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Cause and Effect Essay

Infinity Early College High School, English with Professor Hollier

Things to Think About

At this point, you should understand the big picture concepts and have a good idea about what aspect on which you want to focus. Now let's start digging for resources. With any good research paper, you will want to find more than one resource to provide multiple perspectives and to support various aspects of your argument. Rarely will one resource offer you all the answers you need.

Look at the resources from a critical perspective. Here are some factors that you might want to consider by applying the CAPOW criteria below.




  • What is the publication date or last date updated?
  • Is the content timely, useful, and valid for your information need?




  • Who wrote the content?
  • What makes the author or organization qualified to write it? What other information is included about the author?
  • Who sponsored the content?




  • Is the purpose of the content to inform, to entertain, or to promote a product or service? 
  • Who is the intended audience?
  • Does the information seem credible? If so, can you check the information against another resource (i.e. books, journal articles, newspapers, etc.) for credibility?




  • What is the bias in the content?
  • Are opinions balanced or does the author have an agenda?
  • How does the bias influence the information?


Writing Style


  • Does the information contain a bibliography, references, or a comprehensive list of sources supporting its theme, topic, or agenda?
  • Is content presented at an appropriate level for an academic research paper?
  • Does the supporting information fit your research need?
  • Is the work complete, or is it a summary of other work?

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