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Research class


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Overview of what you need to know to start a research paper. Questions to ask your teacher.

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Research class

  1. 1. Let’s Write a Research PaperGetting started: Step 1, makesure you understand whatthe topic is. (more coming)
  2. 2. What to ask your teacher.1. What format should this be done in? It could be MLA, APA, Turabian, known as Chicago Manual.2. How long should it be? Does that include the outline and Works Cited page?3. Does your teacher expect to approve the topic and/or thesis statement in advance?4. Does the teacher want an outline? Does the teacher want to see your note cards? 5. Will the teacher want to see your outline or rough draft. 
  3. 3. Cont-- questions1. Does the teacher want a cover? Some may not want plastic covers.2. What information does the teacher want on the cover page?3. Will the teacher expect all research turned in with the paper?4. Does the teacher want a Works Cited (only the sources used in the paper) or a Bibliography (everything you looked at).5. Is this an informative or a persuasive paper?6. May you uses any sources (encyclopedias, magazines, Internet, etc.). How many should you use and are there any restrictions?7. Ask your questions now because excuses arent accepted later.
  4. 4. Basic Guidelines for a Research Paper.1. Plan on spending about 60% of your time planning, researching, and preparing the first draft.2. It must be typed unless your teacher states otherwise. Even then, statistics point to higher grades for typed papers.3. Use 10 or 12 point type and a standard font such as Arial or Times New Roman.4. Type on only one side of the page and double space all text.5. Use parenthetical in-text documentation. 
  5. 5. Guidelines-cont1. When you look at any possible source material, always copy down the bibliographical information (See Works Cited). 2. Even if you use note cards, it helps to photo copy pages you might use. 3. You must give credit to both exact quotes and paraphrases.4. Unless otherwise stated the margins are to be 1 inch all around.5. TCC offers special writing classes all semester-  current schedule.
  6. 6. Ima Student Class and SectionYour TeacherDate the paper is due How to Write a Research Paper One must double space and indent 5 spaceswhen one begins a paragraph. However, for the sake ofspace this will be single spaced. As stated earlier the writerwill use the standard one inch margins all the way around.This is normally the default setting if using a wordprocessing machine or computer. Use left justification forthe margins. If one needs a topic, one may go to the TCChandouts- Research Paper Topics or visit the TCCLearning Resource Center for ideas. Unless the teacherspecifies otherwise, this is to be written in third person (he,she, they). This is called a research paper because the writers mustdo research and include it in their paper. One must include
  7. 7. Last Name 2a combination of direct quotes, paraphrases, combinationnotes, and your own conclusions. In a direct quote the writerwill use the authors exact words and place quotation marks("quote") around it. It will be followed by the authors last nameand the page number in parenthesis. In a paraphrase, thewhole idea in the writers own words. With a combination note,one uses some of ones own words and an direct quote. Thewriters own conclusions are the ideas that come to the writersas contemplate the research. In the event of a long quote,more than 4 lines, the writer must set it off by indenting 10spaces. This will not need quotation marks. Laughter is also an elixir for the mind. Testsadministered by Swedish psychologist Lars Ljungdahl beforeand after humor therapy reveal a reduction of stressand depression and a heightened sense of mental well beingand creativity. More and more we are discovering that it onlyhurts when we dont laugh. (Lederer 10)
  8. 8. Last 3(Page 2 and all subsequent pages will have theauthors last name and the page number as a headerat 1/2 inch from the top of the paper. The actual textwill begin at the 1 inch margin.) In the event there isa quote inside your quote, use a single quote markfor the interior quote. This is a combination quotewith an interior quote. A teacher read this to herstudents, " If you subscribe to the summer WeeklyReader you will receive ten issues. One of herstudents waited all summer for a pair of tennisshoes" (Lederer 147). Please notice that there is nopunctuation inside the parenthesis, and the closingpunctuation from the sentence is placed after theparenthesis.
