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How Do I Start My Research?

Tips on Reading and Taking Notes


Close Reading a Text and Avoiding Pitfalls

Close reading takes more time than quick, superficial reading, but doing a close reading will save you from a lot of frustration and anxiety when you begin to develop your thesis.

Active reading

Active reading is a strategy in which you engage with or "talk" to your text - whether it's a textbook, journal article, or any other reading assignment. Talking to the text while you read, rather than just highlighting and underlining words, can help you to better understand, remember, and use what you've read.

You can also Visit Purdue Owl for more close reading tips.

Note Taking


Taking Notes

Taking notes while you're doing research will save you lots of time when you begin writing a draft of your research paper. Keeping clear notes helps you to maintain an organized record of where information comes from, what you were thinking while you were reading, and what new questions you might want to answer. Paraphrasing while you're taking research notes on your topic can also help you to avoid accidental plagiarism.