How to Write Family and Consumer Science Term Paper: The Guide You Can’t Skip

Writing guide
Posted on February 8, 2019

Stuck with your family and consumer science term paper? Family and Consumer Science is a field of studies that focuses on relationships among people and their personal environments, taking into account the impact of biological, physical, and social environments on human development and behavior. Students who are enrolled in such programs have to learn a set of professional skills and be ready to apply their knowledge to improve the well-being of people of all ages by addressing complex problems faced by individuals, families, and communities. Every semester, students are typically assigned to complete multiple writing assignments of different types in the family and consumer sciences and a term paper is one of them.

Writing a long essay or a term paper can seem to be intimidating at first but there are some basic rules of thumb that you should follow. They will make your job as a writer easier. Read this guide on how to write a family and consumer science term paper and learn the most effective strategies for completing a successful family and consumer term paper. Besides, you’ll find here a list of interesting term paper topic ideas that you can use for creating your own written projects.

What Is Family and Consumer Science Term Paper?

Family and consumer science term paper is actually an extended essay that is based on a profound research of scholarly sources. Like most academic papers, term papers in the family and consumer science have a basic format and include an introduction, body, and conclusion. In this guide, we’ll discuss how to write each section of your paper so keep reading.

Writing a term paper is a long process that is often messy and recursive but still, it can be divided into a number of tasks:

  • Choosing a topic;
  • Researching a topic;
  • Planning and outlining;
  • Drafting and revising;
  • Editing and proofreading the final draft.

Choose a Good Family and Consumer Science Term Paper Topic

When writing a term paper, you may have different options: you can pick your own topic, a topic may be assigned to you or you may be given a list of possible topics to choose from. Anyway, you will have to decide what approach to use to select a suitable topic for your term paper. It’s a very important step and you’d better choose a topic that you are interested in and that is somehow familiar to you. In this case, it will be easier for you to conduct a research and you may even enjoy doing it.

But you should make sure that the chosen topic is not too broad. Otherwise, you will not be able to write a well-focused paper. That’s why you should do some background reading to understand whether your term paper topic is feasible. For example, if you are interested in interior design, you should narrow down this topic and write about contemporary interior design trends or the history of interiors. You may want to cover another aspect of this broad topic as well.

Besides, you should do some preliminary research to determine whether you’ll be able to find enough resources in your library and online databases to cover your topic. When you have chosen an appropriate topic for your term paper, you should try to formulate a clear research question that will help you stay focused while doing the research and finding relevant sources.

Can’t decide which topic to select for your term paper? Here is a list of amazing family and consumer science term paper topics you can choose from:

  • Core Strategies of the Leading Luxury Brands;
  • How Do Environmental Factors Influence Healthy Child Development?
  • How Can Parents Support Positive Eating Behaviors of Their Children?
  • What Is the Connection Between Sustainability and Food Safety?
  • Key Reasons Why Parents Turn to Homeschooling;
  • Environmental Sustainability and Family Planning;
  • Impact of Immigration on Older Families;
  • Basic Concepts in Interior Design;
  • Principles of Family Finance;
  • History of Interiors and Architecture;
  • Safe Methods of Commercial Food Production;
  • What Is the Role of Minerals, Vitamins, and Micronutrients in Human Nutrition?
  • Management of Family Resources;
  • Nutritional Management for Food Allergies;
  • Current Trends in Family Life.

Conduct a Research Like a Pro

First, you can read some general resources to gain an understanding of the subject area. You may consult textbooks, specialized encyclopedias, and look through general newspaper or magazine articles. Write down different terms and phrases that define your topic. You will use them as keywords when searching for relevant scholarly books and articles. You should also think about ideas that you would like to explore in your term paper and make a preliminary outline for your research and develop a thesis statement.

Now you must search for material that was published on your topic by experts in the field. You have to read the material that you can find, analyze, and evaluate it to determine how different sources can be useful for writing your term paper and developing your argument. You should use skimming and scanning techniques while determining if a source is useful. If you decide that a source is useful, you have to read it closely and take notes of some important ideas. You don’t have to write them word for word but summarize, paraphrase or use your own words to explain the key ideas.

You’d better organize all the sources that you find. You can do it using index cards or on a spreadsheet. You should record essential information about every article, book, website or document that you use when doing research and writing your term paper such as the title, the author’s name, the date of publication etc.

Taking notes from your sources is a crucial part of the research. You can use different methods for doing that but it’s important to clearly indicate if the ideas are your own or you derived them from the sources you are reading. That’s why you should use quotation marks to show that it is direct copying.

