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Those strategies were meant for students who had already mastered the basics of performing research, not students just getting started doing research and writing papers.
Is it any wonder that so many university students rely on Wikipedia as the first and last stop in their research itinerary? I tell my students that the first step in writing a research paper is to admit you have a research paper.
Write up a schedule with a series of milestones to accomplish by a specific date e. Wikipedia is a great place to start your research — spend some time searching for keywords related to your topic, browsing the links you find on each page, and following their suggested resources.
Take notes, especially of any good sources they recommend. By the time you get ready to write, though, you should have much better sources at your command than Wikipedia, so avoid citing it in your paper.
You can usually skim through the bibliography and note down anything whose title sounds relevant to your research. Have a research question in mind.
Technically, your thesis should emerge from your research, when you have data in front of you. As you come across new material, ask yourself if it looks like it will help you answer your question. Get one or two good sources for background your initial Wikipedia searching should be adequate in most cases and then keep focused by working towards an answer to your research question.
Deal with one piece at a time. Get enough of a sense of the topic that you can create an outline of the things you need to understand, and then deal with each piece on its own. Start your research with an idea of how you plan to collect and organize your notes and data.
Spend some time getting to know what resources, both online and offline, your library to offer. Most university libraries also subscribe to a number of academic databases, and most are now accessible online — get to know the research material you can access from home.
J-Stor, for instance, holds full-text photographic copies of hundreds of journals, all easily searchable. Use the human resources available to you as well as the material resources.
Another often-overlooked resource is your friendly neighborhood librarian. Librarians are, in my estimation, the best people on Earth — they know the material in their charge forwards and backwards, they are deeply concerned with seeing it used, and they have committed their lives to making information more available.
Most librarians will be happy to help you find relevant material for your project, and some will even locate specific pieces of hard-to-find information for you. Carry an idea book. Keep a small notebook and a pen with you everywhere well, maybe not in the shower — although I do keep dry erase markers by the sink so I can write down quick thoughts on the bathroom mirror when I get out of the shower ; jot down notes whenever an idea crosses your mind, and transfer these notes into your research log or software, or whatever as soon as you can.
Bring it up to date. If research in your topic seems to dry up a decade or so back, it might be because the field moved on, but it also might be because funding opportunities disappeared, a major researcher died, or any number of accidental reasons.Updated to conform to today's academic standards and the most recent Internet research sources, this succinct, easy-to-follow guide gives students clear directions for writing papers in .
Engineering was love at first sight for me. Years after graduation I still enjoy a good problem-solving assignment or research paper. I’ve helped hundreds of students conquer the toughest subjects in .
Basic Steps to the Research Process. Your teacher just assigned you a research paper, or an essay that requires research, or some kind of project that requires research and citing your sources.
The process and types of writing. Required and voluntary writing has a broad range of styles.
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