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Historical research model – 7 Strategies You Must Follow

“Those who do not study history are bound to repeat it” is a well-known proverb. People study history partly because societal patterns and human behaviour are cyclical. Knowing how to study history can help us focus on making progress rather than making the same mistakes repeatedly. So, it requires an ample understanding of historiography or historical research model. Historiography, or the historical research model, makes systematic efforts to reconstruct the nuanced details, significant figures, significant events, and even significant past ideas that have impacted the present. Historical research is a qualitative study that analyses the past to develop inferences about the present and the future. This article will tell you everything you need to know about the historical research model and the strategies you must follow.

What is a historical research model?

Historical research methods are procedures used to examine historical events and create current conceptions and conclusions. It includes analysing prior facts or occurrences carefully and determining their veracity. Collecting, confirming, and synthesising historical data is the goal of historical research design to establish facts that support or contradict a hypothesis. It is helpful for providing details about the past. Analysis of information regarding historical events is a key component of historical research. It is a critical analysis of prior experiences and how those events came to be. To better comprehend how past experiences have affected current and upcoming events related to the life stream. A lot of times, it also includes reviewing oral documentation in addition to written materials. Most of the time, historical research is based on information that is now accessible, such as journals, letters, newspapers, reports, and so forth.

What are the kinds of data sources in the historical research model?

The historical research model relies on the following sources for data collection:

1. Primary Sources

Primary sources are the first-hand historical accounts collected through the following mediums:

  • Eyewitness reports of the happenings
  • Testimonies could be either verbal or written.
  • Court documents, company records, meeting minutes, public records, letters, diaries, journals, and drawings.
  • Data located in academic libraries, archives, or independently owned collections like those of the community historical organisation.

If you have any confusion in utilizing the primary resources, you can hire dissertation writing services.

2. Secondary Sources

Secondary sources pertain to the sources already compiled by other researchers and used in book formats. The researchers who cannot access the primary documents can use the secondary sources for research in historiography. Secondary sources encompass the following sources:

  • Either written or spoken.
  • First-person accounts of events.
  • Obtained from books, encyclopedias, articles, newspapers, biographies, journals, and other media types, such as movies or audio recordings.

What are the 7 strategies you must follow in a historical research model?

The historical research model requires abiding by the following seven strategies:

1. Consider the Big Picture

You can turn learning history into a creative endeavour rather than merely memorising facts about the past if you approach it as a broad investigation of a figure or time period. Consider the broad societal movements and cultural currents that have influenced the topics you are researching while you conduct your research.

2. Make Notes

You will be inundated with data if you properly study world history, British history, or the history of a specific cultural trend. There are too many details to memorise. You must get into the habit of taking notes if you want to keep knowledge manageable. You can write notes in the text’s margins if you have your history books. However, sticky notes are far more useful for locating certain pages. Flashcards are also excellent and aid the researchers who utilise the historical research model for evaluating past events.

3. Keep the timeline in mind.

Knowing the chronological order in which historical events occurred is essential while researching a topic. It does not imply that a historical research report must be presented in chronological order. You must attempt to think like a professional historian who frequently thinks about large patterns and cultural shifts.

4. Evaluate Primary Sources

A primary source is material produced during the time period you are studying, whether written, photographed, or taped. It might be a letter, a treaty, a picture, a news report, official papers, or folklore from someone who lived at the time. While secondary texts like history textbooks might be excellent resources, their authors’ prejudices are nonetheless present in them. When starting a research assignment, it is frequently best to start from the beginning by reading, seeing, or listening to historical records from the time period you are studying. Primary sources are usually more important in successful research efforts than secondary sources.

5. Gather Data from Reliable Sources

If you are a novice student of history, you might begin your study with a search engine online. The results you obtain can be excellent resources at the beginning of the process. However, the historical research model requires you to produce excellent work, so you should delve a little further. University students may have access to government libraries and archives, or they can use the resources available at their campus library. Many large organisations and businesses have their conservators, and these individuals are frequently more than glad to assist researchers in finding answers to specific inquiries concerning their company. You can locate excellent resources for any research study if you commit yourself to a comprehensive investigation.

6. Know the Difference Between Historicism and Present Mindedness

The historical research model requires knowing the difference between historicism and present-mindedness. Historicism pertains to looking at past events from the perspective of the people who experienced them. On the other hand, present-mindedness refers to looking at past events from the perspective of present reality. A historian cannot possibly detach himself or herself from the present realities. However, historical research entails shedding light on the past to evaluate the present societal and cultural trends. So, it is essential to know the difference between historicism and present-mindedness.

7. Understand the Power Dynamics

The historical research model entails an ample understanding of the power dynamics that generated the discourse. For instance, the historical accounts of the colonial era are overshadowed by the power dynamics and written from the perspective of rulers. Every epoch generates discourse, and the hegemonic ideas are prevalent, masking the underlying themes and counter histories. So, it is essential to understand the power dynamics.


The historical research model refers to the research methods and techniques undertaken by historians to reconstruct the past. It is a creative and interesting endeavour that requires imagination and lyrical lucidity to paint an image in the reader’s mind.

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