Throughout the process of structuring and putting my podcast together, I have had to do a lot of research about my topic. Since my topic is a topical issue, my research has been quite successful and I have received a lot of useful results to support my episode. However, as I keep structuring and restructuring my episode, some sources become very useful and others have to be left out. As known, my episode is about US Immigration. I do not plan on including any characters in my episode because I would not be able to access real victims of the situation.

Even though I would not be including characters in my episode, I would be using articles from my research and names of the people who wrote the article would be mentioned. Therefore, these names would serve as my characters for my episode. Their names would be mentioned to attribute their work to them to avoid any form of plagiarism. One of my sources was written by the CAP immigration team and Michael D. Nicholson and their article discusses some of the effects of Immigration on the US economy. This source is useful for my episode because my episode is going to explain the positive and negative effects of immigration on the US economy and based on that discussion, I would make a conclusion on if the US should gladly receive its immigrants without any problems. 

At the beginning of my episode I would give a little insight on what Immigration generally means and I would be picking that from the Merriam- Webster dictionary. I will eventually zoom into what US immigration has looked like over the years by stating a rough figure I got from one of my research results; Science Vs Immigration from Bello Collective. These sources are useful because they give the listener of the episode a general insight of what is going to be discussed further. 

In the episode, I may repeatedly use the phrase “according to”. This phrase indicates my way of introducing my sources or characters which would give my episode a supporting evidence. Most of my sources are coming from different people or organization but they have the similarity of country of origin which is the United States.




Phase Three

Week 9: Introducing Characters

I have been able to find a variety of useful sources throughout my researching process. Arguably the most important is Scott Johnson’s piece, titled Christine Blasey Ford’s Accusations Against Brett Kavanaugh: A Case for Discussion. Johnson effectively breaks down the case from both factual and psychological viewpoints. As a licensed psychologist with a master’s degree in counselling and psychological services, Johnson was able to identify and explain common tendencies and attitudes of sexual assault victims and offender; no other source I have come across was able to do this. I am going to introduce this source as a character because of Johnson’s unique perspective; I believe that he offers more to the breakdown of the case than anyone else does thanks to his psychological approach.

Another article that I have found particularly useful is Abortion Rights and the Kavanaugh Nomination by John Greabe. When Dr. Ford publicly said that she wanted to remain anonymous throughout the whole process and she had no intention of bringing this case to the media, a lot of people were left wondering how this case reached the levels of popularity that it did. Many speculate that the Democratic Party leaked this case to the public in an effort to delay Kavanaugh’s confirmation. Greabe goes in depth into this possibility as well as why. He explained the impact Kavanaugh would have on current abortion laws, as well as where the other judges stand on the issue. I will introduce this source as a character because it outlines a side of the case that the media didn’t touch on very much, if at all; the possibility that Dr. Ford lied. Greabe brings to light what reasons she would have to lie. This going hand-in-hand with the first article I mentioned because Johnson touched on commonalities of liars from a psychological standpoint. I think it is very important to examine all possibilities of the case in order to cover it more responsibly than the main stream media did.

The third article I believe to be very important is a government publication by the Department of Justice. This article assesses the qualifications, credentials and character of Brett Kavanaugh. When I discuss the credibility of both parties, this article will prove to be very important. This relates to Greabe’s article in the sense that when addressing whether or not Dr. Ford was telling the whole truth, I must look into the credibility of both parties.

Greabe, J. (2018). Abortion Rights and the Kavanaugh Nomination. University of New Hampshire Scholars' Repository.

Johnson, S. (2019). Christine Blasey Ford‘s accusations against Brett Kavanaugh: A case for discussion. Forensic Research & Criminology International Journal,7(1).

USA, Law & Justice. (2018, September 4). Retrieved from

Zach Cunningham


I was not planning to introduce characters in my podcast, even though I did mention a researcher by the name of Vivian Krause in my outline last week. I will introduce Vivian Krause as a character, as someone who has researched on the funding, from charitable organizations based in the United States to run an organized campaign against Canadian oil industry.  I initially thought that, a character in a podcast can only be a person who is being interviewed as part of an episode or who must feature in the podcast in some way. The lecture and tutorial discussions prompted me to consider, introducing characters as people telling stories through their writing.(Bell, 2019)

After listening to the Science vs podcast on alternative milk during tutorial, everyone agreed that its main weakness was that all the evidence came from one researcher/character only.(“Soy, Almond, Oat Milks,” n.d.) In the light of this, I have decided to introduce Professor Ian Clark as another character, who is a professor in the Department of Earth Sciences at the University of Ottawa. Professor Clark in response to an interview question answered that, “cutting off the oil sands energy supply will not reduce our addiction to fossil fuels. It will only require North Americans to import more.”(News, 2012)

I will introduce Dr. Patrick Moore, a founding member of Greenpeace who served as the president of Greenpeace Canada for nine years and seven years as a Director of Greenpeace international. He dropped out of Greenpeace because it got “corrupted” and pursued a policy of “political agendas and fear mongering over science and truth.”(Clean Energy Philippines, n.d.) Patrick Moore is of the view that every square inch of the oil sands development will eventually be reclaimed because it is the law, while Edmonton will never be reclaimed because it has been converted from what the eco system was in to human habitation.(Shaw TV Fort McMurray, n.d.)




Bell, S. (2019, March). Week 9 Online lecture. Retrieved from

Clean Energy Philippines. (n.d.). Patrick Moore: Why I Left Greenpeace. Retrieved from

News. (2012, February 9). ‘The environmental movement has lost its way’ | Financial Post. Retrieved March 14, 2019, from

Shaw TV Fort McMurray. (n.d.). Patrick Moore Supports Fort McMurray Oil Sands Reclamation. Retrieved from

Soy, Almond, Oat Milks: Are They Udder Bull? by Science Vs. (n.d.). Retrieved March 14, 2019, from




Week Nine: Fiction Isn’t The Only Place For Stories

As humans, stories shape our lives. We live out stories all the time, and we seek out stories in fiction and nonfiction alike. In a video by the Future of Storytelling (2013), Jennifer Aaker points out that narratives are particularly persuasive to us because they are memorable, impactful and personal. She continues to talk about how statistics fade from our memories, but stories stay with us much longer. Many effective forms of persuasion involve creating a story, even in areas like climate change (Jones & Peterson, 2017), where a setting, plot and characters are introduced in order to actualize or, as Dr. Bell (2019) explains in her lecture slides, activate the topic of climate change in a way that is personal and meaningful to the public.

For example, a condom ad created by Zazoo (2011), a French condom company, is persuasive because it introduces two characters: a man and a boy. The boy wants to buy candies at the grocery store, but when the father says no, the child throws a temper tantrum. This story connects to us in a way that statistics can’t, and when the punchline “Use condoms” comes in, it creates a full and unforgettable picture.

I plan to use the impact of stories in my podcast by activating my points with narratives. For example, I plan to use descriptive language and imagery, like a quote by Jon Kabat-Zinn stated in an interview (Experience Life Magazine, 2018) that uses a powerful metaphor of being imprisoned by the strength of emotion. This imagery is repeated as I explain the theories, and then I activate it with a story about a child I have worked with that struggles with this very concept. These characters complement each other, as one solidifies the other’s points. Neither of them would be as effective alone. The audience would not feel as impacted by the story of the child if they didn’t have such strong imagery about imprisonment from an expert voice, and the audience would not feel as strongly about the imagery without the narrative of the struggling child.

Thinking of people as characters and their words as elements of a larger story makes me much more excited to continue on with my podcast. It could be said that the narrative is persuading me before it’s even written. When I chose my topic, I had a narrative in mind, the story of the child worked with, and knowing that his story is being told in a powerful way is incredibly motivating to me. It helps me look for sources that can supplement his journey, that can explain it and eventually help him and other children like him to avoid suffering in this way. As I shape my podcast, thinking on the sources as characters telling a story, I plan to craft a powerful and persuasive narrative that holds strong throughout the entire piece.

