1. Conduct preliminary research in the beginning stages of formulating a thesis, when many issues are unclear and thoughts need to be solidified. Conducting preliminary research on your area of study and specific topic will help you to formulate a research question or thesis statement that will lead to more specific and relevant research. Visit your library, the internet and electronic databases to find preliminary sources, such as books and scholarly journals, for your background study.
2. Read the information and develop a research question or thesis statement that will guide your thesis. You will need to take notes and keep accurate track of the sources that you used up to this point. Many people use note cards, but with current technology there many electronic note taking programs available. Use a method of recording source information that you are comfortable with. Be sure to cite the source of the information on each note so you don't forget where each piece of information came from, should you decide to use it in your thesis.
3. Write a thesis statement or research question. Think about what you've read and look for issues, problems or solutions that others have found and determine your own opinion or stance on the issue. Write out your opinion as a authoritative statement on the issue, problem or solution. At this point, you can do more detailed research and find sources that are more relevant to your thesis or research question.
4. Complete your research using your thesis statement and research question as your guide. You will find relevant sources that will provide insight into your specific thesis issue or problem. Make sure that your sources provide details on the history and past research related to your research question.
5. Create relevant sections as you write the background study. As you evaluate your research and begin to write the background study, create five separate sections that cover the key issues, major findings, and controversies surrounding your thesis, as well as sections that provide an evaluation and conclusion.
6. Conclude by identifying any further study that needs to be done in that area, or provide possible solutions to the issue that haven't been considered before.
7. Revise and edit your background study. Complete several drafts of your work, revising and filling in information as you go. Each time that you read over your work, try to leave it better than it was before. It's also a great idea to have someone else look it over as well