You're sitting at your desk in a classroom or in an airless cubicle, wondering how many minutes are left in a seemingly endless day, when suddenly your teacher or supervisor lowers the boom: She wants a research paper, complete with footnotes and a list of sources. She wants accuracy, originality, and good grammar. And gasp! - she wants ten pages! You may be 16 years old or 60 years old, but your reaction is the same: Help! Take heart. A research paper may seem daunting, but it's a far-from-impossible project to accomplish. Turning research into writing is actually quite easy, as long as you follow a few proven techniques. And that's where "Research Papers For Dummies" steps in to help. In this easy-to-understand guide, you find out how to search for information using both traditional printed sources and the electronic treasure troves of the Internet. You also discover how to take all those bits of information, discarding the irrelevant ones, and put them into a form that illustrates your point with clarity and originality.
Here's just a sampling of the topics you'll find in "Research Papers For Dummies": Types of research papers, from business reports to dissertations; The basic ingredients of a paper: Introduction, body, conclusion, footnotes, and bibliography; Note-taking methods while doing research; Avoiding plagiarism and other research paper pitfalls; Defining your thesis statement and choosing a structure for your paper; Supporting your argument and drawing an insightful conclusion; Revising and polishing your prose; and Top Ten lists on the best ways to begin your research online and in print. "Research Papers For Dummies" also includes an appendix that's full of research paper ideas if you're stuck. If you're tasked with writing a research paper, chances are you already have a lot of demands on your time. You don't need another huge pile of papers to read. This book can actually save you time in the long run, because it gives you the easiest, fastest, and most successful methods for completing your paper.
Geraldine Woods is the author of more than 40 books, including the popular English Grammar For Dummies. She has taught high school and middle school English for over 25 years.
Introduction. Part I: Figuring Out What You Are Writing and How to Write It. Chapter 1: Running a Marathon in Sandals, or Writing a Research Paper. Chapter 2: Getting on the Right Track: Tips for Saving Time and Effort. Chapter 3: What Am I Writing About? Part II: Finding Everything about Anything: Research. Chapter 4: Casting a Wide Net: Choosing Sources for Your Paper. Chapter 5: Surfing Safari: Researching Online. Chapter 6: Working from Traditional Sources. Chapter 7: Real Live People: Interviewing Techniques. Part III: Collecting Pearls of Wisdom: How to Take Notes. Chapter 8: One Size Does Not Fit All: Note--Taking Methods. Chapter 9: Note Taking: What to Write, What to Skip. Chapter 10: Staying on the Right Side of the Law. Part IV: More Than Sharpening Pencils: Preparing to Write. Chapter 11: Forming a Thesis Statement. Chapter 12: Choosing a Structure for Your Paper. Chapter 13: Organizing the Information: Subtopics. Chapter 14: The Battle Plan: Constructing an Outline. Part V: Turn on the Computer, Fill the Fountain Pen: It's Time to Write. Chapter 15: Allow Me to Introduce Myself: Writing an Effective Introduction. Chapter 16: The Body of Evidence. Chapter 17: And in Conclusion. Chapter 18: The Picky Stuff: Citing Sources. Chapter 19: It's a Breeze: The Final Draft. Chapter 20: Solving Special Problems. Part VI: The Part of Tens. Chapter 21: The Ten Best Ways to Start Electronic Research. Chapter 22: The Ten Best Ways to Start Traditional Research. Appendix. Index.