Research Paper Instructions
This course requires that you write a 6–8 page research paper. This paper’s topic is Toward an Understanding of Pastoral Theology. You might ask, “What is Pastoral Theology?” The answer is that pastoral theology is demonstrated when a minister allows Scripture to control his ministry so that he becomes effective in pastoring God’s people. Jay Adams helps clarify as he states, “Ministry and life are inseparably intertwined with theology. The pastoral worker cannot escape either the need for a theology of pastoral work (ministry) or the implications of theology in all that he does. If the pastor finds that he fails in his everyday dealings with men and women, he should recognize that the source of his problems may not be lack of experience, strategy or skills; in more instances than he may wish to admit, his failures may stem from shoddy or erroneous biblical understanding or theological thinking.” Therefore, this paper should be written in a manner that demonstrates your understanding of how to perform/live theology before a group of people so that they are able to know and love God. Furthermore, this paper should follow the guidelines that are listed below. Therefore, before you submit your paper, you should ask yourself each of the following questions to ensure that you have fulfilled all of the requirements.
The Research Paper must be submitted via SafeAssign by 11:59 p.m. (ET) on Monday of Module/Week 7.
- What is the topic you are going to address?
- Is there a clear thesis statement?
- Does the introduction provide a clear overview of the paper’s contents?
- Are the issues raised in the topic properly treated?
- Are there differing viewpoints considered, analyzed, and treated within your paper?
- Do you analyze the topic thoroughly and logically?
- Is your paper written with clear and concise content?
- Is your paper written substantively with good development of ideas and concepts?
- Do the assertions that you make in your paper have clear support (sources)?
- Does your paper flow?
- Is your word choice clear and concise—without any ambiguity?
- Is your paper presentation strong and focused?
- Did you use proper headings?
- Are the transitions between your paragraphs and sections clear?
- Are your sentences written with fluency – coherent, unified, and varied?
- Are your sentences structured properly – complete, clear, and concise?
- Is your punctuation correct?
- Did you double space your paper?
- Did you use Times New Roman as your font? Did you use 12 as your font size?
Materials & Style
- Did you incorporate 5 sources?
- Did you use scholarly sources?
- Are materials properly cited and quoted? Are quotes relevant to the study?
- Is your paper properly formatted following Turabian guidelines? Are the entries in the bibliography and footnotes properly formatted?
- Is your paper without spelling and grammatical errors?
- Does your paper reflect an appropriate upper collegiate level of vocabulary?
- Does your conclusion offer a good summary of the issues treated?
- Does it conclude the thought by offering thoughts that bring the paper to a proper end?
- Does it offer suggestions for further study related to the issue/passage?
 Jay E. Adams, Shepherding God’s Flock: A Handbook on Pastoral Ministry, Counseling, and Leadership (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1974), 2.