Tutor profile: Delaney J.
What writing style and citations am I supposed to use for my papers?
First, determine the type of paper you're writing. Your teacher/professor may tell you which style they prefer. If not, determine what the subject of your paper is. If you're writing about social sciences or math, you'll likely use APA format. If you're writing about literature or language, you'll probably use MLA. Depending on the situation, your instructor may also ask for specific styles such as Chicago 8th Ed., Element and Date, etc. Each of these have guides available both at libraries and online. Depending on which style your instructor chooses, you'll need to cite any research/information that isn't your own (including quotes and ideas). These citations will go at the end of your paper, and sometimes within the paper as "in-text citations", depending on the style!
How do I start a literary analysis on a piece of poetry?
Literary analysis can seem tricky at first, but there's a few ways to break it down. When reading poetry, get comfortable with it. Read it in your head a few times, then read it out loud a few more. After that, look deeper and start asking yourself questions about the piece. Start with the big picture! Who is the author? What is this poem about? What is the author trying to make you feel/understand? Once you have those answered, keep digging. What tools do they use to convey this? Does the wording, format, or content change the poem at all? What is the deeper context of the poem? Once you've answered these questions, you're on the road to analyzing a poem.
How do I start a research paper for class?
Great Question! Starting a paper is the hardest part, but it's not so bad when you break it down. First, gather the information you need for you paper. I recommend utilizing note cards to keep everything organized. Once you have all your information in one place, your next goal is to break it down into 3-4 main subjects. For example, if you have lots of information about fishing, perhaps your data could be broken down into the supplies for fishing, how to fish, and what kind of fish you can catch. Once you've broken it down, you've got the hardest part done! Utilize these main topics as your thesis statement: a sentence or two statement that encompasses the whole paper. Once you have this, you're ready to begin! Write an introduction that is eye-catching and introduces your ideas and your thesis. Make the 3-4 subjects into your 'body' paragraphs, and at the end, make a conclusion restating your thesis and wrapping up your ideas.
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