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Note card format for my research paper: What are the peculiarities?

Using note cards to get through your research paper is an excellent way to:

  • Remember research done
  • Record your outline such as headings and subheadings
  • Keep track of key ideas within your writing
  • Understand the structure of your paper
  • Stay on track with your paper’s direction

However, these can only be beneficial if done correctly. Here’s why:

Insufficient notes

Chances are you will have a large number of notes by the time your writing actually begins. You’re liable to forget pertinent information unless you are very clear about what you are trying to convey. Write neatly and ensure that you include sufficient information to jog your memory later. You’ll be surprised at how quickly you can forget what was in your mind 24 hours ago.

Sloppy outlines

Another mistake made while note card making is that students fail to keep their outline in mind while doing so. Your outline needs to be in a certain order for it to make sense. You must include main sections and subheadings accurately on your note cards. Make sure that every main heading has all its sub parts underneath it for easier outline construction later on.

Missing the point of key ideas

The art of being laconic in your writing will get easier and easier the more you practice. Taking a pertinent sentence or paragraph and breaking it up into a tiny phrase can be challenging, but this is the key to fitting in more information onto your flash cards for better referencing. It’s also important to learn this skill in your assignment writing, because the more you say with fewer words, the more space you’ll have to win more points.

Failing to use a decent numbering system

Numbering your note cards properly will assist you later on when it’s time to arrange your structure. Knowing how all the parts fit together will depend on how well you sort your note cards out from the start. Number your cards properly to avoid getting confused about the configuration.

Too many note cards

A research paper is often long with lots of info. Soon, you may find your desk so full of note cards that you don’t know what they’re all for. The best way to remedy this is by using a colour coding system. Have at least four differently coloured note cards available so that you can tell the difference between:

  • Research points
  • Headings and subheadings
  • Theme direction indicators
  • Quotes and references
 
 

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