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Do universities keep all student term papers

Professors almost always provide specific written guidelines for length, focus, format etc. If they don't, they pay major dues when it's time to grade them. If we don't tell you the requirements, ask!

  • Many campus organizations start recruiting during this time for the next academic year;
  • Shortly after O-Week, many students begin to realize that they must also learn to be students how to take notes, how to study for midterms, how to write essays, how to talk to professors, and the like;
  • So figure for ten pages, about 10-15 references and so on.

Maybe we just zoned out and forgot to mention it. These requirements may vary dramatically from class to class, and from semester to semester. Did you already read the syllabus? Read it again, carefully. Pick The Right Topic. Make sure that you find this topic genuinely interesting, or find some aspect of it that is especially cool.

By the time you finish your research and writing, you might well be genuinely sick to death of your topic ask any graduate student who's just completed a dissertation!

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But if you're bored when you start, you've already defeated yourself, and turned a potentially interesting assignment into yet more drudgery. Skim Your Textbook, look over the syllabus, read the newspaper, look through recent issues of relevant journals and magazines, surf the net, watch the evening news, talk to your classmates and friends, find a spare half hour of peace and quiet to just sit under the stars and think - these are all good potential sources for paper topics.

If all else fails, talk to the teacher. We're full of good ideas. That's why they pay us such huge salaries narf. Narrow Down Your Topic. Many good ideas are wasted because students have a hard time focusing on a narrow enough topic. If your topic is way too broad, try homing in on some part of that topic, and exploring that area in more depth. If cloning is too broad for a five page paper, what about cloning Elvis? On the other hand, don't turn in fifteen pages on cloning Elvis.

Fit the idea to the space provided, and be concise. I'd much rather have a paper that says a lot about a little, than a paper that says a little about a lot. My Topic is Too Narrow! Generalize to similar or related topics cloning of humans vs. But keep your focus clear throughout. Otherwise, those interesting related issues you delved into might end up looking like window dressing, added only to bring the paper up to its required minimum length. Profs see enough fluff that they generally smell it a mile away.

Kind of like a sixth sense, or a really obscure super power. In your first draft, say what you have to say, then punch it up or trim it down as need be. Outlining is a genuine pain, which I personally put in the same category as cleaning the litter box - a necessary evil.

But it actually does help, do universities keep all student term papers in the early stages of your paper, by forcing you to come to terms with what you want to say about your topic. It can also show you where you will need to apply your research time, and reveal major deficiencies in your approach to your topic. Research Your Topic Carefully. That big building with all the books? Make it your friend. Better yet, cozy up to the librarians.

A good library always has do universities keep all student term papers good professional staff, trained to be courteous and helpful, and bright enough to genuinely care about a LOT of topics, and who will expertly direct your search to the right place.

Unfortunately, librarians are merely human, working long thankless hours for low pay, so a little patience on your part will go a long way. Remember that most of the interface you deal with aren't really librarians, they're student workers, clerical staff, or whoever else could be dragooned into helping to fill the long hours on the firing line. You should seek out and befriend a competent and helpful reference librarian early on, like Buffy found Giles. If you find that person, the path to the information you will need to graduate will be smoothly paved, and may even turn out to be full of interesting roadside attractions.

Each page of your term paper should have around 1-3 references per page, as a general rule of thumb. So figure for ten pages, about 10-15 references and so on. Many papers may have more than that, but if yours has less, you probably skimped in the endless hours in the library department.

No more than one third of your sources should come from magazines or the internet, unless they refer to actual data.

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If your entire argument is built upon a stack of Newsweeks, it will tremble in the slightest breeze. Try to use several different types of sources in your research. These would include but need not be limited to books, magazine articles, journal articles really serious magazinesreference books, and the internet. Avoid using too many newspaper articles and magazines wherever you can. Magazines like Time and Newsweek often have good focused articles, but they tend to be laden with unsupported opinions, and written to cause a sensation rather than to reveal the truth.

