Based on the definition of the word “trend” provided here (an increase or decrease in a phenomenon over time), students will identify a current trend in U.S. culture and research the origins, causes, effects, and future prospects for the trend (TREND ANALYSIS). The trend should be of short to medium length (3-20 years). Students should use MLA format. The paper should be no less than four full pages in length, not including works cited, and no more than four pages in length. A minimum of six sources are required for the paper. The paper should state what the trend is and what is causing it (in the first paragraph, before the thesis). In addition, the thesis should state SPECIFICALLY how long the trend will continue into the future and why it will end.
The paper should include at least three reasons why the claim is true. Thesis Example: “The trend of increasing zombie movies and TV shows on an annual basis will end in the year 2018 because Americans will grow bored with zombies and quit watching them, Hollywood will take up more serious subjects like airplane disaster movies, the movie is replaced by the Youtube video as the most commonly consumed form of entertainment. The paper should also use at least one other technique mentioned in the article on future forecasting: “Methods and Approaches to Future Studies.” This should be clearly mentioned and integrated into the paper. The paper must follow MLA format, use at least one short quotation, and include correct in-text citations/source integration through indentifying tags for all five sources. Note: Trends are everywhere. From percentages of the population who vote, to percentages of the increase in the price of cotton, trends are a mathematical representation of an increase or decrease in a particular phenomenon over time. Students need only choose their favorite pastime or hobby to find a trend. Ask yourself questions such as: Are you new to the pastime? How long have you known about it? How long do you foresee the pastime remaining popular? How much money does the pastime generate as an industry? Sales figures are a great way to talk about the strength and length of a trend. They allow you to examine the increase or decrease of a particular phenomenon—namely the amount of money generated by a trend. Do you play video games? What are the sales results for the last three years, and what are the projections for the next five? Any subject which interests you can be analyzed in terms of trend numbers, usually through sales. The best way to lay out the paper might be the following: P1. Introduction/Thesis Statement. This paragraph should identify what the trend is, and why it matters, then make a predictive claim (thesis claim) about how long the trend will continue, and why the claim about trend length is true. An example is: “Accelerating growth in the trend of live goldfish swallowing will continue until 2027, when PETA will get the government to outlaw it, goldfish prices will rise too high, and people begin will swallowing swords instead.” P2. Brief history and explanation of the causes of the trend (one paragraph). P3-P4-P5. All three of these paragraphs explain the reasons, one by one, why the trend will end when you say it will (reasoning). This is where the future forecasting techniques can be used. Be sure to include evidence supporting your reasoning. Evidence could consist of how other similar trends came to an end. For instance, My Space rose in popularity over three-four years, peaked, and has been in decline ever since. P6-P7. At least 2 counterarguments (a discussion of those who think the trend will not end when you think it will, and why they might be wrong) P8. Conclusion