Step 1: Topic Selection & Research A)

Step 1:
Topic Selection & Research
A) Topic Selection:
a. Choose a topic from the list provide or one of your own (verified). Consider what you find
interesting already or what you might find interesting. Remember research is about
exploration and discovering your interest level.
b. Your topic must be teacher approved. A maximum of two students per topic.
B) Develop a focused research question:
a. Be clear & specific as you will try to find the answer through secondary research:
Poor Question
What is the effect of the
What do you think about
violence in schools?
Changing male & female
What’s wrong with the question?
• Effect on whom?
• What type of media (too
broad be specific like t.v.)
• Question is seeking
individual opinions not facts
discovered through research
• Question needs to be useful
for both secondary &
primary research
• Like in Jeopardy: your
answer should be in the form
of a question
A better research question
What is the effect of television
on children?
What causes violence in
How have male & female roles in
the family changed over the last
50 years
C) Secondary Research:
a. Find Resources that are relevant to your topic: 4-6 sources
b. Use library time effectively to create a search strategy for resources and to locate different
types of resources (only valid sources! No Wikipedia- only journals, magazines,
newspapers, documentaries)
D) Write Research Notes:
a. Use one piece of paper for each new source and record the bibliographical information (in APA
format: see example) at the top of the page
b. Record page numbers in the column on the left hand side (see example)
c. Remember:
i. stay focused on your question and specifics
ii. research notes must be in your own words or in quotation marks if a direct quote (needs
page number)
iii. research notes must be detailed but in point form
E) You will need at least:
a. 4-6 pages of research notes
b. 4-6 sources used
c. 2 different types of sources