Essay Writing Help: Organizing Research Materials

It is a vital part of the process to organize your research materials for optimal benefit. By doing so, you will make your job easier of retaining information to add into your essay. The best part of organizing your research in an efficient manner is the time saving possibility. There are often times essays that require 15 or more sources- in those events it is especially recommended to keep your background research well organized and available for reference as you are writing your essay.


It is recommended to use a folder that will store all of your reference materials in one place. This way, as you read the research, you can highlight what is relevant and what you would be interested in referencing in your essay. Organize the research materials in order of how they will appear in the essay. Conversely, you can organize the research alphabetically, which is also a smart idea as this is how the references will appear in the bibliography.

You may be tempted to merely bookmark your references on your computer, but it is a better idea to print them out and store them in the folder using separate tabs. When you have a clear sense of the references being used, it will aid in your organization throughout your essay. The best essays are well-informed using research that is from legitimate sources. But even with the best resources available, it is also important to expose them in an organized way as you are writing out the information. Organized research will result in an organized mind.

Index Cards

Index cards are also a great way to organize information, and are also handy to carry around with you. For the bibliography, write out each reference on one card. To keep track of which reference you use in your essay, tally it on the index card as you write and write the page number you used as well. This will not only provide a clear and organized self reference, but will also ensure that you are using all of your references throughout your paper without omission. In some academic cases, it is possible to be marked down considerably if you are missing a reference that is cited within the body, or if you omitted a source altogether. Be sure to take these precautions by being well organized in your research. In the end, you will find the organization will help your essay reach its full potential.