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Quick Tips for the Panic-Stricken

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OK, you've stumbled into A+ Research & Writing looking for help because your paper's due in a week, and you have no idea where to start. You don't have time to read through this whole site. Is there a quicker way to get started right now?

Well, if you promise to come back and read A+ to help you with your next paper, we'll give you some shortcuts to the "basics."

Make an appointment with your reference librarian

Reference librarians are trained to help students organize their research approach and carry out the research. Be sure to let the librarian know exactly what your assignment is, how much time you have to finish it and what you've done so far to get started.

Surf to one of the OWLs and bookmark it in your browser

What's an OWL? An Online Writing Lab, usually provided by a college or university to help students with writing (and research) projects. They have great online "handouts" to help with everything from outlining your paper to where to place a comma! Choose one from our list of OWLs on the Web, or go directly to the big granddaddy of them all at Purdue University (over 100 handouts!). Look over what's there and be ready to go back again as you start the writing process.

Try to find a "model" of the type of paper you're writing

Look at the links to Common Types of Papers and Papers on Special Subjects to see if there's advice, and perhaps even a model outline, for the specific type of paper you're writing.

Look for a topic at one of these websites:

There are lots of suggestions for topics at the following websites. See if you can get your ideas flowing by browsing them. Some of these sites merely list topics. Others also provides links to resources on their suggested topics.

Best of luck, and come back to see us when you have more time!!


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A+ Research & Writing for high school and college students was created by Kathryn L. Schwartz