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How to Write a Research Paper

A step-by-step guide to writing a research paper.

What Are Keywords?

Keywords are important words/concepts found in your research question or thesis. 

A quick and dirty way to pull keywords from a research question/thesis is to choose the most important nouns; all other words are irrelevant.

Using keywords to search will always retrieve more results than phrases or sentences.

Image source:  Producer.  CC BY-SA 3.0. Wikimedia Commons

Find Keywords

You can find keywords:

Image source:  Evan-Amos.  Public Domain.  Wikimedia Commons.

Chart Keywords

Keywords have a profound impact on search results. Using the right words will speed up the research process, while the wrong ones can bring to it to a painfully screeching halt.

If the keywords you initially choose do not give good results, try others on your list, try search strategies, or ask a librarian for help.

Use the chart above to document keywords related to your topic.  Keep it by your side when you start your research.