Whether you are writing professionally or forcibly for schoolwork, you need to learn how to research effectively. The contents of your article heavily depend on the data you will gather if you want your readers to stop raising their eyebrows when they read your stuff.
The key to getting to the meat of things when you want to write a report about something is to know what you need to look for. Convert your chosen topic into a question so that you end up with very specific focus as a main idea or topic.
List down or mentally come up with a list of keywords that are related to your topic. Use these keywords to lookup articles through the search engines online like Yahoo and Google. Once you get the hits, read through and check for relevant links.
You can type the exact keywords in the search bar and hit enter to get general topic about your subject. If there is more than one word, you can use a plus sign to indicate that all the words are needed. Another search engine trick is to place the key phrases within quotation marks. This will help the search engine gather only specific items with the exact key phrase in the exact order of words.
Aside from the Internet, the conventional way of going to the library could still be useful. The encyclopedias and reference books will be able to supply you with necessary information.
Another source of data would be the newspapers and magazines. Most statistics will be gathered from these sources and they are usually accurate. If you want to use direct quotes from professionals or experts, you should interview people about your topic.
Once you have all the data you need, you can start to write your book report, college report, college essay, or even business reports. It is important to know how to research because this is how you will gather the important contents of your articles.