Research Paper Writing Guide For Beginners
Research papers are considered scary and difficult. It is because of the lengthy procedures and the required time to create the paper while conducting the research. But honestly, research papers are not that scary to write.
To write an interesting and good research paper, it is important to have strong command over the structure or style of the paper and, of course, writing skills. High school and college students are often assigned difficult and dry topics to write a research paper on as their academics.
Generally, the purpose of assigning students research papers is to evaluate and assess the student’s capability of conducting research and writing ability.
Many of you have spent hours and hours designing a good research paper and searched for writing tips but failed. Isn’t it frustrating when you don’t get the grades you deserve? Well, with this guide to write a research paper, your life will become easier.
Research Paper Definition
A research paper is academic writing that is based on the writer's original research about a certain topic and the interpretation and findings of the particular research. It can be just an assignment for high school, a thesis, or a Ph.D. dissertation.
Three key elements make up a research paper.
- First, you need to understand your topic very well before you write about it. Others will read what you write, and if you don't know what you're talking about, they won't like reading it.
- Secondly, to do well, you need to practice. If you don't write or put thoughts together into arguments with evidence, then you will not get good results when creating your own work.
- Finally, to get started, take guidance from professionals. They can help you before you start to learn more on your own.
It is a blessing to know what you are going to research on. However, once that part is settled, the next thing would be to find out how to write it in an interesting fashion not to bore your reader!
Your readers can easily get bored with lengthy, wordy writing, and hence shorter sentences always work better than longer ones.
All these ingredients of a great topic, coherent structure, and short sentence structures will make for 'the tastiest' paper without too much text!
Your research paper should have a logical sequence; this includes:
- the tone in which you are writing
- your choice of words and how clearly they're represented
- the credibility of your work
It's essential that all requirements for works cited or style guide be included in your paper. It will help you access academics as well as support you professionally later on down the road!
How to Start a Research Paper?
There are a plethora of things to keep in mind before you start writing your research paper. They mainly include:
- Material that would be needed for your research paper
- The arguments and the points related to the topic of your research paper
- The purpose of your research and study.
Before writing anything you should know the topic you are going to write about. Choosing and coming up with a topic is like war itself. You fight with your multiple thoughts and ideas and after sacrificing hundreds of ideas, you finally pick one, the best and the most exciting topic.
Only an interesting topic will draw the reader's attention to your research. And because you are conducting your research to be read, make it interesting and meaningful.
The Research Process
In order to get the audience to read your research paper, your paper should reflect the highest level of writing and analytical skills. However, it is also important to give vital consideration to the whole research process to create a useful research paper.
The more detailed and comprehensive your research is, the better chances are there for you to make reasonable arguments and get strong supporting evidence.
Always make sure to use authentic and credible sources while gathering data for your research. The credible resources include field reports, blogs, articles, e-papers, and publications.
Conducting detailed research helps you in many ways:
- Gives you a better understanding of the topic and theme of the paper.
- Coming up with a better research question.
- Organizing and structuring your paper in a logical flow.
- Formulating ideas for effective impact.
- Help you write a strong thesis statement which will be impressive.
- Discussing your ideas more clearly and with authority.
When conducting your research, professionals advise keeping a note of important information and facts and checking the sources. You will need to build the reference list and bibliography and give sources and references in your paper.
Research Paper Format
There are different parts to a research paper. However, a general structure of a research paper includes an introduction, methodology, outcomes, and decision parts.
Here is a basic research paper outline that you can follow to organize your research thoughts and ideas.
The introduction in the research paper includes the topic sentence and a very catchy hook that grabs the reader's attention at once. The introductory paragraph states the chosen area of your study, and it aims to convince your audience of your perspective and stance on a particular matter.
An impressive and interesting introduction will decide whether the readers will stick to your findings or not. So it is immensely important to give equal care to the introduction as other parts of the research structure.
This section talks about the research techniques you opt to conduct your study. Either you are choosing qualitative or quantitative methods to gather data and information for your research.
The methodology part also includes the research material and sources used in the research. It further states the tools used for investigating, evaluating, and analyzing the data and research study.
This section of your research includes the importance and significance of your research findings and analysis. These findings then support the main argument of your research.
In this part, your findings of the research are further elaborated, and your research is widened. Each argument of your research here will now present the broader implications of your study.
How to Write a Research Paper?
We will now make writing your paper easier by breaking down the writing process into simpler steps.
The process of writing a research paper is started by preparing a title page. The title page is the first page that gives general information about your research work. It is then followed by the abstract and reference list at the end.
Here is a step-by-step guide to take you through the writing process.
Below you will find a complete description of each step.
The title page is the cover page of your research paper that includes all the relevant information like the writer’s name, the name of the instructor, date, and the institute. The title page explicitly states your reader and makes them clear about what your research is about.
How to Write an Abstract for your Research?
An abstract consists of a summary sentence that sheds light on the main theme of the paper. The abstract is shortly written, and usually, the length of the abstract is half a page.
In simple words, an abstract is an overview of the topic sentence discussed in your research.
