The goal of the Senior Project is to validate that Owen High School students have acquired the skills, knowledge, and concepts necessary to perform well when they leave high school. Each student will use educational tools to broaden his/her knowledge about a particular, self-selected topic. The topic should be complex and comprehensive enough to challenge the student intellectually and creatively. The topic should be viewed as one that requires cumulative knowledge. Each student will demonstrate mastery of his/her topic through the four components of the Senior Project:


The content of the essay should show that the student is able to analyze, apply, and synthesize what he or she has learned through researching his/her topic.

The essay should be five to eight pages in length, with a minimum of five sources, including at least one primary source. Students are to limit their use of encyclopedias and other general-information references to no more than one resource. Resources from the Internet should be limited to no more than two.

For purposes of documentation, students should use the MLA Handbook, 4th edition, or its equivalent, with in-text citations and technological (the Internet, for example) referencing. The final draft of the essay should include an outline and a page for works cited. The text should be double-spaced, 12-point font.


The product should be an appropriate outgrowth or extension of the research. Expenditures will not enhance the evaluation of the product. The product can take many forms such as:

- The performance of a skill (example: learn and play a musical instrument)

- The production of a project (example: design and build a piece of furniture)

- Learning about a profession (example: intern at an insurance office documented by a journal, scrapbook, etc.)


At the end of the semester, the student will make an eight-to-ten minute presentation to a board of community members, followed by a five-minute question-and-answer session.


As students progress through the project, they will be required to compile a project notebook, or portfolio.

This notebook contains documentation of the project throughout the semester.

The Senior Project counts 20% of the course grade for all English IV courses.

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