The paper should briefly describe and summarize your sources, but the emphasis is on synthesizing the findings to suggest ideas and make conclusions regarding your chosen topic. Make sure to invoke and refer specifically to the basic ecological concept(s) addressed by your paper.
• Style/Grammar = Spelling, punctuation, no direct quotes or simple rephrasing (this is a synthesis!); no plagiarism; complete sentences; no run-ons; don’t start sentences
with numbers; italicize scientific names
• Introduction = Overview/explanation of topic; importance of topic; how it fits in with the field of ecology (or sub-field within ecology, which you have defined). Set up the topic in relation to the field of ecology; relate to basic concepts within ecology; relevance and importance – include a statement of what your paper will discuss. Introduction of the general importance of your topic is essential.
• Discussion = Synthesis of the findings in the four studies; conclusion of overall current knowledge on topic. Discuss how your references complete a picture of what the current status is of the findings or knowledge on the topic/basic ecological concept. Compare and contrast the findings from the references. You need not include a section called “discussion” but this content is essential to the paper.
• Use of References = Reviews of each paper; discuss each relative to the larger theme and to your other references. Introduce each study briefly, highlight main points and findings that are especially important to topic; include methods only if they are highly relevant or insightful; relate to other references if applicable.
• Citations & Bibliography = Correct & consistent format in text AND in bibliography; e.g., in text: (Jones & Smith 2008, Smith et al. 2008). The bibliography or “Literature Cited” will list of all references used, in alphabetical order. Follow bibliography format shown above for Ecology. These references should NOT be annotated.
Comment: Please use these 4 articles, and you could use other articles that you think you need the info from those. But you have to use these 4 too. Please cite the articles if you decide to use the new ones.