Bell, S. (2019). Narrative nonfiction [PowerPoint slides]. Retrieved from

Experience Life Magazine [ExperienceLifeMag]. (2018, August 23). Behind the scenes with Jon Kabat-Zinn [Video file]. Retrieved from

Future of Storytelling. (2013, September 14). Persuasion and the power of story: Jennifer Aaker (Future of StoryTelling 2013) [Video file]. Retrieved from

Jones, M., & Peterson, H. (2017, August 22). Narrative Persuasion and Storytelling as Climate Communication Strategies. Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Climate Science. Retrieved from

R0FLMAOWPIMP (2011, January 9). Zazoo condoms commercial supermarket - use condoms [banned] [Video file]. Retrieved from

Pan Goordat

Phase 2

Haider Syed

Week 5 Popular source

Popular sources contain a broad range of topics, presented in a shorter, more condensed article. Unlike scholarly sources, popular sources may not be credible as they do not use citations and are simple articles which offer an overview of a subject matter, rather than in depth research. Popular sources can be found on social media, in newspapers like; the Toronto star and magazines like; Vogue and the rolling stones. Popular sources can be extremely useful when an individual is searching for the public’s opinion as public opinion is mostly based on popular sources such as newspapers and magazines. An example of this is when someone wants to find the latest fashion trends, one must go through the latest fashion magazine issues to get a general idea of what’s popular in the fashion industry. Popular sources give us general information regarding any subject matter. One way to evaluate the credibility of popular sources is to primarily check if the platform from which the source is coming from, reliable or not. If the source is a newspaper article, we must check if the person who published the article actually works for the newspaper agency and if the newspaper agency itself is an old and reliable source of information. An example of an unreliable popular source could be someone’s podcast on Youtube.

 Keywords help us narrow our research into one or two words which are related to the main topic and help us get an overview of the topic in one or two words. These are words used in search engines like google, to get more accurate results. If I would be writing an essay of police brutality, I would use keywords such as racism.

Week 6 Scholarly articles

The first scholarly source I selected for my podcast episode, which is turning out be really helpful is “Police Brutality and Black Health: Setting the Agenda for Public Health Scholars” written by Sirry Alang, PhD, Donna McAlpine, PhD, Ellen McCreedy, PhD, MPH, and Rachel Hardeman, PhD, MPH. This article speaks about police brutality on the black community and mentions about several effects such as: fatal injuries that increase population-specific mortality rates and adverse physiological responses that increase morbidity as a result of police brutality. I found this source through Google Scholar as I searched for “police brutality”. After looking at the contributors information section in the article, I found out that this source is scholarly as all the authors have a phD which proves that they are well qualified in their fields and furthermore, more than 20 sources were used in creating this article, from which many are scholarly sources. The second source I’m finding really helpful in my research is titled: “Pulling the Trigger: Dehumanization of African Americans and Police Violence” written by Themal I. Ellawala. This scholarly journal mentions the role of racial bias in police violence and talks about the dehumanization of African Americans, especially the youth. I also found this source through Google Scholar. I know this source is scholarly because in the author biography section, it says that Themal Ellawala, the author is a psychology major and the article uses many scholarly sources as references. I found it quite helpful when I searched typed the keyword “police brutality” in the science data base as a lot of results regarding the psychological aspect of the matter showed up and when I searched the same key words in the humanities data base a lot of articles related to movements against police brutality showed up. I found this really helpful as it helps in narrowing down the topic to something precise and specific.


Sirry Alang, Donna McAlpine, Ellen McCreedy and Rachel Hardeman,(March, 21st, 2017). Police Brutality and Black Health: Setting the Agenda for Public Health Scholars. Retrieved from:

Themal I. Ellawala. (April, 2016). Pulling the Trigger: Dehumanization of African Americans and Police Violence. Retrieved from:

Week 7 Government sources and statistics

Government and institutional sources could be very useful for my podcast episode, primarily because they are highly credible. Credibility makes any argument stronger and more trust worthy. Government sources provide accurate and updated information to the viewers. For my podcast, one of the most important government sources is Statistics Canada which can really provide the exact figures of police brutality incidents and the mortality rate which resulted from the police force. When my argument would be backed by official figures, I believe the argument would be more convincing to the viewers.

Week 8 Episode outline


Police Racism

Opinion Piece:

The Skin I’m In: I’ve been interrogated by police more than 50 times. All because I’m black

Focus Question:

Why is the black community more likely to be subject to police brutality as compared to others?

Recently, high-profile cases where people of color have been racially profiled, confronted by police, and, in some cases, arrested after white business owners, employees, or bystanders viewed them with suspicion. Many of the incidents have spread on social media, calling national attention to the issue. Coloured people have long been subject to racial profiling in public, or private spaces. The only thing that has changed is how social media, cellphones and cameras have made it easier for black people to capture and share the footage of confrontations and arrests.

 T. Ross, a doctoral student in the anthropology at the University of California states there is "evidence of a significant bias in the killing of unarmed black Americans relative to unarmed white Americans." The probability of being black, unarmed and shot by police is about 3.5 times the probability of being white, unarmed and shot by police.





P.R. Lockhart. (11, May, 2018).White people keep calling the cops on black people for no reason. That’s dangerous. Retrieved from:


Kirsten Weir. (December, 2016). Policing in black & white. Retrieved from:


Haider Syed

Week 8: Episode Outline


Topic: Demonization of Canadian oil as “dirty”.

Opinion Piece: Maloney, it’s time to end oil sands shaming. Enough with the guilt trip. Canada and Canadian workers have nothing to be ashamed of and should sell more oil, not less.

Focus Question: Is Canadian oil dirtier than other oils?

Thesis: Canadian oil is being stigmatized as a poster child of “dirty fuels”.

Introduction: Here I will give some background information about Alberta oil, and the reasons it is being called “dirty”.

First argument to support my thesis: delays in the completion of crucial pipelines.

The reason I am starting with the issue of the pipelines is that, the delays caused in their completion was mainly because of the stigmatization of Alberta oil. I will start by introducing a story about pipeline delay from Financial Post (Mar 4, 2019) which reports that Enbridge Inc.’s replacement and expansion of its line 3 crude oil pipeline will be in service a year later than expected(Commodities & Energy, 2019). I will discuss the hindrances that the Canadian government is facing with regards to building other important pipelines as well, like the Keystone XL, which is being delayed since last 10 years. I will argue that these delays are part of an organized campaign which is stigmatizing Alberta oil by calling it the “tar sands” and “dirty oil”. I will than show that, not completing the pipelines on time, is costing Canada in the shape of not having access to markets and buyers beyond the United States(“Canada paid high price for oil pipeline, faces delay risks,” 2019). It is costing Canada, because the United States gulf coast refineries are buying Alberta oil at a discount to the international oil price. At present the United States GC refineries are the only buyers of Canadian crude, in the absence of the Trans-Mountain pipeline, which will increase the value of Canadian oil by moving oil from the Pacific coast refineries to the Asian markets.

Second argument to support my thesis: funding from US. Charitable organizations.

Campaigns and funding go hand in hand, therefore the funding argument is the logical progression from the pipelines issue that I have just discussed. I will discuss that the funding to these environmental groups is from the charitable organizations in the United States(U.S. charities are investing millions into anti-pipeline campaigns in Canada, 2018). I will introduce listeners to Vivian Krause, an independent researcher who has been monitoring the “Tar Sands” campaign since 2010 and how she explains the role of funding from the United States charitable organizations(“Rethink Campaigns,” n.d.). Vivian Krause has been interviewed on television by business and other news channels, where she explained how important pipeline projects are sabotaged to bully Canada out of the oil market(“B.C. researcher argues anti-Alberta oil campaigns about protecting U.S. interests, not environment |,” 2018).

Third argument to support my thesis: quick buildup of pipelines in the United States without any hindrances from environmentalists.

