History Paper Instructions

2612 Words11 Pages
Imagine driving to a place you've never visited before, and forgetting to bring a road map. You have an idea of where you want to go, but you'll probably find it difficult to get there. Writing a history paper can be a similar experience. You may start out with nothing more than the assignment sheet that the professor handed out in class. That gives you an idea of where you need to go, but it may not seem easy to get there. But by following some simple guidelines, you can move steadily and effectively towards your destination. The following example will guide you through the steps in writing a history paper: 1. Identify the assignment's goals, or the professor's question. For this example, the assignment is to write a 5-7 pp. paper in…show more content…
Do the same for the contrary evidence. If you think it will help, note where you will place statistics or quotations. Choose the quotations that best support your thesis. Quote directly when the quotation clearly and succinctly states the point you wish to make, or illustrates a point you have made. When the quotation is wordy or provides only basic facts, you will want to paraphrase the material. You should also paraphrase to avoid overuse of quotations: your paper should not be a series of quotations linked by an occasional transition sentence (of course, you must cite paraphrases just as you would a quotation). Finally, indicate where you will conclude your…show more content…
Omit needless words. State your ideas as directly as possible. Excessive use of adverbs, adjectives, and prepositional phrases can clutter a sentence, obscuring rather than amplifying your points. Many students load their papers with "filler" words in order to meet a minimum length requirement. This is obvious to the reader, and does more harm than good. It's better to use additional evidence rather than additional words. CORRECT EXAMPLE: The CCC employed thousands of workers to construct hiking trails in national parks. INCORRECT EXAMPLE: The CCC kept many thousands of workers busily employed in constructing long hiking trails through America's beautiful national parks. 9. Know your audience. Identifying your audience helps you determine what information and how much of it you will include in your essay. Your audience for a history paper is usually the professor or the teaching assistant who will grade it. This leads many students to assume that their audience is already familiar with most of the material. As a result, student writers often take shortcuts by failing to place information within its context, or by neglecting to define terms. Writing this way puts you at risk of providing insufficient information; when grading the essay the instructor is likely to assume that you are not familiar with the context or terms. One way to overcome this problem is to write your paper so that a general reader unfamiliar with the topic would be able to read and understand

More about History Paper Instructions

Open Document