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The Research Process<br />Six simple steps to writing an effective research paper<br />Carteret Community College Library<br />Elizabeth Baker, 2009<br />
What are the Six Steps?<br />Define the problem or task.<br />Find background information.<br />Gather your sources.<br />Collect your information.<br />Organize your information.<br />Evaluate your process.<br />
Step 1: Define the Problem or Task<br />Choose the right topic. You don’t want a topic too narrow or too broad.<br />State your topic as a question.<br />Decide what information you may need to answer this question.<br />
Step 2: Find Background Information<br />Brainstorm for what you may already know about your topic.<br />Write down keywords you may use in the research process.<br />Find your topic in an encyclopedia and read the article.<br />Make an outline to guide your research.<br />
Step 3: Gather Your Sources<br />What sources are available for research? Decide which you will use.<br /><ul><li>Reference and other Library books.
Magazine or newspaper articles.
Electronic databases.</li></li></ul><li>Step 4: Collect Your Information<br />Research your topic.<br />Take notes.<br />Do not plagiarize.<br />Record where you find your information to create a bibliography.<br />Be sure that every source you use supports your research question.<br />
Things to Remember in Research<br />Make sure that you take information from many different sources.<br />Record the bibliographic information of each source. Always record what you found and where you found it.<br />Paraphrase all information into your own words.<br />Be careful that you record facts and not opinions.<br />
Things to Remember in Research<br />Work from general to specific when defining your topic.<br />Translate your topic’s keywords into the terminology of the field. You will discover the terminology in finding background information.<br />
Step 5: Organize Your Information<br />Begin to write your actual paper.<br />Remember your purpose for collecting your information—to answer your research question.<br />Remember your audience—who will be reading your work.<br />Remember that your paper should present yourideassupported by your research.<br />
Step 6: Evaluate Your Process<br />Did you answer your research question?<br />Now that you have finished, what did you learn from this process?<br />What would you do differently next time?<br />
Happy Researching!<br />