Effective Tips On Writing An Outline For A Physics Research Paper
More and more students are starting to neglect the outline step of writing research papers. Many students assume that it’s a waste of time and that they can complete their paper more quickly by skipping it. The truth, however, is that when writing a research paper, particularly for a technical subject such as physics, spending time writing a quality and detailed outline Will save you time in the long run and result in a much better paper.
Follow these affective tips on how to write an excellent outline for a physics paper:
- Don’t start your introduction off too broadly
- Decide what will dictate your section organization
- Be as detailed as possible
- Indicate whether notes are quotes or paraphrasing
- Include citations in each outline entry
Most students know that their introductions should start off broadly and narrow down ending in their thesis statement. However, when students are taught this, they often end up starting their introduction off much too broadly with sweeping generalizations or universal statement. As you are putting together your paper outline, be sure not to start your introduction off too broadly.
Depending on what your paper is on there are many different ways that you can organize the sections of your paper. For instance, when writing about a certain theory of physics you could either write about its discovery chronologically, or you could write about its different components. When completing the outline for your paper you must decide what will dictate how you organize your sections.
By making your outline as detailed as possible and including all of your notes in it, you will end up spending much less time actually writing the paper. It is not uncommon for the outline for a 10 page paper to be eight or nine pages.
As you are including your notes into your outline it is important to indicate whether they are direct quotes from a source or whether you have already paraphrase them. Be sure to use quotation marks around any direct quote. This will help to save you from accidentally plagiarizing from the source without showing it as a direct quote when it comes time to write your paper.
Another strategy when writing your outline that will save you significant time in the long run is to include the in text citation at the end of each outline note. That way, when you go to write, you will know exactly what citation to use.