Researching People And Places

In 9th grade we had to write research papers to learn them for 10th grade, and in 10th we had to write them for 11th, and then in 12th, again, to learn them for college. So what I keep learning, over and over, is to sit in the library and copy quotes out of books and into my paper and connect them up. What's the deal?

The hallmark of college writing is learning to write with research. Sometimes you'll be asked to write a research paper or report; other times you'll simply be asked to write persuasively or critically. In either case, your papers will profit from using expert testimony and documentable information. Sometimes assignments requesting outside sources need to be written objectively, in the third person, with a minimum of writer value judgments; other times outside sources may be integrated with firstperson pronouns and experience to create a more personal research-based paper—be sure to ask your instructors which approach they prefer. This chapter provides some suggestions for writing with a variety of research sources.

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