A significant part of the paper should be your interpretation of the information and how your knowledge about the subject has been enriched.
Your paper should contain these parts: Introduction: Your introductory material should set up your topic for your audience.
What I am looking for is evidence that you can gather a body of knowledge on a particular subject, narrow it down to a particular focus and show that you can synthesize the information and make some intelligent, insightful observations about the subject.
What I don 't want is just a regurgitation of information strung together.
It is a balancing act to find sources that you can understand - that relate to your level of study in your discipline, and, at the same time, challenge you intellectually.
In this paper I do not want you to try and solve a problem or necessarily reach a conclusion.
Investigate possible approaches to your chosen topic and map out your strategy.
Your final product will be judged on how well you succeed in producing a well though out, clear paper which shows you can interpret and intelligently discuss the issue and how well you can backup your findings with evidence.
Encyclopedias should not be your main sources, but can give you good background information and clarify concepts.
If you are taking a course in your major this semester, you can research a topic for that course (with my permission and the other professor's).