Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
As you read through this chapter, you will learn how to create the research paper
shown in Figure 2–1 on the previous page by performing these general tasks:
Change the document settings.
Type the research paper.
Save the research paper.
Create an alphabetical list of sources.
Proof and revise the research paper.
Print the research paper.
General Project Guidelines
When creating a Word document, the actions you perform and decisions you make will
affect the appearance and characteristics of the i nished document. As you create a
research paper, such as the project shown in Figure 2–1, you should follow these general
1. Select a topic. Spend time brainstorming ideas for a topic. Choose one you i nd
interesting. For shorter papers, narrow the scope of the topic; for longer papers, broaden
the scope. Identify a tentative thesis statement, which is a sentence describing the paper’s
subject matter.
2. Research the topic and take notes. Gather credible, relevant information about the
topic that supports the thesis statement. Sources of research include books, magazines,
newspapers, and the Internet. As you record facts and ideas, list details about the
source: title, author, place of publication, publisher, date of publication, etc. When
taking notes, be careful not to plagiarize . That is, do not use someone else’s work and
claim it to be your own. If you copy information directly, place it in quotation marks
and identify its source.
3. Organize your ideas. Classify your notes into related concepts. Make an outline from the
categories of notes. In the outline, identify all main ideas and supporting details.
4. Write the i rst draft, referencing sources. From the outline, compose the paper.
Every research paper should include an introduction containing the thesis statement,
supporting details, and a conclusion. Follow the guidelines identii ed in the required
documentation style. Reference all sources of information.
5. Create the list of sources. Using the formats specii ed in the required documentation style,
completely list all sources referenced in the body of the research paper in alphabetical
6. Proofread and revise the paper. If possible, proofread the paper with a fresh set of eyes,
that is, at least one to two days after completing the i rst draft. Proofreading involves
reading the paper with the intent of identifying errors (spelling, grammar, etc.) and
looking for ways to improve the paper (wording, transitions, l ow, etc.). Try reading the
paper out loud, which helps to identify unclear or awkward wording. Ask someone else
to proofread the paper and give you suggestions for improvements.
When necessary, more specii c details concerning the above guidelines are presented at
appropriate points in the chapter. The chapter also will identify the actions performed and
decisions made regarding these guidelines during the creation of the research paper shown
in Figure 2–1.
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