1. As you are selecting a topic, you should consider how it relates to the theoretical framework developed in the first part of the course (definitions of culture, gender, race, class, ethnie and nation, the international order, posmodernism, etc). The first part of your 1-2 page proposal should explain clearly how you will use a given theoretical perspective to analyze your topic.

2. Try to choose a topic in the area of your concentration in the program (French, German, Spanish, US Culture).

3. In the second part of your proposal you should outline the major questions you plan to explore, the questions you plan to pose, and the reasons for posing them. Why is the problem worth studying? What makes it a problem?

4. The final part should indicate how you are going to carry out the project, including where you will look for sources (i.e. the beginnings of a bibliography).

5. In general, you should not choose a topic that is too broad nor should you plan to arrive at definitive answers. Be sure the project is feasible. This is, after all, the final paper for a course and not a thesis. This paper, however, may turn into the basis for a thesis or extended paper. You might want to explore what has been said thus far about your topic and trace the major arguments being made as well as significant disagreements.

6. Working on the final paper is a continual process of refining. BEGIN EARLY. You need to be working on the final paper throughout the semester. Brainstorm, get out ideas, shape an argument, revise, revise, revise.

7. Consult. Consult with your fellow students; compare ideas with them. (Graduate students learn a great deal from each other.) Consult with the instructors throughout the process. Be as specific and concrete as possible when consulting.

8. Be sure to refer to appropriate research and bibliographic guides.

9. Cite all sources correctly. Incorrect citations will lower the grade.

10. Leave sufficient time for completing final draft.

11. Some previous topics have been: Liberation Theology in Nicaragua; Liberation Theology in Haiti; Jews and Anti-Semitism in France; Northern Africans in France; Belgium: a binational state; Multi-cultural education in Baltimore City schools; Roles and images of women in French magazines of different types; Hispanic women professors in US universities; Restrictions on Chinese Immigration in the US 1882-1904.