College Personal Reflection Essay Vs Research

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What does a good thesis statement look like?
There is one big tip on writing a good essay almost every article on the web gives you. It’s to come up with a clear and specific thesis statement.
But how one does it? You need to understand what is the main idea of your paper and how to communicate it in a comprehensive and concise way. Here are some of the thesis statement examples to help you make this task less problematic.

Thesis statement formula

As you can see, there is no universal thesis statement formula as every type of a writing assignment requires a different approach. In some cases, you will have to include counterarguments, and in others presenting solely your point of view will suffice. Here are a couple of examples:

While there is a common belief that ……., a closer examination proves that …….
Despite the ……., the recent facts show that ……
The reason for is …… and as a result …….

Contents:

 

Argumentative Essay

    1. Endorsement of child labor by international companies should not be supported.
      Consumers should not buy items from the countries that endorse child labor because this kind of financial approval encourages big corporations to increase the production, the exhaustion of a child’s body can lead to severe health problems, and the hard work deprives children of their childhood.
    2. The morality of atheists and theists.
      Even though atheists do not have an instruction of good behavior provided by the superior beings, they are not less moral than theists. They have their own moral compass and laws established by society to differentiate good deeds from the bad ones.
    3. Testing drugs on animals is the sacrifice we have to make.
      The greatest value we have is a human life. If testing a new drug on a cute little rabbit could result in saving your mother or father from a terminal illness, then this is the sacrifice we need to make. Animal testing can lead to our healthier future, less incurable diseases, and more saved lives.
    4. Getting a university diploma is necessary.
      Even though there are some examples of successful people without a college degree, everybody should go through this stage of self-development. The years in college give you knowledge, improve your soft skills, and connect you with other bright people who can help you get to the top in the future.
    5. Personal information on the web should have a legislative basis.
      Even though we can’t imagine our life without social media, we have to be careful about the information we provide as it can be used for research reasons. There should be specific laws about the availability of big data and who can use it because it will be easy to manipulate people’s minds, gather the personal information without permission and use it for someone’s benefits.
    6. Landing on the Moon is a fake.
      Despite the presence of a documentary video of landing on the Moon, it should be recognized as the biggest fraud. The details of the video and the fact that we still have not made a come back there after more than 40 years indicate that it could not be filmed on the Moon surface.
    7. Parents monitoring their children internet use is the right thing.
      While there is a lot of useful and educational information on the internet, parents should regulate the internet use of their children. Children get distracted, spend more time on harmful web sites, and avoid social interaction.
    8. Money as a motivation for good grades is an option.
      The approach of encouraging the children to get good grades by paying them can be a model of the real world situation. If you work hard and get good results, you will get paid accordingly. This way of encouragement is acceptable and can be used by parents.
    9. The line between exaggeration and lies in advertising.
      There are not enough regulatory norms to make the modern advertisement less deceiving. The line between exaggeration and lies is not clear and the products advertised turn often don’t meet the customers’ expectations. If we introduce more rigid rules to advertising, there will be less disappointed customers.
    10. Space missions should not be a priority.
      We spend billions of dollars on developing the strategies of Mars colonization while there are millions of people suffering from famine here, on our planet. It would be more beneficial to spend more on saving people in Africa from starvation and water shortages than sending someone to a distant planet.
    11. Unfair salary rates of doctors.
      In the world where human life is the biggest value, doctors should get the highest salary rates, not actors and singers. They save lives, deprive us of physical pain, and have to spend years of studying and practicing to be able to do that.
    12. Euthanasia should be legalized.
      Euthanasia should be recognized as one of the possible ways of ending a person’s life. The right of life is given to every person and we are free to take decisions we consider to be right.
    13. Homeschooling is effective.
      Homeschooling is an effective way of educating children as it gives an opportunity to focus on personal strength and weaknesses, make emphasis on the particular subjects a child has an interest in, and adapt the studying approach to the most convenient for a child.
    14. Diets are just waste of time.
      Multiple cases show that all the diets have a short-term effect on the body. Diets are ineffective because people start gaining weight once they stop and the organism goes through an unnecessary stress.
    15. The production of cigarettes should decrease by 90%.
      The production of cigarettes should decrease by 90% so that with time, the harmful habit could disappear. A significant decrease in the production of tobacco products will lead to the minimization of demand on it as the price will get higher, the supply will decrease and people will not be able to buy it.
    16. Reverse discrimination at the workplace is a problem.
      The fear of being punished for the discrimination of ethnical minorities at the workplace leads to the discrimination of the rest of the population. There should be a law that balances out this inequality.
    17. Redistribution of money spent on the space programs is needed.
      The government should not spend money on the search for new exoplanets as it has no practical value for people on Earth. Instead, they should focus on asteroid mining projects to be able to get the vital resources after they are all used on our planet and survive.
    18. Plastic surgeries should not be allowed to everyone.
      Even though plastic surgeries are aesthetically justified, they do not solve the psychological problems of desire to change one’s appearance. They should be allowed only in severe cases because they give people the fake satisfaction, can cause an addiction, and support the objectification of one’s image.
    19. Video games advocating violence should be banned.
      Video games featuring violent episodes should be banned as they lead to violence at schools, damage the mentality of minds, and create the perverted image of reality.
    20. Abortions should be legal.
      The legalization of abortions should be legalized as women should have the freedom to make decisions regarding their bodies and there are cases when there could be no other solution to the problem.

