How do I create an argument within my paper?
First, you need to have a clear and concise topic that you've already narrowed down. Then, you need to form an opinion about your topic. This opinion should be formed, in part, by the sources you begin discovering as you check out reliable sources as a part of the research process. Next, look at sources that agree with your opinion. Also look at sources that disagree with your opinion or talk about your topic in a different way. Remember, these sources should all be reputable! Next, craft a thesis sentence - this should be a sentence that clearly states your opinion about your topic and also lays out your 'whys' - reasons (based on your research) why your opinion is a good one to hold. This will provide direction within the body of your paper. From here, you can create a paper outline. Usually, most argumentative papers have a introductory paragraph (the thesis sentence goes here), several paragraphs of supporting material (based on and/or bolstered by your research; introducing alternative points of view/ opinions also goes in this section), and a conclusory paragraph. From here, you can begin work on constructing your argumentative paper!
How do I find sources for my paper?
First, consult your assignment sheet to look at parameters your teacher/ professor has given you. You'll also need to consider your topic to determine which sources are most appropriate. If the topic is a current event, you'll need to find reputable news sources online. If your professor wants academic sources, you can start by using your academic library catalog or databases for searching! I recommend starting with a few keyword searches. From there, you can refine your search using search engine filters or facets.
How do I narrow down a topic for an essay or paper?
First, ask your topic some questions like the following: What perspectives am i considering? What aspect of the topic interests me? Can I narrow my topic by date range, geographical location, or academic discipline? Are there specific types of people, places, or things I can focus on?