It was very important to show here, that while in Canada the environmental groups protest pipelines and the same groups choose to remain silent when the United States expand and build new ones(Commodities & Energy, 2015). A very interesting fact for the listeners here is, that the United States has built equivalent of 10 keystone pipelines, since 2010 and after decades of being an importer of crude oil and refined products, is now exporting thousands of barrels of crude oil and refined products per day(“In major shift, U.S. now exports more oil than it ships in,” 2018). On the other hand, Canada has the world’s third largest oil reserves but cannot export crude oil to refineries beyond United States. Here I will educate the listener about refineries and their different specifications(“Oil Price Differentials Explained,” n.d.). I feel it is necessary for two reasons, first, to debunk the myth that other crude is not dirty, because every crude is dirty and needs refining and second to inform that such refineries are already in place that can only refine the heaviest of the crudes. The refineries of the United States gulf coast are an example – by specification they can only refine crude like the Alberta oil, because separate refineries are there for the light crude(“How much for that heavy oil?,” n.d.).

 Fourth argument to support my thesis: Alberta oil has competitors.

 The reason that this will be my last argument to support my thesis is to show that other countries have similar natural resources(“Why Venezuela is Alberta’s biggest competitor,” n.d.). These countries are fulfilling an existing demand and if they won’t, some other country will. Alberta oil is not the heaviest of the crudes and there are other crudes which are equally heavy if not more. Venezuela’s oil sands are technically “extra heavy” deposits since they do not contain bitumen, but has better geography than Alberta, as Venezuelan oil has excellent access to tide water, and is relatively close to the US gulf coast which is the world’s biggest consumer of heavy oil. California, in the United States is another example as mush of its abundant oil reserves are as carbon intensive to extract and refine as Alberta oil(Mernit, 2017).

At the end of my episode I will leave the listeners with the question that in the light of what they have heard, should Canada abandon its natural resource and let other countries supply to the demand that will exist till proper alternatives are in place.

I have left out research of the global warming issue in its entirety to keep the scope of my argument as narrow as possible. I have also left out my research about Canadian jobs, and economy which are being affected by this campaign against Alberta oil and my research on the fact that fossil fuels are here to stay for longer than being anticipated, was also not used to keep the focus narrow.




B.C. researcher argues anti-Alberta oil campaigns about protecting U.S. interests, not environment | (2018, November 13). Retrieved February 1, 2019, from

Canada paid high price for oil pipeline, faces delay risks: watchdog. (2019, January 31). Reuters. Retrieved from

Commodities, & Energy. (2015, November 4). America has built the equivalent of 10 Keystone pipelines since 2010 — and nobody said anything | Financial Post. Retrieved March 8, 2019, from

Commodities, & Energy. (2019, March 4). Fresh blow to Canada’s oil industry as key pipeline delayed by a year | Financial Post. Retrieved March 8, 2019, from

How much for that heavy oil? (n.d.). Retrieved March 8, 2019, from

In major shift, U.S. now exports more oil than it ships in. (2018, December 6). Reuters. Retrieved from

Mernit, J. (2017). Why Does Green California Pump the Dirtiest Oil in the U.S.? Yale Environment 360. Retrieved from

Oil Price Differentials Explained: Why Alberta crude sells at a deep discount. (n.d.). Retrieved March 8, 2019, from

Rethink Campaigns. (n.d.). Retrieved March 8, 2019, from

U.S. charities are investing millions into anti-pipeline campaigns in Canada: Researcher. (2018). Retrieved from

Why Venezuela is Alberta’s biggest competitor. (n.d.). Retrieved March 8, 2019, from












Week 7: Government, Industry and Institutional Sources


I am finding all three sources relevant due to the scope of my opinion piece. I have looked at the data about the Canadian economy and its reliance on the energy sector on government websites. I had to search the employment data to find out the statistics about the energy sector to come to an understanding about its importance to the economy. The contribution to the Canadian gross domestic product (GDP) of this sector was also an important factor to look at and government sources were of the greatest help(“Economic Contribution,” n.d.). In researching for the environmental aspects of the natural resource, I found the government websites very helpful, especially in relation to the steps the government is taking to reduce carbon emissions. I have also noticed the fact that governments fund a lot of research work, especially in areas were the governments are looking to expand and face stiff resistance(“Funding & Support :: CERI,” n.d.). These kinds of research work have a bias, even though their scope is very wide and are conducted very professionally.

Canada’s energy industry was very relevant to my research. I have used trade magazines to research a lot of basic and historical information about my project. These trade magazines have articles pertaining to technical information, for professionals of that area. These magazines deal with issues ranging from the importance of the energy sector, to export markets and the future of energy(“Oil Sands Magazine,” n.d.).

The international source that I have found to be particularly helpful is the International Energy Agency (IEA), which I used mainly to see the forecast of the world’s energy demand, and the breakup of the energy sources to meet that demand(“International Energy Agency,” n.d.). IEA also projects the demand of various energy sources, well in to the future and is also helpful to research on the alternatives to fossil fuel.



Economic Contribution. (n.d.). Retrieved February 26, 2019, from

Funding & Support :: CERI. (n.d.). Retrieved March 1, 2019, from

International Energy Agency. (n.d.). Retrieved March 1, 2019, from

Oil Sands Magazine. (n.d.). Retrieved March 1, 2019, from



Phase Two:

Article 1: Fifty Shades of Erotic Stimulus: Feminist Media Studies Vol. 1

summary: This article explains the success of Fifty Shades of Grey as well as explaining why it caught the attention of many: sex. It goes onto explaining why the sexual aspect of this book was such a selling a point and narrows down the topic as to why sex in this story can be mis-perceived.

How I discovered article: I searched on google scholar for Fifty Shades of grey, simply because I want my podcast to use this literary piece as a floodgate for all the juicy and controversial topics discussed or triggered from this book/movie.

Article 2: ‘Spontaneous’ Sexual Consent: An Analysis of Sexual Consent Literature

summary: This article is about explaining sexual consent and how the line is so grey that sometimes things could be percieved as sexual assault to one person but to another it isn’t. It also goes through different literary pieces that talk about sexuality and consent and combs through the details of sexual violence, the sciences of sexual consent and premeditated results that this article opened up in the minds of others.

How I discovered article: I googled sexual consent because I really want to put emphasis on this topic in my podcast, especially with, how the media seems to be handling a new sexual assault case so often it’s becoming normal.

What is a scholarly source: A scholarly source is when it’s written by someone with a lot of knowledge on their topic. They are usually in academia and have done through research. The articles typically don’t have strong opinions and more so, present the information as facts. The information used is always cited in a long bibliography.


{} Beres, M. A. (2007, February 07). 'Spontaneous' Sexual Consent: An Analysis of Sexual Consent Literature. Retrieved February 16, 2019, from

{} Comella, L. (2013, May 07). Fifty Shades of Erotic Stimulus. Retrieved February 15, 2019, from

Week 6: Scholarly Sources


The two scholarly source that I am finding helpful are the “The Economics of Canadian Oil Sands”(Heyes, Leach, & Mason, 2018), and “Human contributions to climate change remains questionable”(Singer, 1999). The first source deals with key economic drivers of oil sands costs and discusses transportation related challenges, of getting Canadian oil to export markets. It also examines climate change, and other environmental issues, along with economic impacts and considerations. The second source deals with the question of human contribution to climate change. The author who is a climate skeptic, and not a denier argues that earth’s climate has never been steady, it has either warmed or cooled without any human intervention. Both are journal articles and the authors are scholars in their fields, with stated credential and affiliations. Both have extensive references, citing all sources that have been consulted by the authors, and their work has been scrutinized and reviewed by experts. The purpose of both sources is to present research findings, and to expand knowledge in the field of study.(Labaree, n.d.) I found the first source on google scholar by typing the keywords, “economics of Canadian oil sands”, and the second source I discovered when I typed “S Fred Singer Climate change” on google scholar.

