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Research Planning Guide

Use this guide to learn about the research process and plan your research project.

Welcome to the Research Planning Guide (RPG)

Welcome to the Guide portion of the DBU Library's Research Planning Guide (RPG).  This Guide contains information about each step of the research and writing process.  

Our Research Calculator can help you plan for the research process.  Just enter your start date and due date, and the Calculator will show you when each step should be completed. Not only will it show you—you can choose to receive email reminders as well!

Use the tabs on the left to find information and resources about each of the stages of the research and writing process.

Are you surprised that there are so many steps?  Librarians and writing teachers agree that breaking a research project down into small steps is the best method.  Using these steps will help you approach your research assignment in a progressive manner that should produce a better final product. The librarians at DBU are experts at helping students find the best resources for their projects, and they are available to help you.  Just look for any of these friendly faces at the Reference Desk on the first floor:


Don't let the number of steps intimidate you!  Not all of the steps require the same amount of time; some steps can be accomplished in less than a day, while others may take a week or more.  But all of the steps are important—each step will contribute to your success, so don't skip anything!

Give it a try and then use the satisfaction survey below the tabs to let us know how the RPG worked for you and to suggest ways it could be improved.

This work is based on Baylor University's Research Paper Planner, the University of Minnesota's Assignment Calculator, and William Badke's Research Strategies: Finding Your Way Through the Information Fog (see below). It has been created specifically to meet the needs of the DBU community.

Badke, William B. Research Strategies: Finding Your Way through the Information Fog. 5th ed. Bloomington: IUniverse, 2014. Print.