Narrowing a topic requires you to be more specific about your research interest and can help you to develop a thesis.
Questions to Narrow Your Topic
What is a Thesis Statement?
A thesis is typically a one sentence statement in the first paragraph, or beginning, of your project that states your purpose. Thesis statements should be arguable, specific, detailed, and meaningful.
For example: How does parenting style affect adolescent development of independence?
Before you look for articles, you should determine what your topic is and identify keywords and phrases.
State your topic as a question: How does parenting style affect adolescent development of independence?
Parenting Style: Democratic parenting, permissive parenting or authoritarian parenting
Adolescent Development: Physical development, cognitive development, or social/emotional development
Independence: Autonomy, self-sufficiency, competence
Once you have identified keywords and phrases and synonyms, you are ready to formulate searches.
For example, for the topic "How does parenting style affect adolescent development of independence?" you might search for:
"parenting style" AND "Adolescent development" AND independence
If you don't find anything with that search, then you may want to think of adding some synonyms to your search:
"authoritarian parent*" AND "social development" AND (autonomy OR competence)
Search for information using the single most important term related to your topic. Use this type of search when looking for basic background information.
For example: "adolescent development" - the quotation marks tell the database to look for the phrase
Search for information by combining key words/phrases using the words you have brainstormed. Each phrase/word should be separated by the word "AND". Use this kind of search when looking for specific evidence related to your topic.
For example: "parenting style" AND "adolescent development" AND independence
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