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9 — Writing and Editing a Research Paper

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we are almost done writing our research papers you’ve made your thesis you’ve written an outline and now it’s time for you to actually go ahead and write your paper and then edit it like we’ve talked about in class when you’re writing your paper it’s really important for you to follow your outline there’s a reason why you created the outline the way that you did you had to first decide how many paragraphs you were going to have and how you’re going to separate your thesis into different parts then you wrote a sentence to represent each one of those parts those sentences are going to be the first sentences of every one of your paragraphs that’s why those are really important then you also defined what kinds of facts you’re going to use different opinions you were going to try to explain those paragraphs follow your outline that is the best way for you to write your paper also you’ll need to use your sources you need to use sources in every single paragraph it can’t just be from your head um it should be your ideas but then your sources are used to backup your ideas so you’re going to be taking sentences from your sources and using them as quotes you can use facts and statistics but pretty much every single point that you’re making you need to back up with something from a source I always start writing my essays by writing the middle paragraphs first I write the introduction lat next and on the conclusion last the reason why I do that is because it’s difficult to introduce an essay that isn’t written yet and so I always start with why feels comfortable write that paragraph first then I go back into the introduction once I have an essay and then I conclude it at the end I found that that makes my papers stronger and a lot of my students say it works for them as well that’s what I’d recommend to you write those metal paragraphs first you got lined then it introduced them and then conclude as you’re writing you’re going to want to use transition sentences it’s important that your essay flows really really nicely you’re not just shouting at people with a bullhorn you’re actually trying to give a coherent argument not hit them over the head with it some words that are really good for that are words like ever likewise subsequently which means as a result of finally furthermore those kinds of words you also want to transition every sentence between paragraphs and then as you’re going from one topic to another in a paragraph let me know transition sentence there as well additionally you need to develop and support every point you’re trying to make that’s going to include explaining every one of your ideas and then giving examples explanations are in your words examples come from your sources it’s important to have both in every single paragraph now as you’re using your sources you need to cite them at the end of every sentence we call those parenthetical citations that just means they’re in parentheses so whenever you use a fact or quote in any sentence whether or not it’s direct words from one of your sources at the end of that sentence you need to put in parentheses the last name of the author and the page number that fact or quote or statistic appeared on so here’s an example of where there’s a quote that’s incorporated with a sentence part of the trouble however is that the mere presence of a technology-rich environment is not sufficient for enhanced teaching and learning or added value and then there’s the author’s name and the page number so this particular quote has been incorporated into the sentence you don’t have to do it that way but it’s one way to make your sentence is stronger now if there’s no author you’re just going to use the title of the source if it’s very very long go ahead and shorten it enough for the audience to know which source are talking about and then you need to create a bibliography entry for every source used in your paper that’s going to go at the very very end there are actually some very specific requirements for what you need to include in your bibliography and how you’re supposed to format it at the end of this video you’re going to do an exercise that’s going to help you learn what that should look like there are a lot more tips for using sources in your workbook make sure that you read them and don’t just skip over them just because you watch this video the last thing to talk about is introductions and conclusions I mentioned earlier that you should write them last a couple things you should include for the introduction you want to provide some background this is a really good place to put some really general information that you wanted to put other parts in your essay but didn’t quite fit with your thesis you can states all that information first and then you’ll end with the thesis always at the end of that first paragraph it’s going to be your last sentence of the first paragraph you want your introduction to be somewhere between seven and ten sentences and then the conclusion at the end will be shorter it’ll probably be four to five sentences you want to review your major points and then restate your thesis in different words don’t just use the same words um you want to mix them up a little bit this is a great place to use interesting facts or statistics for the skill builder you’re actually going to use some other websites here are some of the websites you’re going to use you’ll be able to link to them directly from my website where you’re watching this video so you can find them there what you’re going to do on pages 16 to 17 of your workbook is make a draft bibliography the final bibliography is going to have to be typed this is for you to practice so the first two websites there the one from Purdue and the second from Washington are going to help you make your rib lee ography then there’s a game for you to practice different citation styles I recommend that you play that game I might help you a little bit to understand how citations fit together good luck with your papers I’m looking forward to reading them

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