A lot of people get really great paper ideas some things that they’re dealing with at work or in your career to keep an open mind just about anything can turn into a good paper topic but we need to make sure that we turn it into a good paper topic by making it narrow and I think this is the biggest mistake that people pick with topics they pick extremely broad topics and what happens here is two things first of all information overload there’s way too much data too many sources and student doesn’t know what to do it doesn’t have time to wade through all those sources and so you end up maybe picking the ones that aren’t the best or just feeling really overwhelmed. Find out how to deal with information overload at Edusson.

Another thing that broad topics tend to lead to is really shallow papers kind of like if you read an encyclopedia article you know that it’s going to give you like a say you look up an encyclopedia article on elephants or something like that it’s going to give you a ton of information on elephants but it’s going to be really surface level it’s not going to be the kind of information that like a scientist or biologist who studies elephants would know about so it’s good information but it’s just not deep and it’s not college-level so that’s the problem with a broad topic take your initial idea whatever pops into your mind first and keep pushing it to make it as narrow as you possibly can I’m giving you an example here on the PowerPoint we used to kind of joke in the Graduate   that the the worst seminary paper topic or title would be Jesus because it’s such a broad topic I mean how can you say everything that there is to be said about Jesus so given you an example here so if you start you know you want to write about Jesus okay so then we narrow it down through his earthly life those 33 years when he was on earth and then we’re going to narrow that down to his childhood but there’s still a lot you could say about Jesus childhood.

So let’s narrow that down to that temple incident there when he was 12 years old and he went on and the parents thought he was with them and he wasn’t they ran back to Jerusalem and then tried to find him and he was in the temple but even that would still be I think kind of a broad paper on so I’ve narrowed it down this far to you know in that story Jesus says I must be about my father’s business I think would be a really good school religion or seminary paper to write about okay what did you when he said I must be about my father’s business and so we’ve taken this extremely broad topic and we’ve narrowed it down to something manageable all right so once you have a topic you actually want to figure out what you’re going to argue or claim about that topic and that’s going to be your thesis statement.