A term paper is a common piece of writing that professors assign to students in order to check the knowledge they gained and concepts they memorized over a term or semester. Sometimes, these papers even check what one learned over a year. Therefore, it might seem that the key to success in writing a decent term paper is to be fairly familiar with the course materials and topics discussed in classes. Although the assumption is true to a certain extent, the bare knowledge is not enough for you to compose a perfect term paper. There are a couple of other crucial things that we are glad to introduce to you in this short guide.
The definition of a term paper is quite vague and varies from school to school and from professor to professor. In addition, the kind of topics discussed in classes impacts the instructions to this paper tremendously. For instance, the amount of research to be done to complete the paper largely depends on this factor. Still, there are a set of universal rules and tips that you should be aware of regardless the class you take and school you attend.
To create a term paper, you should take a few steps:
- First, there is a need for a topic. As a rule, professors provide a list of topics that you have to choose from and rather rarely, you must come up with it by yourself. In the latter case, make sure the selected topic is in line with the subjects that you addressed during the classes.
- Second, locate as much literature that is relevant to the topic as possible. Dismiss the sources that are not reliable, not credible or outdated.
- Read and critically analyze each piece of writing. Be sure to take notes of the major points. You will have to process big volumes of information, so you will definitely forget something unless you get it jotted down.
- Then, with some ideas in mind and materials gathered, you should proceed to compose a strong outline that will be a foundation of your draft first and then the term paper.
- Start working on the body of the draft but do not think too much about form at this point. Focus on the content! Support the claims with evidence from literature.
- Next, relying on the body, formulate a strong introduction with a hook to grab a reader's attention and draft a powerful conclusion that will not only summarize the main points but also leave a lasting impression on the audience.
- When dealing with the introduction, do not forget about a thesis statement. This tricky sentence should be paid a lot of attention since it is basically the most important piece of the whole term paper. It should be effective, striking, and persuasive! So, be sure to put much effort in creating it.
- Finally, edit, revise, review, and proofread the paper. Brush up on it and eliminate all the mistakes, inconsistencies, and inaccuracies. You may ask someone else to give the term paper a fresh look.