Research topic. You must include at least four primary, peer-reviewed sources in your bibliography. Additional sources of varying standards can also be used. However, these four must be specifically cited. An un-cited source should not appear in your bibliography.
A primary source is the original material. If you are directly quoting the words of an author, that is usually a primary source. However, if you are quoting a paraphrase from an author (known because the author is making a citation), then you should find the original document they are paraphrasing and then quote or paraphrase the original.
- Peer-reviewed means that experts in the field have vetted the ideas, methods, and conclusions to determine its suitability for publication.
- Use the library databases, Google Scholar, and Wikipedia to locate these primary sources (i.e. see what Wikipedia cites, or what papers are listed as often cited in Google Scholar). Ensure that they are from peer reviewed sources (such as ACM, IEEE, etc.) and not from trade publications (such as eWeek, PC Magazine, etc.) Wikipedia is not a primary source — you can use it, but it will not count as one of the four peer reviewed primary sources.
- Write a 4 to 6 page research paper on your topic. The page count excludes any figures, tables, pictures, title page, front-matter, back-matter, appendices, or bibliographic references. In other words, there should be 4 to 6 pages of double-spaced prose.
- Proofread your assignment carefully. Improper English grammar, sentence structure, punctuation, or spelling will result in significant point deductions.