How to narrow a research topic
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How to Narrow a Research Topic. You know what you want to write about, but you’re not sure if it is too big or too small- what do you do? . When your research topic is too broad, you’ll get a zillion hits on a search engine. 6,730,000!.

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How to Narrow a Research Topic

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How to narrow a research topic

How to Narrow a Research Topic


How to narrow a research topic

You know what you want to write about, but you’re not sure if it is too big or too small- what do you do?


How to narrow a research topic

How to Narrow a Research Topic

When your research topic is too broad, you’ll get a zillion hits on a search engine. 6,730,000!


How to narrow a research topic

How to Narrow a Research Topic

When your research topic is too broad, you’ll get a zillion hits on a search engine. Ask yourself these questions:

Who?

What?

When?

Where?

Why?

How?


How to narrow a research topic

How to Narrow a Research Topic

Let’s see how this works with an example: eating disorders

This topic is too broad (general) to write about in a short paper. We need to make it narrower (more specific).


How to narrow a research topic

How to Narrow a Research Topic

Who?

TOPIC: EATING DISORDERS

Populations

Age

NEW TOPIC:

Eating disorders in elderly females

Gender

Race or Ethnicity


How to narrow a research topic

How to Narrow a Research Topic

What?

TOPIC: EATING DISORDERS

Types

Anorexia

NEW TOPIC:

Anorexia in elderly females

Bulimia

Compulsive eating


How to narrow a research topic

How to Narrow a Research Topic

When?

TOPIC: EATING DISORDERS

Timeframes

Current or historical view

NEW TOPIC:

Bulimia in middle-aged females

Period of life


Where

How to Narrow a Research Topic

Where?

TOPIC: EATING DISORDERS

Places

States

NEW TOPIC:

Anorexia in Australian women

Regions

Countries


How to narrow a research topic

How to Narrow a Research Topic

Why?

TOPIC: EATING DISORDERS

Evaluate

Causes

NEW TOPIC:

Successful methods for treatment of compulsive eating

Treatments

Outcomes


Mix n match

How to Narrow a Research Topic

Mix n’ Match

  • Combine any number of elements that you derive from asking these questions until you find an interesting topic to research.

  • Some examples:

  • Causes and treatment of anorexia in college athletes

  • Prevalence of bulimia in teen-age males in the United States

  • Changes in treatment for compulsive overeaters, 1950-present.


Too narrow

How to Narrow a Research Topic

Too Narrow?

This one is easy.

If you can’t find much information, then you are probably too narrow!

Examples:

What foreign languages are taught in South Dakota schools?

Or where is Chinese taught and why?


Don t forget your thesis what is your stand on this topic

How to Narrow a Research Topic

Don’t Forget Your Thesis!What is your stand on this topic?

Topic: Rock and Roll

Narrowed: Early Rock 1950s

My stand on this topic: The early rock and roll of the ‘50s greatly influences the music of today.

My ideas: American Idol had contestants do Beatles

Lots of artists name them as influence- recent RS article about artists favorites.

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame exhibits- info from website?

Adjusted by K. Conner for Eng III


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