Creating a Helpful Research Paper Note Card

Writing a research paper is not the easiest thing in the world but neither is it the hardest thing. If you are finding that your research is getting out of hand and difficult to keep organized then you may benefit from the use of note cards to help you keep in organized.

To get started with this you will need note cards as well as a note card or recipe box and dividers for the box.

  • Once you have your supplies get them organized. If you would like to make them into a flip book sort of thing that you can just flip through then you can get a 5x7 flip photo album to keep them in.
  • Make the dividers if you are using a box to keep the notecards in. You can make a divider for the thesis statement as well as one for each bullet point in your outline as well as one for each subheading for each topic. You should also make a divider for the conclusion as well as one for references.
  • When you are first writing the information that you will be using on your note cards, write it in pencil so that if you find information that you need to change it will be easier.
  • As you find references and resources to use write those down as soon as you find them. This will save you from having to go back later and do it. You should either number the references cards or assign them letters so that what you references on the note cards you won’t have to write out all of the information but instead you will know what references the information came from. For example if you are writing down information found from the source you listed on reference card G you can just put the information on the notecard and then write reference G at the bottom and you will know that the reference was from the source listed on reference card G.
  • As you finish with each card, immediately file it in the order that your dividers are in. This will keep everything organized and you will know right where to put your hands on any information covered on the cards.

By using note cards while you are researching and formulating your thoughts on your research paper you will be able to write it faster when you do start writing it because all of the information you need is right in front of you and in order.