            I searched for my keywords on a humanities data base(“Humanities International Complete | EBSCO,” n.d.), but the results that came were far away from the area of my interest. This tells us that researching in the wrong direction can lead the researcher off track and that it is very important to know the area that our topic of research covers.




Heyes, A., Leach, A., & Mason, C. F. (2018). The Economics of Canadian Oil Sands. Review of Environmental Economics and Policy, 12(2), 242–263.

Humanities International Complete | EBSCO. (n.d.). Retrieved February 15, 2019, from

Labaree, R. V. (n.d.). Research Guides: Organizing Your Social Sciences Research Paper: What Is Scholarly vs. Popular? [Research Guide]. Retrieved February 8, 2019, from //

Singer, S. F. (1999). Human contribution to climate change remains questionable. Eos, Transactions American Geophysical Union, 80(16), 183–187.







Phase 2


A popular source is a term used to describe a sources content, unlike a scholarly source popular sources are usually general interest stories written by the public that contain no real citations. You can identify a popular source most easily by the audience it is produced for. Popular sources are made for the average person; they are easy to read and do not require any special background to understand the content. Though they are not as credible as scholarly sources, popular sources can provide useful and reliable information for content you are creating.  A good example of this would be any local news content.  If you were writing an article about the impact of the Canada Day on patriotism, news articles may be a good source to display the level of emotion the public carries during this day.  The important thing when choosing these sources is making sure it is reliable. To do this the best thing to do is look at the sources history.  If the popular source is coming from a well-known organization that has a history of being ethical and legitimate, then it is most likely a good source to use.  A prime example of this would be Canadian Broadcasting Network vs a Blogger writing about Canada Day.


The first scholarly source I chose to apply to my project is “Bridging the Generation Gap: How to Get Radio Babies, Boomers, Gen Xers, and Gen Yers to Work Together and Achieve More” written by Linda S. Gravett and Robin Throckmorton. Gravett and Throckmorton breakdown some characterizes of various generations and discuss how, although we possess differences, can work together and manage to minimize conflict and preconceived ideas of others based on age. I found this source through the York University online library of scholarly sources. I know that this source is scholarly because, after doing some brief research on the two authors, it was clear that they are well educated and working in the discipline they are writing about. The source is peer reviewed and many of the sources cited for this piece are also scholarly. The second source I found is a book titled “Millennials Rising: The Next Great Generation” written by Neil Howe and William Strauss. Howe and Strauss breakdown and analyze millennials as an entire generation through various interviews, surveys and anecdotes; as well as revamp the generation as a whole from downbeat to successful. I found this source through Google Scholar relatively easily. I entered the following key words: millennials, generation gap, Gen X and Gen Y before coming across this source. I know that this source is scholarly because of the credibility of these authors, as well as the lengthy list of sources cited and the peer review process.  I somewhat struggled to find reliable scholarly sources for this area of research and struggled to pinpoint where this topic fit within a specific academic discipline. I also found it quite difficult to determine who a reliable author is because of the complexity of this topic. For example, it would be easy to determine that a certified dietician would be reliable to source information from on an essay about youth obesity in Canada; yet it was tricky to pinpoint where reliable information would be found; a historian, or perhaps a teacher with decades of experience, maybe even an ‘expert’ on the generation gap in Canada? 

Gravett, L., Throckmorton, R. (2007). Bridging the generation gap: how to get radio babies, boomers, gen xers, and gen yers to work together and achieve more. Retrieved from$28563:_ss_book:14384#summary/BOOKS/RW$28563:_ss_book:14384

 Howe, N., Strauss, W. (2000). Millenials rising: the next great generation. Retrieved from


I never really considered conducting research through government documents but since reading the instructions for this post I have personally had a lot of luck with conducting research through government documents. I did a bit of research using information from the Canadian demographic reports on many major cities (age, income, level of education etc.) I also had luck getting information from American government documents on voting demographics. Although voting is done anonymously there are statistics available to say which states voted mainly for each party as well as age of voters in those states. I believe that this information in extremely relevant and helpful in my research and I will continue to do so.

U.S Census Bureau. (2012). Voting and registration USA. Retrieved from

File, T. (2017). Voting in america: a look at the 2016 presidential election. Retrieved from

U.S Census Bureau. (2016). Selected characteristics of the citizens, 18 and older population. Retrieved from


Outline Transcript W/ Sources:

I was unable to attach a Word/PDF. Please email me if you have trouble with the Doc.


Phase Two

Week 8: Podcast Outline

Link to transcript here

Zach Cunningham

Week 7: Government Sources

Although I don’t see myself relying on government sources too heavily for the purpose of this assignment, I believe that I have found a few articles that could prove to be beneficial to my research. For example, a publication issued in September of 2018 on the official website of the White House did a great job of listing Brett Kavanaugh’s qualifications and credentials. I will likely use this source to help introduce Kavanaugh and justify why he was President Trump’s nominee for Supreme Court Justice. I also found an article written by Adam Ganucheau that showcases both Mississippi senators’ take on Dr. Ford’s allegations and testimony.

I believe a majority of my sources will likely be from journals and repositories, but government sources will help me ‘paint the picture’ of Justice Kavanaugh’s background as well learn the opinions of several other politicians. I believe that in a case like this one, hearing the opinions from political leaders is relevant because of the ‘insider’ point of view.

To conclude, I will be using some government sources to help my argument because they offer a unique point of view and are very relevant to my podcast episode, given the topic.

Ganucheau, A. (2018, September 27). Mississippi senators dismiss Christine Blasey Ford's testimony as partisan tactic. Retrieved from’s-testimony-partisan-tactic

USA, Law & Justice. (2018, September 4). Retrieved from

Zach Cunningham

Week 6: Scholarly Sources

I have been researching my topic for a couple weeks now, looking to gain a further understanding of the Brett Kavanaugh case as well as learn any new relevant information along the way. The first scholarly article that I gained a lot of information from was written by Scott Johnson, a licensed psychologist with a master’s degree in counselling & psychological services; “Christine Blasey Ford’s accusations against Brett Kavanaugh: A case for discussion.” This was published to the Forensic Research & Criminology International Journal. Johnson not only covered the case in great detail, he also explained common tendencies and attitudes of offenders and victims of sexual assault. This was very interesting, and it helped me look at the testimonies and the case in general from a different perspective.

The second article was written by John Greabe; Abortion Rights and the Kavanaugh Nomination. This was published to the University of New Hampshire Scholars’ Repository. Greabe explained, in great detail, how the confirmation of Kavanaugh will likely result in the overturning of Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey. As I mentioned in the pitch for my podcast episode, it is possible that the Democratic Party leaked Ford’s identity to stop this; essentially using her as a political pawn. Leaking her identity would effectively bring the case into the general public and more importantly into the hands of the media, causing an uproar and a call for Kavanaugh’s confirmation to be delayed. If this was indeed their tactic, it didn’t work, as Kavanaugh has already been confirmed. Greabe explained his point very effectively with past rulings, the current judges’ political stances, etc. I have learned a lot more about the possible delay tactic used by the Democratic Party from this article.

These are both examples of scholarly articles because they were written by experts in their respective fields and they were published to scholarly journals/repositories. I found these sources from typing “Brett Kavanaugh Christine Blasey Ford” into Google Scholar. These were the two best and most relevant articles in terms of what I was looking for and I have gained more from these two sources than anywhere else as of now. After searching for scholarly articles in multiple databases, I found that the content varies heavily, even with very similar searches. After searching different combinations of “Brett Kavanaugh, Christine Blasey Ford, Kavanaugh confirmation”, etc., in political science databases, I saw articles surrounding the hearings, testimonies, and more about the actual court case. When I used similar keywords in a psychology database, the articles were centered more around the minds of those involved with sexual assault; similar to what Johnson wrote about in the first article I mentioned. I think it is necessary to search different databases, at least in my case, when they can offer different perspectives and ideas about a topic. Doing so has allowed me to further my understanding of my topic and I am excited to continue researching!

