Any spelling or grammatical errors? Quotes accurate in source, spelling, and punctuation? Are all my citations accurate and in correct format? Did I avoid using contractions? Did I use third person as much as possible? Did I leave a sense of completion for my reader s at the end of the paper? For an excellent source on English composition, check out this classic book by William Strunk, Jr. Note: William Strunk, Jr. The Elements of Style was first published in Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our terms and conditions of fair use.
Writing a Research Paper Summary: The pages in this section provide detailed information about how to write research papers including discussing research papers as a genre, choosing topics, and finding sources.
The Research Paper There will come a time in most students' careers when they are assigned a research paper. After all, you still have to write your research paper. First off, skimming. Get comfortable reading through things quickly.
Learn how to identify key points and arguments without getting bogged down and reading every word. Next, find reliable resources. But, you cannot use that as a final source. You can use general sources like Wikipedia to get familiar with a topic, find keywords that can further drive your research, and quickly understand large amounts of information.
But, for the information you use in your paper, you have to find reliable resources. Take what you have learned from a Google search or Wikipedia article and dig deeper. Check out the sources on the article, use keywords from your internet search to search an academic database, or ask an expert whether or not what you learned is valid and if it is, where you can find a reliable source stating the same thing. So, just to be clear: you can use Wikipedia as a starting point in your research, but you should not cite Wikipedia as one of the primary sources for your research paper.
You can find an article that says anything you want it to say. Are the spires on the Cinderella Castle at Disney World removable in case of a hurricane? Did a cook attempt to assassinate George Washington by feeding him poisoned tomatoes? Just because you find one article stating that something is true, that does not necessarily mean it is a proven fact that you can use in your research. Work to understand all of the different viewpoints and schools of thought on your topic.
This can be done by reading a variety of articles, reading a book or article that gives an overview of the topic and incorporates different points of view, or talking to an expert who can explain the topic in depth. Step 4: Organize Your Research So you have all of this information, now what to do with it? Step four is all about getting organized. Like research, different people have different preferences here. It can also depend on your assignment.
If your teacher requires you to turn in a bibliography with your research paper think back to step 1; you ought to already know exactly what the assignment is by now! If you are just making one just for yourself, think about how you would like to organize your research.
It might make sense to bookmark resources on your web browser or make a digital bibliography that allows you to link the resources you found. You might prefer a printed list of your resources or you might want to write down all you have learned that is relevant to your project on notecards or sticky notes and organize your research paper on a table or the floor.
A thesis is a short statement that you — as researcher and author — put forward for the readers of your paper as what you are trying to explain or prove. A starting point when writing a thesis might be to write a one-sentence answer to the question: what is your paper about?
What is my thesis or purpose statement? Be the best writer in the office. Craft a strong opening sentence that will engage the reader. Explain the purpose of your paper and how you plan to approach the topic. Is this a factual report? An analysis? A persuasive piece? Conclude the introductory paragraph with your thesis statement.
The introduction is the broad beginning of the paper that answers three important questions: What is this? Why am I reading it? Now that you understand why profs are such format sticklers, take a look at the rubric: The rubric is a list of direct touch points that will be examined by the professor as they grade your work. In this case, you can see five discrete categories, each with its own stakes, and the number value that corresponds to your performance: The prof will take the rubric and keep it within reach while grading.
Along with making notes on your paper, the prof will also check off your performance in each category—summarizing your performance in that category: If you have a hundred-point paper, each one of these categories is worth 20 points.
To get an A on this paper, you have to perform with excellence in 3 categories and above average in at least 2 of the other categories. Now you have a goal. Which three categories are you going to absolutely kill in? At least one of them—formatting—is a gimmie.
All it takes is attention to detail—Microsoft Word has all the tools you need to score perfectly there. Focus on Development and Body Paragraphs for your other two. Writing an Anchor Sentence It might seem like a silly thing to do, but an anchor sentence is as vital as a thesis statement. Note that there is nothing about originality in this rubric.
I will demonstrate this knowledge by staying organized, using relevant research, and sticking to my thesis statement. Yes, it seems a bit silly. But now you have an anchor.
It often begins with a general statement about the topic and ends with a more specific statement of the main idea of your paper. Now you have a goal.
Grammarly Grammarly is like a super-powered spell checker. State why the main idea is important — Tell the reader why he or she should care and keep reading. It usually makes sense to have an introduction and conclusion, but what goes between will vary based on the contents of your essay. Hint: Grammarly can help!