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Home > Resources > Writing A Paper

Writing A Paper

There are number of criteria that must be met in order to write a good research paper. The following eleven steps will help you write a grade “A” research paper.

Step 1 – Select A Topic

The first step in writing a research paper is selection a topic for your paper. You should select a topic of interest to you and one that broad enough that you can find enough information to complete your paper. Selecting topic that is too narrow may make it difficult for you to find enough information to write a good research paper. However, you don’t want a really broad topic either. If the topic of your paper is too broad you’ll have difficulty completing your paper.

Step 2 – Find Information

It’s important to use information from a variety of sources when writing a research paper. Some good information sources include books, magazines, professional and academic journals, newspapers, encyclopedias, and almanacs. Using a variety of sources will ensure that your research paper include a variety of supporting viewpoints and unbiased information.

Step 3 – Prepare Note Cards

Note cards are used to write down notes from each source of information. Numbering each note cards will help you keep better track of where your information is coming from.

Step 4 – Prepare Bibliography Cards

Bibliography cards are used to present the sources of information you used to write your research paper. To learn more about how to format bibliography cards your library. Your library can provide you with style manuals that will show you how to prepare bibliography cards for various sources of information.

Step 5 – Prepare an Outline

Preparing an outline before writing your research paper will help you organize information in a logical sequence. Write an outline by organizing your notes (from your note cards) into topics, supporting topics and details. For example, if your writing your research paper on horses then your outline might appear as follows:

I. Horses (topic)
  A. Types of Horses (subtopic)
    1. Working Horses (detail)
    a. Stock Horses (subdetail)

Step 6 – Prepare a Rough Draft

A rough draft is a preliminary draft of your research paper. This is not the copy you hand in to your teacher. Using your note cards and outline write a rough draft of your research paper. In your rough draft include footnotes to give credit to the sources of the information included in your paper.

Step 7 – Write Your Final Paper

Revise your rough draft and make any improvement or modifications required to make sure that the topics covered and ideas expressed in paper are clear and concise. Also review your paper for spelling and grammatical errors.

Step 8 – Create a Bibliography

A bibliography is a list of all the sources you used to gather information for your paper. You should list your sources in alphabetical order. Refer to your bibliography cards to get the information require to prepare your bibliography.

Step 9 – Create Title Page

The title page includes the title of your paper, your name, and the due date of the paper in that order. The title page should be attached to the very front of your research paper.

Step 10 – Create a Table of Contents

The table of contents lists the main topics and subtopics of your paper as well as the corresponding page number for each. Items in the table of content should be ordered by page number.

Step 11 – Final Review

Before your turn your paper into your teacher review it one more time to make sure you didn’t miss anything. Check your paper to make sure you included the following:

  • Title page
  • Table of contents
  • Footnotes for quotations
  • Footnotes for major information sources
  • Page numbers for each page
  • Bibliography

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