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How to Approach Investigative Writing

Below are guidelines for how to write research in an investigative writing style, also called an inductive argument. The writers at Paper Masters help you with investigative writing and show you how to put together the perfect project when you need to present an inductive argument.

Responding to visual arguments

The investigative paper requires students to critically analyze an argument presented in the visual media. Possible topics may include television, movies, childen's books, magazines, advertisements, billboards. For investigative writing, students will conduct research that presents well-developed argument that establishes the scope of the issue/problem, reviews possible responses to the problem, evaluates the responses, and selects logical conclusion (reason for reflecting on the problem/issue-can be result, action). Usually, in investigative writing, a primary source (written or visual media) and various support sources (secondary: print sources, or primary sources: surveys or questionnaires) are required.

Guidlines to write the Investigative Writing Research Paper:

  1. Identify a visual argument. Ask questions. What is disturbing, insightful, interesting, revealing about the visual argument(purpose)? What is the audience that is most impacted, obvious, sensitive to the visual argument(scope)?
  2. Research the Topic. Once you have identified a question(working thesis), begin to research. Using the Linc or Internet, identify sources(minimum 2) that provide the paper with support. Surveys or questionnaires may be used (survey/questionnaires count as 1 source; at least two print source is required).
  3. Determine the problem/issue, consider the scope, and organize the data collected.
  4. Draw a conclusion. Given the material presented, what conclusion is made about the argument? Develop the final thesis. Note: The thesis may appear in the introduction or may appear once the support evidence has been presented.
  5. Organize the paper. In-text graphics or appendices may be used. Headings may be used to guide the reader. Use in-text citations to cite all research. Create Reference page.

Possible Topic for an Invstigative Research Paper

Investigative Research Paper: How the Men's and Women's Health Magazines front covers approach visual/and content stories (ex. Individuals on the cover, Sexual content, Fitness, selling hope).
What is it about the cover that men and women buy the magazine. Compare and Contrast.

Important: The Men's Health Magazine has two covers (one on each side of the magazine).

Have flexibility on argument-Want to use the covers in some way.

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