Research For Your Essay

We’re going to look at how to write a good essay and although this essay can be applied at almost any level for the purposes of this talk we’re going to assume that it’s at a university level now one of the most important things about essay writing is your preparation your research at a university level there are many tools at your disposal many of them accessible through the internet so use them but don’t don’t pooh-pooh the value of books on you books are our lifeblood and you need to learn at the earliest possible stage how to skim through a book how to read a book quickly.

For example if we take one of these things there’s a book about her former British prime minister all the exciting information is going to be about two-thirds of the way through the book so if you have to read this book and let’s say one hour please don’t start at the forward or the introduction because that’s really just pandering to the brilliance of the writer it’s hits all pompous rubbish the actual weight the information is going to be about two-thirds of the way through the book this is the same with an academic book with a novel in fact with any form of literary writing the important bit of information and in your essay is going to be about two-thirds of the way through the actual piece when you’re looking at when you’re looking for research you should think seriously about the resources that are available to you on the Internet.

You’ve got things like JSTOR which is or PDF for the most parts of therefore a little bit slow lexis nexis Eric CQ researcher university databases but also make sure that you’re looking at primary as well as secondary sources the primary sources are very valuable the secondary sources are equally valuable useful to know what everybody is saying about your particular subject but make sure you do this quickly the next thing you need to look at is analysis your analysis of why somebody says something because everybody has a bias everybody has a particular axe to grind look carefully at the evidence that is presented for a particular viewpoint look at the claims that are made by the author identify his argument or her argument and the some shion’s be careful of generalizations things which are out of date and non sequiturs check also whether or not the logic works as we look particularly for a thing called the logical fallacy I’m going to speak in the in a few lessons about a thing called the fallacy of authority.

But that equally is important here don’t accept what somebody says simply because they shout louder look at the evidence point that I would like to make is the value of what I call the crunch but some people might call this the thesis some people bizarrely might call this the synthesis if their following is a philosophical approach where you have thesis antithesis and then synthesis um but essentially the reason I call this the crunch is because it’s the weight of your essay it’s the bit that packs the punch maybe we should call it punch rather than crunch anyway that that’s the bit that you’re focusing on if you don’t know what you are going to write in your crunch or your thesis or whatever you want to call it then.