Term papers are academic essays that require critical thinking and writing. Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be difficult writing one. Follow these film & theatre studies term paper writing tips carefully and you will become quite skilled at writing term papers. It’s important to remember the key principle in writing critically – research. The more time spent in research, the less time spent in writing a term paper. Also remember to choose a topic that means something to you. It’s easier writing on a topic you can connect or relate to. And of course, don’t forget to go through the pre-writing tips listed. They make the writing process easier and less laborious. Good luck!
A term paper is a research and academic paper written and submitted at the end of a course program. Usually submitted at the end of a semester, a term paper evaluates a student’s grasp and understanding of a course. A term paper requires good research skills, critical thinking and organised writing skills.
The performing arts is a broad discipline of theatre studies with a wide palette of options to choose from. You can write on history of performing arts, drama, spoken word, poetry, musical theatre, opera, circus arts, public speaking, recitation, magic, illusion, puppetry and comedy. The list is almost endless.
The golden rule of writing a term paper on the performing arts is to choose a topic that means something to you. Just like creative writing, you have to write from your heart, but also with a lot of detailed research.
Usually a topic might be suggested by your course teacher. Other times, you may be given the option of choosing a topic to write on. Some students pass up this opportunity and insist on their teachers choosing the topic for them, others follow the crowd and prefer to write on what everyone is writing on.
Writing a term paper improves your ability to think and write critically. This skill is useful in making important decisions in life, therefore don’t pass up the opportunity if presented to you.
What topic do you wish to write on? Why do you want to write on that topic? How has the topic affected your understanding of the performing arts? These are a few of the questions to consider before choosing a topic to write on.
A few examples of sample topics to choose from include:
These are just a few samples to stir up possible ideas on what to write on. The performing arts has a broad array of topics, trends, discussions and events to write on. Think outside the box and be true to yourself.
If you are still unable to come up with a topic, you can ask your teacher to draw up a list of topics you could write on. Then take time to research on these topics and see if there is any one that strikes a chord. If you still don’t feel inspired, try reading a couple of previous term papers written by others, academic journals on the various branches of the performing arts, your textbooks or reviewing the notes you took during the lectures. Inspiration may bubble up from any of these sources.
Before you start writing a term paper, there are a couple of factors you need to put into consideration to avoid getting stuck in the middle. A couple of them include:
It is wiser to choose topics you can easily explain and discuss with your teachers or colleagues. However, if you choose a complex topic you are confident in researching and defending, then go for it. You will help others in understanding the topic better. Once you have provided answers to these questions, you are set to write your term paper. Before you do, take note of these pre-writing tips:
Your title is the first impression of your work, so you should be interested in making a good one. There are no hard and fast rules in pitching excellent titles, however, it’s safer to use titles that are not too long or too short. Your title should be relevant to the body of the essay, and like the thesis statement, should make a good platform for building your ideas.
A term paper has:
Introduce your topic in the introduction, define the key words of your essay, discuss current events that are related to your topic, discuss significant issues and problems and how you plan on solving them. The introduction is also a good place to summarise the objectives of your essay, the relevance and significance of the topic you are discussing.
There are so many ways to start the introduction. You can decide to grab your reader’s attention with a rhetoric, a quote, an anecdote or an intriguing statistic or fact. You can also start by asking a question and go ahead to answer the question in the preceding paragraphs. Whatever method you choose, be sure to use clear succinct words, present your perspective and stance on the topic, then go ahead to build on it.
In the body of your essay, aim to convince your reader with series of logical paragraphs that are linked to one another. Explain each point that backs up your stance on the topic, using each point to form a paragraph.
You can use any of the styles available: descriptive, analytical, persuasive, argumentative, or a combination of all. Make sure each paragraph supports the objectives of your topic and backs up your thesis statement. Use compact sentences, active verbs and short to moderate paragraphs. You can decide to use a handful of figures of speech to add a lyrical ring to your essay.
Be careful not to pepper your entire work with quotes. You don’t want your work to come off as somebody else’s. And of course, don’t forget to cite and reference other people’s work.
Conclude by restating your thesis statement and summarising your stance on the topic. Recap on the key points and wrap up with a question that encourages further research, reading and questions.
Next, give your essay to a colleague in school, perhaps a course mate, or a lecturer you can trust, let them assess the content of your essay and make input on the sufficiency of information provided. After this, give to a third pair of eyes to proof read for those grammar errors and punctuation mistakes that managed to escape your scrutiny and spell checker.
Also remember to sort out your bibliography early to avoid last minute rushes. Bibliographies are also written using either the APA or MLA format or any other term paper formats preferred by your teacher.
Term papers are meant to be scholarly papers, so you need to provide legitimate scholarly sources. Use the following databases to find articles: