Researching Your Presentation

Chapter 8
Your Research Plan
 Successful
speeches require supporting
 Supporting
 To
information requires specific
get the right information on your topic
you need a Research Plan.
Playing the Research Game –
Research Plan
Analyze your audience – in picking a subject you must
first consider the needs and expectations of those
people who will be listening to you.
-- Ask the following questions
What do my listeners already know about my topic?
How do I capture their interest?
How formal should my language be?
What should I avoid saying that might alienate my
What can I say to change the minds of people who
might disagree with my positions?
2. Gather information – there are two ways
to begin gathering information
 Rough
Outline – if you already have
knowledge of your subject you may want
to create a rough outline so that you can
specify your research.
 Reading
– if you know very little or nothing
at all about your topic, start by gathering
information first so you can get an
understanding of your topic first
3. Analyze and Evaluate the source – you need to
determine whether the material you find is reliable.
How to determine reliability
 Look at who wrote and published the material.
 Determine
if the write is known or unknown and
what they say about him/her. (look at book reviews)
 Look
at where the information is coming from. Is it a
well known source of valid information?
 Do
you find similar information in multiple sources?
4. Analyze and Evaluate your Material – determine
whether the gathered information will contribute to
your speech.
 Be
sure that the information you gathered targets
your audience appropriately.
 Be
sure that the information connect
 Make
sure it supports your main points
Thinking Critically
World War III is about to take place. You are
responsible for selecting and saving three
books that you think would have a major
impact on future generations. One must be
a children’s book, one a book that
significantly affected your life, and one a
reference book. You have three minutes to
explain why these three books would be an
important contribution.
Using the Library
 Research
is a crucial step in writing
 You
need to supplement your personal knowledge
with solid research.
 With
all that libraries have to offer it can be difficult
to know where to begin and how to conduct a
successful search for supporting material.
 To
make it easier use and employ four shortcuts:
 Ask
 Call ahead
 Use the library system
 Print from home
Shortcuts for using research
time effectively
1. Ask questions
Make certain to take
advantage of a
reference librarian’s
They can answer your
questions and help you
locate sources, which
can save you hours of
2. Call Ahead
A public library’s
department can
usually answer your
questions over the
They may even find
facts for you
3. Use the library
libraries have
web sites that list all
the books within
their library system
4. Print from Home
 Most
 This
could help you
save time in seeing
if you book is there.
it is not ask about
interlibrary loan
Most of the web sites you
can access at the library
to search for articles can
also be accessed right
from your home.
Such sites not only allow
you to search for journal
and magazine articles,
but they also allow you
to print them.
This can save you a trip
to the library and give
you access to library
materials 24 hours a day
 If
The internet and Research
When you use the internet virtually any topic
imaginable is at your fingertips.
Because there is so much information finding
what you needs is not always easy – so use a
search engine.
A search engine is a site that allows you to
search for information based on key words,
names of persons, or titles of works.
(google, bing, ask,)
Search Engine tips
 Use
specific key words and try different
 Use Advanced Search or Search Tips
 Some engines list sites by popularity: the
site at the top is the one viewed the most
 When doing research it’s best to stick with
news sites
 Evaluate the web site
Criteria for evaluating Web Pages
Evaluation of Web Documents
How to Interpret the Basics
1. Accuracy of Web Documents
• Who wrote the page and can
you contact him or her?
• What is the purpose of the
document and why was it
• Is this person qualified to write
this document?
• Make sure author provides an
e-mail address or a contact
address/phone number
• Know the distinction between
author and person who
maintains t he website.
2. Authority of Web Documents
• Who published the document
and is it separate from the
person who maintains the Web
• Check the domain of the
document. What institution
publishes this document?
• What credentials re listed for
the author(s)?
• Where is the document
published? Check URL domain.
Taking Notes
Whenever you investigate a written source of
information or interview an expert you should take
A rule of thumb is to record more notes then you think
you will need.
However, select the information that is the most
important, that supports your point or argument, and
that will interest your audience.
The best way to organize this information is to create
source cards and note cards (just like in English Class)
Create Source Cards
As soon as you find a source that
you may want to use for your paper make
a Source Card immediately.
The most common source cards for this type of paper
How to create Source Cards
1.Get index cards
2.In the upper right hand corner number
your index cards 1-10
3.Determine what kind of source you have
(encyclopedia, internet, book, etc)
4.Follow the example cards below all the
way down
to the punctuation.
Note: for internet sources you may not have an author
or date,
if you do not just move on to the next thing.
Internet Site with a print version (always print from site – do not copy and paste)
Note: all dates for internet sites need to be written – day Month(spelled out) ye
Note: all websites must be written completely
Encyclopedia Article
Book with one author
Create Note Cards
In order to get ready to create
note cards you have to
complete the following items.
Print or copy all sources (print
directly from internet sites do not
copy and paste, photocopy
pages from books)
Have source cards already
done and correct
How to create a Note Card
1. Get new index cards
2. Get a piece of information you want to use for your paper from
one of sources
3. Get the source card that goes along with that source
4. Then write you note card like the diagram below.
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