RESEARCH AND WRITING OVERVIEW

To my students in Research and Writing:

This wiki page lays out web links to the best material for the various steps in the research paper process that I have discovered so far in my over 20 years of teaching Research and Writing for both history and political science majors.

During the course of this semester we will try to work our way systematically through the content on this page.

The key to your improvement will be (a) your desire to improve and (b) your diligence in getting started. I will help you and encourage you along the way, but YOU have to do it.

Since this page is designed for me to use during our class sessions, I have not included any particular descriptions of the content within each link, but will expand upon each one in class that we choose to deal with.






SECTION ONE: RESEARCH
GENERAL THOUGHTS

How to Start a Research Project
http://apu.libguides.com/startresearch

Organizing your Social Sciences research paper (USC LibGuide)
http://libguides.usc.edu/content.php?pid=83009&sid=615849

Reading, Writing, and Researching for History: A Guide for College Students
Patrick Rael, Bowdoin College
http://www.bowdoin.edu/writing-guides/

Writing for History (UNC Writing Center)
http://writingcenter.unc.edu/handouts/history/

Writing for Political Science (UNC Writing Center)
http://writingcenter.unc.edu/handouts/political-science/



CHOOSING AND REFINING A TOPIC

How to select a research topic (University of Michigan)
http://www.umflint.edu/library/how-select-research-topic

Narrowing your topic (USC Libraries)
http://libguides.usc.edu/content.php?pid=83009&sid=1756246

Constructing an effective search (Norwich University)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pp7VOxV-SyY&feature=youtube_gdata_player

Research is a process: refining and broadening (Norwich University)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y1PFqMkwe3M&feature=youtube_gdata_player

Choosing keywords (Norwich University)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bMBd60919xc&feature=youtube_gdata_player

Developing and analyzing your topic (Norwich University)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mtipg3T8GY8&feature=youtube_gdata_player



PRIMARY AND SECONDARY SOURCES
PEER-REVIEWED ARTICLES
REVIEW ARTICLES

Primary and Secondary Sources

Evaluating print sources (University of North Carolina)
Check out the section entitled "Primary and Secondary sources"
http://writingcenter.unc.edu/handouts/evaluating-print-sources/

Good video from Common Craft: Primary and Secondary sources
http://www.commoncraft.com/video/primary-and-secondary-sources

What are Primary Sources? (Yale University)
http://www.yale.edu/collections_collaborative/primarysources/primarysources.html

Peer-Reviewed articles

"What is a Scholarly Article?" (University of Washington)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PuyCJnv3auk&feature=youtube_gdata_player

Peer-reviewed journals (University of Texas)
http://www.lib.utexas.edu/lsl/help/modules/peer.html

Question of the week: Peer-Reviewed articles (University of Georgia)
http://www.libs.uga.edu/blog/?p=1315

Review articles

What is a "review" article (University of Texas)
http://www.lib.utexas.edu/lsl/help/modules/review.html



CRITICAL THINKING (Point of View)

Know what you are seeing.
Don't be fooled.
Be analytical.
Critical doesn't mean to find fault.

Cognitive dissonance
http://changingminds.org/explanations/theories/cognitive_dissonance.htm

Fallacies - The Writing Center at UNC-Chapel Hill
http://writingcenter.unc.edu/handouts/fallacies/

Fact-checking websites:

Politifact.com
http://www.politifact.com/

FactCheck.org
http://www.factcheck.org/

The Fact Checker (Washington Post)
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/fact-checker/

Leanings of Magazines and Newspapers (Lorain County Community College)
http://libguides.lorainccc.edu/c.php?g=29395&p=183699

The 100 most popular conservative news sites
http://rightwingnews.com/john-hawkins/the-100-most-popular-conservative-websites-of-2015/

The 50 most popular liberal news sites
http://rightwingnews.com/top-news/the-50-most-popular-liberal-websites/




THESIS STATEMENTS

a. Thesis Statements (UNC Writing Center)
http://writingcenter.unc.edu/handouts/thesis-statements/

b. Sheridan-Baker Thesis Machine [various links to it are available on Google]

How to develop a thesis statement:

(1) State the topic under consideration--grades.

(2) State the specific issue in the form of a debating proposition.

