10 pg research

RESEARCH PAPER:  “Why is New Mexico poor and what should be done about it?


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Due Thursday April 15th.  Letter grade lost for each day late.


A 10-page paper.  Worth 10% of your grade



            1)  Double-spaced, use a 12 font.

            2)  1 ½” margins on left, 1” margins elsewhere.

            3)  At least 8 sources – half must be from sources other than the Internet.

4)  Citation style – no footnotes, use the following: (Jones 1990) when using general background information, (Jones 1990, p. 8) when citing a specific fact or using a quote from a certain page.  Then list your sources in any standard format in alphabetical order in a bibliography at the end of the paper.

            5)  No Wikipedia sources allowed – a letter grade deducted if you use this

            6) Indent and single-space long quotes (avoid using too many).


Research Paper Topic:  “Why is New Mexico poor and what should be done about it?


Part 1)   How did this happen?  (7 pages)

            Discuss how geography helps explain why New Mexico is a poor state. 


Part 2)   What should we do about it?  (3 pages)

            Give your opinion on how we can improve economic conditions in New Mexico.



In Part 1 analyze New Mexico’s historical and cultural geography for reasons for why poverty is so common here.  Use historical/cultural facts and demographic/income figures. 

New Mexico has been claimed by various Indian nations, Spain, Mexico, and the United States.   

As a result, New Mexicans often hold very different beliefs about whose place this is and how life should be lived.  What are some of those core beliefs?  Cultural diversity is a wonderful part of living here, but does this limit New Mexican’s ability to agree on how we can create a more prosperous future? 


In Part 2 provide and briefly explain a thoughtful set of recommendations for what can be done to reduce poverty in the state.  A huge variety of topics might be considered including:  reducing social/cultural conflicts, improving educational achievement, changing tax policies, altering economic development and energy development strategies, and reforming U.S.-Mexico Border laws


       Be creative and factual.

       There are no wrong opinions if you provide evidence and use reason.

       You will never be marked down for your political point of view

The best papers must show evidence that you thought about this topic and made a sincere effort. 

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