Greabe, J. (2018). Abortion Rights and the Kavanaugh Nomination. University of New Hampshire Scholars' Repository.

Johnson, S. (2019). Christine Blasey Ford‘s accusations against Brett Kavanaugh: A case for discussion. Forensic Research & Criminology International Journal,7(1).

Scott A. Johnson Biography. (n.d.). Retrieved from

Zach Cunningham

Week 5: Popular Sources

A popular source is something that the public uses for anecdotal information and a general understanding of a certain topic. These sources are popular because they are generally easier to read, requiring no prior knowledge on the topic. Scholarly sources go a lot further in depth, include original research and generally require prior knowledge of the topic if you want to fully understand what you’re reading. Popular sources lack original research and often use simplified language. Determining the credibility of a source can be done by researching the author, ensuring it is as unbiased as possible, making sure the article is up to date and noting any supporting documentation such as graphs, charts, etc. (“Is My Source Credible?”, n.d.).

An example of a non-credible source is Wikipedia because everyone has the ability to edit it. Examples of credible sources include government websites, academic databases, educational institutions, etc. (“Credible/Non-credible sources”, 2014).

Keywords are words that people type into a search engine to find results best suited for what they’re looking for. For someone who is looking to generate more traffic to their website, including the most keywords and keyword phrases possible within your website is bound to land you more clicks than before because your website will rank higher in the search results due to more keywords matching the search query.

Credible/Non-credible sources. (2014, July 22). Retrieved from

Is My Source Credible? (n.d.). Retrieved from

Scholarly or popular sources. (n.d.). Retrieved from

Zach Cunningham



A major requirement for academic essays are sources and popular sources are one of them. A popular source is an unreliable source which is written for popular consumption and not for academic purposes. It is mostly used for blogs, journalism, social media and several others. They do not contribute to the production of academic knowledge. Popular sources sometimes stand as opinion pieces; people’s thoughts which cannot be supported with evidence. In order for an individual to be sure about the credibility of a popular source, he or she would have to check the purpose of the source, the person who published the source, the ways in which the source relates to your work, the time frame of the source and how accurate the source is. For example, when I am conducting a research for my podcast and I want to use a newspaper article, I have use a credible newspaper and the article I use has to be written by a credible person who works at the newspaper company.

Keywords are specific words use in search engines for specific results. It makes the searching process much easier and efficient. My topic for my podcast is about migration and citizenship and if I want to do some research on the topic, some keywords I would be using are immigration, human rights, deportation, freedom, safe place, dual citizenship and many others.


Most academic essays always require strong scholarly sources as supporting evidence. A scholarly source is a reliable source which is written for scholars and contributes to the production of scholarly knowledge. It is also generally accepted in a scholarly community. Scholarly sources are peer reviewed and can be found in scholarly books such as textbooks or they can be found in school databases. My podcast is based on US migration and I used the York library database to search for scholarly sources on the topic. One of the sources I found was based on Donald Trump’s policy on building a wall against the southern border to tighten immigration policies and how it would threaten privacy and local policing and it was an article produced by the CATO Institute in the US. This source would help in my podcast because it relates to my topic which is a top current issue in the US now. It would give ideas on the US immigration policies as well. 

I located another source in the same database which is an article produced by the Center for American Progress in 2017. This article analysis the effects of immigration on the US economy. This source would aid in my podcast episode by showing the effects of immigration and if that should be a solid ground for the US to stand on to grant every immigrant citizenship despite the ways through which they migrate into the US. 

These sources are credible sources which are helpful to my podcast because they are produced by credible institutions in the US and they are factual in way or the other. I used the keywords “US” and “Immigration” and I used a specific time frame when searching for these sources in the York Library database. I searched by subjects, so I initially searched in the social science subjects with these same keywords and I found nothing. I later on went ahead to search in the politics and government section of the library and moved on to the public and international affairs section, which gave me a whole lot of useful sources. This experience made me realize that, in order for me to receive accurate and useful sources, I would have to search in the right subject sections in the library.



We’ve been talking about the different kinds of sources in the past few weeks. Generally, a source is any piece of information which is written for either popular consumption or written for scholars and contributes to the production of scholarly knowledge. They serve supporting evidence for arguments made in academic writeups. It could be reliable or unreliable. In order to have very good sources, one has to do a thorough research based on whatever topic they are dealing with and by doing so they would have to use the necessary keywords available in order to achieve accurate research results.

I am definitely going to need several sources for my podcast episode because my episode is on a topical issue and I would need a lot of evidence to support a lot of statements I am going to make in the podcast. All kinds of sources; government, industry or institutional sources, would be relevant to my project. This is because the issue is topical and there are several views been made from all kinds of people. However, government sources would be very good sources to use because the issue of US Immigration is highly a governmental issue. For example, a CNN article stated that the Justice Department in the US linked Immigration to the Terror attacks in the US and they refused to retract that statement which most people felt it was quite offensive. This kind of government source would give me a deeper understanding of why the US is making several changes to their immigration policies. It would also serve as a good supporting evidence for any argument I make in that direction in my podcast episode.




Week 5: Popular Sources

Popular Source

A popular source will help a reader, get general ideas about a topic of interest and will help in some background research around the topic. A popular source may contain unreliable evidence, because it is mainly written by a member of the general public and not an expert. Some of the popular sources do mention research conducted by others, but they do not contain any original research. Popular sources are useful to get first hand information about an issue of immediate public interest, or generally current affairs because they help in answering, who, what, when and why questions.(Labaree, n.d.)

Just for the purpose of this blog post I entered (how to make money + stock market) in my google search bar. It opened endless possibilities right in front of my eyes, in fact I was looking at more possibilities than the money I would have invested if I had to. I randomly opened an article, with a heading that said “7 Quick Ways to Make Money Investing $1000”(Adams, 2019). I noticed that it had been shared 1.7k times, which is a lot, so I decided to do some research on the author and found out that he is a writer, blogger, a serial entrepreneur (probably someone who murders one business after another and gets away with it) a software engineer, and the list went on. He did not mention his experience in investing, but still was writing on investing strategies, he mentioned hyperlinked citations in his article, but most of them led me back to his own writings, or similar pieces of work. The website looks very professional, and belongs to the “Entrepreneur” magazine, but the content of the article was very superficial. It just had an eye-catching headline but had no agenda to properly guide the reader through even one of the asset classes mentioned.

A key word helps to narrow down or target, what we are searching for in the search engines on the internet or in a library data base. 




Adams, R. L. (2019, February 4). 7 Quick Ways to Make Money Investing $1,000. Retrieved February 8, 2019, from

Labaree, R. V. (n.d.). Research Guides: Organizing Your Social Sciences Research Paper: What Is Scholarly vs. Popular? [Research Guide]. Retrieved February 8, 2019, from //



Week Eight: R.I.P. all the research that didn’t make it

Episode outline located here.

Week Seven: Is Education An Industry? ft. the storyboard.

Admittedly, when I began my research, I hadn’t considered industry sources to be relevant in any way whatsoever. But as I did more digging, I realized that the information provided by industry sectors in trade journals offers a critical piece of the puzzle in nearly every topic.

I came across a video essay on YouTube that helped me realize just how important industry sources are. In Lindsay Ellis’ video essay titled That Time Disney Remade Beauty and the Beast, she lays the groundwork for her points by providing historical context. She does this by digging into the Disney industry, pulling quotes from former CEOs of the company, identifying their mission statements and justifying their business decisions. All of this strengthens her argument and provides the viewer with important information that supports all of her points moving forward. Without this critical piece of background information, her review of the live-action remake could be seen as, as she puts it, just “an over-long, nitpicky complainy video” (2:24-2:27). Providing context to an argument is critical for crafting a persuasive narrative. A former professor of mine once told me that no piece of media can be evaluated without considering the social context in which it was written. Industry sources provide that social context and illustrate to us what the industry currently looks like. In my case, industry sources paint a picture of the programs currently in place to promote student well-being (Reid, 2017). They explain the state of teacher education and how equipped educators are to assist students with mental health issues (“New report reveals”, 2014). Without this solid groundwork, the final product remains abstract and theoretical, not considering the practicality of implementation.