 

Personal Reflection

    1. Studying abroad.
      Although the idea of studying abroad might sound costly, the experience one will get from the interaction with another culture and different approach to teaching is worth it.
    2. Marriage at a young age.
      There is nothing good about getting married at a young age except for it being romantic. People’s personalities change dramatically between 20 and 30 years old and young marriages are almost never a good idea.
    3. Getting a degree.
      Higher education is no longer a requirement for getting the dream job. Online short-term courses can give you the necessary theoretical information.
    4. Women choosing not to have children.
      There is nothing scandalous about a woman who chooses not to have children and our society has to understand that. It is her time and body that are at stake but not someone’s beliefs.
    5. Modern art.
      Modern art becomes more and more meaningless as almost every creative project has a goal of provoking negative emotions.
    6. National identity.
      We will see more and more regions demanding independence in the upcoming years because the question of national identity has become extremely the top of the agenda in Europe.
    7. AIDS.
      There is an urgent need of educating people about AIDS as there are many countries even in Europe where the information about this disease is inaccurate and unspecific.
    8. Protecting animals.
      Every civilized country should ban circuses that use animals for their shows. This kind of entertainment is not worth the sufferings those animals go through.
    9. Vegetarianism.
      Becoming a vegetarian is a new stage of the human development as you stop being an animal and make a conscious choice of not eating meat for the sake of other animals just like you.
    10. Suicide.
      Choosing death instead of life is a selfish deed by which you take the joy of your life not from yourself but from the people who love you.

 

 

Research Paper

    1. Plants in the developing countries.
      International companies having their factories in the developing countries provide thousands of people with work and stable income. The question of ethics should not stand in the way of helping those people to survive.
    2. 6 hour work day
      The U.S. should introduce a 6 hour work day for office workers to reduce sick-leave and increase the motivation.
    3. The importance of exams.
      Exams are not an effective way of assessing students’ knowledge. There should be an alternative to measuring the abilities while exams will be banned.
    4. School uniforms.
      School uniforms work perfectly for erasing the difference of families’ income levels and can always be individualized by the students to express their creativity.
    5. Space debris.
      Space debris is a serious threat to our planet and there should be more information and publicity on the topic.
    6. Personal information.
      The federal government should not have access to the personal information we state online and should not be able to use it.
    7. Food at school cafeterias
      The food at school cafeterias is one of the main reason of children’s obesity in the U.S. the government should introduce legal regulations regarding this issue.
    8. Maternity leave
      The period of paid maternity leave should increase up to 2 years. A woman should be able to get a salary from the government during this time while staying with children at home.
    9. Harmful ads.
      The ads of alcohol and cigarettes should be banned as they advocate the unhealthy way of life.
    10. Beauty contests.
      Beauty contests do not have any value for the society and should be eliminated from the lives of civilized societies.

