How To Select A Topic For A Term Paper In History: 5 Things To Remember

No matter the kind of history you take in class – Global, US, European, etc. – your term paper assignment can be made significantly easier to complete by selecting a great topic. This is easier said than done and is often the main reason why students wait until the last minute to get started on their work. Here are five things to remember when selecting a great topic for a history term paper:

  1. Make Sure the Topic is Original
  2. The first thing to remember is that your term paper needs to cover something original rather than something that has been discussed over and over again. For many, this can be the most difficult part about doing this kind of project – selecting an original argument. The best approach is to brainstorm several ideas and find unique ways of looking at each one, comparing them, and mixing them up.

  3. Make Sure the Topic is Debatable
  4. Another key point to remember is that your idea must be one that is debatable and can be academically argued against. You might want to do some preliminary research to find content in support and against your argument idea. This way you can present your point of view as well as take a proactive approach to argue against the opposition’s evidence.

  5. Make Sure You Can Find Enough Material
  6. One of the largest hurdles students run into is not being able to find enough material to present an excellent academic argument. This could be because the term paper is either too broad or too narrow to complete in an effective manner within the allowed time. Don’t make the project harder than it has to be; make sure you can find enough resources to meet the assignment’s requirements.

  7. Get Guidance from Your Instructor
  8. If you are having too much trouble sorting through your ideas or settling on a single one that would make for a great history term paper, don’t hesitate to speak with your instructor to get some guidance. A lot of students approach writing assignments without getting help, and in so doing wind up spending more time and energy than they need. Get help early.

  9. Keep it Within the Scope of the Class
  10. Lastly, remember to keep your topic within the scope of the class. If your topic covers an area that doesn’t appear in your syllabus, then it’s best that you move on to one that does. Remember that the course’s required and recommended readings will save from hours spent in the library. Stick within the parameters of your history class and you should do quite well.

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