Voting-Related Research Paper Topics

This page presents a selection of election-related research questions accompanied by links to credible articles on each topic.  These modules can be used to immerse students in the topic of voting without having a curriculum that is tied to constantly changing current events.  Many of these topics are not as partisan as some of the other assignments which might be desirable for some classroom environments.

Format

Each research question is matched with credible articles providing: 

  • an overview of the topic

  • opinion pieces that provide a pro or con stance 

 

Suggested Uses

  • Implement one of these questions as a topic for a research paper for an entire class of students.  

  • Give students with a choice of topics and encourage them to use these resources as a springboard as they begin research for their own papers.

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Should the voting age be lowered to 16? 

Many beginning college students are newly eligible to vote, but should they have been eligible when they were still in high school?  These articles set the stage for a debate about the voting age.

OVERVIEW OF ISSUE

Lowering the Voting Age - Top 3 Pros and Cons

Pro.Con.org - 2018

Should 16-year-olds be allowed to vote?

Hannah Grabenstein - PBS Newshour - 2018

PRO LOWERING THE VOTING AGE

Let 16-year-olds vote

Noah Berlatsky - CNN - 2019

Let the 16-year-olds Who Are Marching for the Planet Vote to Save It

John Nichols - The Nation - 2019

OPPOSED TO LOWERING THE VOTING AGE

Lower the voting age?  Let's raise it instead.

Jeff Jacoby - The Boston Globe - 2019

No, We Shouldn't Lower The Voting Age To 16

David Davenport - Forbes - 2016​

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Should voting be mandatory? 

Voter turnout in the United States is notoriously low, and some people argue that requiring citizens to vote is the best way to address this issue.  

OVERVIEW OF ISSUE

Compulsory Voting

ThoughtCo - 2018

The Pros and Cons of Requiring Citizens to Vote

Nina Jaffe-Geffner - FairVote - 2015

PRO MANDATORY VOTING

Voting Should be Mandatory 

Waleed Aly - The New York Times - 2017

Telling Americans to Vote, or Else

William A. Galston - The New York Times - 2011

OPPOSED TO MANDATORY VOTING

Is Voting a Civic Right of a Civic Duty?

Chayenne Polimedio - Vox  - 2018

Mandatory Voting Is a Terrible--And Insulting--Idea

Scott Shackford - Reason - 2015

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Should the USA abolish the Electoral College? 

The popular vote does not determine the ultimate outcome of presidential elections.  Some question whether we should maintain this system.

OVERVIEW

The Electoral College - Top 3 Pros and Cons

Pro.Con.org - 2017​

America's Unique and Controversial Electoral College

V. Lance Tarrance - Gallup - ​2016

ABOLISH THE ELECTORAL COLLEGE

Why the electoral College is the absolute worst, explained

Andrew Prokop - Vox - 2016

Here's Every Defense of the Electoral College -- and Why They're All Wrong

Eric Levitz -New York Magazine - 2019

KEEP THE ELECTORAL COLLEGE

In Defense of the Electoral College

Richard A. Posner - Slate - 2012 

Electoral College keeps elections fair

Gary Gregg - Politico - 2012

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Should voter ID be required? 

In order to prevent voter fraud, many states require voter ID, a controversial practice because it may discourage or disenfranchise some voters.

OVERVIEW

Everything You've Ever Wanted to Know About Voter ID Laws​

Suevon Lee and Sarah Smith - ProPublica - 2016​

What We Know About Voter ID Laws

Dan Hopkins - FiveThirtyEight - 2018

SUPPORT REQUIRING VOTER ID

Voter ID Would Protect Voter's Rights, Not Inhibit Them

Matthew Rousu - Forbes - 2014

OPPOSE REQUIRING VOTER ID

Oppose Voter ID Legislation - Fact Sheet​

ACLU - 2018

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Note:

ProCon.org features thorough units on Voting Machines and Felon Voting​.

©2019 by Voting Writes