Because of this, I plan to use industry sources to craft a solid introduction for my podcast that fully illustrates where we are in terms of wellness education in public schools. Without these critical sources, that would be incredibly difficult, if not impossible, and my listeners would be left feeling like there was something missing from my argument.

Storyboard for podcast

Storyboard for podcast

Lindsay Ellis. (2018, July 31). That time Disney remade Beauty and the Beast [Video file]. Retrieved from

New report reveals teachers ill-equipped to address mental health issues in the classroom. (2014). Marketwired. Retrieved from

Reid, M. (2017). Shifting the focus to student wellbeing: How safe schools and mental wellness are just as important as the 3 rs. Municipal World, 127(9), 13-14,36. Retrieved from

Week Six: Whose Voices are Scholarly?

As I’ve been digging myself into the rabbit hole of finding research, I find myself drowned in sources--both scholarly and popular. But two of these sources stuck out to me: studies examining the effect of mindfulness on students. The first one, written by Kimberly Schonert-Reichl and Molly Stewart Lawlor, looked into implementing and evaluating a specific mindfulness-based program in elementary schools. This study is particularly helpful, as it acknowledges the gaps in mindfulness studies in its introduction and presents unbiased raw data. This source was published in a scholarly journal and was found through Google Scholar using the keyword “mindfulness-based education”. Dr. Bell (2019) explains that if a source has been accepted by a scholarly. We can see that this source has been published in a journal called Mindfulness, which is a collection of peer-reviewed papers that are approved by a board of experts. Because of that, we know this work is scholarly.

Similarly, I found my second source, The Effectiveness of Mindfulness Training for Children with ADHD and Mindful Parenting for their Parents, through Google Scholar by searching “mindfulness and ADHD”. Though this source has an open license, it was still published in a scholarly, peer-reviewed journal and follows a scholarly structure that relies on citation and a very specific structure. Illinois University Library (n.d.) explains that scholarly sources are written by qualified and educated individuals in an area that they are specialized in. The primary author of this source is well-versed in clinical and developmental psychology, and it is listed as her area of expertise. And, of course, because this paper has also been published in a scholarly journal, we know it has been through the peer-review process and has been accepted by scholars.

I tried to search for the keyword “mindfulness-based education” in both an education database by the name of CBCA Education, which provided four scholarly articles based in Canada. This allowed me to very easily find a third scholarly source that offers a very comprehensive overview of the effects of stress on university students (di Pierdomenico et al., 2017), which is a topic I had been wanting to address in my podcast. However, when I searched for the same keyword in the social services abstracts on ProQuest, I found thirty peer-reviewed journal articles! While in the education database, there were only four articles, all of which explored very similar veins, in the social services database, there was a lot more variety. It’s important to look into different disciplines to gain several different perspectives on an issue.

Bell, S. (2019). All in [PowerPoint slides]. Retrieved from

di Pierdomenico, E., Kadziolka, M., & Miller, C. J. (2017). Mindfulness correlates with stress and coping in university students. The Canadian Journal of Higher Education, 47(2), 121-134. Retrieved from

Schonert-Reichl, K. A., & Lawlor, M. S. (2010). The effects of a mindfulness-based education program on pre- and early adolescents’ well-being and social and emotional competence. Mindfulness, 1, 137–151.

Illinois University Library (n.d.). How do I determine if a source is scholarly? [Webpage]. Retrieved from

van der Oord, S., Bögels, S. M., & Peijnenburg, D. (2012). The effectiveness of mindfulness training for children with ADHD and mindful parenting for their parents. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 1, 139-147.

Week Five: As Academics, We Hate What’s Popular

Despite popular sources being the main source of information for most of the general population, the idea of engaging with popular sources in a scholarly work often gets snubbed in university settings. In lecture, Dr. Bell (2019) defines popular sources as anything that is written for the general public and not for a scholarly audience. This includes news articles, social media, and non-scholarly books. Popular sources can be used in a number of ways. The Berkeley Library at the University of California (2018) explains that popular sources are often easier to read than scholarly sources, as the audience doesn’t need to have a special background in the field. This makes gathering background information easier when engaging with a popular rather than a scholarly source. Popular sources are also useful for understanding public reactions to a certain topic and to gain insight on the concerns and controversies around a research question.

To evaluate the credibility of a popular source, the SPARK module at York University (2013) provides a PARCA test, which stands for purpose, authority, relevance, currency and accuracy. To illustrate this, I’m going to evaluate two sources I came across during my research, both written by yoga teachers. The first source is a blog post entitled 7 Reasons Meditation Should Be Taught In Schools. The purpose of the article is to promote meditation and its benefits. The author, who is a yoga instructor and personally practices mindfulness meditation, is biased and provides a narrow viewpoint on meditation coloured mostly by his own experience. He doesn’t address counter-arguments at all, even when there are clear biases in his argument. The parent blog cites that its purpose is not academic, but rather it is to create a community around spirituality and mindfulness. When I clicked on the author’s about page, it read more like a Tinder profile than a reliable source. His education and experience aren’t mentioned, merely that he is passionate about yoga. The resource was relevant to my research, as it brought up points I’d seen in other articles, but the arguments weren’t supported by anything but personal experience and general claims. There is no date of publication, but that doesn’t much matter, as there is no evidence in the article that may become dated. Finally, the tone of the article is incredibly biased.

The second source is a blog post entitled Is mindfulness worthy of all the hype?. Its purpose is to examine the popularity of mindfulness in recent years. The author, despite being a yoga instructor, doesn’t talk about her own experience for its own sake. Rather, she details experiences she’s had implementing a wide variety of relaxation techniques beyond simply mindfulness meditation. Despite her interest in mindfulness and relaxation, the author works to speak to counter-arguments and worries surrounding the issue. The blog itself is published by Stanford Medicine, a reputable source, as it is part of an academic institution. Unlike the author of the previous work, this author has a section detailing her academic background and history in working in this field, which makes her more credible. Not to mention, the website ends with a .edu instead of a .com. The information is related to my topic and provides a good overview of some of the issues around this topic in a way that isn’t too dense to read. The article is also very recent, having been published last month. Finally, there is some evidence linked within the article, but it’s not very substantial and it isn’t cited. Overall, though, this is a fairly credible popular source, especially for understanding the overview of the situation.  

A keyword is a search term that yields relevant results. These keywords are the gateway to a plethora of sources that can be used in our work. I’ve personally found one keyword that has been infinitely helpful, which is “mindfulness-based education”. Many scholarly and popular sources speak of this particular term, so I have access to them when I search using this keyword.

Bell, S. (2019). Week 5 video lecture part 2 [Video]. Retrieved from

Berkeley Library (2018). Evaluating resources: Scholarly & popular sources. Retrieved from

Caron, M. (n.d.). 7 reasons meditation should be taught in schools [Blog post]. Retreived from

PARCA Test [PDF file]. (2013). Retrieved from

Seppälä, E. (2019, January 25). Is mindfulness worthy of all the hype? [Blog post]. Retrieved from

Pan Goordat

Phase 1

Week 1

Hi everyone, my name is Haider Syed and I'm in my third year of political science here at York University. I aspire to be a politician one day and international politics is something that I'm very passionate about. In my free time I enjoy reading a book or spending time with my friends. I love travelling and have visited many historical sites around the world. I love a good conversation and hope to engage in plenty during the semester.

This course is really exiting and has really showed me how to express myself more creatively. Being a big fan of political podcasts on youtube, I always wanted to learn how to make podcasts and engage in the actual activity of recording a podcast. I look forward to learning new ways of creative expression during the semester.

A lot of undergraduate students want to get quick information and the most common form of a research tactic/ shortcut is youtube. I believe it’s the easiest way to understand something in a fun way and then incorporate the ideas attained from a video into written form. However, sometimes finding the relevant information an be hard as some topics might not have material on youtube.

