The best research topics are those that are sparked by genuine curiosity.  Choose a topic you want to know more about.  

  1. Different people are curious about different things.  To start thinking about what sparks your curiosity, take this quick self-assessment.  
  2. Make sure to read this scoring guide to understand your scores and what they mean. 

Scholarly or academic topics

If you have to use scholarly or peer-reviewed sources, you'll find your path is easier if you choose a topic popular with researchers and experts.  One way to find topics like that is to browse through press releases and news items about new and interesting research studies.

  1. Science Daily aggregates press releases from universities, laboratories and research centers around the world.  You can browse by topic, or search the site. Each press release is accompanied by a citation for the original study or conference paper.
  2. OSU research announcements

View Mapping OSU Research in a larger map

  1. Don't forget your course text and lecture notes.

Current issues/ policy topics

Opposing Viewpoints

Use this database to browse for topics with multiple perspectives.  Each entry includes an overview of the issues, and links to resources that represent different points of view.

Be aware that some of the controversies in Opposing Viewpoints are more one-sided than they appear.  For example, even if 96% of the people writing on an issue believe that a law should stay the same, and only 4% believe that there should be a change -- Opposing Viewpoints will make it look as if opinions are evenly divided.  After you identify a topic in this database, you need to do more research to find out how much weight you should give each perspective.