Social Work and Human Services Term Paper Writing Guide

Writing guide
Posted on January 24, 2019

A term paper is often a significant component of the mark. The majority of students apply the same approach to this task as they did for the essay, which is a wrong way to organize the paper. A student should realize that he/she will have to put many efforts in this work to make it worthy and thought-provoking. Excellent time-management, adequate planning, and above-average writing skills are just a few capabilities, which you will need to craft a high-mark paper. The social work term paper tips in this guide might assist you in the writing process and help to differentiate between an average term paper and an outstanding work.

Definition of the Social Work Term Paper

The ‘term paper’ differs much from a colleague essay in length and depth of the research. It is commonly defined as a written assignment of a significant length, which asks an individual to analyze and interpret the data obtained regarding a particular topic. That is why a student will have to identify the issue and gather a significant amount of data on the problem, which will serve as a foundation for further investigation. After that, it is vital to analyze the information applying a specific framework and draw own conclusion on the topic. Writing a standard and short paper will not help you to reach your academic goal. A student should be able to analyze a significant amount of data and present his/her findings on the research problem. The following features might help you differentiate between an essay and a term paper:

  • The topic is related to the discipline and demonstrates your understanding of the key terms;
  • Reviews and analyzes existing evidence on the subject;
  • The term paper has from 4 to 10 credible references, which can support the author’s findings and main ideas;
  • All figures and references are cited correctly in work;
  • The paper is written using academic language;
  • The work is coherent and has a clear structure with the introduction, abstract, literature review, results, conclusions, the table of context, etc.

A term paper is longer than an essay and has a sophisticated structure. A student will have to concentrate on the assignment and conduct in-depth research to come to sensible solutions. It is essential to follow all the components of the study to provide your readers with high-quality content.

Select the Topic: Some Fresh Ideas from Our Academic Writers

This step is vital for any work regardless of its size, topic, purpose, target audience, etc. In most cases, a professor assigns the topic and wants his/her students to conduct a study to research a particular issue in the field of Social Work and Human Services. In this case, an individual should focus on the writing process and search for the information in journals and scientific works. However, teachers sometimes ask their learners to pick up a problem, which will meet students’ interests and made them curious. As a rule, people try to search for the easiest topics, which will not pose any risks and threats to them. While this approach might be successful, it will not bring excellent results to an individual. If a learner aims to get the highest mark and make the research process fascinating, it would be better to select a controversial topic, which is relevant to the modern community. Nevertheless, it is essential to remember that the issue should align with the course material and it should be interesting for a reader.

How to Research the Problem Thoroughly

It is useless to write your introduction or main body without any information on the topic. You should gather primary and secondary data, analyze it, select the best research method and get a better understanding of social work and human services problem. Additionally, it is vital to identify the gap in the study and point out to the information, which is missing in the works of renowned scholars. This step will help you to narrow your focus and concentrate on the essential aspects of the study. While some students decide to begin with the information they already know, avoid doing it since it will lead you to the deadlock. You might use primary and secondary sources to get new ideas on the topic and develop own solutions to an issue. Besides, you can organize discussions with your groupmates and colleagues, who will provide you with useful ideas. They might also recommend you literature, which will be helpful to your study.

Create an Effective Thesis Statement

A thesis statement is an important part of the work. It is the sentence, which should speak much about your position on the topic and identify the main problem of your study. Students frequently make mistakes when they develop a general thesis, which does not narrow their study to a specific issue. As a result, such papers do not inform readers about a particular problem and restate the information, which is familiar to all readers. These works are useless and boring since they do not carry any new information. Instead, it would be better to narrow the study and concentrate on a problem, which was not addressed in previous works. A student will have a chance to contribute to the development of a field, which will positively affect the professor’s mark. Before choosing the topic for the term paper, you should ask the following questions:

  • Am I interested in this field?
  • Is the issue too general? Is it too narrow?
  • Does the topic align with the course materials?
  • Will it be useful for me in the future? Can I contribute to the development of the field?
  • Is there a gap in the study? How can I address this gap?
  • Is the problem relevant to the modern society? Is there a way to resolve it?

