Turning Topics into Research
Part of effective research is figuring out what you’re researching. Often that means taking a BIG topic and turning it into a relatively narrow question that you can then try to answer.
If you already have a research question, you might find that you need to break it down into sub-questions.
Creating a Concept Map
One way to start that process is by creating a concept map. A concept map is an illustration of the many facts, topics, concepts and ideas that are related to your broad topic. Start by writing down your main idea in the oval below, and then start writing down related ideas, including issues, sub-topics, examples, questions you have, anything and everything you know about it…and things you don’t know!
Ask yourself: Where is this happening? Who is involved? When did it happen? What was the result? What was the cause? How did it happen?
From your concept map pull out specific sub-questions that you might need to answer, and then think about keywords/search terms you might use. Finally, think about where you might search for answers to these questions.
|Sub-question||Keywords/Search Terms||Where to search?|