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Alternative Energy - ELEC221

Where to start?

Planning Your Research 

When you first receive an assignment requiring research, the first thing you should do is to carefully read the assignment to make sure you understand all parts of the assignment that are required. If your professor includes a rubric, take a look at that because it will show you exactly what your professor expects. 

Prior to jumping straight into your research, the next step you should take is to plan your search strategy. This only takes a few minutes and will help save you time.

One simple way to plan your research is to ask yourself four simple questions:

  1. What do I already KNOW about your topic?
  2. What do you WANT to know about your topic? 
  3. How will you find information about your topic?
  4. What have you LEARNED about your topic?

If you choose a topic with which you have some familiarity, you will already have some knowledge about it. Try to jot down a few things about your topic. 

After that, you can start thinking about your research and what you want to find out.

Then, think about how you will find information for you topic. Will you use Google or another freely available search engine? Will you use the library? Will you talk to experts or professors about the topic? 

Finally, after reading, watching, or listening to each new piece of information, think about what you have learned from that and how it will help your paper. 

Remember, a good research paper will use a variety of sources.