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Complete, concise, and specially designed for easy access, this guide to the process of writing the research paper features a no-nonsense handbook format that helps students quickly find the information they need. The Third Edition of Handbook for College Research provides the latest information on locating and evaluating print and electronic source material as well as documenting sources in four different styles (the APA, Chicago, CBE, and updated MLA guidelines). In addition to guiding students in the stages of writing the research paper—planning, drafting, and revising, this edition includes convenient, in-text annotations with each citation, providing clear visual models of the four styles.
1. Moving from Subject to Topic: Where Research Begins 1a Choose a general subject 1b Narrow your general subject to a specific topic 1c Work with assigned subjects, when appropriate 2. Planning Thesis Statements and Stated Objectives 2a Write a working thesis statement, when appropriate 2b State your objectives, when appropriate 3. Defining Research Goals and Evaluating Sources 3a Acknowledge the goals of your research 3b Consider the kinds of sources you need 3c Consider the currentness of your sources 3d Consider the availability of your sources 4. Learning about Your Library 4a Locate the circulation area 4b Explore the reference area 4c Familiarize yourself with the catalog area 4d Explore the stacks 4e Familiarize yourself with the current periodicals area 4f Locate the government documents area 4g Explore the microform area 4h Find the media area 4i Browse in the new-book area 4j Find the preshelving areas 4k Locate the library's computer clusters 4l Search out the special collections 4m Locate any special libraries 4n Find the interlibrary loan department 4o Locate the reserve area 4p Find the photocopy areas 4q Locate the group study rooms 5. Learning to Use Online Catalogs and Periodical Databases 5a Remember what all online catalogs have in common 5b Learn to locate and interpret information on search screens 5c Consider the benefits of online periodical databases 5d Consider what all comprehensive periodical databases have in common 5e Learn to locate and interpret information on search screens 6. Conducting Field Research and Using Audiovisual Sources 6a Consider experts from radio and television 6b Consider local experts 6c Consider responses from informed nonspecialists 6d Prepare thoroughly for interviews 6e Plan questionnaires and surveys carefully 6f Consider audiovisual sources 7. Using the Internet and Other Electronic Sources 7a Explore a variety of Internet search engines 7b Learn to interpret Internet search results 7c Consider the kinds of Internet sources available 7d Learn how to find information on home pages 7e Use Web sites judiciously 7f Consider discussion (or interest) groups 7g Consider CD-ROM sources 7h Be aware of special concerns about using electronic sources 8. Evaluating Sources and Writing a Research Proposal 8a Compile a preliminary list of sources 8b Evaluate print sources 8c Evaluate audiovisual sources 8d Evaluate Internet sources 8e Evaluate your combinations of sources 8f Prepare a research proposal 9. Thinking Critically 9a Think critically, analyzing alternative methods of development 9b Analyze your audience 9c Evaluate evidence 9d Avoid logical fallacies 10. Taking Notes from Sources 10a Consider alternative techniques for taking notes 10b Take complete, consistent, accurate notes 10c Take different kinds of notes, depending on the material 10d Consider the issues of common knowledge 10e Recognize the seriousness of plagiarism 11. Planning the Paper 11a Review your research 11b Revise the working thesis statement or objective 11c Develop an informal outline 11d Group your notes to follow your outline 11e Prepare a formal outline, when needed 12. Writing the Draft of the Paper 12a Remember general strategies for drafting papers 12b Consider strategies that apply principally to drafting research papers 12c Incorporate notes in the paper 12d Use parenthetical notes to document research 12e Plan your title and your introductory and concluding paragraphs 13. Revising the Paper 13a Reconsider content 13b Rework style 13c Eliminate technical errors 13d Solicit responses from other readers 14. Using MLA Style When Appropriate 14a Prepare complete citations for the works-cited page 14b Follow the appropriate citation forms for books and other separately published material 14c Follow the appropriate citation forms for periodicals 14d Follow the appropriate citation forms for audiovisual sources 14e Follow the appropriate citation forms for the Internet and other electronic sources 14f When appropriate, follow MLA guidelines to prepare your manuscript 15. Using APA Style When Appropriate 15a Recognize the distinct documentation patterns of APA style 15b Consider patterns for in-text citations 15c Prepare complete entries for the reference list 15d Follow the appropriate reference-list entry forms for periodicals 15e Follow the appropriate reference-list entry forms for books and other separately published materials 15f Follow the appropriate reference-list entry forms for audiovisual sources 15g Follow the appropriate reference-list entry forms for electronic sources 15h When appropriate, follow APA guidelines to prepare your manuscript 16. Using Chicago Style When Appropriate 16a Recognize the distinct documentation patterns in Chicago style 16b Consider patterns for footnotes and endnotes 16c Follow the appropriate note forms for books and other separately published materials 16d Follow the appropriate note forms for periodicals 16e Follow the appropriate note forms for audiovisual sources 16f Follow the appropriate note forms for electronic sources 16g When required, prepare a bibliography 16h When appropriate, follow Chicago guidelines to prepare your manuscript 17. Using CBE Style When Appropriate 17a Recognize the distinct documentation patterns of CBE style 17b Consider patterns for in-text documentation 17c Complete citations for the reference page 17d Follow the appropriate citation forms for books and other separately published materials 17e Follow the appropriate citation forms for periodicals and audiovisual sources 17f When appropriate, follow CBE guidelines to prepare your manuscript Appendix A Document Design and Manuscript Preparation Basic Printing Features Visual Elements MLA Manuscript Guidelines Appendix B Abbreviations and Shortened Forms of Publishers' Names Modern Language Association (MLA) University of Chicago (Chicago) Council of Biology Editors (CBE) Appendix C Glossary of Computer Terms