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You Will Learn How to Compose A Research Paper Step One: The Basics.

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Presentation on theme: "You Will Learn How to Compose A Research Paper Step One: The Basics."— Presentation transcript:

1 You Will Learn How to Compose A Research Paper Step One: The Basics

2  Organization makes the Essay!  Half the grade of an essay is determined by the logical progression of ideas.  The traditional 5 paragraph essay outline will just about write your paper for you!  Stop fighting the Outline!

3  Introduction  Thesis Statement- what are you trying to prove? How will you argue it?  1 st idea 3 examples from the text to support this idea  2 nd idea 3 examples from the text to support this idea  3 rd idea 3 examples from the text to support this idea  Conclusion Restatement of your thesis statement

4  A primary source is first hand evidence. It was there at the time of an event. It is contemporary to the period being studied.  Examples of primary sources are: speeches, letters, songs, legislation, court decisions, journals/diaries, interviews, artifacts, autobiographies, and photographs.

5  Titles advertise how interesting and well written your paper is.  Animal Rights  Hamburgers are Evil: Animal Rights Should be Better  The Burden of the Beast: The Struggle for Regulation of Animal Rights in the United States. Which would you read?


7 To Clearly State to the Reader:  The Topic  The Side of the Argument You are Taking  The thesis statement of an essay HAS to be the last sentence of your first paragraph and include 3 supporting details to support your paper’s contention or intent.

8  Ideally you would have a minimum of 3 direct quotes per paragraph to solidly ground your essay in research.  Without referencing creditable sources throughout your work your reader simply will not believe your argument.

9  Introduce ALL quotations in the beginning of the sentence that precedes the quotation.  Place author's last name and page number in parentheses. Example:  His biographer Stross states, “Thomas Alva Edison is the patron saint of electric light, electric power, and music-on-demand, the grandfather of the Wired World, and the great-grandfather of iPod Nation. He was the person who flipped the switch” (Stross 27).

10  When you paraphrase or summarize information from the text or wish to attribute factual information to a particular source, include the parenthetical citation in the sentence where you conclude the paraphrase, summary, or information. This is usually the last sentence in the paragraph. Example:  O'Brien claims that the mind is the greatest unexplored area in the world (15).

11 Research Paper Topic: The Legalization of Marijuana Original Thesis Statement: "Since this costs our people and country so much money, a law legalizing marijuana would dramatically affect our nation as a whole; enforcing marijuana prohibition costs taxpayers over $10 billion a year." Thesis Statement After 3rd Editing: “Enforcing marijuana prohibition costs American taxpayers over $10 billion a year; a law legalizing marijuana and the subsequent taxation of the controlled substance would have a dramatic effect on the nation’s economy."

12  “Most of Charles Dickens writing takes place in Victorian England, but his timeless message is universal.”  Question asked by the teacher as she reads and grades your work: Most? When else did his writings take place? In the future? In NJ?

13  During Charles Dickens’ time murder was illegal, not like today.  Q. Wait- is murder legal now? Why didn’t anybody tell me?  “There are many small events in the novel that have a slightly different theme than the theme of the whole book, but follow the same topic; the poorer of England.”  Q. Which novel? What theme? Why is there a semi colon? Who exactly are the “poorer of England” and who are they poorer than?

14  “As the poorer get poorer the richer get richer.”  Q. Seriously, who are these people?  “The novel Oliver Twist was written by Charles Dickens that was about an orphan boy called Oliver Twist, whom which the book is named after.”  Q. You’re kidding me; Oliver Twist is about Oliver Twist? That’s deep man.

15 The Following are Personal Pronouns and should NEVER be used in a Formal Essay.

16 "Proponents and opponents constantly argue with the debatable subject of legalized cannabis. Proponents believe that there is enough research on marijuana to show that it can help the ill and is not harmful towards people, while opponents believe that it would ruin our economy and the youth because it is falsely shown as a healthy drug."

17 Do not use passive words like:  Would  Should  Could  Usually  Basically  Mostly  Most Likely  Pretty Much Passive words like these infer that you are unsure of the validity of your argument. Why should the reader believe you if you don’t believe yourself?

18  All formal essay writing is to be written in the present tense.  Animals had to suffer to satisfy someone’s taste bus.  Animals have had to suffer to satisfy the taste buds of the masses.

19  Do not begin a sentence with a quote. You must introduce all quotes within the sentence. Example  “To be or not to be.” ” (III.i.65)Hamlet was considering his existence.  Considering his very existence, the character of Hamlet ponders, “[t]o be or not to be” (III.i.65).

20  All punctuation belongs inside quotation marks. Incorrect:  Charles Brooks writes “the play is about reality and illusions, the illusions of memory, dream, and wish that modify our awareness of reality (Brooks 39)”.

21  Charles Brooks writes that “the play is about reality and illusions, the illusions of memory, dream, and wish that modify our awareness of reality” (Brooks 39).

22  Do me a favor- unless your paper is handwritten- don’t underline anything.  In the days of typewriters the titles of books were underlined. Now the titles of books can be put in italics.  The title of a long text, like a book, novel or epic poem is in italics. The title of a short text like a short story, poem or article is in “quotation marks.”

23  I challenge you to never say or type the word “THAT”  The same goes for the word “This”  Why do English Teachers hate the word “That?”  Because we do.

24 Example:  With: "The company says that it believes stocks will fall." Without: "The company says it believes stocks will fall."  When a sentence has a main clause and a subordinate clause you don't have to use the word "that." You can say, "The company says it believes stocks will fall."

25 Works Cited Dyer, Wayne W. The Power of Intention: Learning to Co-Create Your World Your Way. Carlsbad: Hay House, 2004. Heller, Joseph. Catch 22. New York: Simon & Schuster; Reprint edition, 1996. O‘ Reilley, Mary Rose. The Barn at the End of the World: The Apprenticeship of a Quaker Buddhist Shepherd. Minneapolis: Milkweed Editions, 2000.

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