You may choose your own topic but it must be related to cognitive psychology.

The project for this course is a written paper that reviews, in depth, a topic in cognition and memory. You may choose your own topic but it must be related to cognitive psychology.  Examples of appropriate topics include false memories, attention span, problem-solving, and decision-making. 

Your paper should summarize fundamental issues, questions, and controversies and provide a general overview of the topic. To accomplish this, you will have to use a minimum of five recent research articles (published within the past five years) to illustrate relevant points. You may use any of a number of electronic databases to find research articles that deal with your topic, including the library and the Internet. The one requirement for your selected research articles is that they must have appeared in a peer-reviewed scientific journal. (You may wish to consult the library staff or your instructor to determine whether a particular journal is peer-reviewed.) You may not use the course text or newspaper or magazine articles as one of your five references, but they are sometimes useful when they lead you to an appropriate research article. Avoid simply repeating the articles in summary form; use them within the text of your paper to illustrate important points.   This paper should focus on current research, as opposed to background information that could be found in a textbook.

Your paper is to be seven to ten pages or about 1,950 words, in length. It must be typed, double spaced, with one-inch margins, and fully referenced in the format specified in the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (see Check the Course Schedule in this syllabus for the due date.

The text of your paper should be preceded by an abstract (about 100 words) that summarizes the key points in the paper (i.e., a statement of the problem, major findings, and conclusions).

The paper will be graded on content, organization, and writing mechanics and style. The following rubric will be used to assign points associated with each main topic.

The paper is due at the end of this week (Sunday).  Please see the grading rubric in the syllabus and reprinted below.


1. All topics are discussed in clear detail.

2. The author supports assertions correctly.

3. Ideas are interrelated coherently and logically.

4. The author creatively enhances the topic.


5. An introduction previews the main points of study.

6. The body of the paper develops and elaborates on the main ideas.

7. A conclusion summarizes the main points.

8. An abstract summarizes the key points of the paper.

Writing Mechanics and Style

9. The paper is free of mechanical errors (e.g., misspellings, typos, punctuation errors, etc.)

10. The paper is grammatically sound (proper sentence structure).

11. Citations and references are formatted in proper style (i.e., APA).

12. References are recent (within the past five years) and appropriate to the nature and the level of the topic.

13. References were located using appropriate electronic data sources.

Points to be Awarded

Behaviors Demonstrated


Paper contains no errors in this area.


Paper contains limited errors in this area; however, the overall presentation of the material is readable and appropriate.


Paper contains limited errors in this area; however, the overall presentation material is difficult to read.


Paper contains a number of errors in this area; however the overall presentation is acceptable.


Paper contains a number of errors in this area, and the overall presentation is difficult to read.


Paper contains numerous errors in this area that detract from the overall presentation.

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