limit was 150 words that would tell you that
you really just need to provide a brief summary of the topic. There is in fact no room to delve into the topic in detail. If the
word limit was 20,000 words then we might expect you to work on the topic for a year or more and it would be a very
detailed and comprehensive essay. An essay between 1000 and 1500 words is a typical size for 1st year students. It means
you cover things generally but have some opportunities to have greater detail. In fact the hardest part about an essay this size
is keeping below the limit. You need to be organised and your writing needs to be clear and concise. Those are key skills in
academic writing and so students who successfully cover the topic in a clear and concise way will do much better than
students who cover the same material but meander, use flowery language, are repetitive and go over the word limit.
Do we get a "Rubric"?
At the end of this document is a "Marking Guide" which is a broad rubric. As this is an argument type essay, the focus is on
how well you present your evidence and arguments. In addition as you are asked to you are asked to include multiple types of
evidence so there will be points associated with each "Stream of evidence" you present.

How is the essay related to the topics in the course?


The essay in Psyc 1010 typically links multiple modules and bridges a number of topic areas. It will require you to
investigate aspects of things you have learned in the lectures but the essay topic cannot be answered simply using material
from the lectures or tutorials. Your essay relates primarily to the Social Psychology section but also to other sections of the
course.
Can I use quotations?
NO, in psychology essays you almost never use quotations from sources. You need to read the article, understand what they
are saying and then summarise the article's authors ideas in your own words. Your argument is often based on evidence that
researchers have presented in their Journal Article and how those authors have interpreted their data. It is very important that
you do not copy and paste bits from your sources. It is also important that you do not copy bits and then change a word or
two. If you do use quotations (because you really really really want to), and you properly identify them as quotations using
egg "blah blah blah", and you properly reference them { "bla blah blah" Smith and Jones 2007, pg 28 }, you possibly won't
lose points but the quoted work will not gain you any points in the marking rubric. However if you copy and paste sections
and do not identify it as a quotation (even if you have a reference for it) it will be counted against you as it is plagiarism. So,
the best thing you can do is to learn to read information, and then summarise it in your own words. You may however use the
Quotation from the question if you really really want to. You do not have to give the source (as I made it up anyway)
Can I have my lecturer or tutor read a draft of my essay?
No. There are over 700 students in Psyc 1010 and it is not possible to read drafts of your work. However you should try to
have someone not in Psyc 1010 read a draft of you essay. You may also book an appointment with the Learning Skills unit
to discuss essay writing. They can help with general skills but of course they can't comment on the specific topic in a specific
course.
I have never written an Argument essay before, how is it fair that you ask us to do one now?
University is about learning new skills. If we only ever asked you to do things you already know how to do, you would not
learn anything at University. This essay is a relatively simple and straightforward topic and your Summary actually was a
very simplified small essay where you have to present information is a logical order leading the reader to a specific position
or conclusion. It is small (only 10%) and we have given you a specific structure to follow. This is basically an argument
essay on training wheels.
I wrote on the same topic for SOCA9999, can I use the same essay?
No, the University's rules about Academic Conduct state that you may not submit the same work for credit more than once.
While copying your own work is not plagiarism... it is Academic Misconduct.
I have a friend in Psyc 1010, can we work together?
No but to a very small amount... yes. Yes you can informally have conversations and discuss concepts as part of a study
group. No you can not share resources, work together while writing, read each others work etc. Collusion is another form of
Academic Misconduct
What should I NOT include
University Assessment Coversheet: NO Coversheet : Online submission is automatically linked to your student number and this course so we don't
need or want a coversheet.
Abstract: NO ABSTRACT!
Title Page: NO Title Page... just put your title at the top of your 1st page
Point form: DO NOT use point form anywhere in your essay
Extension Approval: You do not include this if you have an extension. I know who has an extension already.
Footnotes: NO footnotes

