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Writing Research Papers   Tags: apa, bibliography, citation, english, internet, mla, paper, research, works cited, writers, writing  

Resources to help students interested in writing research papers
Last Updated: Jul 19, 2017 URL: Print Guide RSS Updates
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Use this subject guide to help you find general information about writing research papers or other college writing

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Basic Research Paper Outline

Start Your Research at the Library

  • BCTC LRC (Library)
    This is the link to the BCTC LRC (Library) website. You can access library materials from the library website 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, by accessing articles and books from our databases.
  • Library Hours
    You can also visit the library in person. Check the Library Hours page to see when we are open.

Related Guides


Library Catalog

Search for books in the KCTCS Library Catalog



BCTC Tutoring Center

The BCTC Tutoring Center offers help to BCTC students in a variety of areas, including writing help. Visit link below for specific campus locations and hours.

Assignment Calculator

  • Assignment Calculator
    The Assignment Calculator is a time management tool for researching and writing your paper.

    The Assignment Calculator can help outline the process of researching and writing step by step. provide you with an action plan with recommended due dates for each step, and help you finish your assignment on time and on target

Citing Your Sources

Citing Your Sources: When writing a research paper, you will often need to evaluate and refer to the work of other people (your "sources").  When you draw upon the work of others, you must give proper credit by citing their work in your paper.  Even when you do not quote another's work directly, if reading that source contributed to the ideas presented in your paper, you should give the author due credit by citing him or her.  

Other Reasons Why You Should Cite:  Citing sources in your paper shows that you have taken the time and effort to learn about what others have written about a research topic before putting forth your own ideas. This builds your credibility as a careful researcher and writer. Citations can also provide evidence for any factual claims you make in your paper, and they can be a useful source of more information for the paper's reader.

Think of including cited sources in your paper as similar to having a conversation with other researchers in the field.  You show you have read others' work on the topic, you acknowledge their research ideas with a citation, and then you add your own ideas on the topic.

How Do You Cite?  Your instructor will tell you what style guide to use when citing other's work in your paper. Two common styles are MLA and APA. For links to several citation style guides, please visit the Citation Guide.


    Selected Books at the BCTC Library

    Audiovisuals of Interest

    • Writing a Great Research Paper (DVDs)
      This series of ten DVDs guides you through each step of the research paper process,. Each DVD can be checked out separately at the Cooper Campus Library (Call # PE1478 .W66 2007)

      v. 1. Picking an A+ topic
      v. 2. Starting your research
      v. 3. Finding the best sources
      v. 4. Plagiarism & other pitfalls
      v. 5. Taking notes
      v. 6. How to be persuasive
      v. 7. Writing your first draft
      v. 8. Quoting, citing, & paraphrasing
      v. 9. Formatting your paper
      v. 10. Perfecting your final draft.

    My Profile

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    Maureen Cropper
    Contact Info
    Electronic Resources Librarian /
    BCTC - Leestown Campus
    Lexington, KY 40511
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    Steps in Writing a Research Paper

    1. Read the research paper assignment instructions provided to you by your instructor. Be sure to pay attention to any specific assignment requirements such as page length, style guidelines, topic selection, source types, etc.

    2. Choose a topic for your paper. Narrow or expand your topic as needed, to meet the requirements of your assignment.

    3. Find and read sources about your topic (books, articles, web sites, etc.). You can find many sources at the library.

    4. Take notes of ideas or quotations you may want to cite in your paper ( it can be useful to write notes on index cards or in a notebook, making sure you also write down where the information came from).

    5. Prepare an outline of your paper.

    6. Write a first draft of your paper.

    7. Conduct any additional research if necessary

    8. Look over your first draft and then revise/rewrite as needed for clarity, accuracy, and quality. 

    9. Check to make sure you have included all necessary citation information (Works Cited or Bibliography at end of paper, in-text citations, etc).

    10. Proofread your paper one last time for correct spelling, punctuation, and style guidelines and then make any final corrections to your paper.

    Research Guide

    • Library Research Guide
      This online Research Guide prepared by BCTC librarians will give you some hints and links to aid in the research process

    Search Academic Search Complete

    • Academic Search Complete
      Academic Search Complete is a full-text, multi-disciplinary database. It is one of our more popular EBSCO databases. It contains many journal articles that you may find useful as sources for your research papers

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