How to write a research paper
Research papers are similar to academic essays, but they are typically longer and more informative. They evaluate not only your writing skills but also your academic research abilities.
From understanding your topic to proofreading your final draft, this step-by-step tutorial will walk you through the entire writing process.
Step 1: Understand your assignment
The difference between a research paper and a research proposal
Although the writing procedure is comparable, a research paper is not the same as a research proposal.
Pro tipEvaluate the deadline and word count carefully: be practical and provide yourself time to read, write, and edit.
Step 2: Choose your subject & research
Choosing a research paper topic
It’s time to figure out your subject in your research paper now that you know the general requirements. There are several ways to come up with a research paper subject:
Make sure that your topic keeps up with the guidelines of your professor. Once you have a broad subject in mind, narrow it down to a subject that:
Try to come up with topics that are both unique and specific:
This step may be individual as everybody does their research for a paper in various ways. However, it’s crucial to remain concentrated and not get distracted. After all, you do have a research paper to write.
You may benefit from research when:
This may go against what you’ve been taught, but you can do research for your paper on Wikipedia. However, you cannot depend on it as a final source.
You can use general sources like Wikipedia to:
ImportantHowever, you must find credible sources for the information you provide in your research paper. You can use Wikipedia as a starting point for your research, but you should not cite it as one of your sources.
Here are a few useful and credible sources for research:
You can find an article that seems to say what you’re looking for. However, if you dig deeper, you might see that what they say is not actually accurate or valid.
Step 3: Organize findings & form the thesis statement
So now that you have all of this information, what do you do with it? This step is all about organizing them and forming the thesis statement.
Pro tipYou can also use a browser extension such as MyBib to automatically create citations in APA, MLA, and Harvard referencing styles and add websites to your bibliography.
Forming the thesis statement
After completing the previous steps, you’re now able to express your own point of view, argument, or assertion with a thesis statement.
The thesis statement should be brief, contentious, and well-organized. That is, it should:
Step 4: Create an outline & write your introduction
Creating an outline
Research paper introduction
You may feel as though you should have begun writing earlier, but don’t worry: the work you’ve done so far is crucial. It will assist you in writing a research paper that is solid, straightforward, and interesting.
The background and description for the remainder of your research paper should be presented in the introduction paragraph.
Research paper introduction example
Did you know that 2.3 million people are currently in jail in America? Hook: An interesting first sentence. Although it is commonly accepted that incarceration should be the deterrent for crimes, figures show that 77 percent of inmates who are released would re-offend. Context: Background information with reliable statistics. This indicates that incarceration is ineffective in reducing re-offending. My research paper attempts to show that incarceration does not act as a deterrent to crime and that other options, such as restorative justice and other community punishment, should be considered. Thesis statement:Your main argument for the subject and the paper.
Step 5: Write your body paragraphs
A strong body paragraph illustrates, confirms, and/or backs up your thesis statement. This is where your outline will be helpful.
Step 6: Write your conclusion & revise your paper
A research paper conclusion aims to guide your reader out of the paper’s claim by providing a sense of closure.
Revise, revise, revise!
Ensure that you have completed the required assignments and that the paper is as well-articulated as possible during the revision and proofreading phase.
Pro tipYou can use an online tool such as Grammarly to help you during the revision process.
Frequently Asked Questions
Thank you for reading. If you need further information, feel free to have a look at our essay samples or contact us at live chat.
Recently on Tamara Blog
How to write a horror story
This article will guide you on how to write a horror story. You will learn how to plan your setting, characters, and outline and see examples of exposition, rising action, climax, falling action, and resolution.
How to write a story
Learn how to write a story with our guide on the steps of story writing and see examples of exposition, rising action, climax, falling action, and resolution.
Writing a Great Autobiography (Steps & Examples)
An autobiography essay is simply writing about your personal experiences or a specific event, but not a story of your whole life. Although the writing process may take a lot of time, it’s easy to overcome with a good preparation and planning.
An Extensive Guide to Essay Structures (With Examples)
Writing a great essay is all about having a clear and logical structure. However, many people struggle with organizing their thoughts and ideas in a way that is both coherent and easy to follow. If you’re one of them, don’t worry!
A Sensational Guide to Hook Sentences (With Examples)
Do you want your reader to wonder what’s next in your essay and keep reading? Then you need something to grab the reader’s attention: the hook sentence.
Essay Topic Ideas
Get inspiration for your essay with our list of essay topic ideas, from persuasive and argumentative to narrative and research essay topics.