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research paper tips

Coming up with controversial topics for research papers


In today’s world, where nothing means everything and vice versa, the potential for creating a controversial topic is just as easy as finding one. From political hot buttons to environmental issues to scandals and corruption, it is not hard to find enough information to write an informative research essay. In fact, lack of motivation cannot be used as an excuse for an assignment like this, either. Assuming you were in the midst of a course needed as a general education requirement which you had no interest in, your inability to choose a research paper topic might be noted as understandable, yet still inexcusable.

Controversy comes in many forms. When you have an opportunity to research and voice your opinion on one, make sure you are responsible. Here are a few guidelines worth adhering to:

You aren’t trying to sell copies


  • Leave scandal to the tabloids and worthless gossip websites.
  • Pop-culture in the realm of academia is highly frowned upon. Latest episodes of stupid reality television shows and the way America voted are also off-limits.

This is a research paper, and while your instructions ask you to find a topic that is controversial, that does not mean you should immediately think of it as contemporary and make light of the assignment. Take care to follow the same guidelines used in every other research paper you have written.

The five paragraph model


  • Your essay will need to be comprised of an introduction, body, and conclusion.
  • Controversial topics will certainly have plenty of information, so…
  • It is crucial that you are able to discern fact from fiction and spin from truth. This starts with having a clear thesis and sources that are reliable and authentic.
  • Using this format is the best way to present your research and conclusions regardless of your topic, but especially one that may require delicate handling.
  • The five paragraph model can help ensure your ability to present fact from fiction and show the integrity and detail you are capable of.

As for the topics themselves, well, it’s a long and troubling list. Rarely, if ever, is controversy synonymous with problems that are good to have. A responsible writer will take the time to craft an essay that is thoughtful, respectful, and the realization that researching, writing, and presenting a point of view is a privilege-not a right. Do not take it for granted.

 
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