Research Paper And Outline Development

Research Paper: Topic & Outline Development

Assignment Instructions


This assignment is the first in our Research Paper series. It provides an opportunity for you to take a closer look at a topic related to physiological processes and psychology. You will use your work in this assignment to sharpen your research and writing skills while you prepare to write your Research Paper.



For this assignment, you will:

1. Show the progression of topic selection to purpose statement to basic outline using a copy of the table provided below. Note: sample data is provided. Please do not use this topic or any of the references.

2. After completing your copy of this table, you will use the information to create an APA-formatted document with the title page, your purpose/thesis statement, a reference list with at least 3 journal articles (that meet the criteria listed below). You may also include your textbook and the Bible. The completed development chart will be included after your references as an Appendix.


Instruction Example
Step One Begin with a general topic. Memory


Step Two Narrow your general topic by selecting a topic from one chapter title in our textbook. Attention and Memory
Step Three Read that section in the textbook to gain a general understanding. Clinical Issues and Memory Testing
Step Four Ask a research question to begin your investigation. Is there anything an adult can do to prevent memory problems as they age?
Step Five Begin your search to determine what has been discovered on your topic. This will be a preliminary look at the topic. Feel free to flag articles that look like they may be helpful but don’t be in a hurry to create a final list. Research Tips & Suggestions:

1. Make a list of key words from the section of our textbook pertaining to your topic to use as search terms. List at least 5 key words here.

2. Search for one of the articles cited in our textbook in the JF Library. Your search will produce a list of related articles.

3. Remember to narrow your search to include only articles from the last five years.

4. In the JFL search engine you can specify the date range, the type of article, etc.

List the limiters you used in your search (example date range, peer-reviewed, etc.

Step Six Based on what you find in the literature, formulate a preliminary purpose/thesis statement.

Your thesis statement should:

1. Answer your research question by identifying your topic,

1. State your position, and

1. Provide evidence to support your position.

This purpose/thesis statement will likely need to be adjusted/refined as you work on your final paper.


Lifestyle factors that tend to improve memory function in older adults are X, Y and Z.

Type your preliminary thesis statement here.


Step Seven Finalize your research process by choosing at least 3 articles from the JF Library. All 3 must be from peer-reviewed journals published within the past 5 years. All 3 should describe original research. Each article must support your research question and purpose statement.


How to identify “original research”


Original research articles will include the following sections:

• Abstract

• Introduction (will not always identified with a label)

• Methods

• Results

• Discussion

• References


The abstract for original research will likely include these words:

• Study

• Sample


The abstract for original research will most likely NOT include these words:

• Review

• Meta-Analysis






Bhatti, G. K., Reddy, A. P., Reddy, P. H., & Bhatti, J. S. (2020). Lifestyle modifications and nutritional interventions in aging-associated cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s disease. Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience11, 369.


Gosselin, N., Baril, A. A., Osorio, R. S., Kaminska, M., & Carrier, J. (2019). Obstructive sleep apnea and the risk of cognitive decline in older adults. American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine199(2), 142-148.


Tyndall, A. V., Clark, C. M., Anderson, T. J., Hogan, D. B., Hill, M. D., Longman, R. S., & Poulin, M. J. (2018). Protective effects of exercise on cognition and brain health in older adults. Exercise and Sport Sciences Reviews46(4), 215-223.



Step Eight Create an outline using evidence you discover in scholarly articles within the library to support your purpose statement.

· List three main supporting statements with at least two sub-points under each main point.

· Remember that you are not just reviewing loosely related articles but are presenting a progression of ideas to support your purpose statement.

· A Biblical Integration section should follow the three main supporting statements. Include two sub-points each identifying a Biblical concept (with reference) that speak to your topic.

Remember that your final paper will also include an Introduction and Conclusion section along with transition and synthesis statements to create a smooth flow of ideas.



Replace the sample information below with information based on your research/topic.

Working Title: Lifestyle Habits to Improve or Maintain Memory Function

Thesis Statement: This paper will examine how lifestyle factors like exercise, adequate sleep, and nutrition contribute to better memory function.


I. Introduction

II. First point of evidence <Brief statement describing this point>

A. (Bhatti et al., 2020)

B. (Tyndall et al., 2018)

III. Second point of evidence <Brief statement describing this point>

A. (Tyndall et al., 2018)

B. (Bhatti et al., 2020)

III. Third point of evidence <Brief statement describing this point>

A. (Gosselin et al., 2019)

B. (Tyndall et al., 2018)

IV. Biblical Integration – how do Biblical principles connect to this topic?

A. The Bible says XYZ (English Standard Version Bible, 2001, Psalm 1:1).

B. It also says ABC (English Standard Version Bible, 2001, 1 Corinthians 6:19).

V. Conclusion

Step Nine Pull it all together using APA formatting standards (student version).

Include all the following items in a separate document:

· Title page (formatted according to APA student standards).

· One page with your research question and purpose statement.

· Reference page with all sources listed (3 peer-reviewed journal articles, the course textbook, and the Bible).

· The Topic & Outline Development Chart should also be included as an Appendix after your Reference page.

NOTE: Do not include any sources obtained outside of our library (no magazine articles, wikis, blog posts, etc.)


A template for an APA (student) paper is available here:

To review general formatting rules:



Step Ten Final Steps

· Review content

· Review formatting

· Self-check using the assignment instructions and grading rubric.





Your assignment will be checked for originality via the Turnitin plagiarism tool.



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