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Denounce Plagiarism and Cheating - Learn the Best Ways of Academic Research and Writing
Proper research and writing skills are essential to a student's academic success. The inability to develop or improve research and writing skills can be detrimental to the students overall academic success. Proper research and writing techniques must be developed and refined over time through feedback from professors and teachers. Adherence to this feedback will allow the student to improve their research and writing skills. However, there are several key elements that students can work on independently to improve their research and writing skills.
The first issue that students must be aware of is the significant impact that either the intended or unintended use of plagiarism has on proper research and writing. Unintended plagiarism occurs when a student inaccurately cites references utilized in the research paper or fails to cite references utilized in the research paper. This is typically attributed to the student not understanding proper citation styles and requirements. Intended use of plagiarism occurs when a student knowingly and intentionally tries to pass another individuals work off as their own. The use of plagiarism in any manner can have catastrophic consequences to academic success and is in direct contrast to proper research and writing techniques. By the student being aware of this and taking the time to select the appropriate citation style, plagiarism can be avoided which will increase proper research and writing techniques.
Identifying the appropriate citation style and requirements in order to avoid plagiarism is one of the most important aspects in proper research and writing. After these are addressed, the student needs to learn to identify an empirical article or an empirical source. An empirical article, also known as a peer reviewed article, identifies the article as a source with trusted academic information. The alternative to finding empirical articles would be simply searching the web for information on a subject matter without verifying the authenticity of the information being presented. This could lead to inaccurate information being presented as factual in a research paper which drastically decreases the level of success in regards to the research and writing associated with the process. By the student taking the time to utilize only empirical articles in their research and writing, the student will produce a strong factual paper.
After the background of proper research and writing is established, the actual writing process can begin. Students being aware of how to utilize these phases appropriately can assist in proper writing techniques. Proper writing includes three primary phases: outlining/researching, drafting, and proofreading. The first phase of any research paper should be an outline of the intended purpose of the paper. This would include a thesis statement, an outline of the key points in the paper, and would include the actual research done on each of the key points being addressed. The next phase would be to draft the actual paper based on the outline and research done in the first phase. This would be where most of the body of the paper would be written. The last phase would to proofread the entire paper. It is also recommended that you do not proofread any paper directly after finishing writing it. Even taking a short break prior to this phase will drastically increase the accuracy of the final proofread. If the student adheres to this writing process, the flow of the paper and the information presented in the paper will be academically sound and show strong writing and research skills.
Research and writing skills are continuously being developed and refined as the student progress through their academic career. However, adherence to the key elements mentioned here will provide the student with a solid foundation to improve their research and writing skills on. As the student receives feedback from their professors, their academic writing and research skills will continue to get stronger.
How to Learn Proper Research and Writing?
Most professional researchers complain that students are not well prepared to write valid and quality research papers as they are supposed to do by the time of graduation. Lester et al reveals the cause of this academic problem as students struggling with the methods of research, grammar, and citations. Other students do not know the difference between research papers and personal essays. There is a layout which guides a student on how to begin research and write an excellent research paper.
First, a student should identify future tasks and prioritize them to avoid being closed out by deadlines. A serious student should check out those tasks whose deadlines are closer than others. After doing that, a schedule should be developed and organized.
After building a schedule, it is important to choose an appropriate topic to write about if choices are given. This step can be very hard especially when a student is not aware of what is interesting to him or her. It is paramount to pick an interesting topic to avoid running out of points when writing begins.
Upon choosing an interesting topic, it is critical to start carrying out research on the topic and taking notes. During this step, a student should ensure that there is a lot to write. Unique sources are critical to obtaining valid and acceptable information. These different sources include live lectures and personal interviews. When taking notes, a direct quote is recorded using quotation marks to avoid plagiarism.
Developing a thesis is vital, and this is the step that follows research and note taking. A thesis is written as a statement which is succinct and very clear. A thesis expresses the main idea or the main position in writing. This statement excludes known facts. An example of known facts includes that of a human heart beating seventy-two times in a minute. Such facts should not be considered as theses. A thesis should not also include specific arguments for they should be involved in the paragraphs that make up the body of a research paper.
After researching, taking notes and designing a quality thesis, one should create a smart outline on how the structure of the research paper should look like. A quality outline makes a student identify areas that need more research. It also enables a learner to identify key points of argument before reviewing a thesis statement. Reviewing a thesis statement reinforces one's decision to either continue with the thesis or develop a different one depending on the key points researched.
The next step is for a student to follow the outline created to write a rough copy also known as the draft. Mahmoud elaborates that a draft is written by pulling ideas from gathered sources that should be cited. If there happens to be a section which is too challenging to finish, there is need to handle the next section and go back to the challenging section later.
When the draft is ready, it is paramount to review it and revise to find out any errors to be corrected. It is advisable for a student to take a break and rest the mind and eyes for a while before reviewing and revising the draft. It is very important to have a friend review for the benefit of coming up with fresh opinions.
Properly cited sources should be noted down depending on the instructor's specifications concerning the preferred citation style. Examples of citation styles include MLA and APA.
The final step includes proofreading the draft, making the final copy, proofread the final copy and submit it to the instructor. Proofreading steps help to avoid copy pasting and grammar errors.
Lester, J. D., & Lester, J. D. The essential guide: Research writing across the disciplines. Boston: Pearson Education.
Mahmoud, S. Research & writing: A complete guide & handbook. White Hall, Va: Betterway Publications.