Table of contents:
- What is a term paper
- Preliminary preparations
- Term paper structure
- Term paper topics examples
It is a nice feeling - finally realizing that your academic path is almost over. Soon, you will be free of constant assignments and will embark on a new journey in the professional field of your choosing. Or, if it's not your last year, you will soon join the magical world by the name 'summer break.' In any case, your freedom, no matter how temporary, is close. But before that can happen, you still need to prepare a few final papers. Otherwise, the gatekeepers of college education won't let you pass. Among the number of papers you need to submit in order to break free, there is one that is trickier than any complex essay you can be assigned with. A term paper. Writing a term paper can be as torturous as it is exciting. There's a ton of research to do, your writing must be impeccable, and it takes an ungodly amount of time. And you don't always have enough of it to sleep, let alone to dedicate it to the lengthy piece of work. But seize your panic! For we are here to enlighten you and show you how to write a good term paper. Cheers!
What is a term paper
Of course, before dropping yourself in the middle of all the writing mess, you need to make sure you really understand what is a term paper. You would be surprised to find how many students get to the end of a certain studying period without even realizing what they're doing in college. In order to define term paper, you only need to look at the name. 'Term' here indicates that you have to utilize everything you've learned during your semester. Your work will represent what you have achieved throughout the term. Dust off all those analytical and writing skills, for this paper usually takes up a significant part of your overall grade.
In the term paper, you research a particular topic, either assigned to you or the one you choose for yourself. At the time of your study, you bring about all those skills you've supposedly picked up in class. You need to show exceptional perception, ability to conduct thorough academic research and be competent enough to format your work correctly. If it all seems too much of a bother, just think that it's worse for those who already have to write their theses paper. So you got the good end of the deal! And with enough patience and tenacity, you can nail this paper as Raskolnikov did with that old lady.
Term paper format
If you use citations (and you will, for it's vital for you to reference other people, but that's the talk for another section), you need to be aware of different formatting styles. The most common ones are APA and MLA ones. Usually, professors indicate which one they wish you to use. But if there are no specifications, you better read up on both of them and choose one that fits you better. Don't leave the formatting of your bibliography to last minute. It's better to dedicate a separate day to compiling and putting everything in order. We advise you to even do the annotations at the beginning stages of your work, for it will get easier to reference sources later on.
How to format a term paper
APA or MLA format styles also regulate the proper recommendations for the styling of the body of your paper. They help you figure out what margins and fonts to use, how to create your term paper cover page, and basically what goes where and in which style. Be attentive with those rules. Term paper writing is a thing that every professor takes very seriously, sometimes even way too much. Some people will cut your grade if your word size is half an inch smaller than required. It may seem funny, but don't take formatting too lightly.
Just like you need to warm up before hitting those bench-presses, there is some preparation you need to get done before starting crafting your term paper. You may, of course, think, that it's too much of a bother, and you will not be wrong. Sometimes, it is better just to order your paper and be done with it!
Determining your topic.
Most of the time, you get assigned the theme for your essay by your professor. But from time to time you can get an exciting opportunity to choose what you want to research for yourself. If that happens, you have a vast field to pick your daisy-topics from. Go with something more or less familiar. Yes, you can already navigate the subject, because you've spent the whole term studying hard. But wouldn't it be even more spectacular to research something you're interested in outside of class? That would be amazing! Even if you already got assigned a topic by your supervisor, you can always slightly alter it to fit into your interests better. Make education fun, and it will come easier!
Doing your research
Get out a shovel, we need to dig. A term paper is no ordinary essay, for it is lengthier, harder to complete, and more important in regards to your grade. Libraries seem like an archaism these days, but you can't always find all you need on the Internet. So don't repudiate from visiting the temple of Muses! Remember, though, that ancient sources are good for studying philosophy and such. In order to get the most relevant information about the research you need, always use the latest editions. Times change, and so does the perception of the world by the human race. Also, never trust only one source. Double-check the data you retrieve, and if something seems wrong, get the third piece of intel. Only when you are confident that your information is relevant, you can add it to your paper.
Making an outline
Even the brightest minds can sometimes get their electricity supply cut. You can be a brilliant writer, but writing everything on the go is really not a wise choice. Make a plan first, draft it out. Create an outline where you divide the parts of your paper into categories. Under those categories, note which sources and what information that you received at the research stage will you use in it. After completing your draft, leave it be. Get some rest, and then go back and re-read it, fixing all the mistakes and noting down what can be changed. As an option, you can give it to someone else. It is easier for an unbiased and unclogged mind to see miscalculations you might've missed.
Term paper structure
We know what you're probably thinking. There are already so many things to consider, and we didn't even get to the term paper structure yet! Well, don't panic. We're finally here. And yes, there are even more rules here, so buckle up. You need to know how to structure a term paper if you want to be a top student. Or, at least that student that doesn't seem to be bothered by studies, but still get straight A's. In this section, we will talk about the core parts of a term paper. They are basically the same ones you have in your run-of-the-mill essay. But, as usual, it is not as simple as you would like. Believe us - you're not the only one struggling, so we hope you can feel the support of hundreds of your fellow students behind you. Let's get into it! We will lead with the guide on how to start a term paper.
