Throughout you education career and especially in the college years you will receive this assignment quite frequently.

The research paper allows instructors to focus students on a particular topic where they can research new information on their own.

When you are faced with this assignment here you can find the basics steps you must follow to complete this task.

What is a Research Paper – Basic Steps for College Students

Step One – Develop a question for your research

The preliminary step in doing this research task is to come up with a question that you want to research. Sometimes the question will be provided by the instructor and other times there will be general topics that you must choose from relating to the subject of the class. Take the topics and guidelines your class provides and come up with a question to guide your work.

Step Two – Researching your topic

The next step in completing this project is to conduct research about your topic. There are many places to look including your text book and notes, school library and online searches. In today’s educational process most research is done online from the comfort of your dorm room or home. Categorize your research and save it in one location for easy reference while you are working.

Step Three – Develop the outline of your work

As you go through the investigative process you can begin to develop the outline of your paper. You will see an outline as you read research that was done in other areas and also can begin to develop questions for your writing. When you are researching and developing your outline, capture any quotes or references at this time so that you will have them available for your writing.

Step Four – Develop a first draft of the paper

Now that you have an outline of what you want to say, you can begin to develop the written part of your project. Sit in a quiet place and put your thoughts down on paper or type them into the document on your computer. You do not have to work from beginning to end of the document but instead, you can fill in the outline that you have created with the areas that are fresh in your mind.

Step Five – Fill in the gaps

Once you have the first draft completed now is the time to fill in any gaps in your material. Work through the entire document and fill in any areas where there is not sufficient information. Add quotations and additional references to make your work have substance. Complete this process by ensuring that all of your references have been annotated correctly.

Step Six – Final editing

The last step of the process in developing a research paper is editing. Editing is like putting frosting on a cake, the cake itself has substance and the material you want but without the frosting it is bland and no fun to eat. Go through the paper and check for spelling and grammar mistakes. Verify references and add a reference section to the end or footnote section of the composition. Review the flow of the entire piece to ensure it is logical and concise and clearly answers the question you posed.

Writing Tips

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