A well-developed research paper is organized point by point.
You should start to use a data base system, some mentioned in comments that come to mind are Mendeley freeEndNote Organising research papersRefBase free to mention a few.
There is also a Wikipedia comparison page that can be of assistance. To sort your references concerns managing some form of structure where you group or "mind map your articles. In the old days you simply kept them in piles.
With a data base software you can start providing key words in the data base and also keep some short notes for each paper which makes everything searchable and ready for sorting. I think the process or sorting articles is one that changes with different tasks and also persons so you are best of taking some advice from others and looking into it.
Hopefully you also have peers around who can provide their insights. In the end you will develop your own set of tools that suit your needs and to keep trying different ones at an early stage, and discarding many of them, is far better than trying to do it later when the mass of information is much larger.
Another option is to simply start using something and sticking with it regardless of weaknesses. The bottom line is that with experience you will rely less and less on note-taking and be more efficient at seeing structure in what you read and so keeping a reference database is the main tool you will use.
Even if this may not sound very constructive, I also say that the time you spend now on testing different solutions will pay back later, putting it off is only pushing problems forward. A final personal note. If you want a free, platform independent, and completely versatile way to author documents you should look into LaTeX-writing for example through TeX.
For example, the papers in your “introduction” pile will be labeled with A-1, A-2, A-3, and so on. As you sort through your notes, you might find it hard to determine which pile is best for each piece of research. Writing papers in college requires that you come up with sophisticated, complex, and even creative ways of structuring your ideas. Accordingly, there are no simple formulae that we can offer you that will work for every paper, every time. We can, however, give you some Courtesy Odegaard Writing & Research Center. Edit: I've been doing research in this area, and there are a couple of systems out that might be of interest for organizing PDFs. Both @ CompendiumNG and @ Docear integrate PDF management with other organization tools such as mind mapping. Docear especially has visions of being a universal interface to all things related to doing research.
I recommend it to everyone unless you are in a complete Word-environment, being alone with a different system can be hard. You should nevertheless look into it.Final Thoughts on Organizing Research notes: You should always question whether it’s worth adding another task to your workflow (such as digitising your notes).
Avoid workflow complexity like the plague, as it creates a disincentive to do creative work. What does the reader need to know?
How shall I organize the information I have?) This is a strategic way to use your time and minimize the "I'm three-quarters done and have lost my way" syndrome. Proceed with research process, pausing every so often to flesh out parts of the outline with freewriting or to reevaluate my direction.
3. Edit: I've been doing research in this area, and there are a couple of systems out that might be of interest for organizing PDFs. Both @ CompendiumNG and @ Docear integrate PDF management with other organization tools such as mind mapping.
Docear especially has visions of being a universal interface to all things related to doing research. › Organizing a research paper.
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The way a paper is organized is largely the result of the logical and causal relationships between the categories or topics apparent in the research. In other words, each category's placement is specifically chosen so that it is the result of the previous theme and able . I electronically highlight and comment my papers in the program Xournal.
I used to then organize them somewhat in a program called Zotero (in some ways similar to the Mendeley mentioned above I believe). However, I recently stopped using Zotero because it was an additional hassle.