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The Curious Researcher

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Presentation on theme: "The Curious Researcher"— Presentation transcript:

1 The Curious Researcher
Chapter 1

2 The Importance of Getting Curious
Choose a topic you are curious about This will help to make your essay a success If you don’t like what you’re writing about, this will most likely show through into your essay Curiosity is a driving force behind your research paper Choose your research topic carefully If you have already chosen a topic, and you find yourself losing interest, try approaching it from a different angle. Think Personal Experience “What have I seen or experienced that raises questions that research can help answer?”

3 Interest Inventory Make a List: Places Trends Things Technologies
People Controversies History Jobs Habits Hobbies

4 Interest Inventory Brainstorm different words or phrases that come to mind when you think about the different categories Write your ideas under each column Review your lists Look for a single item in any column that seems promising Ask: Is this something that raises questions that research can help answer? Are they potentially interesting questions? Does this item get at something I’ve always wondered about?

5 Meet Amanda Under her Trends column, Amanda wrote “White Teeth”
Some questions she developed were: Are tooth whiteners safe? What makes teeth turn brown? Can teeth get too white? From these questions, Amanda was able to come up with a tentative topic and research question.

6 Other Ways to Find a Topic
For Complete List pg. 28 – 29 Surf the Net Search a research database Pay attention to what you’ve read recently Consider practical topics Think about issues, ideas, or materials you’ve encountered in other classes Collaborate

7 What Makes a Question “Researchable”?
It’s not too big or too small It focuses on some aspect of a topic about which something has been said It interests the researcher Some people have a stake in the answer It implies an approach or various means of answering it It raises more questions. The answer might not be simple.

8 Organization Starting research with a thesis or main point before starting research is efficient It sets you on a steady path to finding the information you will need to find to use as support in your paper ON THE OTHER HAND Beginning with broad questions also has its benefits By researching without knowing your thesis statement can help you discover different ideas Research topics are fluid and can be dictated more by ongoing research than by the original chosen topic

9 Working Knowledge Develop a working knowledge of your topic
Working knowledge meaning a broader understanding of the range of your topic Having a working knowledge will help you become familiar with important aspects of you topic, such as: Definitions Debates Experts Context

10 Developing Working Knowledge
Search General and Subject Encyclopaedias Encyclopedia Britannica Columbia Encyclopedia Subject Encyclopaedias (list on page 36) Use the Internet Public library Try Google Scholar Go to the LIBRARY!! As you are developing your working knowledge, start compiling a bibliography!

11 Narrowing the Subject Begin your research by narrowing a general topic
If a topic is too large you will find that the information available is overwhelming You want to create a manageable topic that you can explore in detail

12 Narrowing the Subject Almost every subject you will choose to write about for this class and for this paper has been written about before Try to find a unique angle on a familiar topic Take a closer look at some aspect of a larger subject Tips to Narrow: Time – Limit the time frame of your project Place – Anchor a larger subject to a particular place Person – Use the particulars of a person to reveal generalities about a group Story – Ground a larger story in the specifics of a “smaller” one

13 Potential Topic: Global Warming
1.Time: Climate Change in the next 50 Years 2. Place: Climate Change in Canada 3. Person: Al Gore 4. Story: Climate Change and Polar Bears

14 Narrowing the Subject Cont…
If you are unsure how to specify what you’re seeking, ask yourself: “who?”, “what?”, “where?”, “when?”, “why?”, or “how?”

15 Crafting Your Research Question
Choose the type of question you want to answer: A sense-making question arises when we are searching for an explanation A hypothesis-testing question tests our assumptions about what we believe to be true A relationship-analyzing question has to do with figuring out cause and effect relationships as well as comparisons

16 Purpose for a Research Assignment
To Explore (a.k.a. Academic Inquiry) You pose the research question because you want to uncover the answer You want to write about what you believe is the best answer to the question you’ve posed Exploratory essays often begin with sense-making or relationship-analyzing questions

17 Purpose for a Research Assignment
To Argue (State a Convincing Claim) You believe you already have the answer to your research question (i.e. you have a hypothesis you want to test by looking at the evidence) When you are convinced your hypothesis is correct, you will argue your claim Your purpose is to state a central claim and make it convincing in order to influence what your readers think

18 Reading for Research The best readers are guided by purpose:
They know why they are reading something and what they hope to get from it When reading for research you should: Know what type of text you are reading Know where to look for what you need to know Gain prior knowledge of the topic you are reading about

19 Reading Rhetorically wat up? how r u doin 2day? wanna meet at the mall l8r? c u in a bit lol    vs Structural symbolic interactionism understands the creation of self and identity to occur within existing social structures (Burke) There are fundamental differences between these types of texts, and how we read them should be different too.

20 Reading Rhetorically Reading strategies: Have a working knowledge
Know your purpose Understand the article’s organization Use a highlighter Make notes in the margins Read and Reread

21 When writing your research paper, remember:
Example in Text To see an example of how to focus your paper, look at page 44 in your text When writing your research paper, remember:

22 For next week: Remember that there will be a quiz next week
Make sure that you have a copy of the handout for the Theater Review Theater Review Must contain two full pages of good writing Must contain research about the author and the play

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