Brainstorming Techniques

Often, the first idea for a research project is not the best topic you could have selected. Rather than rush into a decision, you should spend some time brainstorming potential topics.

Brainstorming is a simple, quick, and effective way:

  • to get your ideas down on paper
  • to come up with potential “details, examples, reasons, facts, data, and quotations” you can use in your writing
  • to insure that you are choosing the best examples to illustrate your point
  • to give you a solid basis for preparing an outline

As you do your brainstorming put down any potential topic that comes to mind. Don't try to analyze whether or not it is an acceptable topic; just list it.

After you have finished brainstorming, you can go over your list and evaluate whether the various topics fit the course assignment.

Two ways to use brainstorming as a pre-writing technique are:

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Photo Credit: Heinz Scheuring

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