This Step does not have a # because it takes place at every step of the process.
You begin with a Project in your NoodleTools account, record your Research Question and Thesis Statement, create Note Cards, and Record your sources as you find them.
|First, use your own ideas. It should be your paper and your ideas that should be the focus.|
|Use the ideas of others sparingly--only to support or reinforce your own argument.|
|When taking notes, include complete citation information for each item you use.|
|Use quotation marks when directly stating another person's words.|
|is to take 30 minutes and write a short draft of your paper without using any notes. It will help you think through what you want to say and not be too dependent on your sources.|
This step can be most difficult. Your teacher may give you the freedom to choose whatever you would like to write about as long as it interests you and you are able to investigate, detail, and argue a particular position. Or you have to answer an assessment question. Or you have to choose within a certain field.
Performing a Google search is likely to overwhelm you with the immense number of results returned to you. Since current events or controversial issues provide many ideas for investigation and argument, there are a few resources that your librarians and teachers can guide you to for thought-provoking topics.
Pay attention to news stories on radio, television, and items that hit your news feed online
Check out Opposing Viewpoints in Context and Global Issues in Context for ideas
You need a topic with enough information to research, but it is not too broad
Ask another teacher about some ideas you might have
This is an excellent point to chat with a librarian to help you settle into a good direction for a manageable topic
Use the Pre-Search Worksheet on this page> to organize your research
After you have done some background research, you are more prepared to develop informed research questions that will not overwhelm you when you try to answer them. Keep in mind, though, that your questions may not, actually should not, have direct answers. Critical reading of what you find will present you with possibilities, and you may make logical jumps in reasoning to answer the question, using support from sources that you find. Sometimes, as you read more, your research question may change.
Click image below for full analysis of different types of resources. Great Infographic. Portland Community College.
Steps #6 and #7 are repeatable as often as necessary.
The further we go in our academic careers, the more detailed and complex our research questions become. By the time someone becomes a graduate student and works on a dissertation, these two steps can be repeated endless times. You will, with experience, determine how many passes through Steps #6 and #7 are appropriate for your research needs.
This is another good time to set up appointments with your teacher, supervisor, and librarian.
Step #10: Reflect
The Internet is a tremendous resource for finding information, but you need to use it critically and with care. One important thing to be aware of is that unlike resources found in a library in printed form, those found on the internet may not have been through a review or editing process.
When researching online you should:
|Desirable source attribute||Questions to consider in order to determine this|
|Reliability and credibility||
Adapted from "Introduction; Academic honesty, Acknowledge the work or ideas of another person", from Extended Essay Guide, International Baccalaureate Organization, 2016.