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Introduction to Academic Reading and Writing: Develop a Research Question

Develop a Research Question

      1. Conduct some initial research about your topic. 

  1. 2. Generate several questions. 

  1. 3. Select one to write about.  

  1. 4. Use the following to evaluate your research question: 

  • a. Is it too narrow or too broad? 

  1. b. Does it contain vague or unclear language? 

  1. c. Does it focus on an aspect of the topic about which there is established research? 

  1. d. Do people care about its answer?  

  1. e. Can it be answered in a variety of ways? 


Once you’ve developed your research question, you’ll be able to conduct more focused research. This will help you create an effective thesis statement.  

Pre-Research: Building a Foundation

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Selecting a topic is the first step in the research paper writing process. From your selected topic, generate a research question. 

Video by Laurier Library, Wilfred Laurier University, 2017.