Resolved: grades are unnecessary in college.

(3) State your position on the issue as a simple "yes" or "no" sentence.

Yes, grades are unnecessary in college.

(4) Using a "because clause," provide a main rationale for your position.

Grades are unnecessary because students learn more readily without them.

(5) Qualify your thesis by using an "although clause" to concede points you do not wish to dispute.

Although a student's work should be evaluated in some fashion, grades are unnecessary in college because students learn more readily without them.

(6) Polish your sentence. Maybe drop the specific words "although" and "because".

While there may be a legitimate need to evaluate the work of college students, the traditional grading system hinders learning and stifles creativity



DATABASES

Go to APU Library>>>databases
Select All Databases
http://www.apu.edu/library/resources/databases/

These are the best video tutorials I have found, covering various databases you will want to use at one time or another:

JSTOR (Front Range Community College)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vV-8-h9q6Xc&feature=youtube_gdata_player

EBSCO Academic Search Premier (Front Range Community College)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N_jdAA4uRiY&feature=youtube_gdata_player

America: History and Life
America History and Life (EBSCOhost 2.0 Version) Basic Search Tutorial
http://youtu.be/E8PTNoCptd8

Finding Articles in America: History and Life
http://youtu.be/Fgep5mxexG4

Project Muse (Virginia Tech Libraries)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JXFEI9qYl7Q&feature=youtube_gdata_player

Pro Quest (Front Range Community College)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d2KLaQulgFA&feature=youtube_gdata_player

Lexis Nexis (Lexis Nexis)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RZg3tqBC17E&feature=youtube_gdata_player

World Cat (Front Range Community College)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Om4VoS9BxHI&feature=youtube_gdata_player



FINDING SOURCES: GENERAL

Online Search Strategies (helpful Boolean chart)
http://www.apu.edu/library/downloads/guide_searchstrategies.pdf

Not Just "Finding" Sources but Learning Something
http://www.insidehighered.com/blogs/library-babel-fish/welcome-palace-ambiguity

Critically Analyzing Information Sources | Cornell University
http://olinuris.library.cornell.edu/ref/research/skill26.htm

LibGuides
http://libguides.com/community.php?m=i&ref=libguides.com

Mining bibliographies (Norwich University)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jc9QPaz2SEA&feature=youtube_gdata_player



FINDING SOURCES: SPECIFIC

Here is how to deal with the APU Library Periodical Finder

Go to APU Library page.
http://www.apu.edu/library/resources/

Select Periodical Finder
http://ae2zb3gz7x.search.serialssolutions.com/

a. Let's look up the following general periodicals that are of major importance in our department:

American Historical Review (0002-8762)

from 10/01/1895 to 06/30/2012 in EBSCOhost EJS
from 10/01/1895 to 12/31/2007 in JSTOR Arts & Sciences I Archive Collection
from 02/01/1975 to 1 year ago in Academic Search Premier and Military & Government Collection
from 02/01/1985 to 1 year ago in MAS Ultra - School Edition
from 02/01/1995 to 06/30/2013 in EBSCOhost EJS
from 2006 to present in Print titles for Azusa Pacific

Journal of American History (0021-8723)

from 06/01/1964 to 12/31/2007 in JSTOR Arts & Sciences I Archive Collection
from 09/01/2003 to 1 year ago in Academic Search Premier

Reviews in American history (0048-7511) Peer Reviewed

from 03/01/1973 to 12/31/2007 in JSTOR Arts & Sciences I Archive Collection
from 03/01/1995 to present in Project MUSE - Standard Collection
from 2005 to present in Print titles for Azusa Pacific Current issue(s) on display

Current history (1941) (0011-3530) Peer Reviewed

from 1981 to present in Print titles for Azusa Pacific
from 01/01/2000 to 09/30/2013 in EBSCOhost EJS

American Political Science Review (0003-0554)

from 11/01/1906 to 11/30/2009 in JSTOR Arts & Sciences I Archive Collection
from 03/01/1988 to present in ABI/INFORM Complete
from 03/01/2001 to 08/31/2013 in EBSCOhost EJS
from 2008 to present in Print titles for Azusa Pacific

b. Here are some other valuable journals available through our APU library you should be aware of.

