MHS AP Chemistry
Short Papers

The paper should use standard formal research paper format.  This means write it like it’s an English paper.  Ask your English teacher if you are not familiar with the MLA format.  Avoid casual writing and contractions.

There should be at least two references.  At least one must be less than two years old, and at least one must be from our library.  Show all references, including page numbers.  I will spot-check randomly.  Be very careful about internet references: they may be unreliable, so you should try to double check anything you find there.  Make sure that internet citations are reproducible - ask someone to find what you found from your works cited reference.  If they can’t, it needs revision.  You are NOT required to use the internet as a source.

The paper can be on ANY topic at all to do with chemistry.  Pick one that interests you, or reflects your interests in other subjects (if you like writing, you might find out about various inks and pen tips...).  If you have a really hard time picking a topic, think about that notebook of project ideas I have.

DO NOT write about the same topic as your friends.

DO NOT claim other authors’ work as your own - this is plagiarism, which is stealing.  This is research paper, so all of your ideas should come from outside sources.  That means AT LEAST every paragraph should cite a reference.  If you have any questions about this or about the definition of “common knowledge,” see me before the paper is due.  If the first paper is NOT properly referenced, I will hand it back for re-writing and it will begin losing points for lateness.  PARAPHRASE.  Any paper after the first that is not referenced will not be given credit.

There must be chemistry there, too.  Reactions, molecules, diagrams... not just paragraphs.  The chemistry must be correct.

TYPE THESE PAPERS.  Use a computer at home, or the one in Room 207, or one of the ones in Room 237, but TYPE THESE PAPERS.  They should be about 2-3 pages double spaced, not counting references.  Did I mention that you should TYPE THESE PAPERS?

Ask someone else in the class to read a semi-final draft before you pass it in.  They will catch many silly grammar and spilling errors.

The grade is out of 25 points.  Each paper counts as a concept.
a) 10 points chemistry __________
b) 5 points neatness __________
c) 5 points mechanics (grammar, spelling, style...) __________
d) 5 points references __________
e) 2 points OFF for each day late __________


[MHS AP Chem page]