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Academic Research Guide

Narrow your topic: too much information

If your topic seems too broad, consider these questions:

  • What do you already know about the subject?
  • Is there a specific time period you want to cover?
  • Is there a geographic region or country on which you would like to focus?
  • Is there a particular aspect of this topic that interests you? For example, historical influence, sociological aspects, psychological angles, specific groups or individuals involved in the topic.

Broaden your topic: not enough information

If your topic is so specific that you can't find sources that address it, consider these questions:

  • Could you add elements to your topic for examination?
  • Could you think more broadly about this topic? Give thought to the wider implications of your research.
  • Who are the key players in this topic?
  • What other issues are involved in this topic?