VCU Libraries

Research Guides

Develop Research Topics

Discover topic Ideas and learn how to develop them to fit your assignment

Developing a topic: it's a process!

When you are given a choice of topic to research by your professor, it's great to focus on one that interests you--it helps you to stick with it if the going gets tough.  It seems easy to just choose and run with it...no matter what. Until you get close to the deadline and realize that you either can't find enough information, or have found so much that it's hard to focus in on the best information for your specific area of interest.

Don't panic! There is an easier way to manage your project. It's called the research cycle. Not only will it save you the time and frustration of doing and re-doing your project, you won't be faced with the last minute choice of starting over or settling for a poor result.

Learn more about this helpful tool, the research cycle, on the next page. Then go on to find fun and easy ways to explore topic ideas. Finally, get some details about tweaking (narrowing/broadening) those ideas to fit your assignments and interests.  Need more help? Check out the last page to find all the ways to get in touch with your helpful library staff!

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