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Choose a Topic

Develop a Topic

Once you have selected a topic, the next step is to develop a research question.

  • Write down what you already know about the topic and what you would like to know. 
  • Ask the five "W" questions about your topic: 
    • Who, What, When, Why, How 
      • Example: Who first domesticated dogs? What challenges did people face when domesticating dogs? When did dogs become a popular pet? Why are humans drawn to dogs? How have dogs evolved from wolves?
  • If you are having trouble finding resources on your topic, broaden your search. 
    • Example: For Cedar Falls, try broadening your search to Iowa or Midwest. 
    • Example: For first-year college students, try broadening your search to college students. 
    • Example: For Facebook, try broadening your search to social media or social networking.