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How to write a researchpaper ?


"This three-part article will explain the steps that will help you write a high school, college or university research paper. Research techniques and processes can differ from person to person, what works for some may not work for others. Nevertheless, when students ask how to write a research paper there is set of steps that proved to be effective and helpful."

"Most college and university instructors agree that best 'research papers' are written when a student has a personal interest in the topic. Deeply-seeded appreciation of the particular subject matter transforms into clearer thesis, a better structure, and vivid presentation. When the research paper topics are not mandatory by your instructor, you can brainstorm for research paper ideas by examining your own interests, hobbies, or future goals. "

"Your choice of a suitable research subject is often determined by whether or not you are interested in reading or investigating. Investigating the primary sources puts you in the role of a detective and is best paired with the subject that you have developed an intimate preference. Working with secondary sources is allows you to see the larger picture by analyzing what others have said about your topic. "

"The typical ''College Paper'' involves the latter; you are expected to do a fair share of library research. Many students who are wondering how to write a research paper also need to be critical on the topic choice. Not only it should be interesting, it also must be suitable for college or university level. Some subjects are not worth investigating; they are too trivial, merely factual, or too routine. Others are often too new or current for a conclusive study. "


"After you have decided on a subject, the next step is to read a general, authoritative article from a trusted source, such as Encyclopedia Britannica. It is always best to start with an overview and then work your way down to details. Time and time again, this approach proved to be the most effective way to start writing a research paper. One of the immediate benefits of doing this is that you will immediately understand whether you want to pursue that topic or not. You will also learn what information to look for next. Look for the ideas that prompt you to ask why or how they are true or in what specific way they must be true. These ideas will provide a basis upon which you will formulate a temporary thesis and temporary outline."


"After you have found a general subject and have read a general article for background, you must next decide how to write a thesis statement on the topic you have chosen. Just as the creative artist is lead to make a final statement of truth about some aspect of life by observing and selecting from the myriad details of life's experiences, so you, as a researcher, must be able to crystallize a statement of truth by observing and selecting significant details from the wealth of material you will find on your topic. This truth, stated in a simple sentence, provides you with a thesis statement. It is a statement of your opinion, a conclusion that, from what you have read, you have reason to believe can be proven, but that you are scholar enough to discard or alter later if you uncover facts that prove it invalid. "

"A good thesis statement never is a preconceived notion or a personal prejudice that you could prove only by distorting or ignoring facts, nor is it the statement of indisputable fact about which further investigation would reveal nothing. It must express and idea that is arguable or debatable or one that demands further explanation. Because it is an idea, it must be expressed as a full sentence, never just a phrase. Although at this point writing a thesis statement is necessarily result in a temporary draft because you have not accumulated all the available facts yet, it does provide you with an angle of vision from which you can continue your research. "

"It is important to limit your thesis writing as soon as possible so that, within the limits of the time in which you have to work and the projected or assigned length of the finished paper, the truth of that thesis statement can be investigated thoroughly. No factor is more often responsible for a poor research paper than is the failure to limit a thesis. It is obvious that the less area you try to cover, the more depth you can explore and the more valuable your finished paper will be. As you do your research paper, you will probably keep narrowing your thesis statement and limiting the scope of your research to express an idea that can be thoroughly and realistically handled within the space limitation of your paper. "

"One way to help you with writing a thesis statement is to make a very short, research paper outline listing in sentence form the main ideas that you hope to develop in order to prove your thesis. Then look to see if any one of those points might serve as thesis as itself. Continue to go through that process until you feel you have limited your thesis as much as possible. Although this thesis is necessarily a temporary one because you have not accumulated all the available facts yet, it does provide you with an angle of vision from which you can continue your research. You now know how you are going to focus on your subject and how you are going to select the material for your research. You are ready now to formulate a research paper outline."


