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Writing Open-Ended Research Questions
Transcript of Writing Open-Ended Research Questions
Some helpful tips:
Keep in mind...
Your questions can change as you go- it's OK to take out questions that don't work, or add questions as you find good information.
Your questions will turn into your paragraph main ideas! Remember that you need enough questions to FULLY explain your research topic.
If your topic is the Underground Railroad, be sure to include a question about what it was and how it worked, or your reader may be confused.
If your question is too narrow, it will be a very short paragraph and may also confuse your reader.
Don't use opinion questions or futuristic questions that can't be answered with factual research. Speculation can be used in your conclusion but not throughout your paper.
When writing open-ended research questions, stay away from:
Here are a couple of examples to get you
What were some causes of the war?
Who were some of the important leaders in the war?
What were some ways regular citizens' lives changed as a result of the war?
What happened during the Boston Tea Party?
-Ask yourself what you want to know ("I know I want to write a paragraph about the materials used to build WW II planes. How can I turn that into a question?")
-Here are some good question starters:
"What happened when..."
"What is the difference between..."
Can you think of some open-ended questions about the Revolutionary War?
Each of your paragraphs will be made up of answers to your questions, so you need to find as many answers to your questions as you can.
Open-ended questions have many answers. Closed-ended answers do not.
Open-ended: "What was it like to fly in a WW II aircraft?"
Closed-ended: "Did people get motion-sickness in WW II air crafts?" (Your answer can only be yes, no, or sometimes. You'll have a tough time writing a whole paragraph about that!)
- opinion questions (What are people's favorite World War II planes?)
-yes or no questions (Did WW II aircraft use regular fuel?)
- unanswerable questions (What would pilots do for jobs if they weren't pilots?)