  9. 9. Last 4If one mentions an authors name in the text, one need onlygive the page number in the parenthesis. This is also thecase if one is continuing to quote from one author. "Shes areal Pre-Madonna" (152). In the event the quote comes froma book with 2 authors, list both in parenthesis. (Author1 andAuthor2 10). With 3 authors it will be (Author1, Author2, andAuthor3 10). Beyond 3 authors one may name them all, orname the first followed by the abbreviation for "and others"et al. (Author1 et al. 10). In the event the quote is a quotefrom another work which cant be found, one must indicatethat it was quoted from another place (qtd. in Author 10). In the event one uses an abbreviation, always spellout the name first. For example, the Modern LanguageAssociation (MLA) is the source of this information. In theevent one doesnt wish to use a whole quote, one may usean ellipsis (...) to indicate that text is missing. For example:"... and the quote" or "The ... quote" or "The quote ..."
  10. 10. Last 5Should the writer need to to offer an explanationabout the quote or extra details, this may be done byplacing the explanation in square brackets [ ]. If yousee [sic] it means there is an error made by theoriginal author—colour[sic]. When the writer feels sure that he/she has proventhe point of the thesis, the writer will prepare theconclusion. This section will sum up all that has beenwritten without introducing any new topics.Like any project make sure that you allow enoughtime. Prepare a schedule. It is a simple process ifyou take it in steps and allow enough time. To quotefrom Murphys Law: "If anything can go wrong, it will."This is never more true than when you leave aproject to the last minute. Good Luck.
  11. 11. Last 6This is a list of all the works that you have included inyour paper. It will be listed in alphabetical order byauthor. In the event that no author is given, use the titleof the work and place it in alphabetical order betweenthe authors. Continue the page numbering with yourname and the page number in the header. The title,Works Cited, is at the 1 inch margin and just the firstletters are capitalized. The first line of the entry willbegin at the 1 inch margin with the second andsubsequent lines of the entry being indented 5 spaces.Continue to double space your work. Make sure youplace the punctuation exactly as you see it here. Thepublishers name may be abbreviated-- see your textor MLA Home page. When you give the full date, itshould be given as day month year (16 May 1978). Insome cases your instructor may want you to list everysource you looked at regardless of whether you used itor not. This is called a Bibliography. This is intended to
  12. 12. LAST 7be a basic instruction if you need more detail visit TCCWriting Center- Handouts- MLA Parenthetical In-TextDocumentation Guidelines or go directly to the MLAHome page Works Cited(Books 1 author. Last, First.  Title of the Book in Italics/or underlined if  you cant print in italics.  City ofPublication: Publishers Name, year published.)Lederer, Richard. More Anguished English. New York: Delacorte Press, 1993.
  13. 13. Books 1 author.  Last, First.  Title of the Book in Italics/or underlined if you cant print in italics.  City of Publication: Publishers Name, year published.Lederer, Richard. More Anguished English. New York: Delacorte Press,1993.2 Books by the same author- use the form above for the first entry-the second entry follows this sample.---.  Title.  City: Publisher, year.Books 2 or 3 authorsLast1, First, and First Last2. Title.  City: Publisher, year.Last1, First, First Last2 and First Last3. Title.  City: Publisher, year.Books 4 or more authorsLast1, First., et al. Title.  City: Publisher, year.Book with an editor. Last, First, ed. Title.  City: Publisher, year.Magazines, periodicals, journals or newspapers.  Last, First. "Title of the Article in quotes." Title of the Magazine in italics or underlined. Volume or Issue Number (Year) OR full date: Starting page-ending page (for newspapers include the section letter with the pagenumber). Treat articles with no author just as you treated the book with noauthor.
  14. 14. Government Publications.Last, First (if given) OR the State OR United StatesDepartment or Committee. City whereit is printed like--Washington, D.C.: the agency preparing it like--GPO(Government Printing Office)/ State Dept. of Education,year.E-mail  Last, First. E-mail to the author. full date.Listserv or Usenet, bulletin board, or discussion group.Last, First. "The title in quotes." full date of the posting. OnlinePosting (type those words). Name of the group- may includethe subject. Your source (Like- Usenet).Date you took it off-line. The electronic address thoughoptional is important. Ask your instructor his/her preference.
