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Controversial Issues

Writing a debate or argumentative research paper? Here's how to get started researching controversial issues.

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Selecting a Topic

Here are some basic tips for selecting a topic for any research paper. 

Choose: a topic that interests you. You're more likely to enjoy the research process, if you like the topic. 

Make sure: that your topic is not so broad that you are overwhelmed with information.

Make sure: that your topic is not so narrow that you can't find enough information.

Limit: your topic to a time period if necessary. For example, 2, 5 or 10 years.

Limit: your topic to a geographical area if necessary. For example, the United States or Kentucky or Louisville.

Consider: how much information you need. For example, your professor may require 3 scholarly articles, 1 book, and 1 newspaper article. It's best to know what you need before you even start looking.

Start: your research early to eliminate stress and anxiety.

Selecting a Topic

Stumped about what to write about? Here are a couple places to get ideas. A librarian or writing instructor can help you narrow a topic that is too broad.

One helpful note on Gale in Context: Opposing Viewpoints is that if you click on the "Browse Issues" tab right beneath the light bulb icon, you will find a list of topics.

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