Don't ignore the government documents collection. For raw data and spirited opinion, government documents can't be beat. Your tax dollars fund a mountain of research, good, bad, and indifferent, and the results of all of that research end up in the government documents department of the library. Collections of state documents can also be an invaluable source for certain topics, such as local environmental problems.

Modern university libraries have most of their collections online. Every university library has its own database for books and journals. Consult the online catalog first to see what's available. You can usually dial into do universities keep all student term papers from your home PC. Sign out those library books and copy those journal articles early on in the process, or you may find some prof has absconded with the only copy of your best source, and good luck getting it back before Christmas.

Or some bozo has neatly cut out every article on your hot topic which, by an odd coincidence, was the hot topic for thirty other students just last semester.

If you have a specific title or author, it's pretty easy to type it in an online catalog or database, and see what happens.

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But most of the time, what you have is a genuinely fuzzy idea, and that's where keyword searches come in real handy.

Every library has at least one keyword-searchable index of magazines and journals, and may even have a special index that covers your subject area. Try typing in the words that come closest to your topic, and see what happens. If you get zip, try thinking of alternate terms, synonyms, slang etc. Usually you get way too much, because in our haste to get everything online, we've indexed everything to death.

So a search on alligators turns up everything from wildlife to recipes. Make sure you read the search screen for the online system you are using, because many online indexes and catalogs ask you to click on Keyword Search or something similar, before sending the surfer in search of the prize.

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It lets me keyword search a huge list of sources including lots of stuff that's not in the librarylets me scan titles of individual issues of journals, and even for a fee lets me order photocopies of articles online, or get their table of contents regularly delivered to my email box. Try using a little logic - Boolean logic, that is. So OR can be used to build up a pool of likely hits desert or sweets or candy. AND can be used to combine two terms together, and pull out only those hits that mention both terms, narrowing down the results, like: Some indexes let you use NOT to filter out some category you don't need, like: Most online indexes use some version of Boolean searching.

Try truncating your search terms. That means lopping off the last letter or so, and sticking on a "wild card" which says "this plus any variation of this", such as plural forms. But it would also drag in psychotic, psychobabble and psychosomatic, so use truncation with caution. Every system has a different "wild card" character usually a? Find out what sources are NOT available locally, but potentially valuable to your paper.

You can order a copy of any book or journal article through the library's inter-library loan department. The rules and fees vary, and there may be photocopy fees or other restrictions. It can take several weeks to get the material you need from another library. As the semester progresses, and more students and faculty gradually realize they also need this service, it quickly slows down under the load.

  1. Please note that many of the resources linked in this document require the student to login and access them, the parent or supporter role would be to provide the link to the student with encouragement to access it.
  2. My professor is in a position of power, and refusing to do so could limit my own career opportunities. Turabian's style manual will have several examples of how to reference or "cite" every conceivable type of material you could drag into your paper, including internet sources.
  3. I also keep a floppy copy which I update every fifteen or twenty minutes. Some of their experiences may include.
  4. Have you chatted with a program counsellor yet? Direct quotations, by the way, are not only allowed but encouraged, as long as they are referenced.

Try and guess how much of your tuition went into beefing up the library staff. If you send in your requests very early on, you will be have the necessary tools to complete your paper when you're finally ready to begin. Drag Yourself Into The Bookstacks. Whatever sources you use, build a list of the best references as you go, copying down the library catalog number etc.

Drag those ponderous volumes back out to the copiers, and stand in line behind countless other people who somehow mysteriously realized that they needed to do the exact same thing at the same time you did. Get the jump on the inevitable crowd. Most term papers for most classes end up being due at about the same time.

It's like a conspiracy. So remember, one is a study date, two is a study group, but three is a line. Ask The Prof For Help. What have you got to lose? There are copies in the library, and the campus bookstore usually has some in stock. Check the textbook do universities keep all student term papers also, as some classes might require this book.

The library will also have the expanded version, probably on the reference shelves. Neatness Does Count - Spelling and grammar will be considered in grading your paper. The point of writing papers is to teach you to organize your thoughts, and express them in a clear and coherent fashion, in the proper style.