Career Analysis Essay assignment

Paper instructions

Here is the formal Career Analysis Essay assignment sheet. While I cannot foresee
everything that has to do with the assignment or guarantee a wonderful handout
such as this for each paper, I hope this handout is helpful. Many of the activities
we complete during the week will help you with the writing process.
 Length: Full five to seven pages
 MLA format
 Five sources cited in the body of the essay and on the works cited page
Sections and information to include in your essay:
 Background
 Thesis
 Criteria for Determining Whether I Should Continue on my Current Career
Path, (insert current career path), or Change
 Research Methods
 Research Findings
 Future Outlook
 Works Cited Page
Here’s a little bit about each section:
 Background: In this section, please include a short introduction that
discusses why you initially wanted to pursue a career in this field. What were
your initial assumptions about this career before you began your research?
Did you have concerns about this field?
Make sure your information flows in one smooth paragraph or more and
always write in complete sentences. Do not copy the questions. Rather, use
clear topic sentences.
 Thesis: You are determining if you should remain on your current career path
or change. You will do the research first and then make your decision. Once
you have made your decision, you will be ready to write your thesis. Your
thesis would look something like this:
Career Analysis Essay 2
 Based on my research, I should stay on my current career path because
X, X, and X (criteria) or Based on my research, I should change
my current career path because X, X, and X (criteria).
 Research Methods: In this section, you will discuss what kind of research
you did. You might think of it as answering this question:
-How did you go about researching whether or not you should stay on your
career path? What sources did you use? What keywords helped you retrieve
sources? How do you ensure that these sources were credible?
Be sure to discuss your research process and the sources you retrieved. If you
read in a book or books, discuss those texts and the titles. If you searched on
the Internet, discuss the title or titles of the websites (not the addresses).
Italicize all titles of books, websites, newspaper titles, and journals.
Place essay titles and article titles between “quotation marks.”
 Criteria for Determining Whether I Should Continue on my Current Career
Path or Change: In order to support your thesis, you need to do research.
You would base this research on the criteria you have chosen. Here are some
 employability–How easy would it be to get a job in your field? How
soon you could get a job?
 salary–How much money would you make?
 job satisfaction–How satisfied would you be in your field?
 types of people you would work with/workplace community
 distance from home (Would you have to move in order to find a job in
your field, or could you get a job around where you live now? What
would your commute be like?)
 schedule and work/life balance (would you work on a shift schedule
or a more regular schedule? How much time will you have for
personal pursuits?)
 variance in job duties (would you do the same thing most of the time,
or would you have different job duties?)
These are just examples. You are welcome to choose other criteria than
those I provided here.
Career Analysis Essay 3
 Research Findings: This section should include fully developed individual
paragraphs. Each criterion should have its own heading and should be in
paragraph form. One criteria’s discussion could exceed one paragraph. Your
paragraphs should discuss what the criterion is, why this criterion is important,
what you learned through the research process, and how the research influences
your assumptions/expectations about the career. As you discuss your research
findings you should include summaries, paraphrased material, and direct quotes
when necessary. Remember, you should include in-text citations that correlate
with your works cited entries. Review the MLA folder materials and your text.
Example Research Findings Section:
Criterion Section: Salary
Through my research into a civil engineer career, I learned that salary is not
the most important aspect of my career choice. I always thought that making
more money would lead to more happiness. However, an article in Forbes
magazine, a leading business publication, said, “Work-life balance is the
most important factor in job selection for the millennial generation. This
generation is less interested in money than having time for family and
friends” (Johnson 43). A second source on the Collegiate Careers Web site
substantiates this finding: “Jobs seekers today are breaking the mold of past
generations and business organizations are responding to their new value
sets” (“Breaking the Mold” par. 6). The Collegiate Careers article
emphasizes what Johnson refers to as a work-life balance. This new insight
shifted my assumptions about what I want it a career. While salary is
important, it cannot replace the value of interpersonal relationships.
Engineers not only make up to ninety-thousand dollars a year, but they also
can work a standard schedule that allows one to spend time on personal
interests (Herntin 87).
**Notice how the research is smoothly integrated into the paragraph. It is
used to support the writer’s claims about the criterion and its importance**
Be sure to be thorough in telling what you learned. Don’t skimp on this
section. You should, as the example above demonstrates, maintain an
academic voice and integrate research to prove your points. This is the
longest section of your paper. Be sure to cite what you have learned as we
have discussed in class. If you find a source that gives you a one-sentence
answer, which is likely with salary, check another source as well to verify
Career Analysis Essay 4
what you have learned and to make your information more convincing. Be
sure to cite all quotations and paraphrases.
A note about academic voice:
-Rather than writing “I selected three criteria and researched them . . .”
you should write:
“Research into three criteria revealed new information and insights
that . . . ”
**Notice how the second example removes the first person “I” which
changes the tone of the sentence and emphasizes the point of the sentence—
the research**
 Future Outlook: You have now studied your field extensively and made a
decision regarding whether or not you should remain in this field. In the next
essay, The Proposal, you will be identifying opportunities and challenges in
your field and planning additional research.
Based on your investigation of this career field, what opportunities or
challenges do you see? Are there potential concerns? Will there be any specific
changes or developments in this field?
 Works Cited: (does not count toward page length) This section starts on a
separate page. Here, list the sources you used. Be sure to follow MLA citation
style (MLA).
Other Considerations:
The paper will count as 100 points. As with all college-level work, it should be
sound in grammar, mechanics, punctuation, usage, spelling, etc. These will
count significantly in the grade, and poor work in any of these areas can fail a
paper. Perhaps in classes you have had before the major concern was the
content, or what you would say. However, in a college-level English class, we
will not only be ensuring that the information is sound but also that it is
properly cited, that words are correctly spelled, that the punctuation is correct,
that sentences are well worded, etc. Therefore, check your paper carefully
before turning it in. Proofreading and editing are not always fun, but they make
a huge difference.
Career Analysis Essay 5
Do not forget to cite your sources in the text (in-text citations) and on the works
cited page. This requirement is imperative in academic writing.

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