Hey there, everyone!
As some of you may know, I have been going to college for a while and I have always hated writing research papers. In order to actually do the research, the assignment can take several days – something that I simply never have. In fact, no matter what the length of the paper (1, 3, or even 12 pages), I have to get it started and finished in one sitting or either it won’t get done or it will drive me crazy until it is completed. That said, you may be asking yourself how I do it quickly, fairly painlessly, and get A’s. Have no fear! Follow these 6 steps to write a research paper, fast:
1. For the purpose of this post, let’s assume that our research topic is “Aids in America”. Our first step is to head on over to Wikipedia (www.wikipedia.org), where we will actually conduct our research and gain a good understanding of the topic. I know that some red flags just went up for many of you, since it is common knowledge that teachers and professors absolutely despise everything that Wikipedia stands for. That’s absolutely fine. Again, we are only using Wikipedia to figure out what we are writing about.
2. Now is the time to write the paper. As long as you stick to the general ideas you found in Wikipedia, you should be fine. After all, the information is common knowledge. Whatever you do, don’t try to copy and paste anything into your paper. If your school uses a plagiarism detection system such as Turnitin like mine does, they will pick it up instantly. Writing the paper will take the majority of your time, where most used to be dedicated to research. If you get stuck, just keep searching for more filler information. You will be surprised at how fast it can be done.
3. At this point, you are most likely saying something like, “Hey, what about my bibliography?” Finding your sources to cite is actually the easiest part of this research paper technique. I want to introduce you to one of my best friends in college: Google Scholar (http://scholar.google.com/).
4. Simply type in your topic and you are immediately immersed in more sources than you could ever find trying to do Boolean searches through your school’s digital library. Click on a few of them, read the abstracts, and find some that could be possible sources for some of the information you already wrote in your paper.
5. I strongly dislike citations. More so, I absolutely cannot stand wasting my time trying to get them in the correct format that the assignment requires. Don’t get me wrong, there are some great tools out there to help us with this mundane task (http://CitationMachine.net), but why not skip it altogether? You may have noticed my little attempt at artwork in the picture. Google Scholar does all the citation formatting for you.
6. Now, just make your in-text citations and put them after each part of your paper where you felt you were being particularly insightful. I suggest going just slightly overboard with the number of sources you cite. Don’t make it ridiculous, but just enough to make it look like you put quite a bit of time into researching your topic.
You may not have faith in this technique, and that is perfectly fine. The only ways you can get a bad grade is if you completely misunderstand the assignment, have horrible writing skills, or the grader combs through each of your sources and proves that your in-text citations are wrong. As long as you pick relevant sources, never quote the text, and never use page numbers, that is probably impossible.
Thank you for reading my 6 steps to write a research paper, fast.
If any of you have other quick tips for writing research papers, please feel free to leave a comment for the rest of our readers. If I like them, I might even add them to an updated version of this post.