2. Select a Topic

The most important step in doing research is to choose a good topic. To select a topic, consider the following questions:

  • What interests me, and what would I like to research?
  • Is my topic specific and focused on a subject significant to my class assignment or information need?
  • Am I going to be able to find enough information to complete the assignment or answer my question completely?

Steps for focusing your topic:

  1. Make sure that your topic is not too broad and unfocused.
    Example: obesity
  2. Refine the topic and find a more specific aspect of it to study.
    Example: obesity in children
  3. Turn this topic into a question to focus even further.
    Example: Do school lunches contribute to obesity in children?

When in doubt, ask for help in selecting and adding focus to your topic - and don't forget your instructor! She or he is your best resource in helping with your research.