Comparative European politics (Houndmills, Basingstoke, England) (1472-4790)

from 03/01/2003 to 1 year ago in ABI/INFORM Complete

Diplomacy and statecraft (0959-2296) Peer Reviewed

from 03/01/2000 to 18 months ago in Academic Search Premier and Military & Government Collection

Diplomatic history (0145-2096) Peer Reviewed

from 06/01/1993 to 1 year ago in Academic Search Premier

European history quarterly (0265-6914) Peer Reviewed

from 01/01/1999 to present in SAGE Premier 2007 without AERA, SAGE Premier 2008 and SAGE Premier 2009
from 2005 to present in Print titles for Azusa Pacific

Fides et historia (0884-5379) Peer Reviewed

from 1968 to 2012 in ATLA Religion Database with ATLASerials
from 1976 to present in Print titles for Azusa Pacific Current issue(s) on display

Fletcher forum of world affairs (1046-1868) Peer Reviewed

from 01/01/1998 to present in LexisNexis Academic

Foreign affairs (New York, N.Y.) (0015-7120) Peer Reviewed

from 09/15/1922 to present in Academic Search Premier
from 10/01/1964 to present in Military & Government Collection
from 01/01/1982 to present in LexisNexis Academic

Harvard international review (0739-1854) Peer Reviewed

from 03/01/1990 to present in Academic Search Premier, Business Source Elite, MAS Ultra - School Edition, Military & Government Collection and OmniFile Full Text Mega (H.W. Wilson)
from 12/01/1996 to present in ABI/INFORM Complete

Historical journal (0018-246X) Peer Reviewed

from 01/01/1958 to 12/31/2007 in JSTOR Arts & Sciences II Archive Collection

Holocaust and genocide studies (8756-6583) Peer Reviewed

from Spring 2003 to present in Project MUSE - Standard Collection

Journal of European area studies (1460-8464) Peer Reviewed

from 05/01/1999 to 11/30/2002 in Academic Search Premier

Journal of European studies (0047-2441) Peer Reviewed

from 12/01/1992 to 06/30/2005 in Literature Resource Center
from 01/01/1999 to present in SAGE Premier 2007 without AERA, SAGE Premier 2008 and SAGE Premier 2009

Journal of military history (0899-3718) Peer Reviewed

from 01/01/2003 to 10/31/2009 in Project MUSE - Standard Collection

Perspectives on European politics and society (1568-0258) Peer Reviewed

from 12/01/2000 to 18 months ago in Academic Search Premier

Reviews in history

from 1996 to present in Directory of Open Access Journals

SAIS review (Johns Hopkins University. School of Advanced International Studies) (0036-0775) Peer Reviewed

from 1981 to present in Project MUSE - Standard Collection

William and Mary quarterly (0043-5597) Peer Reviewed

from 1892 to present in EBSCOhost EJS (Electronic Journals Service)
from 01/01/1944 to 10/31/2007 in JSTOR Arts & Sciences I Archive Collection
from 1986 to present in Print titles for Azusa Pacific Incomplete.



DOING SOMETHING WITH THE SOURCES

a. Reading them

Six Reading Habits to Develop During Your First Year at Harvard
http://guides.library.harvard.edu/sixreadinghabits

b. Using sources:

Harvard University: Using Sources
http://usingsources.fas.harvard.edu/home

1. Choosing relevant parts of a source
http://usingsources.fas.harvard.edu/choosing-relevant-parts-source

2. Summarizing, paraphrasing, quoting
http://usingsources.fas.harvard.edu/summarizing-paraphrasing-and-quoting

3. The nuts and bolts of integrating sources
[expand each subtitle]
http://usingsources.fas.harvard.edu/nuts-bolts-integrating



DOCUMENTATION

Humanizing academic citation
http://chronicle.com/blogs/linguafranca/2014/08/08/humanizing-academic-citation/

A. Turabian link [put on your Quick Links bar]
http://www.press.uchicago.edu/books/turabian/turabian_citationguide.html

B. Department of History and Political Science Documentation guide

C. Mechanical helps such as Zotero, Ref Works, or End Note



CONFERENCE PRESENTATION

Conference Papers
http://writingcenter.unc.edu/handouts/conference-papers/




TERM PAPER GRADING RUBRIC

Term paper rubric
http://thelearningprofessor.wikispaces.com/Grading+Rubric






SECTION TWO: WRITING

Standard English prose will work well for all your courses in college and for the rest of your life.