It may be useful to group your notes by subject to organize your thoughts on a specific aspect. You should review your notes and consult your preliminary outline to ensure that you are staying within it.

Wondering what type of information you should consider when taking notes?

  • Facts or statistics to improve your argument;
  • Quotations from original works to support your own argument;
  • Ideas that explain the topic, issue or argument that you are investigating;
  • Ideas that support or refute your thesis statement;

Write a Working Outline

The next step is to plan your term paper and create an outline that will help you keep your thoughts on the track. First, you have to develop a strong thesis statement that you will argue in your using relevant source material and convincing evidence. A good thesis forecasts the content of an academic paper and concretely announces the major elements of your topic. You will have to divide your argument into several reasonably balanced sections. You need to decide which material you will have to include or exclude.

Next, you should make a list of headings and sub-headings and decide what you will include under each of them. Try to keep the system of headings simple – you may not need more than 3 levels of headings. If your term paper is not lengthy, 2 levels of headings will do.

You should also decide how many words each of your term paper sections should include. For example, if you divide your 5,000-word term paper on food safety and sustainability into 5 sections, an average section will consist of about 1,000 words. You should decide if it is enough for presenting the key points in each section.

Write the First Draft of Your Term Paper

Use your notes and an outline to start your first draft. Keep in mind that the first draft of your family and consumer science term paper is not meant to be perfect. In fact, you will need to create several drafts before you can complete your final draft. It doesn’t matter from which section of your paper you will start writing. So start with a section that you feel more comfortable with. If you have trouble with writing a particular part of any section, skip it, and go back to later. You may also find that there are some difficult areas that you’ll need to rewrite later.

You should ensure that your term paper has the following basic elements:

  • The introduction that introduces your thesis statement and informs what you are going to discuss and how you are going to structure your paper;
  • The main body that gives key points and evidence to support your thesis statement.
  • The conclusion that summarizes your argument and ends your term paper on a convincing note

Read on to find some tips on how to write the main parts of your term paper.


Your introduction doesn’t have to be long but it should include some essential elements.

  • You have to begin it with an attention grabber, for example, a story, statistic, fact or historical context;
  • You can also give an overview of the specific problem or provide the background information on your topic;
  • Besides, you should define the key terms that will help your readers understand the topic. For example, when writing about child development, you may want to explain such terms as Maslow’s hierarchy of human needs, domains of development, core competencies, least restrictive environment, intentional teaching;
  • If your term paper is argumentative, you can also present the primary opposing views;
  • You must end your introduction with a strong thesis statement which may be 1 or 2 sentences in length.

Main Body

In the body, you need to clearly present the key points that you have outlined in the thesis statement and provide good explanations, details, and examples to support all your points. When writing an argumentative family and consumer science term paper, you need to mention counterarguments and refute them. It’s important to use strong evidence from credible sources to support the major points. Your paper should include quotations, summaries, and paraphrases with proper referencing according to the citation style specified by your instructor (MLA, APA, Harvard, Chicago or other).

Never put all the information into one big section. Instead, you should divide the body of your term paper into a number of sections using an overarching principle and begin each section with an explanation of its purpose. Use clear section headings to guide your readers and help them understand how the argument is developing. Headings are used to break the term paper topic into its natural parts so you should use them carefully in the same way as you use topic sentences in the paragraphs, organizing your thinking for the sake of your audience.


In this part of your paper, you have to restate your thesis statement using different words and summarize all the major points presented in the body in a concise manner. You can also explain the significance of your findings and give suggestions for further research. Don’t include any new arguments in your conclusion.

Revise, Edit, Proofread: Final Steps even Our Writers Don’t Skip

When you have completed your first draft, you should look over it. A good idea is to wait a few days so that you’ll be able to be objective when revising it. You have to review your draft several times and try to determine if your argument is clear to your reader. You should check the content and logical flow of sentences and paragraphs, making improvements where necessary.  Make sure that all your paragraphs begin with a topic sentence and that there are transitions between the paragraphs. You should also pay particular attention to proper citation and referencing to avoid plagiarism. Make sure that you consistently use one system of citation. Attention to details at this early stage can save you tons of time in the long run.

When editing your family and consumer science term paper, you should rewrite unclear passages and delete irrelevant words and sentences. You have to check your vocabulary and avoid inappropriate words or slang. Finally, you need to check grammar, punctuation, and spelling and eliminate typos if there are any.

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