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Reading Books and Research Papers
Topic 5

Books and Journals


  1. Read Chapter 8 in Badke

  2. Books may be too broad for topics

    1. Look at the title, preface, foreword, and introduction

    2. Table of Contents

      • Main heading and subdivisions

      • May be vague

    3. Index

      • Very important if you do not want to read whole book

      • Index lists keywords and which pages contain keywords

    4. Each chapter has an introduction and conclusion

  3. Articles

    1. Articles have a different structure

      • You should try to read whole article

    2. Abstract - summary of an article

      • Main points

      • Conclusion

      • Read the abstract!

    3. Key propositions - a statement that the author believes to be true

      • Question --> Evidence --> Key proposition

      • Thesis (key proposition) --> Evidence --> Restated key proposition

    4. Read the conclusion


Forming the Outline


  1. Forming the outline

    1. Two techniques

      • Summarize - condense sentences down into small units of information

      • Paraphrase - rewrite information in your own words

        • Author Badke - paraphrasing is bad

        • Writer may accidentally plagiarize when he rewrites the paper in author's words

    2. Write down your information

      • Can organize by index cards

      • My method is create outline in Word

      • If your information is an exact quotation, then place quotation marks around the information

        • Each time you write a piece of information from a source, put the author's last name, publication year in parenthesis at the end.

        • For books, add the page numbers after the year

        • Examples

        • (authors year)  or (authors year, pp. ??-??)

  2. Plagiarism - Use an author's unique idea without giving credit

    • Cultural differences

      • Western - recognize ideas of scholars, writers, and thinkers

      • Communal influence - use other ideas without recognizing and citing sources

        • Common for Communistic countries

    • Types

      1. Quote directly from a book, journal, etc. without using quotation marks

        • Exact wording

        • Borrow from a webpage by coping and pasting

        • Easy to detect

      2. Paraphrase an author without acknowledging the author as the source

        •  Very difficult to detect

    • Note - some ideas are generally accepted

      • Do not need to cite the fact that the earth is round; humans have known this for centuries

      • What should you do if you are not sure?

        1. If not sure, then cite the source

        2. Ask an expert


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