Project 2: Identify top trends in your industry

Your initial meeting with your new boss went very well and you are now working in a department that supports the company’s strategic planning for growth in the industry. Your department head has asked you to do research from a newcomer’s perspective to inform existing company marketing directions.  He has asked you to write a short paper detailing the three top trends in the industry, and focus on what you think is the most important issue in these trends.  He is hoping to use your research to position your department to launch a new strategic plan. 
This is your first real task and you are excited and a little nervous about the assignment. You think you have a sense of the industry but know you need to do more research to be accurate in your analysis. The ability to spot trends in your industry is an important skill, and your boss wants to spend energy and capital on new growth areas, products, and services.  Writing for Entrepreneur, Spader (2007) offers ideas about how to Spot the Latest Trends.
Your assignment is to produce an essay of 1,000-1,300 words in which you identify three trends in your industry, discuss them briefly, and then focus on a single issue that is especially important. You are to provide citations for at least SIX RESOURCES. These should be a mix of journal articles from the UMUC library, and pertinent and valid websites or online materials pertaining to your trends.  You will cite your sources’ ideas properly in correct APA format.  
Your headings will follow this general pattern:
Your paper’s short title (First level heading) (This will precede your introductory paragraph. Please refer to sample.)
Top Trends in the _____ Industry  (Second level heading)
An important emerging issue (and what it means in context to the industry)  (Second level heading)
Conclusions (First level heading)
References (On a new page, centered, not bold)
Here is an APA template for Project 2 for your review and use.  
This project will span two weeks. Please submit a draft of the introductory paragraph and References for review  at the end of the Week 2.  
Your draft will have the following elements:

a cover sheet in APA format;
a “template” for your paper that includes the headings;
your opening paragraph that will introduce the industry, the top trends, the issue that you have chosen;  and,
your draft References page.

 Please use the APA Style Guide 6 ed or APA examples to draft your complete citations. Use the feedback that you receive to craete your final graded paper at the end of Week 3. 
Follow these steps for best results. 

Before you begin, refresh your skills on research in the UMUC online library and other resources.  Employ the UMUC Library to locate journal articles, books, and other sources that that will help you to identify the trends in your industry. However, you may also need to use keywords to search trade resources and other currentt online resources and websites. 
Check out the short video below to set up your References page expertly. 

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Follow best practices for structuring the paper: 

An effective introduction grabs the reader’s attention and sets the tone and direction for the rest of the paper.  In reading an introduction, the reader should have a clear idea of what will follow.  Supporting paragraphs move the reader from the general introduction to the more specific aspects of your analysis in the paper.  
The body paragraphs show how the information you are providing supports and relates to your thesis.  Paragraphs across and within sections need to effectively transition from one to the next.
Each paragraph should include a topic sentence, which contains the main point of the paragraph. 
The conclusion brings to a close what you have presented in your paper.

You may want to submit this assignment to the WRIT 689 tutors; if you didn’t already use them for the This I Believe essay, you can register for their services here:Writing Tutoring Registration. If you decide to use their services, please allow a few days’ turnaround time. Use their feedback to revise your essay before you submit it on the due date.
When using sources, you need to be particularly careful to avoid plagiarism. This document discusses academic honesty and ways to avoid inadvertent plagiarism.

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