Choose what to research for a paper or project by consulting the guidelines for the assignment to identify specific areas on which to focus, such as a period in time or segment of study. Brainstorm topics that interest you, and conduct initial research to narrow the list to a viable option.
When deciding on a research topic, it is important to fully understand the requirements of the assignment to ensure proper focus. After consulting the assignment guidelines for any restrictions, make a list of the topics that interest you. A genuine interest is important, because it motivates you to keep working on the project over time. Once you have a list, review it, and systematically narrow down the number of topics. Take the refined list, and conduct initial research to ensure your interest in the topics is genuine.
Most teachers and professors include assignment details such as a minimum length for research papers or formatting requirements for general projects, so make sure there is enough information easily available on your topic to meet these requirements. Finally, consult your teacher or professor to ensure the topic is appropriate for the project and to ask for guidance on how to research it.