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Explore the various units of Mrs. Tracy's Junior & Senior English classes, including literature, research, and writing.
Last Updated: May 10, 2017 URL: http://libguides.mpsaz.net/mrstracymhs Print Guide RSS Updates

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"Graduation is only a concept. In real life every day you graduate. Graduation is a process that goes on until the last day of your life. If you can grasp that, you'll make a difference."

—Arie Pencovici


I-Search Instructions

What You Will Do: 


1.         Set College/Career/Life goals.

2.         Research your career and college path.

3.         Write a report on what you learned.

4.        Write a college entrance essay.

5.         Present your findings in a gallery walk.


Sample topics you may choose to research:

Automotive               Acting/Singing/Performing

Sales                       Medical Professionals

Business Ownership/Management               Teaching

Audio/Visual Production                  Athletics

Graphic Design                        Computer Programming

Engineering                           Cosmetology

Fashion                              Interior Design

Writing/Editing                              Photography

Firefighter                                             Law Enforcement/Forensics

Lawyer/Judicial System                    Librarian

Construction                               Journalism

Politics                                 Art

Architecture             Psychology

Religious Leadership            etc etc etc



Use the resources to your left to begin your research. See the teacher for subscription passwords and user names. You may venture outside of these resources, but be careful to check for credibility.


The Report

The Report: 

 The report will be 6 paragraphs in length and will follow the following format:


a. 1st paragraph- Introduction

1. Where do you see yourself in the future. Avoid using phrases such as “I want,” “I hope,” and “I wish.” Instead be affirmative. Say “I will.”  

2.  What are your personal goals? Explain who you will become personally.

3.  What are your professional goals? Explain who you will become professionally. Why is this career important to you? What drives you to want to attain this profession?

4.  What are your college goals? Why this college? What do you hope to gain from your college education? What will you bring to this college that is unique and original?

b.  2nd paragraph-  Career Description (from AZCIS.intocareers.org or Career Books) 

1.  Describe the career field (as it is today, based on research) that you would like to go into.

2. What is nature of the work you will be doing at the job? (What are the daily tasks you will be completing?) What skills will you need?

3. What kind of schooling and education does the job require? What degrees/certifications do the typical entry level employees have? What about for advancement in the field?

4.  Setting of the job, what type of working conditions exist? What will your work environment be like?

5.  Salary/pay (entry level and goal level)? How important is salary to you?

6.  Benefits? Incentives? What types of other perks does the typical employee in your profession receive?


c.  3rd Paragraph- How do you get there? (Career books or AZCIS.intocareers.org) 

1. What is the average number of years students take to complete your degree? What types of classes would you take your freshman year as you begin your degree? (Major Map)

2.  What type of institution must you attend to obtain the degree (university, community college, career college, tech school, trade school, apprenticeship, etc.)? What are three options of universities or colleges you could attend that would offer your program?

3.  After you obtain a degree, what other certifications do you need?  (post-graduate, masters degree, doctorate, etc.) Do you have to complete an internship? How do you make the transition from college to the career? What is the typical path?

4.  Are there internships available or entry level positions to work in while still in school? How does the school help you get a job once you graduate? Once again, think about that transition from college to career.  

 d.  4th Paragraph- College Requirements (College books) 

1.  What are the admission requirements for your college? If you have already applied, what are the additional requirements for your specific major, if any?

2. What are the costs of attending the school? How do you plan to finance your education? What percentage of your costs will be parent contributions, loans, grants, or your own contributions?

3. What are required freshman costs (i.e. living on campus, meal plans, etc.)? What options do you have as a freshman for on campus living and meal plans?

4.  What type of financial aid is offered and how do you apply? How much financial aid does the school reward each year? What have you applied for?

5. What resources are available to help you if you need academic assistance on campus?


e. 5th Paragraph- College Social Life

1. If you are living in the dorms, how will you adjust to living with a roommate? What will you do if you don’t get along with your roommate? If you are not living in the dorms, how will you combat the statistic that 60% of commuter students drop out in the first year?

2. What will you need to bring to college? What shouldn’t you bring?

3. How will you balance fun with work? What will be the rules you set for yourself so that you get your work done?

4. What strategies will you use to manage your study time wisely?

5. What social organizations are available for you to get involved in if you wish?

f. 6th Paragraph- Conclusion 

1. What was the most important thing that you learned about your possible future career and career path?

2. What was different than you expected? What surprised you?

3.  What other loose ends do you need to tie up before you go off to college?



What is an I-Search?

An I-Search project is a research based essay and presentation that is all about YOU!!!  The research that you do during this essay will hopefully help you make informed decisions for your life, such as attending college, finding a job, and planning your future!


College Entrance Essay

College application essays are perhaps the most significant and crucial type of essay you’ll ever be assigned to write because your future depends upon the results of its accomplishment. The major purpose of these essays is to reveal your unique & genuine personality, demonstrate your writing skills, show your ability to organize your thoughts coherently, & to build the structure of your essays logically. Your goal is to convince the reader that you are great, unique, smart, and that ignoring your acceptance would be a great detriment to their school. 

Avoid superficial and cliché answers, as the people in admissions are well educated and will know if you are sucking up.

In addition to your research paper, your portfolio will consist of ONE (1) college entrance essay. It will be approx. 1-2 pages in length, typed, and virtually error-free. Below is a list of topics you can choose from for your essays. You are also allowed to choose topics from your ACTUAL college applications, which I HIGHLY RECOMMEND. Just make sure you follow the rules for your particular application in order to meet criteria and acceptance.

  • Life is short. Why do you want to spend 4+ years at a particular university?

  • What are the reasons for your personal interests? Analyze your childhood. How were your interests shaped from your upbringing?
  •  What is your approach to life? Reveal your life’s philosophy.

  • Write about a book that has specific significance for you and why.

  • Write an editorial on a subject that you are passionate about. Act like it will be published in your local newspaper.

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