Do conduct a sufficient amount of research. Don’t make the mistake of looking over five sources for twenty page paper. And don’t overdo it by using ten sources for a three-page paper. Make sure that the research conducted fits in with the paper requirement.
Do organize as you go. Don’t make the mistake of writing your custom research paper without any thought of its direction. Organize your sources into background information, supporting arguments and opposing argument. That way your paper will follow a logical path.
Do write a strong thesis statement that will be able to carry the supporting arguments. A thesis statement should be broad enough to cover the supporting arguments but narrow enough to bring focus to the paper.
Do follow paper instruction. Many students will make the mistake of not following their professor’s (Supervisors) instruction. Most professors will list the paper length, the number of required sources and the format the bibliography. Follow their instruction precisely.
Do validate your opinions. Unless specifically instructed, do not leave your opinions unsupported by research. Writing a research paper shows that you know exactly how to substantiate your claims. Prove it to the teacher.
Don’t add new points in the conclusion. Remember, the conclusion is a wrap up. You are acting as a guide and the reader should not be confused by a new point when what is expected is a wrap up.
Don’t forget to proof read your paper. A good paper can be detrimentally affected by poor spelling and grammar. Your brilliant ideas are wasted if the teacher has a hard time reading it. Your teacher will end up feeling frustrated by spelling errors and take his/her frustration out on your grade.
Don’t plagiarize (use illegally). This mistake can be deadly. Remember always cite your sources both in text and in the bibliography. Most style manuals (such as APA, MLA and CMS) will give you exact instructions on how to cite sources and write up the bibliography or works cited page.
Read one or two materials on report writing to boost your existing knowledge on report/research writing.
The last word of advice is to visit your supervisor regularly – during office hours. It is also the perfect time to voice out questions or concerns that you may have about the paper. In addition, your supervisor will be more than happy to recommend relevant information sources to aid your research.
They hold wealth of information in their field of study and are glad to share it with you-If you have the time to listen. These leads can help cut research time and give you confidence that you are headed in the right direction.
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