Final Report Project: Addressing a Challenge, Issue, or Problem in Your Career Field

In your longer report, you can choose to write abut a problem and its solution (or possible solutions). You will explore a major challenge within your field and research possible solutions that are being presented for that challenge.

For example: Suppose you are going into the teaching field and you find that one of the major challenges in K-12 education is keeping teachers. You learn that new teachers often do not stay in the field more than five years! You decide to research why that is (the challenge) and what can be done to retain new teachers.

You decide that your audience will be K-12 administrators. Or, perhaps you decide that the audience should be a general audience of people who are deeply concerned about education.

After researching the problem, and determining why experts feel that it is so hard to retain K-12 teachers, you research what some of the major experts in the field are suggesting for solutions. You find a number of suggestions, but settle on 3 that you feel are most workable.

You then discuss each solution fully, analyzing and discussing the pros and cons of each solution.

Finally, you are ready to give your opinion: what solution do you think will be most successful in retaining new teachers? It might be one of the (at least 3) solutions you researched, or perhaps you come up with your own solution or a combination of solutions.

A Word of Caution: It's important that you narrow your topic effectively. For example, if your field is engineering, choose a manageable topic rather than one that is so big that it can.t really be solved. For example, you might narrow your topic to the problem of attracting more women/minorities/a specific minority to the field of engineering.

However, be sure not to narrow too much. For this assignment, you should choose a topic that others in your field are debating and have discussed in research or in credible, professional publications.

Zero in on a specific issue in your field. For example, if you are in law enforcement you could choose sex trafficking and narrow the problem to the fact that regulation and security at the borders are ineffective at managing and stopping the trafficking of both children and women from third-world countries. Then, you could spend time proposing improvements and alternative solutions.

This may be the first time you have researched or thought about problems in your field. For ideas, try googling challenges in ________ or Issues in __________. Or, browse through the contents of professional journals in your field. You can look at these through the college online databases. I am also more than happy to help you brainstorm!

Find a topic you can really get interested in—it will make your paper easier to research and write.

Information developed by kathryn.roosa@austincc.edu; provided by davidm@austincc.edu.