 

Comparative Essay

    1. Plato and Socrates.
      While the two Greek philosophers had their differences in understanding the world around us, they both were the founders of Western philosophy and made a huge impact on philosophy as we know it today.
    2. Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin.
      The similarities between the two dictators are striking and they need a thorough investigation to understand the specific reasons for their horrid behavior.
    3. Judaism and Christianity.
      Although they bear some similarities, the differences between Judaism and Christianity are remarkable and cause massive disputes until today.
    4. Online and on-campus studies.
      While online classes provide students with more flexibility, they require more organizational and time-management skills to succeed at studies.
    5. Darwin and Lamarck
      Although Darwin and Lamarck had similar views on the idea of species evolving over time, they had reached to different results in terms of the acquired traits inheritability.
    6. Hobbes and Locke
      While Hobbes and Locke both had a major impact on the political philosophy, their views on the origin of moral principles of the right and wrong a man has.
    7. TV series and full-length film
      The quality of modern TV series has increased immensely and sometimes matches the one of a full-length film, even though the two forms have some dramatic differences.
    8. Claude Monet and Pierre Auguste Renoir
      Although the two painters had a close working relationship, they used different approaches to communicating their inner understanding of the world’s beauty.
    9. eBooks and paper books
      While both eBooks and paper books have the same goal, the experience they bring to a reader is different and leads to several major distinctions between the two.
    10. Google and Facebook
      Although Google and Facebook are designed for different purposes, they have multiple similarities of influencing people’s perceptions.

 

Analytical Essay

    1. Gambling.
      Gambling addiction can be caused by several factors – impulse control disorder, genetics, past trauma syndrome- each having its particular impact on the behavior.
    2. Tennis.
      The success of any tennis player depends on his physical, mental, and emotional skills.
    3. Being a popular writer.
      There is no unified success formula for authors to become successful but there are 5 main factors that can influence the writing career.
    4. Missions to the Moon.
      The main reason for stopping further missions to the moon are the high cost and focus on more strategically important expenditures.
    5. How to survive on an island after a shipwreck.
      There is a list of things one can do to prepare for a shipwreck and survive on an island before getting rescued that includes some physical training and thorough strategy.
    6. Random shootings.
      The reasons behind the increasing number of random shootings in the U.S. are the growing fear of population and feeling of vulnerability.
    7. Autism.
      Children diagnosed with autism need their parents to take a special approach to upbringing which includes a particular schedule of activities to avoid stress.
    8. Creative Professions.
      The popularity of creative professions in the 21st century can be explained by the possibility of making robots do the hard routine tasks.
    9. Hurricanes.
      To minimize a major damage caused by a hurricane, every household needs to take thorough preventive measures.
    10. Caste system in India.
      The phenomenon of a caste system in India was introduced as a mean of taking the local populations under control.

 

Case Study

    1. Diversification in business is one of the most effective ways of assuring its success as it lets you have an alternative service or product to focus on during a critical situation.
    2. The symptoms of most of the eating disorders appear due to the stressful way of life.
    3. Creating a positive environment at a workplace increases employees’ motivation and reduces days of sick leave.
    4. Sharing responsibilities in the workplace between the members of one team project increases productivity by X% and helps people feel involved in the process.
    5. The lack of effective communication between colleagues and subordinates can lead to the decrease of productivity.
    6. The urge of changing workplaces and professions in the 21st century has the main reason of overall dissatisfaction with life. The feeling of uselessness and depression makes millennials search for a better place to work and live.
    7. Skills and knowledge do not matter for a top manager as long as they do not have a strong personality and leadership skills.
    8. The individual approach to every employee of New Balance corporation is an example of building a positive brand image without investing too much money in PR.
    9. Translation fails multinational companies make have a serious impact on the sales revenue.
    10. The case of IKEA demonstrates how good PR and social practices can turn society’s attention from the weaknesses of the company and make them its strengths.