  15. 15. Periodical CD-ROM with a print versionLast, First. "Title." Print Source full date, section and pagenumbers if given. Title of the CD-Rom Name of thedistributor or vendor. Full date of electronic publication.CD-Rom or other source with no print edition.Last, First. Title of the article.  Title of the CD-Rom.  Themedium- CD-Rom, magnetic tape, or diskette. Place ofPublication: Publisher, year of publication.An Online source with a print version.Last, First. "Title of Work." Name of the Print Source (Magazine).  Full date, pages and section. Name of the Online Source. Name of the Online service. Date you foundthis online. Optionally- electronic address.An Online source without a print version.Last, First. "Title." Date written. Name of Source. Onlinesource. Date you found this online. Optionally-electronicaddress.A movie or video.  Title of the Work. Dir. directors names.Perf. performers names (only main ones). Name of thestudio/distributor, year.Television or radio. "Title of the Episode." Name of the show. Network. Local station, local city. Full date.
  16. 16. Preparing the Formal Outline Page This is different fromthe working outline which you used to begin organizing yourpaper. This is an outline which shows how your paper isactually organized. You may find that this is an excellent wayof conducting a final edit of your paper since you cancompare it with the original working outline and verify that youhave adequate detail. This is a topic outline and usesphrases or words after the thesis statement but nosentences. Unless your instructor gives other instructions usethe following format. As you can see, as you indent each levelof information, it goes in another 5 spaces. Each levelrequires that you have 2 levels of detail- 1 must have a 2although a 3 does not have to have a 4.
  17. 17. Ima Student Professor I.M. WiseClass and section numbersApril 24, 1998 - Date submitted or due date. OutlineThesis Statement: Yes, you do type the words thesisstatement andunderline it. This is presented as a single sentence and mustmatchthe thesis statement found in the papers introduction. This is astatement of your plan for your paper. It will include theresearch topic and your assertion-- your focus.I. Introduction A. Supporting Detail 1. Sub-detail a. Detail about the sub detail (1.) (2.) (a.) (b.) b. 2. B.II.
  18. 18. Student iiIII. If you go to a second page, you must have your last name in the upper right hand corner and use lower case Roman numerals (ii).
  19. 19. Preparing a Works Cited PageBonnie Startt Spring 2002Using the following information, prepare a sample works citedpage using MLA format. Please note that you do not need touse everything given.1. The Man Who Mistook his Wife for a Hat and other ClinicalTales. Oliver Sacks. New York. Summit Books. “The AutistArtist.” No year of publication listed. Pages 204 through 223.2. Barbara Tuckman. Practicing History. Alfred A. Knopf, Inc.Copyright 1936, 1959, 1966, 1974, 1981. Introduction copyright1981. New York.3. CD-ROM. CD Plus. Jan. 1991. “Responsible Weight Loss inNew Jersey.” New Jersey Medicine 87(1990): M.A. Kirchner, etal. Pages 901-04. Medline.4. “Beware Liquid Diets.” Healthtouch Aug. 1996: Available HarrietCane. N. page. Online. Internet. 4 Mar. 1997.
  20. 20. 5. Double Belonging, Interchurch Families and Christian Unity.George Kilcourse. Paulist Press. New York, NY. Mahwah,N.J.1992 .6. Jennifer Siebel Trainor and Amanda Godley. CollegeComposition and Communication. The Journal of theConference on College Composition and Communication andthe National Council of Teachers of English Volume 50 Number2 December 1998 “After Wyoming.” 1111 W. Kenyon Rd,Urbana, Illinois 61801-1096 pp 153-1827. Black, Craig Summers. Volume 76 Number 11 November1998 “A Bloom in Every Room, Indoor Plants that Flower withEase.” Better Homes and Gardens pages 181-188.8. The New Encyclopedia Britannica: Macropedia. Herman F.Marks. 15th Edition 1991 “Polymers.9. Time. 101. October 11, 1976. “The Right to Die.”10. An interview with your English teacher. At school Feb. 26,1999. Taped for posterity.