1 Nigal

Methodology Research Paper Guidelines Handout

Writing a Research Paper

Summary:

This handout provides detailed information about how to write research papers including discussing research papers as a genre, choosing topics, and finding sources.

Contributors: Jack Raymond Baker, Allen Brizee, Ashley Velázquez
Last Edited: 2018-02-14 03:36:12

The Research Paper

There will come a time in most students' careers when they are assigned a research paper. Such an assignment often creates a great deal of unneeded anxiety in the student, which may result in procrastination and a feeling of confusion and inadequacy. This anxiety frequently stems from the fact that many students are unfamiliar and inexperienced with this genre of writing. Never fear—inexperience and unfamiliarity are situations you can change through practice! Writing a research paper is an essential aspect of academics and should not be avoided on account of one's anxiety. In fact, the process of writing a research paper can be one of the more rewarding experiences one may encounter in academics. What is more, many students will continue to do research throughout their careers, which is one of the reasons this topic is so important.

Becoming an experienced researcher and writer in any field or discipline takes a great deal of practice. There are few individuals for whom this process comes naturally. Remember, even the most seasoned academic veterans have had to learn how to write a research paper at some point in their career. Therefore, with diligence, organization, practice, a willingness to learn (and to make mistakes!), and, perhaps most important of all, patience, students will find that they can achieve great things through their research and writing.

This handout will include the following sections related to the process of writing a research paper:

  • Genre- This section will provide an overview for understanding the difference between an analytical and argumentative research paper.
  • Choosing a Topic- This section will guide the student through the process of choosing topics, whether the topic be one that is assigned or one that the student chooses himself.
  • Identifying an Audience- This section will help the student understand the often times confusing topic of audience by offering some basic guidelines for the process.
  • Where Do I Begin- This section concludes the handout by offering several links to resources at Purdue, and also provides an overview of the final stages of writing a research paper.

The following humanities disciplines are included in this section:

General Humanities | Art & Art History | Film
History | Literature | Music | Philosophy


General Humanities

Print Resources

Excellent introduction to the writing of a humanities paper, this short guide covers the evaluation of library resources, research methods, argument and style. An appropriate place to begin for the first undergraduate research paper.

Very readable and useful book presenting essay writing as a set of distinct skills that can be easily learned. Also includes sections on revision and using library resources.


Return to Top

Art & Art History

Print Resources

Tenth edition of this classic guide to analyzing pictures, sculpture and architectures and how to effectively present it in writing.

Fourth edition of a very useful text for writing critically about the historical context of art -- features an appendix on style and a sample essay by Erwin Panofsky.

Online Resources


Return to Top

Film

Print Resources

Intended to take you from concept to finished screenplay, this emphasizes process and the craft of writing: character development, structure, theme.

Enduring and accessible introduction to the writing of film criticism, featuring explanations of terminology and student/professional writing samples.

Online Resources


Return to Top

History

Print Resources

Very concise and approachable introduction to historical research, with clear chapter themes including writing and citation, methods and avoiding plagiarism, as well as a useful section on historical sources.

A short and practical guide to using primary sources, creating effective arguments, and expressing them concisely in a revised and well-written history essay.

Online Resources


Return to Top

Literature

Print Resources

Metre, form, rhyme, diction, and more: a lucid description of how poems work, with every chapter ending with an important concept applied to the same poem. Also features a very substantial bibliography.

Very accessible anthology of writing guides that teaches critical thinking and writing strategies through case studies, with an emphasis on argument.

Online Resources


Return to Top

Music

Print Resources

Covering the many different schools of music criticism, this is both a beginner's guide for undergraduates new to music literacy and for more advanced musicians seeking to improve their writing skills. Also features a very useful chapter on professional contexts of music writing: program/liner notes, summaries, press releases.

While very useful as a research and writing guide, this also contains much useful information reagrding citations, musical terms and phrases, the use of illustrations and sources.


Return to Top

Philosophy

Print Resources

Recently updated to cover new technologies and sources for writers of undergraduate philosophy papers, Feinberg covers logic and language, as well as concise recommendations of style and citation.

Written for those confident in their writing but who need more guidance for a philosophy paper, this focuses on the kinds of papers one might write, as well as language and reasoning, along with useful appendices on editing and formal logic

Online Resources


Return to Top

Leave a Comment

(0 Comments)

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *