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Step 1: Finding a Topic to Research

Pick a topic that interests you, something that you really want to learn about. Get some ideas by:

  • Looking through your textbook or other class readings for possible topics.
  • Carefully reading your assignment.
  • Talking to your instructor about the assignment.
  • Using encyclopedias (both print and online) to get an overview of a topic, obtain definitions, discover how your idea fits into the larger picture, and get started on preliminary research.
  • Looking at newspaper articles, magazines or journals to find topics you might want to research.
  • Thinking about the two main types of research papers. Is your paper meant to inform or to persuade? To present one side or both sides of a controversial issue?

Be sure you know what your instructor wants:

 


Last Modified: Wednesday, June 3rd, 2009