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Information Literacy Course International Relations: Develop a research question and research design

Conceptualize your topic

You should try to make a thorough analysis of the structure of your topic. What are the elements or aspects of the topic?. You can use the information from the orientation phase to divide the topic in sections or subcategories and draw relations between the sections. In this way you organize the elements of your topic.

The next step is formulating your research question. Which question do you want to answer? Formulating a research question narrows down your topic to the elements that are essential for answering your question.

Ideally you should try to map your arguments. What kind of evidence do you need? What will be your primary sources? And are they available?

What is your own role?

In most cases, it will not be possible to find literature that gives a precise answer to your research question. You will have to use the literature you find to make connections and arrive at the answers yourself, backing them up with arguments.