Term paper introduction
The way you pen down your introduction is like an opening scene for a movie. If it's enjoyable and captivating, people will stay to see the rest, but if it is dull and unmotivating, they will rarely stick around after the first action scene. So, how to write a term paper introduction in an intriguing and attractive way? The answer is simple. Don't. Write a rough draft for it. Make the first version of your intro just for you, but not oriented on your reader yet. No matter how much planning you do, you can't predict the direction your writing will take. It often happens so that even the author can't completely control the flow of their work. When you create only an approximate edition of your opening paragraph, it will set the direction the paper will take without restricting it. You can change it later when everything is done. That way, it will be in perfect sync with the rest of the paper. This is a more natural way than forcing yourself to change something in the body just because you 'already said so in the introduction.'
But when you're done with the rest of the paper, and it's time to finalize the introduction, here are some tips. You've probably heard it before but hook your reader. Make them want to go further. Intrigue them with something so sensational or captivating that they will crave to read more. Start with the short description of what your paper is about. And don't forget about your thesis! In this statement, you indicate the main point of your research and what results you're expecting to achieve. It's even easier to do that if you followed our instructions and penned down your paper before the first paragraph. This way, you already know what you've come to, so just write it down in the introduction and pretend as if it was always like that.
The body of the term paper
The body of your term paper is the most intricate part. It is the literal core of your research. The manifestation of all those sleepless hours you spend in the library or on the Internet, with relaxing music blasting through the speakers and the desire to sleep so great that your eyes drooped. Term paper body format, as we've mentioned, depends on your decision. But its structure is another thing. Let's deal with the common question of how many body paragraphs should a term paper have. Generally, it is determined by the number of argumentative and narrative points you bring in. Always separate your example sections. If they turn out to be too large, it's better to partition everything into sporadic subsections. Make it as easy to follow as you can. Remember - the content of your term paper is relevant, but poorly constructed style can scare away your readers.
Give full, exhaustive arguments. Check that your explanations don't leave any place for further questions. Imagine that you're explaining the law of thermodynamics to a five-year-old. That's how thorough you have to be. But, don't oversimplify your language, use sophisticated and high-level lexis. It has to be evident from the vocabulary of your paper that it was written by someone who knows their stuff. After finishing up, consult with your outline notes. Has everything you planned made into the paper? Did you unveil the topic in an elaborative way? Are you satisfied with it yourself? Only after you've answered these questions can you proceed to the last part.
Term paper conclusion
Ah, it is almost done! Hang in there, buddy, you're at the finishing line. The last question you have to find an answer to is how to end a term paper. In the last-ditch piece of this monster, you can use this 4-step method:
- Recap your thesis.
Do it in an inconspicuous, smart way. You shouldn't just copy and paste it. Rephrase it. If in the introduction it gave off a vibe of 'I will prove it to you,' here it needs to sound like 'see? I did it'.
- Remind them of something interesting.
Recall something particularly exciting from your body paragraphs. Sum up all the major points but don't overstretch it.
- Wrap it up.
Conclude everything. What did you achieve? How will it help further research? Can your paper be useful at all? Convince your reader you didn't just waste about two weeks of your life for one grade.
- Leave with a fleur.
Throw something in there that will make them think. Overall, your conclusion shouldn't be a simple summed up repetition of what you wrote. Show your readers that your topic is fascinating and deserves their further attention.
And this is how to write a conclusion for a term paper! Finally, it is alive! Now everything you have left to do is annotate your work and pray to Zeus your dog won't eat it on the day of your evaluation.
Term paper bibliography
This is the last stage of your struggles - formatting your term paper bibliography. We've already talked about the way you can do it - in the APA or MLA format. Don't forget to double-check that all the references in the paper correlate correctly with the sources in your bibliography. Once again, some professor can be extremely picky about that sort of thing.
Term paper topics examples
We just can't get enough of helping you! Here are some term paper topics we've come up with for you. We hope it can help you get inspired!
Sociology term paper topics
- Anti-sexism and its role as a conduit to the better future.
- Terrorism in modern society.
- Ableism as a normalized form of discrimination.
- The importance of gun control.
- Teen pregnancy as a result of improper sexual education.
Psychology term paper topics
- Teen depression.
- Eating disorders as a product of altered consciousness.
- Serial murder and brain chemistry.
- Bipolar disorder and its symptoms.
- How do phobias manifest.
History term paper topics
- Napoleon Bonaparte - a savior or another setback on French people's way to freedom?
- Jacobin dictatorship.
- The assassination of Martin Luther King Jr.
- Who wanted Kennedy gone?
- Communism throughout the history.
And that's pretty much it! Everything explained and simplified. Good luck with your term paper writing, and remember - you can always call for help from our professional custom writing service.