How to Write a History Research Paper

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Research Paper

A history research paper is a thesis paper that is based on research on the prompt question. It needs some arguments and responses supporting the prompt. It may involve arguments on why, how, and what the topic deals with. The relevant sources of evidence have to be produced accordingly. History assignments vary on different topics with particular instructions given by the respective professor. However, any history paper has some specifically designed steps. So, to get into the real historian’s work and dig into the past, let’s categorize and look at the steps in writing a History research paper.

Ensure the requirement of paper prompt clearly

A professor provides prompts with the main query and/or subqueries in connection to the main query. You will get help from sub-queries to get ideas and answer the main query. Keep a distinction between the main and subqueries to avoid the paper looking like a list of short essays. Consider carefully what is being asked and respond to each section of the prompt. Understanding the prompt properly is the first step to writing a history research paper.

Brainstorm potential responses with their arguments

Put forth all that you know about the topic before beginning any research. List out all your ideas in the form of a diagram to understand the topic better. Do not analyze, stop, or judge your ideas at this stage. Read it once you are done. Understand the queries and lapses that come with it. Make use of this as a guide to do your research and writing.

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Reading and research

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Go to a library or use online resources to look at the angles that pose an argument on the topic. Look at the responses to your arguments through different sources. Do sufficient research to get proper evidence to support your arguments.

Key sources

Identify the crucial sources that will help you in making an argument and their supportive response. Annotate them to downsize the research. This means summarization of the primary idea of the key source and how it shall be used in the research paper. The purpose of the source has to be identified and how it can be used. Identify whether it is evidence or counterpoint or historical background.

A history research paper is successful when the context of the topic and the theme associated with it are understood. Its details are as important as factual data. Then include it in your paper.

Stock and draft

By now, you are at a point where you are clear about the prompt. Look at the gathered material you have till now. Based on the material, look at the points where an argument can be developed. Looking at the sources of evidence you have for the prompt question and what aspects can be put forth for an argument. Address the query given in the prompt. Change the argument or the angle to handle the argument when sufficient evidence sources are not available. 

Argument and its development

An argument has to be developed with evidence-based responses. For brief papers, response to an argument can be rather reached quickly. If there’s any discrepancy and you got into a trap of cyclic confusion, do not worry. Taking help from your professor, friend, or preceptor is the best option. Have a working thesis on hand at the end of this step.

Argument outline

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Your paper is your perspective or interpretation of the events. Your argument will display your take on these events or aspects. Jot down all the phases of your argument. An argument outline has to be organized with the help of notes. Support your argument with solid evidence at each phase. Now, you are good to start writing. Gather as much evidence as possible in support of your argument. If there’s a lapse, check out your drawing to get a different angle of response or argument. This step will assist you in strengthening your argument.

Prepare

Once a path has been chalked out to write the history paper, you are ready to write. Get all your resources at one place such as research material, laptop, notes, etc. Be comfortable and fully ready to write. Begin writing your history research paper based on the outline of your argument. 

Conclusion

Writing a History Research Paper is a step by step process. Initially, you may tend to be overwhelmed or taken back with the paper prompt, but with smaller steps, writing the paper can become manageable and exciting.

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