POS 2041 American National Government Research Project

Module Learning Objectives

  1    Complete a research project related to one of the Standard Course objectives. (CO 3, 4, or 5)

  2    Analyze the influences on American National Government in policy decisions. (CO 5)

  3    Demonstrate proper application of APA formatting and reference documentation. (CO 6)

Letter Writing Project

This is a two-part semester long research project which involves researching a federal issue or concern and addressing that matter in a letter to a member of the United States Congress.  Again, the topic must be federal (national) and not state or local level.  You can search as for suggested topics.

Part 1: Letter to Congress- 50 points (250 words)

Civic Engagement- This is the introductory step to the research project, where you convey your summary analysis to your elected official.

Write a letter to your Representative or Senator explaining your concern and specifically identifying what you would like to see your Representative or Senator do regarding this matter.  

Letter Formatting Tips:

           ?     Please make sure your letter is in the proper business letter format.

           ?     The purpose of your letter should be stated in the first paragraph.

           ?     Parenthetical references are not necessary within your letter.

           ?     If your letter pertains to a specific piece of legislation, identify it accordingly. House bill: H. R. ____, Senate bill: S.____.

           ?     Keep your letter courteous and to the point. Include key information, using examples to support your point.

           ?     Address only one issue in each letter; and, if possible, keep the letter to one page.

Use the following examples to properly address your correspondence:

To a Senator:

The Honorable (full name)

United States Senate 

Street Address

Washington, DC 20510

Dear Senator:

To a Representative:

The Honorable (full name)

United States House of Representatives 

Street Address

Washington, DC 20510

Dear Representative:

How to find your Congressman or Senator, and their address:

  •     Go to the website: Contacting the Congress

  •     Type in your zip code

  •     Click on the name of your Representative or Senator to find their mailing address.

How to format a Business Letter

Part 2: Analysis Paper – 100 points (1,000 Words)

Analysis of issue of concern – This is the main step in completing this assignment and actively engaging as a citizen. 

In APA research paper format, clearly articulate an issue of concern that is important to you and within the authority of the United States Congress. Explain your concern, using your research and explain Congress’ authority to address this issue. What action would you like to see your Representative or Senator and the Congress as a whole take in this matter. Include in your discussion the obstacles to the outcome you are seeking. For examples of topics you can check  But the topic MUST be federal (national), NOT state or local.

Review the Federalism chapter in your textbook for sources federal authority, ie. Constitutional authority and through the use of federal grants and legislation. Please support your position with in-text citations from your sources.

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