Tammy L. Besser
University of Maryland University College
This paper was prepared for Writing 101, Section 7383, Semester 1202, taught by
Dr. Katherine L. Baker.
I have been pursuing my undergraduate degree for several years, and although I’ve taken one or two English and writing courses during that time, I have grown and learned more about writing and the research process in this course than I thought possible. Being a person of a certain age, and having forty years of work experience, I once had the arrogance of thinking I would learn very little taking college level classes. I was certainly wrong in thinking this. Perhaps too, I am in the home-stretch of my degree with only nine courses remaining that I’ve become more attuned to the fact that I have a light at the end of the tunnel and I’m more relaxed about my learning experiences. I was sure I would learn something about writing techniques in this course, but amazingly I learned much more regarding the research process. In looking back at the research essay project, I learned that research is a series of processes. The order is not always the same, but invariably the processes tend to be the same the same for me and they include: identifying a research topic, formulating a thesis statement, preliminary research and brainstorming, formulating additional questions, finding sources, citing the sources and pulling it altogether.
In approaching any research essay project, one of the fundamental things to do is decide on a research topic. Reflecting back on the list of available topics for this writing class, I first chose Cell Phone Usage While Driving. The reason for this topic was that I felt I knew a lot about the subject and felt that writing a research paper on this subject would definitely make it easier for me than writing about a subject I knew very little about. Before tackling any writing project I... [continues]
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