Understanding how to read and synthesize research is a critical skill for MPA students. For your midterm assignment, you must select one topic listed below to research in the academic journals that include research on public and/or nonprofit human resource management. Other topics are possible; just make sure to run the topic by me for approval. You must select and read FIVE research articles on your chosen topic. The articles can be empirical or theoretical (I would suggest a mix of the two). Book reviews do not count as articles. For the assignment, you must complete the following:

Bring together the main research findings of the articles in an integrated discussionby integrated, I mean DO NOT summarize each article one at a time. Read across the five articles, determine what the main themes are, and then provide an integrated discussion of those themes, anchored by a central argument or thesis. For example, you read five papers on compensation strategies in the public service. Perhaps three common themes across the articles include: why strategic decisions about compensation are necessary, the challenges associated with compensation in the public service, the benefits provided by competitive compensation. You can use those three themes as organizing principles (or more if appropriate). One of the best ways to learn how to do this is to look at how this kind of discussion is presented in the literature review section of the articles you are readingthose sections are presenting large amounts of previous research findings in an integrated discussion.
Suggestions: You need not incorporate every point made by the authorsmake sure to hit the important points of the articles. The key here is to be able to highlight the most important points. Pay attention to your introduction. A good introduction is like a strong backbone–it really helps give structure to your paper and prepares the reader for where you are going to go in your paper. Your introduction should set up what you are going to examine and present your central thesis–the main focus of your analytical argument that will be developed throughout the paper. Finally, again you may want to review how the articles you read discussed previous research for guidance on how to best integrate existing research into a coherent literature review-remember-DON'T SUMMARIZE.

Explore how the research informs practice in the public and nonprofit sector. What are the useful findings for practice and, if the research is not useful for practice, explain why.

Explore what future research may be needed on the topic. What more would you like to know for practice?
The midterm assignment should be between 8-10 pages (1.5 SPACED/ 12 pt Times New Roman). The following journals are the ones from which you should select articles. Articles not from these journals should be shown to me for approval (just in case); the key is to select articles from peer-reviewed research journalswhen in doubt, run by me. These journals generally have PDFs of articles available on the web through the library.

Articles attached.
Please explore the following themes
1. Challenges to integrating diversity
2. Managing and Valuing Diversity
3. Glass Ceiling and Diversity


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