Traditionally, when setting out to write a term paper, students start with research. If you want to get your paper done faster, however, do it the other way around.
Here’s how to do it.
First, do a lot of thinking about what you are going to write about. If possible, pick something you already know a little about. Or a lot about even, if that’s possible. But more importantly, pick something that you think might interest you. The more interest you have, the easier the paper will be to write. And the easier it is to write, the faster it will go.
Once you have your topic picked, start with the following outline:
– Introductory Paragraph
– Body of your paper
Your introductory paragraph should state very clearly whatever it is your paper is going to be about. Write it the way you would if you were going to tell someone about it out loud. Use a tape recorder if that will help.
The body of your paper is obviously the main text of your term paper.
The closing is basically a rehash of your introductory paragraph, with some restatements of what you also said in the body of your paper.
Once you have your outline written, expand the body section by writing down a bunch of things you think ought to be in the paper. Use bullets, notes, ideas, questions, cartoons, whatever pops into your head about your topic. You might even talk to other people about it to get their thoughts, or to cause more to pop into your own head.
Next, begin writing your paper. Freestyle. Seriously, just sit down and start writing. Write as much as you possibly can without using any references at all. This way, you will write what you want to say, and it will go a lot faster than trying to rephrase what everybody else has already written on this topic. It will make the paper more unique and interesting too, which should help with the final grade.
Once you have completely exhausted every idea on the subject, put the paper away for awhile. This is assuming you have more than just a couple of hours before it is due.
As you go through your day, you’ll most likely have ideas pop into your head. Jot them down right away before you forget. Then, when you come back to your paper, add those new things you thought of.
Then, once you have everything on this topic you have to offer, take a good hard look at what you’ve written. This is a very critical part. You need to make sure there is a beginning, middle and an end. Just like if you had written a story. Each of your ideas needs to start out with a statement of some sort, followed by something that backs it up. And then, each of your ideas and backing statements need to be in some sort of sequential order that will make sense to whoever will be reading your work.
Once you have finished editing your work, it’s time to start your research. Most of it can be done online. Make sure you mark down your resources as you go. You don’t want to have to go back and look them up again.
As you’re doing your research, try to find articles that will back up what you’ve written already on your own. In this way, you are taking the opposite approach that is normally taught. Instead of you backing up what others have said, you will be using other’s to back up what you have said.
Also, to bolster the strength of your paper, you’ll have to read what others have written, just as you would have had you taken the usual research first approach. The time for this should be greatly reduced however, because by this point in your paper, you already know what you want to say.
Then, once you have the body of the paper filled out, go back and check over your intro and closing. Add more if necessary, and that should be it.
If you use this method to write your term papers, it shouldn’t take you any longer than a few days.