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The Craft of Research (Chicago Guides to Writing, Editing, and Publishing) Paperback – October 2, 1995

ISBN-13: 978-0226065847 ISBN-10: 0226065847 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Series: Chicago Guides to Writing, Editing, and Publishing
  • Paperback: 301 pages
  • Publisher: University Of Chicago Press; 1 edition (October 2, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0226065847
  • ISBN-13: 978-0226065847
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 5.8 x 8.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (51 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #943,430 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews Review

Skillfully done, research can be the solid cornerstone of your term paper (or dissertation, essay, or article); inadequately executed, it can cause your whole project to crumble and fall. Yet essential as research is to the ultimate success of your work, performing it is not an innate talent. The precepts, steps, and skills of solid research are readily acquired if you spend some time with The Craft of Research before you start on your outlines and thesis statements. Written by three distinguished professors in 1995, published by the University of Chicago, and winner of the 1995-96 Critics' Choice Award, The Craft of Research teaches how to plan, carry out, and report on research for any field and at any level. Aimed at assisting student researchers, from raw beginners to accomplished graduate and professional students, the book shows how to choose a topic, plan and organize research, and how to draft and revise a report of findings such that a convincing solution is offered to a significant problem.

The Craft of Research is more than just another instruction manual getting you from topic to outline to notes to report. Recognizing that good research is rarely a simple, sequential procedure, but is instead a complex and intricate process, it discusses the subtle ways in which asking questions about your topic can influence how you draft your report, how a quality introduction can send you back to the library, and how the process of drafting can highlight flaws in your argument that need to be addressed. Clear and explicit, sophisticated and practical, The Craft of Research encourages high standards of scholarly achievement, and spells out the steps by which to get there. --Stephanie Gold

From the Inside Flap

Since 1995, more than 150,000 students and researchers have turned to The Craft of Research for clear and helpful guidance on how to conduct research and report it effectively . Now, master teachers Wayne C. Booth, Gregory G. Colomb, and Joseph M. Williams present a completely revised and updated version of their classic handbook.

Like its predecessor, this new edition reflects the way researchers actually work: in a complex circuit of thinking, writing, revising, and rethinking. It shows how each part of this process influences the others and how a successful research report is an orchestrated conversation between a researcher and a reader. Along with many other topics, The Craft of Research explains how to build an argument that motivates readers to accept a claim; how to anticipate the reservations of thoughtful yet critical readers and to respond to them appropriately; and how to create introductions and conclusions that answer that most demanding question, "So what?"

Celebrated by reviewers for its logic and clarity, this popular book retains its five-part structure. Part 1 provides an orientation to the research process and begins the discussion of what motivates researchers and their readers. Part 2 focuses on finding a topic, planning the project, and locating appropriate sources. This section is brought up to date with new information on the role of the Internet in research, including how to find and evaluate sources, avoid their misuse, and test their reliability.

Part 3 explains the art of making an argument and supporting it. The authors have extensively revised this section to present the structure of an argument in clearer and more accessible terms than in the first edition. New distinctions are made among reasons, evidence, and reports of evidence. The concepts of qualifications and rebuttals are recast as acknowledgment and response. Part 4 covers drafting and revising, and offers new information on the visual representation of data. Part 5 concludes the book with an updated discussion of the ethics of research, as well as an expanded bibliography that includes many electronic sources.

The new edition retains the accessibility, insights, and directness that have made The Craft of Research an indispensable guide for anyone doing research, from students in high school through advanced graduate study to businesspeople and government employees. The authors demonstrate convincingly that researching and reporting skills can be learned and used by all who undertake research projects.

New to this edition:

Extensive coverage of how to do research on the internet, including how to evaluate and test the reliability of sources

New information on the visual representation of data

Expanded bibliography with many electronic sources

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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It is a quick but meaningful read, and I would highly recommend this book for anyone in the research field.
R. Hoffman
The book enabled me to learn how to select a research topic, and how to discover one in a wide range of sources, including my personal interests.
Elijah Chingosho
It is very clearly written, and the information it presents will help anyone understand what they are reading.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