 

Book Review

    1. Long Walk to Freedom by Nelson Mandela is a marvelous example of inspirational writing that shows how it is possible to fight for civil rights on the streets and behind the prison bars.
    2. Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald shows us all the drastic consequences of having an illusion of a better life and making it the sense of one’s life.
    3. Pride and Prejudice was a revolutionary novel depicting a woman as a self-sufficient human being and not just a supplement to a man.
    4. The idea of the struggle against growing up plays the central role in The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger.
    5. In Great Expectations by Charles Dickens, we see that wealth and social class are secondary to loyalty and affection.
    6. The Odyssey is an epic masterpiece that teaches us that any life journey is filled up with a great number of obstacles and the outcome depends on how good we can cope with them.
    7. Through Goethe’s Faust, we can understand the real value of life and the significance of all the decisions we make as some of them may lead us to dramatic results.
    8. The central point Lord of the Flies makes us think about is the constant conflict between personal barbarism and the rigid rules of society.
    9. In the heart aching novel Of Mice and Men, we see the upsetting nature of human life as the sense of loneliness becomes dominant in all main characters.
    10. In The Brothers Karamazov, Dostoyevsky paints a picture of faith and doubt conflict and the unbearable burden of free will can change one’s life dramatically.

 

Position Paper

    1. There should be no controversy in terms of a gay character appearing in a Disney movie – Beauty and the Beast- in 2017 as the norms of our society has changed a lot.
    2. Donald Trump’s illogical and offensive behavior can be just a distraction from the world’s bigger political issues so that there would be no panic amongst the people.
    3. The phenomenon of higher education will be replaced by online courses and seminars in the nearest future as it is a more effective approach.
    4. Despite the protests, women’s objectification remains to be one of the central problems of perception of female beauty.
    5. Elon Musk’s ideas can help Australia and other countries to fight the energy problems and will be the future for the technological development as they are feasible and affordable.
    6. The government should stop supporting space missions trying to find extraterrestrial life due to the time factor. Unless we build a time machine, the time barrier will not let us find other forms of life elsewhere in the Universe.
    7. There should be more severe punishment for the sex offenders to reduce the cases of violence. The capital punishment is the most effective option in fighting these crimes.
    8. Parents should pay more attention to the time their children spend online because they need to know the difference between the real and virtual world from the early age.
    9. The biggest thing one can thieve from someone is no longer material but ephemeral – personal information. Because of the constant hackers attacks, it’s become impossible to feel safe.
    10. If the universities with a long history will not make the necessary adaptations to the modern educational system, the online education will take over the majority of world countries.

 

Critical Review

  1. The human factor is the reason of multiple aircraft extreme situations as only a few pilots are able to take fast and logical decisions under stress.
  2. The stereotype of a woman’s place being at home upbringing children starts to disappear, the gap between the salaries between two genders remains to be dramatic.
  3. Clothing is still the best way of introducing yourself to a person without saying anything.
  4. The type of a teachers’ salary that depends on the results of his work and not on the experience they have is becoming more and more popular.
  5. The concept of family is often the central topic in many of the world’s literature masterpieces.
  6. The effects of global warming become more visible with every year and can lead to the distinction of species.
  7. The sanctions upon the Russian Federation do not prove to be effective even a year from their initiation.
  8. The idea of degradation can be clearly seen in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby”.
  9. Homeopathy is nothing more than a placebo effect for a person.
  10. With the development of the digital era, the advertisers move their focus to online ads ignoring the effects of outdoor advertising.

The differences between the personal essay and the research paper are pretty clear and apparent. Though both require that a writer adheres to some basic rules of writing, and possibly a styling guide (such as MLA and APA), the later calls for a much greater amount of research, formal structure, and an approach that is systematic or methodical. Personal essays in contrast, may require very little research depending on the topic presented, and have no real set approach or structure. *For instance, instead of relying on distinct sections such as methodology, results, and analysis, the personal essay can do quite well with the basic introduction, body, and conclusion sections found in most papers.

Along with the above mentioned points, other issues to consider when examining differences between the two, are purpose, topic and writing style.

Differences in purpose

The first step in conducting a research project is to formulate a research question (the body of the research paper should be the complete answer to that question). The research question should set out to prove something whether through first-hand experimentation or theoretical analyses. A personal essay on the other hand, may be written simply to entertain, inform or re-create. And though a research paper is also written to inform or explain it cannot match the personal essay with regards to the other purposes. So in essence, it can be said that the personal essay is more flexible and adaptable in purpose than the research paper-which is most clearly seen when topic hunting.