My emphasis in this section is principally on those items that I continually correct on student papers.

Major thoughts to keep in mind:

a. Our fundamentals must become automatic.

b. No such thing as a typo; there are only proofreading errors.

How do you teach someone to write well?
http://www.dailywritingtips.com/how-do-you-teach-someone-to-write-well/

Writing Rules! Advice From The New York Times on Writing Well
http://learning.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/09/20/writing-rules-advice-from-the-new-york-times-on-writing-well/



THE WRITING PROCESS

7 steps to creativity – how to have ideas
http://writetodone.com/7-steps-to-creativity-how-to-have-ideas/

Overcoming writer's block
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/composition/brainstorm_block.htm

Getting started: freewriting
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/composition/brainstorm_freewrite.htm

Brainstorming (UNC Writing Center)
http://writingcenter.unc.edu/handouts/brainstorming/

Getting started: clustering (same as mind-mapping)
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/composition/brainstorm_clustering.htm

Getting started: outlining
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/composition/brainstorm_outline.htm



PARAGRAPHS

"On Paragraphs" (Purdue OWL)
Please read and reread this.
https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/606/01/

Paragraphs (UNC Writing Center)
http://writingcenter.unc.edu/handouts/paragraphs/

Introductory Paragraphs
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/intros.htm

Concluding Paragraphs
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/composition/endings.htm

Paragraph development and topic sentences
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/paragraphs.htm

Coherence: Transitions between ideas
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/transitions.htm

Transitions (UNC Writing Center)
http://writingcenter.unc.edu/handouts/transitions/



SENTENCES

15 Ways to Write Tight
http://writetodone.com/15-ways-to-write-tight/

Writing Concisely (UNC Writing Center)
http://writingcenter.unc.edu/handouts/conciseness-handout/

Writing Concise Sentences
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/concise.htm

Interactive Quiz: Writing Concise Sentences
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/quizzes/wordy_quiz.htm

Interactive Quiz: Eliminating Wordiness
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/quizzes/nova/nova8.htm

Interactive Quiz: Rewriting Bloated Sentences
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/quizzes/nova/nova11.htm



Sentence Combining

I have some useful material on this topic in my Writing Handbook (Section IX).
http://thelearningprofessor.wikispaces.com/Writing+Handbook

But let's look at some other wonderful material on this topic:

1. Sentence-combining skills
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/combining_skills.htm

Interactive Quiz on Combining Sentences
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/quizzes/combining_quiz2.htm

Another Interactive Quiz on Combining Sentences
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/quizzes/combining_quiz1.htm

2. Avoiding Primer Language
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/primer.htm

Interactive Quiz: Avoiding Primer Style
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/quizzes/primer_quiz.htm

3. Sentence Variety and Modifier Placement [modifier placement at bottom of screen]
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/sentences.htm

Interactive Quiz: Varying Sentence Beginnings
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/quizzes/nova/nova9.htm

Interactive Quiz: Sentence Variety and Modifier Placement
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/quizzes/nova/nova10.htm

Parallel Form
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/parallelism.htm

Biblical examples of parallelism
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/bible.htm



WORDS

Notorious Confusables: Part I
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/notorious.htm

Notorious Confusables: Part II
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/notorious2.htm

Building a better vocabulary
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/vocabulary.htm

75 Incorrectly Used Words
http://www.inc.com/jeff-haden/75-incorrectly-used-words-that-can-make-you-look-dumb.html

Ten Misspelled Words That Affect Personal Brand [this chart is excellent]
http://www.youtern.com/thesavvyintern/index.php/2013/07/29/ten-misspelled-words-that-affect-personal-brand/

Spelling: Common words that sound alike (OWL Purdue)
https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/660/01/

Five Weak Words that Make Your Writing Less Effective
http://goinswriter.com/weak-words/

Plague Words and Phrases
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/plague.htm



PUNCTUATION

I have a very complete section on comma usage in my Writing Handbook (Section V).
http://thelearningprofessor.wikispaces.com/Writing+Handbook

