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Research Outlines. Before you start your Research Outline… NOTE: These are outlines that will help you with your research—these are NOT outlines of your.

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Presentation on theme: "Research Outlines. Before you start your Research Outline… NOTE: These are outlines that will help you with your research—these are NOT outlines of your."— Presentation transcript:

1 Research Outlines

2 Before you start your Research Outline… NOTE: These are outlines that will help you with your research—these are NOT outlines of your actual thesis or proposal. Write your overarching research question—the question you think you want to answer in your thesis. Make a list of subtopics; these are issues related to your overall research question. For instance, if your research question is, “How did welfare reform affect the poverty rate in the 1990s?”, some subtopics would include: the history of welfare reform and the definition of the poverty rate. Look at your list of subtopics and turn them into questions. These should be smaller questions that you need to answer in order to answer your overarching research question. So, using the example above, your subtopic questions might be: “What policies were reformed in the 1990s?” “How does the U.S. define poverty?

3 Outlines 1. Write your overarching research question. 2. Below it, list all of the smaller subquestions that you will need to answer in order to answer your big research question (HINT: Ideally, these are the subtopic questions that you just wrote!). 3. Put them in some kind of order that makes sense to you—by historical chronology, by topic, basic to complicated, publication date of source, etc. 4. Now, look at your article analyses. Which articles address which of the subquestions in your list? Underneath each question, put the citation of each article that addresses that question, however briefly. You will list most citations more than once, because they probably address more than one of your questions. 5. Now, look at your list. Which subquestions have few or no citations listed underneath them? Focus your research on those questions for the next few weeks!

4 How to use your Outlines Once you’ve done this, your goal is to see which subtopic questions have the least amount of citations beneath them. Those are the subtopics you should focus your research on now—those are the aspects of your topics that you need to know more about. When you search for articles for next week, try to find sources that discuss these “missing” aspects—the subtopics that need more research. Your advisors might be able to suggest sources on these subtopics.

5 What to do now… Complete your Research Outline (it can be a formal outline, or in bulletpoint form, or just a list—I’m not picky about the format, so just do whatever makes the most sense to you). Outlines are due by October 16 at 3 pm (hard copies only, please). Keep researching! Use your Research Outline to prioritize your research (the questions under which you listed few or no citations are the ones you should tackle now!). Article Analyses are also due on October 16. If you do not have an advisor yet and you have not already spoken to me about it, come see me!


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