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Finding a Paper Topic: Develop a Topic

Tips and tools for finding and developing paper topics; includes resources for preemption check and keeping current on your topic.

Broaden or Narrow your Topic

  • Where – jurisdiction & geographic location (e.g., United States; universities; small towns)
  • Who – population or group (e.g., college students; women; Asian Americans)
  • What – discipline or focus (e.g., sociological or historical perspective)
  • When – time period or era (e.g., since the American Revolution or last six months)

Work with Worn Topics

  • Take a different position; critique the other writers' analysis; or propose a new solution
  • Extend the argument; or apply the law to new situations
  • Update the material with later cases, statutes, or solutions