When I research a topic the information overwhelms me. And when i try to read through the articles, i tend to forget what i read a few days back. Hence combining my research seems impossible as i dont remember most of what i researched. What is the best way to organise and perform a good research?
Dr. Leonid Rogozov removing his own appendix at a Soviet research station in Antarctica in 1961
Well, I don’t know how the researchers to research but I can share my own way.
1. I just write down the main points of any article that I read, on a piece of paper
2. I will keep on doing this till the time I think There is not much to read
3. Then after that I combine all those pieces of paper, by pinning them down on my pinboard
4. An just try to connect all of them. Simultaneously writing down the final and main things on a fresh paper or notepad.
organizedcarbon: So I’m not a researcher but I have worked in a research lab and I got to write and edit parts of a publication last summer for the position I had (disclaimer: this mostly applies to sciences).
A lot of professional ‘researchers’ in academic science are already experts, having trained for a minimum of 7 or 8 years (PhD/Postdoc) in a very specific area of a field. So in doing their specific brand of research they are already guided by their own past research and unsolved problems.
If you are new to a subject and want to learn more, take what made you interested and print it and scribble your questions or ideas all over that (assuming its a short article or similar). Then depending on what you want to know you should strive to answer your own questions by exploring the subject in a broad and/or deep way (if its an issue, who are the stakeholders? If its current science, what does it build on or what implications might it have) the best place to start a search is the sources which your article is citing or building on.
In terms of collecting it and remembering it, it should be something you are reviewing often so use bookmarks or save pdfs etc. A single late night on Wikipedia will have you waking up the next day and wondering what the hell you were reading.
10Exahertz: Idk how a real researcher does it
But here are a few tips that I do
1. Go down the rabbit holes
2. Keep going back to the article or book, highlight what’s important in a book
3.read slowly, fast reading is nice but not of u can’t recall, read slowly so that you are thinking while you read
Hope these help lol
tchomptchomp: Biologist here.
What you’re missing is that you don’t have the background knowledge necessary to understand immediately what a paper is talking about, what knowledge they claim to be adding to the body of literature, and to assess the quality of the knowledge they’re adding. This background knowledge is why we have specialized field-specific education for people who are seeking to become researchers of any kind (post-secondary education) as well as supervised field-specific directed reading with direct training in field-specific knowledge-collection methodologies (graduate education).
The reason you’re struggling to remember what you’ve read is because you are trying to memorize every point in an entire paper without any context. When I read a paper, I remember a few key points of knowledge that are contributed by the paper and the methodologies used to generate those pieces of knowledge, but I’m really focusing on how I need to modify my mental models for how the system I study works.
I really can’t give you a better answer than this. There is no secret shortcut to being a great researcher.
belligeren: If you have access, either through your local library/university/Google scholar, I would start by searching for a review of the topic. Others have already gone through years of research to sum up what’s been done, so might as well benefit from that!
For example, instead of just looking up “resilience” in a database, I would search for “resilience education literature review” since I don’t need reviews about natural disaster resilience or biological/physical resilience.
Sorry my answer is so specific; it’s what came to mind first since that’s what I most recently did research on!
pandakupo: I’m not sure how much my credentials count, but I’ve been doing research for a good amount of time and trying to apply into a PhD program in translational medicine.
Research is hard to get into, so don’t fret if you don’t understand everything the article is saying. In fact, a lot of research articles have falsified information (there was an article not too long ago stated the statistics or the background articles used were not valid enough, will find later if you want). So yes, doing good research is hard even for professionals.
What I learned in my first research methods class was to always read the abstract first, then introduction, then discussion/conclusion. Results and methods can be read after if you want to nitpick at the findings afterwards. This also helps you remember what each article talks about and you can organize the information from there. In your own words, write down a thesis statement from the abstract and add concrete details from the discussion/conclusion section.
But to even start reading a paper effectively, you gotta know what articles to choose. I’m not sure what article search engine you’re using and they each have their own search criteria, but I use PubMed for all medical related research. Start with a basic phrase from what you’re interested in. The more you refine your search, the better idea you have on what problem you actually want to solve. Read the abstracts to get an idea for keywords to start or refine your search.
Sorry if there were any grammatical errors, I’m on my phone but just had to reply to this. Hope this helps! Feel free to ask me more questions, I want to help as much as I can 🙂
mattmorrisart: Man everyone learns/processes differently. Ultimately you’re looking for your personal tools for the job. When you find something that works, keep doing it. Life is like an RPG; the more you do something the faster you level up.
Say I’m looking at a few pages of information. Manually I might write a key word or phrase on one side of an index card, then bullet point the relevant info on the other side. I’m compartmentalizing, so I’m not trying to learn all of it at once, just the associated information with the word. Separately I’m remembering the list of key words, building an index. Your brain is a file cabinet, and you’re deciding what to write on the tabs.
jollyfproger: When reading a paper read the abstract, then conclusion, then the figures and captions. This will give you a general idea of what the papers main ideas and results are. If you don’t have the relevant background knowledge then the main body may be pretty inaccessible I’m afraid.
spitterofspit: I want to know what their sources of material is. What online resources so they have access to source from?
N2730v: Anticipate that you’ll initially be overwhelmed by the sheer volume of information. First step should be to write your very specific research question on a sticky note and stick it to your screen. When you find an article, scan through it. Look at your research question. Does the article address it? No? Toss the article. Move on to the next article.
xNovaz: A tool that might be helpful is called [Similar Sites](https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/similar-sites-discover-re/necpbmbhhdiplmfhmjicabdeighkndkn?hl=en) for Google Chrome. It can be very useful for researching +way faster than scrolling through Google page by page.
Research Base in Antarctica
My buddy who does research in Antarctica posted this: “Full moon at the south pole with our telescopes”