There are several examples of the Social Work and Human Services Topics, which students might use while composing a term paper:

  • The Foster Care System and its impact on the educational sector;
  • Abuse of the Elderly Patients in Nursing Homes;
  • Benefits and Drawbacks of Bilingual Education in Kindergartens;
  • Special Education in Areas with Poor Infrastructure;
  • Early Prevention Programs in the United States and their Impact on Public Health;
  • Suicide Prevention among Teenagers with Eating Disorders;
  • The Efficiency of the Juvenile Justice System;
  • Grief Counseling in the Army;
  • Mentoring Programs in Clinics and Hospitals;
  • Ethical Problems Connected with Interracial Adoption.

These topics are narrow enough, so an individual will have a chance to conduct the study and bring new data to the field of Social Work and Human Services. Besides, the issues are relevant to the community, so the findings of the research can be applied to real-life situations.

The Typical Structure of the Term Paper

Cover Page. Start with the cover page and make sure it has all necessary components, such as the title of your work, name, contact information and the course. Every professor might have different requirements, so it would be better to ask for additional information from your instructor.

Abstract. Your term paper should have a one-page abstract, which is usually written at the end when you draw conclusions. This part should summarize the main points of the work and inform readers about the topic of the term paper. Students frequently write it after an introduction, which is wrong. They have only general information on the issue, which will not let them draft a successful abstract. It would be better to write this part after the conclusion when you will have all the necessary data on the problem. In such a way, it would be easy for a student to summarize the main findings and communicate his/her position to a reader.

Introduction. An introduction is a vital part since it will identify the primary focus of the study and set a particular goal for a researcher. Moreover, it will present a thesis statement to the reader and communicate the position of a scholar on a problem. Learners frequently overlook this part, which results in a lower mark. It is essential to provide a general overview of the issue and ensure that the reader will understand the context of the discussion. Begin with intriguing facts or recent news, which will attract readers’ attention and make people mull over the problem.

Main Body.
Methodology and Literature Review. The main body tells a reader about the details of the work. It usually consists of methodology, literature review and results. The first step is to select the research methods, which best fit the study and provide you with the necessary data on the topic. Students might use qualitative or quantitative methods depending on the nature of the research and their goal. Furthermore, it is significant to look at the literature on the topic and evaluate the findings of previous scientists. You should focus on credible sources and select the works, which contributed much to the development of the field or addressed the issue. For instance, if your term paper is devoted to the discussion of special education in deprived areas, you might concentrate on journal articles and search for the findings in this sphere. Besides, it is essential to look at books and papers on the topic, which brought useful results. You may conduct this analysis in the literature review section and compare the findings of various scientists. This step will provide you with the foundation for further investigation and help to determine the gap in the study.

If scholars’ works lack important information, a student might want to gather primary data with the help of interviews, questionnaires or social experiments. However, in this case, it is essential to take into account ethical consideration and prevent leakages and disclosures of respondents’ sensitive data. You might attach the examples of your questionnaires or interview questions in Appendix.

Results. In this section, a student should list the primary findings of the research and provide a reader with a general overview of the main figures. While some individuals present “raw data” and expect a professor to interpret them, it would be better to provide an explanation to all results and comment on the main trends in the field. For example, if the majority of interviewees are dissatisfied with the counselors’ services, it might speak about the low qualification of specialists or ineffective methods. That is why it is vital to get to the root of the issue and analyze the findings from different perspectives. Furthermore, you might want to compare your results with the opinions of renowned scientists, which will help to see the similarities and differences of viewpoints.

Conclusion. Summarize your main findings and restate the thesis statement. Readers should understand the content of the term paper and its central ideas. Ask yourself whether you achieved the goal of the research and answer this question in the final section of your article.

Edit and Write the Final Paper

Proofread the work to ensure that it is free of grammatical, stylistic and lexical mistakes. The term paper with errors and misprints looks unprofessional, so readers will not pay attention to your ideas and findings. You might use software to check your work or give it to your groupmate. Your friend will provide you with a fresh perspective on the problem and point out to the main weaknesses of the text.


Use only credible sources for the paper, which can be backed up by studies and research. You may use journal articles, professional websites, and books as they are usually peer-reviewed. On the contrary, blogs, magazines or Wikipedia cannot serve as a reliable resource since an instructor will not be able to check the information in the article. You should cite them correctly using the format requirements to the paper.

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