The research abstract is written in a pattern in which the topic comes first, followed by the key features of the research, and lastly, the outcome or the result. The key features include answers to the following questions:
- What steps were taken for the study?
- How are you conducting the research?
- What are the main outcomes and results?
In the abstract, you do not give a detailed background of your research or references for your citations or the citation style present in your research paper.
Research paper Introduction
How to Write an Introduction to a Research Paper?
Like in other writings, the introduction of the research paper should be catchy and interesting. It is to grab your reader’s attention and interest and to get them to read the entire paper.
The introduction should be very informative so that it inspires the audience in a very positive and convincing way. An intro includes a hook, area of research, and background information.
Introductions hold the advantage of getting a little informal in stating your point of view if needed.
Use relevant and interesting points to explain the central idea and the theme of your paper. A good introduction of a paper consists of the main research approach, the theme, and the aims.
A basic introduction structure includes the following key points:
- Overview of the background information of your topic sentence.
- Aims and objectives
- Background information of the problem area of the research
- Technical background details.
- Assumptions and constraints
- Purpose of research and investigation
How to Write a Thesis for a Research Paper?
To write a thesis statement, include a summary sentence to feature the main idea of your research. It also contains a preview and synopsis of the supporting argument. A thesis statement points out your topic sentence and helps you organize your ideas.
Usually, a thesis statement comes after the introduction, but it is not a hard and fast rule. Your teacher asks you not to write a thesis statement separately or emphasizes writing it independently.
A good thesis statement gives a strong impact on your research.
Body Section (Methods, Results, and Discussion)
This section brings a coherent flow and a smooth transition to your research. The main body of the research is divided into:
The body section is the soul of your research and analysis, so stay focused while writing this part. All your arguments and reasons presented should be structured and flow in logic so that the reader can follow you from start to end.
Make sure to make relevant headings and subheadings in this section so that readers have a clearer picture of your discussion. It is suggested to make headings as it makes your research readable.
The body paragraphs consist of the following features:
- Researched facts, figures, and valid information that provide evidence.
- Formulated arguments and points presented under headings and subheadings that give a logical flow to your paper.
- Figures and tables relevant to the theme.
- Short and direct paragraphs, each representing a unique and different idea and concept
- Proper citation for the clarity of the paper.
Make sure whatever is there in the body of the research paper, it should support your thesis statement at all costs.
How to Conclude a Research Paper?
How to Conclude a Research Paper?
The conclusion of a research paper includes a summary of the whole study. It restates the central theme, personal stance, thesis statement, and hypothesis. The conclusion also is a sort of “call to action” and persuades the readers to think about the topic.
Your proposed solution in conclusion to the main problem of your research should inspire the readers to support your stance.
Learning how to proofread your research paper is just as important as any other part of the writing process. Proofreading includes checking for mistakes, punctuation, grammar, and citations.
Be sure to check your entire work from the beginning until the end, even double-check small things like page numbers! Before submitting it in class or online, read over all of the word choices made throughout this assignment carefully. As there may be some corrections needed before moving on with submission.
All the headings presented in your research in the body section should be accurately placed and informative, telling your reader what information is presented in that specific section.
The consistent headings in the research paper give it a structure and a proper formation. Headings and subheadings should form a similar format to maintain uniformity in the research.
The headings should contain words and phrases that are further explained in that section
Research Paper Examples
Here are two research paper examples written according to a specific format. Review the examples to know more about writing a research paper.
APA Style Research Paper Format (PDF)
Looking for an APA research paper format? Look at this APA-style sample research paper pdf to understand the concept better.
MLA Style Research Paper Example
Here is an MLA-style research paper sample that you can refer to for your own writing.
Research Paper Topics
To give you an example of what topics to write on, our professionals have assembled a list of good research paper topics for you.
- Differences between the Italian Renaissance art and Northern Renaissance
- Sexism is portrayed in different types of media.
- Impacts of China’s one-child policy
- International relations under Trump’s presidency
- Impact of same-sex classrooms on student’s learning.
- Significance of No Child Left Behind Act.
- Significance of No Child Left Behind Act.
- Organ donation in exchange for money
- Mercy killing
- America’s stance on the War on Terror
- Role of media in Vietnam War
- “I Have a Dream”—Martin Luther King’s dream for America.
- Is social media the cause of anxiety and depression among teenagers?
- Is our intelligence affected by the Google search?
- Creation and Formation of black holes
- Media portrayal of Islam and Muslims after 9/11
- Do writing assignment sheets reflect a student’s capability and knowledge?
Feel free to choose a topic from the above list and start the research process.
Crafting research is simple as well as a tricky business. Our professionals prepared this guide to help you write research papers better.
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Frequently Asked Questions
What are the minimum and maximum words in writing a research title?
Make sure the title is 5-15 words long. If you're writing for a university assignment or a particular journal, make sure it conforms to the standards and requirements of your instructor.
What are the keywords in a research paper?
Keywords are important words in your research question or thesis. You can find them by choosing the most important words, the nouns. They will always get more results than if you search with phrases or sentences.
What makes a research paper good?
A good manuscript (research) should be new, not published before. It should have a story that is easy to read and complete. It must also have graphics and credit others' work correctly.