Week 2 

Everyone has their own opinion on any given subject matter and opinions are not always backed by facts. Opinions can be a view or judgment about anything and is not necessarily backed my knowledge or fact. An opinion might represent things which are true and real and yet can be otherwise, it lacks the stability which is found in objects of knowledge and are hence liable to change, thus rendering the opinion about them false. In contrast to opinion, knowledge is more of a skillset acquired after experience and learning about a particular subject, thus it is not hypothetical in nature like opinion.

Week 3

I’ve selected the article of Desmond Cole “ The skin I’m in” as the topic for my podcast episode. In his article Cole mentions his story in Canada as a black male and how he and his family have been victims of racial profiling by the police on a number of incidents. We’ve all heard that about a hundred years ago slavery in the US had ended and than gradually with the passage of time blacks were given equal rights, but this article claims that racial profiling still exists today. Judging from the various police encounters that Mr. Cole had in several locations across Canada, all resulting in similar outcomes, shows that racism and discrimination by the police is not random or confined to a small part in the city but it exists pretty much everywhere. Just because of being a black male, Mr. Cole had to endure some emotionally damaging times, whether being stopped by the police in the university for walking his white friend home or during a road trip with his family to Niagara Falls. 

Even though the story in the article might not be based on facts, but the issue highlighted is very important and needs to be brought in the limelight for general awareness. The article, coming from a black male, could prove to be bias and not show the whole story. For example, while on a road trip with his family, Mr. Cole’s cousin littered on the street and the whole family got pulled over by the police, it could be that the police were just doing their job and would probably stop anyone littering the streets. This being said, I still believe this article would make a great podcast topic as racism still exists today and bringing this issue in the eyes of the general public would definitely raise awareness and could inspire people into taking the right steps to eradicate racism and racial profiling altogether.

Week 4 -The pitch

Desmond Cole, in his article “The skin I’m in” argues that racism still exists within the police force. Over the course of history the black community has fallen victim to racial profiling and racism more than any other community. Almost every week we see a black male being arrested on TV for some petty crime he probably didn’t commit or read about a similar topic in the newspapers. Cole’s article sheds light on police bias and his experience with the police as a black male. Cole talks about a police incident in his university which is really shocking and nerve wrecking. He says that after a party when he was walking his white friend Sara home, a police officer stopped both of them, turned his back on Cole and asked Sara that “Miss, do you need assistance?” (Cole, 2019). This really shows the height of racial profiling and shouldn’t exist anywhere in the world. While racial profiling is purely based on hypothesis, other people (possibly white males) might be getting away with crimes just because they are less likely to be stopped by the police.

An article in The Star mentions about findings that show “between 2013 and 2017, a Black person was nearly 20 times more likely than a white person to be fatally shot by police in Toronto, representing seven of the 10 fatal shootings by police in that period.” (Rankin and Gillis, 2018). Still article further strengthens the claim that racial profiling still exists today and that the black people are common targets of racism.

Some steps are being taken to prevent such racial profiling as Toronto’s police chief, who happens to be a black male says: “his officers must be extra cautious to ensure that bias does not influence their behaviour in the wake of a report on profiling and discrimination.” (CBC news, 2018) this statement came after an interim report released by the Ontario Human Rights Commission found that black people in Toronto are much more likely to be killed or injured at the hands of police. (CBC news, 2018). Police brutality must stop against any race and racism towards any community should be brought to a complete stop. More on racism and racial profiling will be discussed in my podcast episode.


Desmond Cole, (April, 21st, 2015). The Skin I’m In: I’ve been interrogated by police more than 50 times—all because I’m black. Retrieved from:

Rankin and Gillis, (December, 10, 2018). Black people ‘grossly overrepresented,’ more likely to be hurt or killed by Toronto police, racial profiling report finds. Retrieved from:

CBC news, (December,11, 2018). Toronto police chief acknowledges racial profiling challenges in wake of human rights report. Retrieved from:

Haider Syed

Embed Block
Add an embed URL or code. Learn more

Week 4: The Pitch

In his opinion piece, Joseph Maloney argues, that the demonization of the Canadian oil industry as “dirty”, should be stopped, and Canada should produce and sell more oil to the world. Canada has the world’s third largest oil reserves, of which the most significant is in the form of “Oil sands” in Alberta. So, why are oil sands “dirty”? Is Canada the only country that produces “dirty” oil? and who is after this propaganda? Is it really a propaganda? What will be the impact on the economy, and jobs if it is left in the ground, as most environmentalists suggest? Has the GHG emissions from tar sands subsided over the years with the improvement in technology?

It is termed as “dirty” oil because the GHG emissions from its extraction is 3.2 to 4.5 times as intensive per barrel as conventional crude oil. Dr. James Hansen, an adjunct professor at Columbia University, wrote in 2012, that “if Canada proceeds, and we do nothing, it will be game over for the climate”(Hansen, 2012)

 But Canada is not the only country with dirty oil reserves. Venezuela and California extract some of the dirtiest oil on the planet.(Dusseault, 2001) The procedure to extract oil in California is so similar to the one followed in Alberta, that it is only one and a half percent less carbon intensive.(Mernit, 2017)

According to Vivian Krause, the anti Alberta oil campaigns by environmentalists, are funded by American money and are about protecting the interests of the United States and not the environment.(“B.C. researcher argues anti-Alberta oil campaigns about protecting U.S. interests, not environment |,” 2018) Environmentalists are lobbying with the indigenous people to block the construction of pipelines, which is hindering Canada’s access to global market. Due to pipeline approval delays, Canada is losing billions of dollars as it has a single large buyer in the shape of the United States, which reduces Canada’s ability to compete for higher prices.

Due to efficiencies gained through technology, the GHG emissions per barrel of oil produced in the oil   sands have fallen 29% since the year 2000, and many now believe that it is only a matter of time that it will be as clean as conventional oil.(Canada, 2017a) The demonization of Alberta oil is having an adverse impact on Canadian jobs and the economy, as Canada’s energy sector accounts for almost 11% of nominal GDP and accounts for 22% of annual exports. These facts prove beyond a shadow of doubt that Oil is important for Canadian jobs, and the economy.(Canada, 2017b)

There is more to the story than meets the eye and I intend to uncover it later.




B.C. researcher argues anti-Alberta oil campaigns about protecting U.S. interests, not environment | (2018, November 13). Retrieved February 1, 2019, from

Canada, N. R. (2017a, October 6). Crude oil facts. Retrieved February 1, 2019, from

Canada, N. R. (2017b, October 6). Energy and the economy. Retrieved February 1, 2019, from

Dusseault, M. B. (2001). Comparing Venezuelan and Canadian heavy oil and tar sands. In Canadian International Petroleum Conference. Petroleum Society of Canada.

Hansen, J. (2012). Game over for the climate. New York Times, 9(05).

Mernit, J. (2017). Why Does Green California Pump the Dirtiest Oil in the U.S.? Yale Environment 360. Retrieved from


Week Four

Podcast Pitch


What is racism? What is discrimination? When you hear these words, often times you know the answer. But what about when I ask, what do racism and discrimination look like? These two concepts are very different, but very much the same. I say this in the sense that they go hand in hand with each other. Desmond Cole, author of "The Skin I'm In" goes into detail about his experience with racism and discrimination from the one group of people who should be the least biased, the police.

While away at Queens University, Cole experienced frequent run-ins with the police force for seemingly no reason other than the fact that he was black. Cole states in his article, "As my encounters with police became more frequent, I began to see every uniformed officer as a threat." (Cole, 2019). Obviously, this isn't the only case of racial discrimination in the police force, and this is a big deal. Growing up in a society where people are afraid to speak up about crimes they witness because they might be considered a suspect, leads to more actual criminals getting away with their crimes.

