How to write an outline for a research paper

If the prospect of writing a research paper gives you the cold sweats, you are not alone. One trick to simplifying the writing process is knowing how to create an outline for a research paper. If you can begin writing an outline, the task of drafting the research paper will quickly become more manageable. Read more

Good research paper topics for college students

Good research paper topics for college studentsYou’ve considered our tips, you’ve learned all the tricks, but you’re having trouble just getting started on your research paper. Good research paper ideas take creativity but sometimes choosing a research topic is the most difficult part, so we’ve gathered some ideas for research paper topics for college students. It’s easier said than done: avoid choosing broad research subjects that interest you, and try instead to narrow your focus when selecting research paper topics. Read more

Top 10 mistakes when writing a research paper

Avoid these common research paper blunders

Fall has arrived and that means writing a research paper is in season again. Don’t sell yourself short; you’ve got the potential to write an awesome research paper worthy of an “A.” However, it’s easy to make simple mistakes when you’re given such a large project.

Prevent some very common errors by avoiding these research paper writing blunders, and it will be smooth sailing this semester. Read more

Back to school tips: How to write a research paper

Classes are starting and it has been a while, hasn’t it? You’re now busy getting back into the swing of things, but while you’ve been away, you may have forgotten some vital information about how to write a research paper. There may also be some key components of writing papers with which you’ve always struggled. Here are some back to school tips to keep in mind while starting your first research paper this school year to help create your best work. Read more

Who do you trust?

Which online resources are safe to use?

Search expert Barbara G. Friedman emphasizes the importance of knowing how to evaluate Web site reliability in her book Web Search Savvy: Strategies and Shortcuts for Online Research (Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 2005, 158). In Credibility at a Glance, she notes that one “quick measure of a Web site’s credibility is to look at the domain.”

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Online Answers for “People Questions”

“When you are in need of a short, comprehensive biography of a famous person, there are many online resources available for consideration,” says Joann M. Wleklinski. In her Online piece Get a Life Comparing Online Biography Resources.

Along with Wikipedia, which she calls “a decent resource for a quick, first-look overview of a subject,” she reviews Biography.com, noting that its “content is for the most part reliable, but hardly comprehensive. It seems that a certain amount of sizzle about a person doesn’t hurt the individual’s being represented, either.” See the article for her assessment of general web search engines Google, Yahoo!, and Bing. Read more

Subject vs. Topic

Too often students get papers back from professors with notes such as “Too broad” or “Try to narrow your focus” written on them. Narrowing your focus from a subject to a topic helps prevent you from using too much summary in your paper. Focusing on one topic allows you to fully develop and flush out new ideas of your own.

Narrowing down a subject, which is “broad and general” into a topic or “the specific issue being discussed”  makes it both manageable and arguable, says Laurie Rozakis. In Schaum’s Quick Guide to Writing Great Research Papers 2nd ed., (New York: McGraw-Hill, 2007), 23, she suggests this approach for Shaping Your Ideas. Read more

Matters of opinion

Where to look for research perspective

When you need to examine how people are reporting or commenting on different aspects of an issue or situation, these resources – among NoodleTools.com’s valuable guidelines to help Choose the Best Search for Your Information Need – are a great place to start.

Here are NoodleTools’ suggestions for opinion and perspective resources: Read more

Analyze This

How to write a good book review

A book review is “not a retelling,” emphasizes Los Angeles Valley College (LAVC), nor is it “a book report or a summary.” Instead, they explain in How to Write a Book Review, it is “a description, critical analysis, and an evaluation on the quality, meaning, and significance of a book, not a retelling. It should focus on the book’s purpose, content, and authority. Read more

Take Searches Up a Notch

Traditional search methods don’t always work effectively. When you’re disappointed with the results you’re getting, Barbara G. Friedman, author of Web Search Savvy: Strategies and Shortcuts for Online Research (Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 2005), 60, suggests trying some of the alternative approaches in her checklist of Tips for Smart Searchers. Read more