Length:            6-10 pages (about 1500-2500 words), 12pt font, double spaced, not including cover page and bibliography. Papers must include a word count on the cover page.  APA  format style for citations and references and cover page.



  • You must have a minimum of 5 academic peer reviewed sources, four from outside course material, and at least one from course readings.
  • You may use UP TO three non-academic sources (for example, corporate or organizational websites, newspapers, trade books) in supplementary research, but these do not count as your academic references.  Non-academic (non-peer reviewed) sources CANNOT be your primary resource.  Media sources (newspaper articles, letters to the editor, TV clips, radio broadcasts, podcasts, etc.) are strongly encouraged – in fact, we expect you to use them – and must be cited fully and correctly.  For anything you access via the web, an access date must be provided.
  • While we require only a minimum of one source from course material, if other course material has a direct relevance to your paper it is important to include it.


The essay is an exploration (not argumentative)  of a research question regarding a specific topic or policy issue in mass communication.  You will provide a thesis or topic sentence, explore three reasons (with proof) why your thesis or topic assertion is supported, and come to a conclusion that is supported by the evidence.  You should then anticipate several reasons why some people may disagree with your position and you will have to refute these counterarguments. Then provide a strong conclusion reiterating your position.


Paper topics can address any aspect of the topics and materials discussed in class, as long as they have a policy/regulatory angle as part of the discussion. Papers should include materials beyond what is directly covered in class, as appropriate for your topic.  Topics should focus on Canadian examples.




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