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College Writing: Home

This guide was created to help you learn the steps to successful academic research.

How to Use This Guide

Welcome to the College Writing Research Guide. This guide has been created especially for you to help you conduct scholarly research for your research papers. Click on each tab to find information, tutorials, and even sample papers to give you an idea of how your finished paper should look. Stop by the library or email us if you have any questions. We're always happy to help!

What is Research?

Research is:

  • Driven by a question or problem that then guides the process
  • Seeking information with an open mind 
  • A process, which works best when done step-by-step. The steps may need to be repeated, as the process is iterative
  • Collection and interpretation of data in an attempt to resolve the problem or answer the question
  • Going beyond facts and old ideas
  • Taking a new look at the information and joining the conversation on your topic

Research is not:

  • Copying and pasting information you find through a Google search
  • Combining a paragraph from one article with a couple of paragraphs from websites. That's plagiarism.
  • Writing a "report"
  • Rearranging facts
  • Rewording each phrase and citing each source. That's just a summary of facts with someone else's name on them and still can be classified as plagiarism.
The Research Process