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Finding A Topic For A Research Paper: Tips And Tricks

At some point in your academic schooling, you will be asked to write a research paper. So, how does one go about picking a topic that is just right for them? Read on, and you just might come up with a few good ideas of your own.

When it comes to choosing a topic, you might often be faced with two different perspectives.

  • Your teacher or instructor furnishes you with a list of subjects or theories to which you are restricted.
  • Your teacher or instructor just dispenses out an assignment program that covers the basic strategy of the paper, but the topic you choose is completely up to you.

In either case, the very first thing you need to do when asked to create a research paper is to perceive the assignment fully. Not doing so, will often lead you astray, resulting in confusion, wasted time and effort, and lots of frustration. Never be apprehensive about approaching your instructor with any questions you might have or any doubts you need to clear up. Once you wholly understand the task at hand, you will be able to tweak your argument as well as your audience.

Next, based on the scope of your assignment, it is quite possible that you may spend a long time exploring materials; days, weeks, even months. This amount of time is quite normal and, in fact, a serious analyst should plan for a decent amount of time, irrespective of how big or small the scope is. You may feel that 10 to 12 articles may be good, but go ahead and probe and collect as many articles or cases you can from different sources.

Understand that you can never have too much material. It not only provides you with a larger selection to work with but will also help you realize domains that you are not comfortable with and should avoid. For example, when you cook a meal, it is hard to do so with 2 to 3 ingredients. But if you have access to 40 ingredients, you can pick or reject them at will.

Brainstorming! This method often produces rewarding results. Every time an idea pops in your mind, jot it down on paper, no matter how inconsequential. Physically noting down your train of thoughts is one way to check for consistencies in your choice of topics.

Key Points.

  • Fully perceive/understand the assignment.
  • Start running diverse options through your head as soon as you receive your assignment.
  • Do not procrastinate.
  • Apportion adequate time for groundwork.
  • Gather plenty of materials from as many different sources as you can.
  • Jot down your thoughts on paper, lest you forget later.

Remember, the very first topic that you came up with may not be the one you eventually will end up writing, and this is quite natural while conducting any research. Keep your mind open to changes and let your ongoing discoveries direct you towards your goal.

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