How Do I Write a History Report?
A history report can take several forms. The report can be a general research paper and give an overview of a specific event; for example, "write a report on the War of 1812." Or the report can be specific and discuss a particular aspect of a historical period. For example, "Describe the influence of the role of the ruling class during the French Revolution." Either way, the process is more or less the same. Describing all the key facts and not using too much opinion (unless requested by the instructor) ensures a solid base for the report.
Answer the question or topic title. This should be the main focus of the report. If the report topic is a generic research paper and an overall summary is the topic at hand, then give as complete and comprehensive a review as possible of the events that took place. If the report is more specific, then focus only on that topic and give a brief overview of the general situation. According to Silva Pages, many students fail to complete this simple and necessary requirement.
Learn about the topic. Before writing can begin, the student must have a good general understanding of the topic. Use a variety of materials, such as the Internet, encyclopedias, academic journals and history texts. If the topic is objective or argumentative, then look for content that supports the view of the topic.
Write an introduction. The introduction should have an overview of the general event(s) and go from general to specific. The introduction should end with the thesis statement. The thesis statement is the purpose of the report; what the author is trying to prove or explain. Even a research paper will have a thesis. For example, a research paper's thesis may be something like "this paper will explore the events leading up to the Spanish Civil War."
Create at least three strong arguments if the report is argumentative. Each argument should be supported with two or three facts supporting it. The facts should be based on cited materials and referenced in the report's "works cited" or bibliography. Stick to the facts and avoid adding in opinion unless asked for. This will be the main body of the essay. Stick to the word count or page limit specified by the instructor.
Outline the major events if the paper is research-oriented. Research papers do not necessarily have arguments but they are steeped in fact. The research paper must stick to the events. If there are varying versions of the facts, then state which side made what claims.
Prepare a conclusion. The conclusion should go from specific to general. It should wrap up all the arguments concisely and reiterate the point of the topic or thesis statement. Always include a well organized works cited page or bibliography. The instructor will likely suggest a format for citing references; adhere to it.
Revise your paper. Look for ideas or statements that are not necessary and remove them. Proofread to remove grammatical and spelling errors. If you ar not good at proofreading your own work, have a friend or tutor do it for you.
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