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#Activism Research Project: Perfect for Social Justice/Informational Text Unit

Grade Levels
8th - 12th, Higher Education, Adult Education
Resource Type
Formats Included
  • Google Docs™
25 pages
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Thanks to social media and trending hashtags, modern activism movements look much different than the activism of the past. This project is a great addition to any study of activism, social justice, social movements, informational text, or just as a stand-alone research project. It is crucially important we teach students how to research and understand the movements of their generation so they can actively participate in the dialogue that is taking place all around them. Understanding the current conversations is the first step to being an informed and active citizen. But how well do these hashtags work? What societal effects do they have on the social movement they represent? These are just two of the questions students explore throughout this project.

This project calls for students to select an activism hashtag to research with the primary focus being to determine how the hashtag has affected the movement it represents. The project is highly scaffolded with each step being broken down for students. I use this as the first major writing assignment for my sophomores, so there's a lot of check-ins and scaffolding to help them out. Depending on your students' ability-levels you could easily speed this project up by cutting out some of the scaffolding components that are built into the project. Also, I have included both a presentation and an essay assignment. I usually have students do both, but you could opt for just one in order to save time.

At the end of this project students will be able to:

  • Compose additional research questions to answer their main research question.
  • Develop keywords to use when researching.
  • Evaluate the credibility of sources.
  • Properly cite sources in MLA format.
  • Learn how to take and organize notes while researching.
  • Compile and organize research into a casual analysis research paper.
  • Write a well-organized research paper.
  • Identify key structural components of their own essay.
  • Create and present a slideshow presentation to their peers.
  • Provide good, meaningful feedback to their peers.
  • Reflect upon their writing and speaking performances.
  • Use technology to create and share information.
Total Pages
25 pages
Answer Key
Rubric only
Teaching Duration
3 Weeks
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to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
Draw evidence from informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.
Gather relevant information from multiple authoritative print and digital sources, using advanced searches effectively; assess the strengths and limitations of each source in terms of the task, purpose, and audience; integrate information into the text selectively to maintain the flow of ideas, avoiding plagiarism and overreliance on any one source and following a standard format for citation.
Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects to answer a question (including a self-generated question) or solve a problem; narrow or broaden the inquiry when appropriate; synthesize multiple sources on the subject, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.
Use technology, including the Internet, to produce, publish, and update individual or shared writing products in response to ongoing feedback, including new arguments or information.
Develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach, focusing on addressing what is most significant for a specific purpose and audience.


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