1.Read the abstract first.
If you are looking for scholarly articles on a topic, don’t read the articles until you’ve looked over the abstract and made sure that this article fits in with your intended subtopics. Don’t fall into the trap of using any article as a resource just because it vaguely relates to your topic. You will waste time that could be better spent reading the right articles.
2. Type quotes as you go.
If you find a quote that you think you can use in your paper, type it into your outline under the appropriate subtopic. Make sure to note the author and page number. By the time you get to the writing stage of your paper, you will already have relevant quotes ready to go. You won’t have to waste time going back and finding them. This will also help you solidify your thesis statement.
3. Site your sources as you find them.
I remember getting to the end of papers in high school and having to go back through all of my sources and create a works cited page. By that point, I was so done with my paper that it felt tortuous to do this last step. Don’t make it your last step – do this as you go. Whenever you realize you will use a certain source in your paper, immediately add it to your works cited page. That way, when you are done writing and revising your paper, you won’t have to worry about it.
For extensive guides on citing in APA and MLA styles, follow the links below: