Another research guide from Capital Community College, based on the documentation style recommended by the Modern Language Association, is also available online. That guide contains numerous suggestions about getting started on a research paper and a statement on avoiding plagiarism that should prove useful to beginning researchers.
We also recommend the Capital Community College online Library and Information Skills Tutorial as an introduction to using library and online resources. The workbook has chapters on finding books and journal articles, using CD-ROM databases, discovering resources on the internet, developing critical thinking skills, and designing a search strategy. It would be a good idea to go through the Workbook (and take its computer-graded quizzes) before beginning a major research project.
A Sample APA-Style Research Paper, put together by Judy DeLisle, at Valencia Community College in Florida, will show you not only exactly what your paper should look like, but contain suggestions about the writing of the paper. (The text you see there is actually about writing an APA-style paper.
The APA Manual contains a great deal of material on the art of writing itself, which this guide cannot go into. We do...