Scholarly Essays

The thesis statement, found at the end of the first paragraph, is a one-sentence encapsulation of your essay’s main idea.

It presents an overarching argument and may also identify the main support points for the argument.

Common research sources include data, primary sources (e.g., historical records), and secondary sources (e.g., peer-reviewed scholarly articles).

Writing a research paper involves synthesizing this external information with your own ideas.

You should also conduct searches relating to your narrowed topic using Google Scholar.

Unfortunately, you will not always be able to access the full text of the articles (without paying a fee), but you will at least be able to see the titles and often abstracts (summaries) of scholarly journal articles and books.Most published papers also have abstracts: brief summaries of the most important points of the paper.Abstracts appear in academic database search results so that readers can quickly determine whether the paper is pertinent to their own research.Once you’ve written a thesis statement, you’ve established a clear focus for your paper.Frequently referring back to that thesis statement will prevent you from straying off-topic during the drafting phase.When it is published, it includes complete bibliographic information about the author’s research.Make sure you distinguish between a peer review process and an editorial process.For the Literature Review, you're being asked to focus your research energies on locating scholarly journal articles or scholarly book chapters. As you begin your research, you should be on the lookout for any and all relevant sources with regard to your (narrowed) topic and possible research question since you never know where you might find a useful bit of information or a new perspective or angle that triggers your thinking.While you will need to continue gathering information on your topic as efficiently, creatively and relentlessly as you can, don't equate sources of established information, such as encyclopedia entries, websites with statistics, etc., with scholarly ones that report the results of original research studies or engage in original and complex analysis and argument on a particular aspect of a topic or research question.Students, professors, and researchers in every discipline use academic writing to convey ideas, make arguments, and engage in scholarly conversation.Academic writing is characterized by evidence-based arguments, precise word choice, logical organization, and an impersonal tone.


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