Researching a topic effectively is key to creating a useful formal report. If the data in a report is not accurate, credible, or incomplete then, the entire report is most likely useless. To minimize data errors the writer must know how to effectively research information. With any information the writer has gathered from sources in using any research process the writer must cite their sources in order not to commit plagiarism.
This memo will explain how to effectively research and use data for formal reports to writing 227 students.
This document will explain Lannon’s research tips, then moves on to explain Gallaudet’s process including prewriting, writing, and revising. This document will then explain the Cornell research process which includes finding a topic, finding the context and background, finding books and periodicals, and evaluating the information, and moves on to the annotated bibliography.
Lannon’s Research Tips
There are a plethora of sources on the internet to gather various different types of data from, but not all sources are reputable. Lannon says that even though a website may have useful information it is pertinent to know whether or not the author is reputable (Lannon). It is possible to know if an author is reputable by checking how credible the author is compared to other authors in the same category, and by checking the information the author has posted against scholarly journals and professors (Lannon).
There are three parts to Gallaudet’s writing style, prewriting, writing, and revising, but they are not strictly a step by step process, instead the writer will switch back and forth between each part multiple times before the paper is finished (Research).
The first thing the writer should do is to find a topic. The writer should find an interesting topic, because an interesting topic is much easier to research and write about than a boring one (Research). Once the writer finds a topic and starts researching, it is time for them to start thinking of a thesis statement. One technique of doing this is for the writer to ask themselves an important question about their topic, then through answering it the thesis statement can form. Other techniques to developing a thesis statement may include, jot lists, preliminary outlines, listing possible thesis statements, listing questions, or making a concept map (Research). After the writer has researched and taken notes their topic it is a good idea to revise their thesis statement, because a good thesis statement will help them develop a plan for writing their paper. A good way for the writer to do this is by brainstorming and writing it down on paper, when it’s all written done they can look it over and decide if they want to change their thesis statement or not (Research). Next the writer must create an outline, or go back and revise it if they already have created one. The outline will help the writer organize how...