How to create a research design

A research design is a strategy for answering your research question using empirical data. Creating a research design means making decisions about:

  • Your overall aims and approach
  • The type of research design you’ll use
  • Your sampling methods or criteria for selecting subjects
  • Your data collection methods
  • The procedures you’ll follow to collect data
  • Your data analysis methods

A well-planned research design helps ensure that your methods match your research aims and that you use the right kind of analysis for your data.

You might have to write up a research design as a standalone assignment, or it might be part of a larger research proposal or other project. In either case, you should carefully consider which methods are most appropriate and feasible for answering your question.

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How to format your MLA Works Cited page

In MLA style, the list of Works Cited (also known as a reference list or bibliography) appears at the end of your paper. It gives full details of every source that you cited in the text.

Like the rest of an MLA format paper, the Works Cited should be left-aligned and double-spaced with 1-inch margins.

You can use the free Scribbr Citation Generator to create and manage your Works Cited list. Choose your source type and enter the URL, DOI or title to get started.

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How to write a summary

Summarizing means giving a concise overview of a text’s main points in your own words. A summary is always much shorter than the original text.

Writing a summary does not involve critiquing or analyzing the source—you should simply provide a clear, objective, accurate account of the most important information and ideas, without copying any text from the original and without missing any of the key points.

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How to quote in academic writing

Quoting means copying a passage of someone else’s words and crediting the source. To quote a source, you must ensure:

  • The quoted text is enclosed in quotation marks or formatted as a block quote.
  • The original author is correctly cited.
  • The text is identical to the original.

The exact format of a quote depends on how long it is and which citation style you are using. Quoting and citing correctly is essential to avoid plagiarism.

Example of a quote
“As natural selection acts solely by accumulating slight, successive, favourable variations, it can produce no great or sudden modification; it can act only by very short and slow steps” (Darwin, 1859, p. 510).

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Direct quotes in APA Style

A direct quote is a piece of text copied word-for-word from a source. You may quote a word, phrase, sentence, or entire passage.

There are three main rules for quoting in APA Style:

Example: APA direct quote
According to a recent paper, “quotes can be useful in academic writing” (Singh et al., 2019, p. 25).

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Checklist: Writing a research paper

A research paper is an extended piece of writing based on in-depth independent research. It may involve conducting empirical research or analyzing primary and secondary sources.

Writing a good research paper requires you to demonstrate a strong knowledge of your topic and advance an original argument. To convincingly communicate your ideas, you need a logical structure and a clear style that follows the conventions of academic writing.

When you’ve finished writing your paper, use this checklist to evaluate your work.

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How to write your graduate school resume

When you apply for graduate school, you’ll usually be asked to submit a resume or CV along with your application. A graduate school resume should give a focused, concise overview of relevant experiences and achievements.

The exact sections you include depend on your experiences and on the focus of the program you’re applying to. Ensure your resume gives full details of:

  • Your college education
  • Relevant work experience
  • Relevant voluntary and extracurricular experience
  • Any awards, honors, publications, or other relevant achievements
  • Any relevant skills, certifications, and memberships

The main difference from a regular resume is that you’ll put more emphasis on your education and academic interests to show that you’re a good candidate for graduate school.

Download the Word templates and adjust them to your own purposes.

Resume template 1 Resume Template 2

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APA vs MLA: The key differences

APA vs MLA: The key differences in citation and formatting.

APA and MLA are two of the most commonly used citation styles.

The APA manual (published by the American Psychological Association) is mostly used in social science and education fields.

The MLA Handbook (published by the Modern Language Association) is mostly used in humanities fields.

In both styles, a source citation consists of:

  • A brief parenthetical citation in the text
  • A full reference at the end of the paper

However, citations look slightly different in each style, with different rules for things like title capitalization, author names, and placement of the date.

There are also some differences in layout and formatting. Download the Word templates for a correctly formatted paper in either style.

APA template MLA template

This article follows the 9th edition of MLA style and the 7th edition of APA Style. The APA 6th edition rules can be found here.

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