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What is the best PDF reader, annotator, and organizer for academic scholars using a Mac? Is there such an application and/or software package truly capable of meeting the endless and demanding needs of academic researchers?
When I was doing research for papers in nursing school, I tried to be as systematic as possible. It helps you keep track of where you are in the process. Here are the steps I used. 1) use the topic to focus a specific question or use the question given to determine what the research emphasis is. The key is to also start early. Give yourself lots of time. Last minute efforts tend to be lackluster. 2) go to a specific, trusted source for article databases. There are scientific article databases out there, some available through the school you attend. Also, Mayo clinic, WebMD, .gov sites, etc. can offer meaningful information - and generally include research citations to look up supporting data. Avoid using anything that can't be confirmed with research or supporting data. 3) look up articles, skim them for content and see if there are sentences, phrases or terms that are topically related to what you want to research. Also, the info you find may shape the research question or the direction of the paper as you go. Keep an open mind, and look for data that contradicts as well as supports your topic. Look for research that involves large samples, as well as evidence during their research process that supports honest answers. Check funding sources. Obviously, a company that makes a product does not want to show data that reveals its flaws. Third party reasearch can limit that influence. 4) once you collect enough articles, read them again to see where t fall with supporting / disproving your topic. Start generating a basic paper outline to give you some direction and note where the articles you found can be fit in. If you need more articles, you can go back to find ones to fill in areas that need exploring. 5) with each article, cut and paste words, phrases and sentences that can be cited in your paper. Generate the in-text citation, as well as end reference, based on whatever guidelines you neede. Hint. Google 'Son Of Citation' for help with this. The Temple Univ. OWL site can help here too. 6) write your rough draft. Generate the title page, reference pages, etc. Consult the rubric and syllabus for specific guidelines to follow. Check each one off as you reaf through it. Sometimes, the difference between a good paper and an excellent paper is just following the rules of submission. Take each point seriously. It will make a difference. 7) take a break from your paper. Shoot hoops. Jog a mile. Eat a pizza. Go for coffee. Fresh eyes will help you later. Staring at anything too long, including supermodels, will cause problems. 8) systematically scan your rough draft for one issue each read-through. Scan for punctuatuon one time. Scan again for grammar. Scan again for spacing. Scan for references. Looking for ONE issue is easier than scanning for ALL issues. Scan for proper citation format. Last, read for content. Does it make sense? Does it flow? Does it present the material well? 9) ask someone to proofread it. Best if you find the teacher who assigned it, but a peer who you can trust will work too. Listen to their feedback. Take what t say (unless its your teacher) with a grain of salt. Think about their suggestions before you make the change. 10) finish the paper. Don't second guess yourself. Being systematic also will help give the feeling of being done too. By be thorough and following the rubric, you will increase your chances of success.
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I also use a bunch of programs for editing papers (notably, Google, MS Word) and preparing presentations, so we are on the same page in the long run. As much as possible, I stick with the same program I do most of the time, whether that is Office for word processing/writing, LibreOffice, Firefox/Chrome/Opera, and now Word Viewer for R/science. But what to play? Well, I guess it depends on what I'm working on. There is a bunch of games. Games, I like to play when I am doing something interesting, like studying. I played anime, and they were very educational, especially on the subject of manga, manga, and anime. For other things, I play a lot of poker. I like playing blackjack and I do a lot of it because I am trying to improve my game. And, I play a lot of poker because it is very interesting, especially.