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How can I organise my research?

One important aspect of organising your research is to exercise some discipline about your note taking. It is important to ensure that you know where words and ideas came from so that you can clearly distinguish between them and your own.

See How can I avoid plagiarism? for guidance on note taking.

See How can I use the ideas of others? for further discussion on your approach.

Consider, too, tips for organising your references and documents.

Tip: consider keeping a research journal. A research journal is a good way of recording your thoughts as well as the information you need from your sources. It encourages you to read, think and write about your topic while observing your responses to the material you encounter. A sample page from a research journal might look something like this, but you can be as creative as you wish.

Sample research journal

Research journal

Assignment: __________________________________________________
Source: __________________________________________________
Main points My thoughts
  • _________________________
  • _________________________
  • _________________________
  • _________________________
  • _________________________
  • _________________________
  • _________________________
  • _________________________

Managing your information

The Learning support for research students site explains the importance of managing your information and offers suggestions on how to manage information.

See also How do I research for my assignments?

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