The Illustration of Research

UNIT 2 Major Assignment: The Illustration of Research

The Illustration of Research/Matrix Assignment is the major assignment for Unit 2. In this assignment, you will be organizing your sources and putting them into relationships with one another. This process of organization will help you understand your research more clearly. This in turn will pave the way to the writing process of Unit 3.

The Matrix:
You will use a “matrix”—a visual chart—to help you organize your sources. Consider this blank template:

Research Question: ______________________________________

Source #1    Source #2    Source #3    Source #4
General Topic Back-ground    -Fact/Data

Topic    -Expert Opinion
-Expert Opinion
-Expert Opinion
-Expert Opinion
Topic    -Expert Opinion
-Fact/Data    -Expert Opinion
-Fact/Data    -Expert Opinion

-Expert Opinion
Topic    -Expert Opinion
-Fact/Data    -Expert Opinion
-Fact/Data    -Expert Opinion
-Fact/Data    -Expert Opinion

Here’s What You Do:
1.    State your most up-to-date form of your RQ.
2.    Label the columns across the top of your chart with the author’s last name or with a few keywords from the title of the work. You should have at least 8 sources listed (3 must be scholarly).
3.    Label the left column of the matrix with 4-5 topic or themes that you have noticed during your research. The first row should be for “Background” information: what your reader will just need to know to understand your paper.
4.    You may want to create a column to address the counterargument.
5.    Using your Research Journals and continuing research, fill in the matrix with claims, quotes, brief summaries, facts, and data from the source. Be sure to include page references.

Sample Matrix:

RQ: How were women socially and economically affected by the absence of men in the workplace as a result of World War II?

Cornelsen    Stewart    Bruley    Scott
Background Information:
[put stuff here]    [put stuff here]    [put stuff here]    [put stuff here]
American women were given many new roles,  opportunities, and responsibilities in the job market of the war economy.
– Women accredited the WASP program for opening new doors, challenging stereotypes, and proving that women were as capable as men (p. 113)
– Women could compete with men as equals in the sky because of their exemplary performance (p. 116)
– WASP created opportunities for women that had never previously existed (p. 112)
– Women’s success at flying aircrafts “marked a pivotal step towards breaking the existing gender barrier” (p. 112)    – WAAC (Women’s Army Auxiliary Corp) was 1st chance for women to serve in army, given full army status in 1943 as WAC (p. 28)
– Needs of the war were so great that women’s traditional social roles were ignored (p. 30)
– Military women paid well for the time period and given benefits if they became pregnant (p. 32)
– The 1940’s brought more opportunities to women than ever before (p. 26)    -Women given equal opportunities (p. 223)
– Women joined workforce as a break from the ordinary to help the war (p. 220)
– Unconscious decision to cross into male-dominated roles (p. 221)
– Seized these new opportunities to bring about change (p. 230)
– Women born in the 1920’s found new doors open to them where they once would have encountered brick walls (p. 526)
-Even women not directly involved in the war were changing mentally by being challenged to expand their horizons because of the changing world around them (p. 562)
– War also brought intellectual expansion to many people (p. 557)
women in the wartime job force faced sexist prejudice and opposition from people who wished to preserve an older, more traditional social order.    – “From the outset male pilots resented women’s presence in a traditionally male military setting” (p. 1113-4)
– “The WASP were routinely assigned inferior planes that were later found to have been improperly maintained” (p. 114)
– discrimination against WASP at every level of military service, women were only paid 2/3 of what men were for doing identical tasks (p. 114)
– “In the belief that women were emotionally and physically fragile, the military questioned women’s capabilities to fly an aircraft” (p. 114-5), regardless of their training or aptitude
– WASP’s not granted veteran status until 1979 (p. 115)    – Women in the military given extensive physical and mental tests, but still discriminated against, ridiculed, and considered inferior to men (p. 29)    – Women given unskilled labor positions by government because only seen as temporary workers, therefore no reason to train them (p. 221-2)
– Women given less significant work and viewed as less intelligent and physically able (p. 224)
-“The Church-Bliss diary reveals how dilution arrangements…ensured that women working in male preserves were prevented from achieving any sort of equality” (p. 230)
– more traditionally male jobs resisted the integration of women workers, while other industries were less resistant… but in most all cases women were considered temporary workers (p. 221)
– Equal pay rarely given to women, even though women did the same work (p. 221)
– Women occasionally found their way to positions of importance, but were always treated as inferior (p. 226-8)
– After the war, women were the first to be let go because of their temporary status (p. 230)
– Women in the workforce also faced discrimination from labor unions (p. 226)
In the end,
WWII did not have a great effect on the socio-economic roles of women.        – Women put in untraditional roles during/because of the war, but back to previous subservient roles after the war (p. 35)    – Women were not affected because they still remained in subordinate positions after the war (p. 217)

Once your chart is complete, you will notice interesting patterns of information. You will find that your sources, at times, discuss very similar material, or that they sometimes deal with completely different aspects of your topic. You will also see more clearly how some of your sources belong together in groups. These patterns will be useful as you think further about how to support your main claim.

An additional goal of this part of the matrix is to see how sources that agree at a general level can nevertheless make different points and kinds of points even as they agree. You will start to see the greater nuances of your sources.

Please note that the sample matrix above is much smaller than your will be. Your matrix will include more sources and more reasons and acknowledgments.

See below for a template that you can cut and paste and fill in.