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Research Writing Guide


Title: Research Writing Guide Author: mstrano Last modified by: Mike Strano Created Date: 1/9/2006 5:47:32 PM Document presentation format: On-screen Show (4:3) – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Research Writing Guide

Research Writing Guide
  • Get your thesis
  • Go to Sources to get ideas
  • General Outline
  • Go back to sources to get specific information
  • Specific Outline
  • First Draft
  • Revise and Edit
  • Final Draft

  • A thesis statement declares what you believe and
    what you intend to prove
  • A good thesis statement makes the difference
    between a thoughtful research project and a
    simple retelling of facts

Get your thesis
  • Read about the topic you have been given and
    choose a specific idea that you can prove about
    the topic.
  • Make sure that it is something you can prove, not
    a fact about the topic.
  • Make sure there is enough information on your
    chosen topic to write the required length

Go to Sources to get your ideas
  • Read up on the thesis that you have chosen
  • Look for ideas that you can use to logically
    prove your thesis
  • Write down these ideas and the sources that you
    are getting them from

General Outline
  • Using the knowledge you gained in the last step,
    break your paper into sections that you will use
    to prove your thesis.
  • You do not need the specific ideas you will put
    into the paper, just the general sections of your

Specific Information
  • Go to sources and find specific ideas you can use
    to help prove your thesis.
  • You will need exact quotes, the page numbers of
    the quotes, the authors and all other publication
    information for each source
  • Use An organized method for collecting your notes

Note Card Method
  • Start with a source card
  • On the source card write al the publication
    information you will need to document the source
  • On the Top of the card, label each source with a
    capital letter

Example Source Card
  • A
  • Hawthorne, Nathaniel. Rappaccinis Daughter.
    The American Short Story. Parkes, Thomas K. Ann
    Arbor, MI- State Street Press. 1994. pp. 37-60.

Note Cards
  • Next go through the source and put a different
    quote on each card
  • After the quote put the page number or numbers.
  • On the top of the card put the letter of the
    source it is from, the top of the Source Card

Note Card Example
  • A
  • We will thwart Rappaccini yet,
  • P. 55

Notebook method
  • On the top of the page write out all the
    documentation information
  • Under it list all the quotes with the page number
  • When you go to another source, draw a line and
    put all the publishing information for your next
    work and continue

Notebook method example
  • Hawthorne, Nathaniel. Rappaccinis Daughter.
    The American Short Story. Parkes, Thomas K. Ann
    Arbor, MI- State Street Press. 1994. pp.
  • We will thwart Rappaccini yet, p. 55
  • - Was it a hard doom? p.57

Specific Outline
  • The next step is to take your notes and put them
    into your general outline so that you get a
    specific outline
  • If you did note cards, you can physically arrange
    the cards in the order you want to put them in
  • Write out the outline so that each of your
    sections will be a mini-essay on that part.

Writing the draft
  • Include an introduction that spells out your
    thesis and the sections of your paper
  • Do not just write the ideas from the sources.
    Most of the writing should be your own ideas
    based on what you learned and thought about on
    the topic.
  • Use the sources to back up your own thoughts on
    the thesis

Documenting Sources
  • Every time you use an original idea from someone
    else, whether it is a direct quote or
    paraphrased, you MUST cite the source.
  • Plagiarism is a crime. In high school, you will
    lose points, in college you will at least get a
    0, in grad school, you will be thrown out and in
    the work place you could be sued
  • To avoid plagiarism, you must document all your

Citing a source in your paper
  • When you use someone elses idea, you must cite
    the source.
  • Cite the source by writing whose idea it is.
  • If it is a direct quote, you must also include
    the page number.
  • If it is paraphrased, you just write the persons

Direct Quote example
  • He has the character say, We will thwart
    Rappaccini yet (Hawthorne, p. 55).
  • Hawthorne writes, We will thwart Rappaccini yet
    (p. 55).
  • On page 55, Hawthorne writes We will thwart
    Rappaccini yet.

  • In the story the characters were out to stop
    Rappaccini (Hawthorne)
  • Hawthorne has his characters try to stop

Works Cited Page
  • After the paper is written with all the works
    cited correctly in the book, you must then attach
    a works cited page.
  • This is an alphabetical list of all works that
    were cited throughout your paper
  • This is not a bibliography, which is a list of
    all sources related to the topic, instead it is
    just what you used in your paper

Works Cited Page
  • In this list, you will put all of the publishing
    information that is needed to fully document the
  • If you did your note taking correctly you will
    have all this information.
  • You must write it in the proper format
  • Use MLA Style to help you
  • http//

Sample Works Cited Page
  • Adams, Paul. "Furious Arafat Is Freed." Globe and
    Mail Toronto 2 May
  •           2002 A1.
  • "Beginner Tip Presenting Your Page with Style."
    Webmaster Tips Newsletter.
  • July 2000. NetMechanic. 13 Oct. 2002
  •           news/vol3/beginner_no7.htmgt.
  • Collins, Ronald K.L., and David M. Skover. The
    Trials of Lenny Bruce The
  •           Fall and Rise of an American Icon.
    Naperville, IL Sourcebooks, 2002.
  • Continelli, Louise. "A Place for Owls to Heal."
    Buffalo News 12 Jan. 2003 C2.
  • "E-Money Slips Quietly into Oblivion." Nikkei
    Weekly Tokyo 22 Jan. 2001 4.
  • Gordin, Michael D. "The Science of Vodka."
    Letter. New Yorker 13 Jan. 2003 7.
  • "Ho Chi Minh."  Encyclopaedia Britannica. 2003.           15 May 2003

Rest of the writing process
  • As always, once you have a first draft completed,
    you should revise and edit and do a better draft.
  • Do it as many times as your deadlines allow you
    to do