Given below are some steps and suggestions to help you write the ultimate research paper:
Step 1: Pick a topic
When selecting a topic, search for something that meets these criteria:
- Is the subject appealing to me?
- If you are not interested in your topic, you will likely bore your reader too. Choose a new and exciting topic, something that isn’t overworked.
- Is there adequate information available on this subject?
- Is the knowledge on this subject accessible in different formats (i.e. the internet, newspapers, reference books, pamphlets, etc.)? Note: if the information is in an abundant amount, you will have to narrow it down or restrict your topic.
- Is it refined and relevant enough to meet my teacher’s expectations?
Decide on a topic that will allow you to collect, examine, and interpret information from various sources so that your paper turns into a worthy source of information for the audience. Keep in mind, a great research paper should help your instructor learn too.
Step 2: Describe the task and develop a working thesis.
An academic paper is just an extended answer to a question that someone may have about a specific topic. What question do you want to address about your chosen subject?
Once you have asked the question, frame it as a focused statement that will allow you to utilize available information to prove or confirm it. When forming your thesis, use precise, solid words. Your thesis does not have to be the undeniable truth but something that will stimulate thought and can be verified by your research.
Step 3: Brainstorm all potential sources
Think big, think global. Don’t confine yourself to books, the internet, and magazines.
Step 4: Find and assess sources for suitability for the assignment.
Search in the card catalog for books, videos, vertical files, etc. Check out online subscription databases, e.g. Newsbank, literature resources, etc.
Judge sources on objectivity, authority, accuracy, and content material. Check copyright dates as stuff more than five years old may not be fitting for certain topics. Sources available online on the internet require even more precision and consideration.
Step 5: Access the materials
Access the resource materials. View, see, read, and touch and get as familiar as possible.
Step 6: Prepare
Prepare preceding citation cards or pages in advance.
Step 7: Finalize the thesis statement
Settle on the final thesis statement and create a working outline.
The outline basically acts as a road map for your writing journey with your thesis as your compass– it guides you in the right direction. When making your outline, remember your destination. Your gathered info will help you get there, but how are you going to plan your journey?
The thesis’s place is at the beginning of the outline so you can refer to it frequently. You may be required by your instructor to write one of the following kinds of outlines: a topic outline, in which there’s a series of headings and subheadings in the form of words and phrases, not whole sentences; or a sentence outline, which contains every heading and subheading as a complete sentence. Your teacher can guide you through the process of these outlines. Note: the outline is not supposed to hinder or limit you. It can be revised and changed to help you to prove your thesis more efficiently.
Step 8: Take Notes
Use accessible information. Read source materials, watch videos, listen to podcasts or interviews, and take notes. Making notes will help you determine a way in which you can retrieve the information that you have looked up with ease. There are plenty of ways to take notes. The preferable method in this domain is index cards. However, other techniques include legal pads, graphic organizers, or other sorts of paper with source summary information reported in a manner that is understandable.
When you paraphrase, try reading your source at least once, absorb it, turn away from the source and write the principal ideas in your own wording, and then compare it for accuracy.
Step 9: Orchestrate
Arrange your notes keeping in accordance with the working outline you have prepared.
- Go through your thesis statement and outline once more
- Compose the very first draft along with the title, in-text citations, and works cited page or the bibliography.
- Do a little revision of the first draft.
- Get to writing the final draft.
Step 10: Evaluate
As you get ready to submit your final research paper, evaluate and analyze what you have studied and learned. Assess the result of the work in terms of effectiveness, i.e. carrying out your research and the entire research process itself, i.e. efficiency.
- Does the final paper convey effectiveness?
- Was the information problem-solving process efficient?
These steps will surely put you on your way to writing excellent academic research papers, but you can always seek help from outside sources such as a research paper writing service.