Rules for Comma Usage
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/commas.htm

Punctuation Between Two Independent Clauses
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/indep_clauses.htm

Run-on Sentences, Comma Splices
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/runons.htm

Conjunctions [nice section on then vs. than]
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/conjunctions.htm



REVISION

Editing for Tighter Copy: How to Write with a Knife
http://www.copyblogger.com/write-with-a-knife/

"Eight Simple Tips for Editing Your Own Work"
http://writetodone.com/eight-simple-tips-for-editing-your-own-work/

Polishing Your Prose
http://chronicle.com/article/Polishing-Your-Prose-Word-by/137327/

The #1 Secret of Great Writers
http://writetodone.com/the-1-secret-of-great-writers/

"The Lesson behind “Sh++ty First Drafts" (The Writers Coin)
https://wrd.as.uky.edu/sites/default/files/1-Shitty%20First%20Drafts.pdf

The Right Way to Expand a Too-Short Piece of Writing (Aliventures)
http://www.aliventures.com/too-short-writing

Understanding the "Show, Don't Tell" Rule
http://www.aliventures.com/why-show-dont-tell/

The editing and rewriting process
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/composition/editing.htm

Revising Drafts (UNC Writing Center)
http://writingcenter.unc.edu/handouts/revising-drafts/

Reorganizing Drafts (UNC Writing Center)
http://writingcenter.unc.edu/handouts/reorganizing-drafts/

Editing and Proofreading (UNC Writing Center)
http://writingcenter.unc.edu/handouts/editing-and-proofreading/

Reading Aloud (UNC Writing Center)
http://writingcenter.unc.edu/handouts/reading-aloud/

Proofreading from hard copy
http://www.dailywritingtips.com/proofreading-from-hard-copy/



HOW TO KEEP IMPROVING

Of the many great blogs/resources about writing I have looked at over the years, here are the ones I still use to spark myself:

After Deadline (New York Times newsroom notes on usage and style)
http://afterdeadline.blogs.nytimes.com/

Aliventures
http://www.aliventures.com/

Daily Writing Tips
http://www.dailywritingtips.com/

Write to Done
http://writetodone.com/

Writing Forward
http://www.writingforward.com/

Grammar Girl: Quick and Dirty Tips
http://www.quickanddirtytips.com/grammar-girl



Term Papers: another quicker way to get started

Narrow your term paper topic and find key articles with good bibliographies

1. Do a Google search

Let's use "religion on the Oregon Trail" as an example:

[I was not getting much when I searched on Google for "religion on the Oregon Trail," but I found this one after changing my search term to "Christianity on the Oregon Trail."]

Jerry Rushford. Christians on the Oregon Trail: Churches of Christ and Christian Churches in Early Oregon, 1842-1882. (1997)

One version: [go to page 577 for the Bibliography]
http://digitalcommons.pepperdine.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1004&context=heritage_center

Book version on Amazon.com
http://www.amazon.com/Christians-Oregon-Trail-Christian-1842-1882/dp/0899007775

2. Amazon.com

Search within a book>>Table of contents>>Bibliography pages>>page search

Other similar books. This particular book doesn't have anything.

Can't look inside this particular book from Amazon.com.

Here is an example of one that has both other suggestions and search inside option. [I ran out of time before I could find one for us this morning.]

3. APU Quick Search

When I tried using the APU Quick Search, this same book came up.

4. LINK+
LINK+ does not list this book, so that avenue is closed.

5. World Cat

a. World Cat does have it.
Then go to World Cat from this Quick Search screen

b. Here is how to get into World Cat from scratch

All Databases>>W>>World Cat [I don't use the World Cat.org one]>>Author search

World Cat helps me get other search terms:

Here is the one that will help the most to begin with:
Restoration movement (Christianity) -- Oregon -- History -- 19th century.

To get the actual book, request it on Interlibrary Loan [a different step than LINK+]

6. Then I decided to look up info on Jerry Rushford on Google

This turns out to be great!

Jerry Rushford Center (Pepperdine University)
http://digitalcommons.pepperdine.edu/rushford/

Plus other links to him.

7. I am sure many other sources are available for Christians on the Oregon Trail.

V. In class today: new material: Texas Revolution/Mexican War, part 1