A Step-By-Step Research Paper Writing Guide: Tips For Dummies
You just got a new assignment, and it’s a doozy. You need to to pick a research topic on something you’ve never heard of and write a paper about something you know nothing about! If your find yourself stumped, here’s an easy guide to help you get through this and come out with the A you deserve.
- Pick your topic: A good rule of thumb for any writing assignment is to “write what you know”. You’re probably thinking “Hey, I don’t know anything, that’s why I’m reading this right now!”, But you’d be surprised at how much you do know. For example, if your class is American History and the subject is the Civil War, think if you’ve been somewhere relevant, as a battlefield on a school trip. Start there and then google that place plus “Civil War” until your focus narrows to something you find interesting.
- Find your info: It’s all about notes, notes, notes! Pick a note-taking method you like, such as using note cards, and then delve into your topic and collect as much information as you can. It’s critical to be organized so when you start writing you can find the important information easily. You may receive some guidance from your teacher or professor about research methods, or you may be on your own. If you are using the internet, be careful to evaluate the sites you visit to make sure the information you get is valid and correct! It’s also important to always make note of where you got your information in order to cite it properly later.
- Create a Thesis Statement: This is basically the conclusion, stated at the beginning in one sentence. Anyway you look at it, it’s very important! Choose carefully, write thoughtfully and you’ll come up with something great.
- Draw up an outline: Now that you know what you’ll be focusing on, it’s time to build a framework for your ideas. The very basic form of an outline is:
a. Thesis statement
- First topic
- Subtopic a
- Subtopic b
- Second topic
There you have it, a super simple guide to writing the perfect research paper. Good luck and happy writing!