Faculty of Science and IT, School of Psychology Copyright, 2016

Rubric/General Marking Guide


Draft Version: 10 Points for a valid draft submitted at least 2 days before the deadline for the essay
Final Version: 90 Points
Introduction: 10 points
Your essay should have an Introductory paragraph (or 2): It should provide a context for the question and provide
some background information. It should include a short statement indicating your position (i.e. against Blah Blah
Blah) and your intentions for arguing your position (i.e. an overview of your plan to convince the reader).
Body 40 points
The main part of your essay is the Body. A series of paragraphs that present your case and present evidence
supporting your position. Each paragraph needs to be focused on a specific purpose, have a topic sentence, and be
well written and structured. The paragraphs should also flow in a logical order. The majority of marks will be
earned in the body section. Remember you must also cover these areas
1. General factors that influence Racial Bias.
2. Evidence from 3 types of experiment trying to change Racial Bias
You can see there are at least 4 things that you must cover in this body. It won't surprise you if we tell you each is
worth a maximum of 10 points. That does not necessarily mean you have 4 different paragraphs covering these 4
topics separately but that is the most logical way to do it. You should also give consideration to how you move
(link) from one paragraph to the next.
So you will have to find a structure within the body that fits how you want to organise these things. You should
use subheadings where relevant (but not too much). We don't want to tell you how to organise your essay. Each
student is free to explore their own way, but remember that there are points associated with logical flow of ideas
and structure. So find a structure that works well.
Conclusion: 10 points
Here you wrap it up. You indicate how you have demonstrated your position and you might reiterate some of the
key evidence to show how you have clearly built your case.
References: (10 Points) which is broken down into - Properly formatted In text citations (5 points) and Properly
formatted Reference list (5 points)
You will need at least 8-10 good references to write this essay.
You must use "in text" citations and a proper Reference list. Use APA referencing format. Do not use Numbers or
footnotes.
We won't be super strict on getting every comma or full stop in the correct location so just concentrate on getting
the right general APA-ish format. You will be marked down for doing this incorrectly.
Writing style and Following Instructions: 20 points will go for this category. In an essay, your writing style
needs to be good to convince anyone of your position. This includes grammar, spelling, paragraph structure, flow
within paragraphs and across paragraphs. At least 40% of you do not know the difference between "there" and
"their" or the less common "they're". Improper use of these basic words gives a reader the impression you are
illiterate and weakens your argument regardless of how much evidence you present. Other things that are
commonly misused include "to", "too" and "two", and my personal favorite "then" vs. "than". The Burton Writing
Guide (Chapter 2) is a good place to start for checking common writing issues.
You will also lose points for NOT following the instructions for structure, submission etc.
So in summary
Introduction 10%
Body (use of evidence to support position) 40%
Conclusion 10%
References (in text and Reference list) 10%
Overall Writing 20%
Draft Version submitted at least 2 days before the deadline 10% (this will NOT be graded but will be checked to ensure you are using
the draft to check your own work for possible plagiarism). If you submit a valid draft you will get the 10 points. If you do not submit a
draft OR your draft is not a valid draft of an essay (in essay format) you will get 0 for this and you may potentially be in a position of
your Final version containing Plagiarised work and thus your essay would not be marked.

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How to submit your essay


Submission is ONLY online. No paper copies are to be submitted. You must submit to the correct link on Blackboard
There are 2 links
1) your DRAFT must be submitted to the link in Assessment/ ESSAY (10% of your final grade)/ Draft version of
Essay. Due by May 20 11:59 PM
2) your FINAL version must be submitted to the links in Assessment/ESSAY (10% of your final grade)/ Final version
of Essay. Due by May 22 11:59 PM
NOTE: You get to submit 1 draft ONLY and 1 Final ONLY
Your Draft must be submitted 2 days before the deadline for the Final version

You should write your essay using Microsoft Word or similar word processing software. It must be saved as either a
Word type (.doc or .docx) or PDF. If you use a word processing program other than Word, your last step before
submission should be to "SAVE AS" and select the Word ".doc" file type.
In Blackboard go to Assessments, then go to Assessment 3: essay

Inside that folder you will see the submission links:

Most students will submit before the deadline passes and they will see the links shown above. However as soon at the
deadline passes the link for the Final Version will automatically disappear and a new one will appear called "Final
Version of Essay: Late or with Extension: Revision 1". . Even if you are only 2 seconds late your essay will go into
the Late basket and will receive a Late Penalty. After 5 days passed the deadline, the link will only be visible to those
with an approved extension.

Please see the Turnitin Guide for information on how to view your Originality Report and eventually see your
Comments on the Final Version of your essay.

Faculty of Science and IT, School of Psychology Copyright, 2016