Differences in topic selection & referencing

Titles such as The First Time I Rode the Bus Alone, or My Journey to Adulthood all plainly indicate a very personal experience. For research papers, since the purpose is not to share personal experiences but rather to conduct scholarly work, the topics selected in most cases will reflect just that. For instance, a more suitable topic would be; The Challenges of Public Transportation in Cincinnati or The Attainment of Life Milestones for Autistic Children as Compared to Children Diagnosed with Down Syndrome.

The notable differences in these four different topics is that the research paper topics are much more detailed and predictable. For My Journey to Adulthood there is no indication as to what the journey entails or the many events that may be included. Also, its not really clear what a reader will gain from it (outside of entertainment, for instance). But with the second research paper topic, its clear that you will learn something about the milestones achieved with autism as well as down syndrome-both topics deal with life events, but from two very different angles.

Also you will find that the research paper needs a topic that will not only allow it to be proven but also indicate something that can be thoroughly and properly investigated by way of reputable sources. The sources often referenced for a personal essay are feelings, opinions and personal life experiences (though in some cases statistics as well as definitions are commonly found). These types of sources are obviously not suitable or acceptable for a research paper. Research papers are often required by educational institutions to demonstrate, among other things, a student's research capability. And a great part of that entails obtaining credible and reliable sources of information such as scholarly journal articles, government documents, books, and reports.

Writing style

A writer's style usually involves his or her voice as well as word usage and overall tone. This can be seen by studying the particular vocabulary that at writer uses as well as the overall 'attitude' that is given in the writing. A personal essay varies with its writing style and will ultimately be up to the individual writer. Its possible to run across a personal essay that delivers a sophisticated tone, advanced vocabulary, and a clear respectable voice. While at the same time, run across an essay that uses a very relaxed tone, slang words, and a unique but somewhat objectionable voice. All of this is possible with the personal essay.

The research paper in contrast is meant to be more restricted by presenting an academic and professional style of writing. The tone should be formal, the word usage suitable for the topic discussed as well as the level of the writer (even if writing a research paper the writer should try to stay away from vocabulary that they do not understand-no matter how intelligent it sounds!), and the voice clear and appropriate.

Due to the formal nature of the research paper there simply isn't enough room for the many things that can take place in a personal essay. Therefore wording in it should be clear, concise, and straightforward. Rather than building a scene, or suspense, research writing has the main objective of accurately and efficiently answering the research question (without wordiness or exaggerated descriptions).

*Though a research paper shouldn't be completely boring either, the writer should strive for a good balance between delivering a paper that is informative and professional as well as engaging and stimulating.

So to recap, the major differences in writing style are:

  1. the personal essay gives options for relaxed, sophisticated and entertaining tones as opposed to formal and academic ones
  2. research papers should contain appropriate, average-advanced vocabulary, that is void of any slang or offensive terms
  3. The wording for research papers should not be filled with a lot colorful adjectives that don't really say much or are simply used to create an image. The selected wording should be clear and direct and show plain connections to presented evidences.

Structure and form

Lastly, the most visible of the differences between a personal essay and a research paper is the structure and form of each paper. That is, the research paper has well known and clearly defined sections that are almost universal (though they may differ with regards to discipline or subject matter). Generally a research paper is comprised of 6 key components; Introduction/Literature Review, Methods/Methodology, Results/Findings, Discussion, Conclusion. For a literary or theoretical research paper these sections may differ considerably to give more concentration to secondary as opposed to primary research.

The personal essay, as stated previously, resembles any ordinary essay in that it has a clear Introduction, Body, and Conclusion. There really is no set form for the personal essay which can definitely make it more enjoyable to write. Also there are some different approaches to writing the personal essay which may be mentioned, such as those seen in a popular women's magazine for instance, versus those found in writer's forums or literary publications. *Essays for the later are usually more gentle in nature whereas the first category may host a variety of themes and personalities.

Even though both papers are very different and generally not confused with one another, there are still some subtle similarities that can be noted. One of them being the clear presentation of ideas. Despite the fact that a personal essay allows for a lot of flexibility, a distinguishing factor of a well-crafted personal essay is that it resembles a research paper in its ability to leave a reader feeling satisfied and complete-that is, knowing what was intended by the author and gaining a significant benefit from reading.

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