When you are in college, research papers are something you are going to have to write for most of your courses. Research papers require analytical thought, preparation, and extensive research. It is not something that can be rushed or crammed into one night. I have helped many college students write their research papers and I have found that the most common mistake is where the students are getting their information from. Here are the best resources you should use in order to write the best research paper possible.
Your University’s Library Database: If you go to your university’s website, you can sign in to the library section and have access to research databases that you would otherwise not have access to. This is the beauty of being in college. You will find real and true information about what you are researching and you will know how to properly cite that information. The problem with doing your research with a simple Google search is that there is a lot of inaccurate information online. Of course, there is some really great information on there as well, but to be safe, you should use your library database for college research papers. Your professor will respect your work much more if they see that you are using resources directly from your university.
Class Notes: Your professor is giving you information because they believe that it is important. If they didn’t think that, then they wouldn’t be talking about it in class. Lectures are designed to assist you in writing these kinds of research papers, completing your homework, and understanding your textbook. When you are assigned any kind of paper, your professor wants you to use information that was given to you during class. So attend class, pay attention and take notes. They will be very helpful, especially when brainstorming for a topic for your paper.
Your Textbook: Your textbook should not be your only source of research, but you should definitely use it as a resource. A long with your class notes, this is a great place to start your research. You can kind key points, statistics, and other important information. You should be able to narrow down on what you want to do your research on and even find some great points that you want to include in your research paper. I’m not saying to read the entire book just for your paper, but reread the chapters that include the topics you think you might want to write about. If you know what you want to write about, then you can still read those chapters in the book and see if there is any information that you could use for your research paper.
The best advice I can give you is to use resources that have a great reputation. Your library database, class notes, and textbooks are guaranteed to have accurate and useful information. If you must use the internet, be careful not to get information from sites that are not creditable. Make sure you completely trust the site before you use it.