"The particular angle of vision of your thesis statement will automatically suggest and determine the research paper outline you need to work with. A logical analysis of thesis that you choose to work with will suggest the points for the outline. It is important that you state them as sentences because only a sentence can state a complete idea. Then when you put them into the research paper outline, you will know exactly the point that you are going to make. With the formulation of your thesis and with a research paper outline with the points by which you can logically reach it, you have the necessary criteria by which, with minimum of wasted effort, to select sources for your bibliography. "

"In setting up your research paper outline you are actually using a deductive process. You have temporarily accepted a general statement or premise, and you are going to investigate your sources to see whether or not that premise can be substantially supported by facts. However, in spite of the fact that you temporary research paper outline is the result of a deductive process, your final thesis and outline must be inductively developed. That is, you must eventually analyze your material or the facts accumulated and change your temporary thesis so that it ultimately states an accurate result or conclusion of the material. "

"Research paper outline shows the means by which you arrived at your thesis so that you reader can follow the process step by step with you. "

"Finally, be sure to check your research paper outline. Be sure that each subtopic is directly relevant to the more general topic above it and, finally, that each major topic is directly relevant to the thesis. Make each item parallel to every other item both logically and grammatically. (That is, in a sentence outline, which is definitely preferable to a topic outline, be sure that all terms are stated in parallel parts of speech, which are also parallel logically.) Check to see that no item overlaps another. Remember that no time can be divided into just one part: every I must have a II, every A must have a B, every 1 must have a 2, and so forth. Check to see that you have arranged the items of your outline in logical order: order of space or time, order of importance, order of complexity, and so forth. Remember: it is easier and more advantageous to find the errors of your logic and organization."


"Although you will never have the feeling that you have finished your note-taking to your satisfaction and you will never lose the feeling that you could do a much better job if you could examine "just one more source," the time for writing the first draft inevitably comes. "

  • Check your thesis statement; be sure that it states as specifically as possible in a simple declarative sentence exactly what the material you have gathered adds up to.
  • Check your research paper outline for consistency.
  • Do not begin by writing your introduction. Wait to write that when your paper is completed and you can see what you are introducing. Start now by putting on paper as quickly as possible the overall information you wish to convey about your major points and their subdivisions. Save the fun of polishing your style until later; first you must capture your ideas on paper so you can think about them.
  • The complete thesis should appear early in the paper so that your reader knows where you are going. Topic sentences (usually a point on your outline) generally come at the beginning of paragraphs and then they are developed by giving examples, descriptions, and facts and figures taken from your research. Be sure that all the quoted or paraphrased material is carefully analyzed so that the reader knows how and why you are using the particular material to make your point.
  • Try to use direct quotations very sparingly in your paper. Use them only when there is no other way the material can be stated and when the exact words of the author must be used to make your point. Copy the quotations very carefully, using identical punctuation and wording of the original. As you are writing, check carefully to see whether:
    • You are not merely "stringing quotes" together without enough of your own wording;
    • You have introduced each quoted passage with an appropriate transition;
    • You have analyzed your source material to make it work for you in your paper by showing your reader specifically how it applied to your argument. Don't just cite a quotation and run off. You have just stated that someone said something; now answer the question, "So what?" Why are you telling this to your reader?
  • Develop each section of your outline considering each as a separate essay for the time being. Just as you could not expect to write five essays in one day, so you cannot hope to develop more than one section of a longer paper at a time.



"Now that you know exactly what you are about to introduce, you can write an introductory section to your paper. You can use your introduction to do the following: "

  • 1. point out the timeliness or value of your research;
  • 2. define an abstract or special term used in your thesis;
  • 3. explain why you have taken this particular aspect of your topic;
  • 4. inform your reader of the various aspects of your topic other than the one you have chosen;
  • 5. give pertinent anecdote that provides a direct means of leading into your topic;
  • 6. summarize how you have approached your topic.

"Whatever your approach, your introduction should be relevant; it should gain the immediate attention of your reader, and it should clarify your thesis in some way. "


"The conclusion of the research paper is the most valuable single part of it. All the material you have gathered means nothing to your reader until you present the conclusion you have reached as a result of your research. Restate your thesis and show what the material you have presented adds up to. Analyze and evaluate your main points for your reader; also consider the consequences and general implications of them to your conclusion. Although no actual new information is usually introduced in the concluding paragraphs, the conclusion is the only "original" contribution you offer in your paper. It manifests the value of your research as well as your understanding of the material that you have presented. It should be a strong recapitulation of your major ideas. "

"Good luck with your research paper"

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