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A Research Guide for Criminology


How to make integrating your research into your paper easier

  • Figure out what methods of taking notes will work to help you remember what information came from what source and the key points from each source you'd like to use in your paper. 
  • Make an outline before beginning to write your paper to help you decide on a logical order for your points, identify which themes should be grouped together into a paragraph, pinpoint which articles or books that you've found to support each aspect of your argument or analysis and see if there are any blank spots you might have to find more information for.
  • In most cases, it will work better for the flow of your paper if you paraphrase rather than quote your sources. 
  • Remember, your objective in writing the paper is to present the outcome of your research -  what conclusion you want your reader to draw regarding your research question or key points you want them to come away with. Your objective in the body of your paper is not to just list the sources that you read, your works cited page will do that. So as much as possible, make your sentences revolve around the study result, detail, anecdote or argument you found in the source you are drawing from, with the citation dropped at the end like a breadcrumb to lead your reader to the source you used.

For a fuller description of advice on this topic, see the below pdf:


A way to understand how to integrate sources smoothly into your paper can be to look at an example of how other authors have done it. The below is a screenshot from:

Luglio, D. G., Katsigeorgis, M., Hess, J., Kim, R., Adragna, J., Raja, A., Gordon, C., Fine, J., Thurston, G., Gordon, T., & Vilcassim, M. J. R. (2021). PM2.5 concentration and composition in subway systems in the northeastern United States. Environmental health perspectives, 129(2), 027001.

Note how the authors who are studying chemical concentrations in the subway structure their paragraphs around the relevant content of the articles they are using in their paper. They begin with information on how many subway riders there are, then say where they got their number from. They say that number is likely to increase, then say where they got that assertion from, and so on. 

Strategies to Integrate Information Sources into your Writing (SUNY Empire State College)

Incorporating Sources into Your Research Paper - (Downs-Jones Library at Huston-Tillotson University)

How do I incorporate sources into my papers - (University of Houston Libraries)

Using Sources in a Research Paper (Hartness Library)