46 of 47 people found the following review helpful By Zechristof on September 27, 2001
Format: Paperback
I used this book as the text for a freshman-sophomore course, Introduction to Christian Academics. It is very clearly written, and the information it presents will help anyone understand what they are reading. It is not just for people writing dissertations. To understand and to be able to analyze what you read, you need to know how arguments are constructed -- what constitutes evidence, what are the steps of reasoning, what is the role of the warrant of an argument. My students liked the book a lot. We later used it as a reference in a graduate course. It was worthwhile there, too. This book is one of the half dozen or so that belong on the desk of every person who is serious about what he reads and about what he writes.
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67 of 71 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 13, 2000
Format: Paperback
This is a great book on writing a research report, useful for both beginners and seasoned researchers. It walks you through all the phases of your research project, starting from picking up your topic, through the actual research, note-taking, to writing up your findings, down to sentence level structure and style. For me a most useful part of the book was the beginning: finding a topic, defining your research problem, qualifying it, and determining your warrants; especially revealing was the relationship between your research problem and a wider body of theory, and how you must be explicit about your "warrants" to make a real contribution to "knowledge" or to "solving a practical problem." Even though I had read many other books on writing such as "The Clockwork Muse" or "Writing Your Dissertation in 15 Minutes a Day" none was as explicit as this one on how to combine both Research and Writing (the other books assume that writing a research project entails a progressive, smooth process: you pick a topic, you research it, and you write up your conclusions/findings), nothing farther from the truth; as I learned from painful experience and as was made explicit by this book, to my relief, a research project is a dynamic process in which research and writing go together; they complement and reinforce each other. This book teaches you just how to do this and it was the greatest lesson I learned.
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55 of 59 people found the following review helpful By Thomas Duff HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on March 17, 2004
Format: Paperback
I picked up the book The Craft Of Research by Wayne Booth, Gregory Colomb, and Joseph Williams at the library awhile back, and I finished it over the course of this week. Not quite what I was expecting, but useful if you buy it for the right reason. I was looking for something more geared towards doing research for articles and such. This is geared towards the college student or professional researcher who has to produce research papers on a regular basis. It teaches you how to formulate your argument and properly research your material to make and prove your points. Probably very helpful if you have an actual project to do at the time you're reading it. Definitely a reference book you'd want to have on your shelf.
That's not to say that you couldn't gain some insight on article writing from this book. It's just, in my opinion, a bit too advanced for the type of writing I would do. But because it covers the target audience well, I can't complain.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Debra Miller on November 19, 1997
Format: Paperback
"The Craft of Research" offers researchers practical and clear suggestions for organizing papers. Although somewhat geared for professional writers, it can also be used by high school students writing their first research paper. The authors offer step-by-step formulas for making and evaluating proposed 'claims.' They also include tips that relate to the prior chapter. Another important area covered by Booth, Colomb and Williams is drafting and revision. More clear, step-by-step techniques make this section an important tool for writers. Using their techniques, a writer easily identifies possible problems with arguements or organization. However, the discussion of warrants in "The Craft of Research" is difficult to follow. Since warrants are many times infered but not stated in day-to-day conversations, it is difficult topic to comprehend by novice writers. The authors attempt to explain warrants through examples, clear terms and illustrations. Although the explanation of a warrant (evidence supporting a claim) is successful, the illustrations of warrants is muddied and the logic sometimes hard to comprehend. "The Craft of Research" is an excellent tool for writers of all ages and experience levels. Its guidelines and suggestions, when followed, will produce clearer, cohesive papers and books. Writers should find a spot on the shelf for this book next to 'Miss Kate' (Turabian) as an essential writing and style guide.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Elijah Chingosho on May 19, 2005
Format: Paperback
The authors of The Craft of Research, Wayne C. Booth, Gregory G. Colomb and Joseph M. Williams, presented a scholarly, practical guide to mastering the art of research. They provided a book with tested programmes for turning rough drafts and clumsy prose into clear, powerful and effective writing. The authors presented their propositions, arguments and solutions in a logical, thorough and convincing manner.

The authors produced a unique guide that shows that real research loops back and forth. They explain how each part of the process influences all the others. The authors showed that asking a question about a topic can prepare the researcher to draft a paper, how the process of drafting can reveal problems with an argument, and how the elements of a good introduction can reveal the need for additional research.

The authors encourage researchers to put themselves into the shoes of the readers. They explained how that can be done, by explaining how readers read. Understanding how readers read enables the researcher to know better how to meet their expectations and help readers to see things the researcher's way.

The book teaches skills that are essential to the success of any research project. These include finding a topic, generating research questions, constructing arguments, creating a first draft, and revising that draft for a final report that meets the needs of a community of readers.

The book reflects the way researchers work, proceeding from a complex loop of thinking, writing, revising, refining and rethinking. The book teaches that a successful research project is a carefully orchestrated conversation between researcher and reader.
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