Critically analyse one specific theory in International Relations. Using a case study or examples what are the merits and/or weaknesses of this theory? Example thesis: Though neo-realism was the predominant theory in international relations during the Cold War it suffers from several weaknesses that will be explored in this paper. It is unable to explain the importance of violent non-state actors, it overlooks the importance of international institutions and it underestimates the power of multi-national corporations. Introduction (thesis, list of objectives) Arguments/Analysis Application of case (or provide examples throughout essay. Conclusion Guidelines Organization and Structure • Well organized and doesn’t seem disjointed • Hypothesis clearly stated at the beginning of the paper, hypothesis is logical • Conclusion ties paper up nicely and does not bring in new material all of the sudden • Proper bibliography, proper citations, footnotes if necessary *Use footnotes when you have more information to put down. This is especially useful for adding information that may disrupt the flow of the text or may seem a little bit too historical. Whenever you make a statement that is theoretical or argumentative, try to see if some scholar has mentioned this. Try to source as much as possible and use parentheses next to ideas or thoughts that can be attributed to different scholars. The more you can get in the habit of doing this, the better. Content • Well thought out and well researched • Brings in the appropriate amount of outside information and uses scholar sources for finding information (no Wikipedia!)—many sources please! • Logical and consistent • Appropriate for political science • Uses a theoretical framework (in this instance it would be good if the paper mentioned a scholar that talks about the benefits of globalization) • Links evidence to an argument • Chooses the appropriate concepts to look at, concepts are not too vague and messy • Doesn’t just offer a normative opinion piece
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