Step Five: Make Sense of Information Collected

Review Your Sources and Notes
Review sources and notes before creating a thesis statement. Recognize relationships between information collected.
Evaluate information on note cards and explore connections by sorting them.


Write a Thesis Statement

What does this all add up to? This is your thesis.
A thesis statement answers your main topic question that you plan to discuss in your paper. All of your arguments should connect to your thesis statement since this is what your are setting out to prove.

Your thesis statement should be specific. It should cover only what you will discuss in your paper and should be supported with specific evidence.

Your topic may change as you write, so you may need to revise your thesis statement to reflect exactly what you have discussed in the paper.

See Social Studies Handbook for examples.

Make an Outline
An outlne will help you organize your paper and help you write a clear cohesive paper. It will keep you on track.

Begin preparing the outline by gathering all your notes and reviewing them. Then decide how the information can be organized into major topics and subtopics. Assign a heading to each topic and subtopic. Next, arrange the headings in logical order. For a short report, your outline can be simple, with only a few main headings and subheadings.
After you have arranged your information in logical order, group it into large, obvious divisions. These divisions will be your main topics. Three to five main topics are generally enough for a research paper. Next, see how your main topics can be subdivided. These subtopics must relate to the main topic. You should have at least two subtopics under a main topic or none at all.

As you get ready to start writing, think of the three parts of your project in terms of this simple formula.
  1. Tell the reader what you are going to say.
  2. Say it.
  3. Tell the reader what you said.


An outline

  • Aids in the process of writing
  • Helps you organize your ideas
  • Presents your material in a logical form
  • Shows the relationships among ideas in your writing
  • Constructs an ordered overview of your writing
  • Defines boundaries and groups
See Social Studies Handbook for examples.

Do I Have Enough Information to Support My Thesis Statement?

If the answer is yes, then you are ready for Step Six, Create and Evaluate Final Product.
Create a fr

Step Six: Create and Evaluate Final Product

Create Final Product
All project formats will have several things in common:
  • All projects should have an introduction, body, and conclusion.
  • The information you've found should be integrated with your original ideas.
  • Ideas should be communicated clearly, using proper grammar and vocabulary related to your topic.
  • All ideas that are not your own should be cited.
  • An original touch should be added to make your project stand out.


Write a draft using your outline as a guideline.

See Social Study's Writing Guide to help you write your paper or create your final product.



Does your final product meet all the assignments requirements?

Check final product for any errors.

You may need to revise your paper several times to get it right. Read your paper, looking for problems with the logic of the paper and for misspelled words and grammatical mistakes. Please remember, you cannot trust computer programs to do a complete check of spelling and punctuation in your writing.
Make sure all your sources are properly cited and you gave credit for other's ideas.

CONGRATULATIONS You are now done.