In an article written in The Globe and Mail by Molly Hayes, there is significant research that says "Black people are more likely to be injured or killed by Toronto police officers" (Hayes, 2019). This report was done by the Ontario Human Rights Commission, in 2017. There are several other articles and news clips that show just how severe this issue is in Canada.

The Washington Post published an article by author Robyn Maynard titled, "Over-policing in Black Communities is a Canadian Crisis, too." Just from the title of this we can observe that most of Canadians, and most of the world, see us as kind and open-minded people, and don't get me wrong, we are more open-minded than most in this world, but the fact that we have citizens that live in fear from the very institution that should be protecting us is, to say the least, sickening. In her article, Maynard points this out. She states. "...for most Canadians, racism in policing continues to be treated as an exclusively American phenomenon. In Canada, discussions around policing of black lives here are sidelined or ignored entirely." (Maynard, 2018)

It seems that this is a serious issue, deeply ingrained into Canadian society that doesn’t receive much attention, that’s why in my podcast, I’ll be talking about these issues in depth.


Cole, D. (2015, October 27). The Skin I'm In: I've been interrogated by police more than 50 times-all because I'm black. Retrieved February 1, 2019, from

Hayes, M. (2018, December 11). Black people more likely to be injured or killed by Toronto Police officers, report finds. Retrieved February 1, 2019, from

Maynard, R. (2018, April 24). Over-policing in black communities is a Canadian crisis, too. Retrieved February 1, 2019, from

Week Three

“The Skin I’m In” is the piece I’ve chosen to center my podcast around. I’ve chosen this piece because I feel that this is something that doesn’t get talked about a lot in Canadian society. We hear stories from the United States like this one all the time and, as Canadians, we think, “Well that doesn’t happen here.” We are wrong.

The central argument, or main claim, is that racism and discrimination within our police force exists and that it is not only socially damaging but mentally and emotionally damaging as well. This is clearly outlined in the entirety of the article. The author, Desmond Cole, writes about his experience and entanglements with the police when he went away to University, all of which happened not because he deserved it, but because of the color of his skin. He saw from an early age that his skin color would affect almost every aspect of his life. When he saw his father, a normally imposing force, trembling under the stare of a police officer, it started to make him wonder.

I know this is an opinion piece because all of it is in the form of a story. It is all personal anecdote, although this particular piece of anecdote is rather interesting. I believe it would make for an amazing podcast topic, simply because it is still a major issue in today’s society. I feel that we need to bring awareness to these issues, especially when they have such an astounding negative impact on the lives of youth.

-Megan Snook

Week Two

What is the nature of opinion? To answer this, we first need to look at what an opinion is. An opinion is a subjective thought based on a person's beliefs or experiences that affect the perspective of how they might see any given situation. An opinion, because it is based on each person’s individual perspective, therefore cannot be confirmed. It is also open to interpretation by others who might not have the same beliefs or experiences.

Based on what we know about what an opinion is, we can draw a couple of conclusions. The first of the conclusions we can draw is that we can not take them at face value, this is based on the fact that they are so subjective. We cannot look at someone’s opinion and call it fact. Another conclusion we can draw is that because not everyone’s beliefs and experiences are the same, two people can have very different views on the same subject. The same conclusion can be drawn because of the fact that opinions are subject to interpretation.

With this information I pose this question: is all knowledge just a matter of opinion?

To this question, I answer, no. There is knowledge that is proven, not subject to interpretation and 100% not subjective. Based on the criteria we established above, not all knowledge is a matter of opinion.

But hey, maybe that is just my opinion…

-Megan Snook

Week One

Hello everyone! My name is Megan Snook. I am currently an undecided major but will be switching into Biology, leaning towards BioMed. I’ve lived in various parts of Ontario for most of my life, until 2012. That’s when I moved to Newfoundland, where all of my family is from.

I have recently moved back to pursue a debt-inducing career as a university student. So far, it’s been stressful, but I wouldn’t trade this adventure for anything. I love meeting new people and the university is the perfect environment for that.

I also enjoy the quiet things in life; reading, writing short stories, listening to music and, of course, watching movies and TV shows.

I am not sure how I feel about the course project so far, there is a lot of ideas I have bouncing around in my head but I’m not sure which one I’ll go with. I’m passionate about a lot of things that would be good to do, but time will tell.

I feel like one research tactic that post-secondary students use in Googling. I’m not talking Googling random questions, a lot of them use shortcuts on Google to get scholarly journals. This is in fact very useful as long as they know the difference between credible and non-credible sources.

I look forward to working and learning from each and every one of you!

Phase 1

Week 3: Summary of an opinion piece  

“After Ruining Mayonnaise, Can Millennials Save America” is a political piece in the opinion section of NY Times. Written by Timothy Egan who argues that Millennials not voting is the reason for Trump being in the white house. He also expressed that Millennials can make a difference in the next election and can save the Unite States from itself.

 There will be more millennials voting in the next election than last election. The author referred to an article that was written by Richard Fry called “Millennials projected to overtake Baby Boomers as America’s largest generation”. Where Richard calculated the number of Boomers, Millennials, and Gen X. He projected how many eligible voters on these generations. He found that Millennials will make the largest number of voters starting in 2019.

 The article is an opinion piece because it reflects the author’s opinion. Starting from some arguments that are not supported by facts such as; millennials are ruining food, motorcycles and marriage. And ending with the article being in the opinion section of NY Times.

 Timothy Egan is an American author who wrote a wide range of books and articles on politics from a liberal point of view. Egan won lots of writing awards. Including but not limited to; National Book Award and PNBA award.

 His article is relevant in the current social and political climate in the United States. With two years left for Donald Trump in the white house and the current political chaos internally and externally. Egan thinks that millennials can make the difference in the next election If they go and vote. This piece has the potential to create an interesting podcast because it touches on a point of view that I never thought of before. Millennials not voting can affect important issues such as climate change, wars, and peace.

Week 4: The Pitch

Find the transcript here

Week 3: Summary of Opinion Piece.

In his opinion piece “Its time to end oilsands shaming”, Joseph Maloney (2018) argues that the demonization of the Alberta oilsands, as “dirty” oil, should be stopped. That workers at the Canadian oil industry, care just as much about the environment and global warming, as the people who want to shut the industry down and take away their jobs. Canada has the world’s third largest oil reserves, of which the most significant is in the form of oil sands, in Northern Alberta, near Fort McMurray. Maloney claims that its about Canadian jobs, as 200,000 Canadians are employed in the oil sands and hundreds of thousands more in industries that depend on refined oil products. This industry is demonized, particularly by people who claim that Alberta’s oil is “filthy” so it should not be extracted. For these people buying oil from Russia or Saudi Arabia is better than employing Canadians, whereas a large majority of people want to see a cleaner and responsible oil industry that makes less carbon emissions. Canadian governments, over the years have regulated to make the industry cleaner and safer for the environment. The industry has embraced practices that are more stringent than any other country in the world, he cites examples of Shell’s carbon-capture project and a refinery in Alberta.

This piece reflects Joseph Maloney’s opinion about the subject. The author is the International Vice President, at the International Brotherhood of Boilermakers Canada, which is a diverse union representing workers throughout the United States and Canada, across a broad range of industries. The author being a union leader representing oil sands workers will naturally be biased in his perspective.

Almost every other day we notice on the media, terms like, carbon dioxide, greenhouse gas, emissions, climate change and global warming. These terms draw our attention to the changes taking place on our planet, and it is this fact that makes this piece topical.

This piece will create a very interesting podcast because, a through analysis of this piece, will look at very important issues both in favour of the author’s argument and against his view. We will have to focus on the importance of oil for the Canadian economy and jobs, and the importance of keeping our environment pollution free.

Natural Resources Canada. Energy and the economy. Key facts. Retrieved from Government of Canada website:

International Energy Statistics. Crude Oil Proved Reserves. Retrieved from:

Natural Resources Canada. [2018, Aug 13] Natural Resources Canada. Shell Canada Energy Quest Project. Retrieved from Government of Canada website: