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Choosing a Topic: Home

When choosing a research topic,

begin with your assignment and identify the task, scope, and assignment guidelines. #1: Task. Identify key words in your assignment to clarify your task. What are you being asked to do? Make an argument? Solve a problem? Something else?#2: Scope. Consider the scope of the assignment. How long does it need to be? What kind of sources are expected? How many sources?#3: Assignment Guidelines. As you brainstorm potential topics, keep the guidelines of the assignment in mind.Here are some questions to ask yourself when choosing a research topic. What are you passionate about? What do you value? What moves youto action?What interests you academically? What are you curious about? What questions do you have?What are your concerns as a student?As a person of a certain age or identity? As a citizen of the country or the world?What's going on in the news or in pop culture?What's going on on campus? What are the hot topics on social media? What issue has you or your friends worried or confused?Where is society headed?What issues will matter for your future success and the success of future generations?Here are some additional tips for choosing a research topic. Try a free writing exercise and get feedback from a friend or your professor. Try to avoid cliché topics. Choose a topic you can be open-minded about.