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How to write a research paper: basic steps.

 Writing a research paper is really a time consuming process and one of your first tasks is to organize it in the proper way. This process can be divided into several steps, which are equally important and influence the overall quality of the project. Here we are going to explicate the main stages and the most convenient ways of their completion.

  1. 1.       Research thesis and research purpose.
  • Thesis and purpose statement in research are one of the planning tools, which is why you should pay enough attention to them from the very beginning of your work.
  • Thesis statement is your position regarding the topic. It does not just name the topic but indicates the most important points you are going to discuss in the paper. Usually the reader learns about the purpose, scope and directions of the paper from the thesis.
  • Thesis statement is typically located at the end of introduction and is, in fact, a transition to your next parts.
  • Make sure that the words, which you use for the thesis, are specific and accurate.
  • A statement of purpose gives a brief preview for the reader of the conclusions, which the author will gain.
  • Purpose statement can be explicated in one sentence or can take a whole paragraph if it is necessary.
  1. 2.       Planning a research paper.
  • Identifying the topic. This stage includes several sub-stages:

-          finding a topic interesting for you;

-          clarifying your position on the topic;

-          consulting with your advisor regarding the expectations;

-          posing a topic as a research problem or question.

  • Elaborating the sources:

-          check the list of the recommended or required sources for your paper completion;

-          consider that usually you need to use both primary and secondary sources;

-          conduct your own research in library and online.

  • Organizing the research paper:

-          create a system of materials according to their importance;

-          work on the system of your notes. If you use quotations make sure you have all the details for proper referencing.

  1. 3.       Writing a research paper.
  • Make an outline which will follow these points: your topic, its significance, relevant background material, thesis statement, purpose of research and plan for organizing the arguments supporting the thesis.
  • Introduction should set your topic in the context and provide relevant background information; define unfamiliar terms for the reader; present paper’s purpose and focus; uncover your plan on paper’s organization.
  • The main body of the paper will be easy to write in case you prepared an outline previously. Remember that your outline is a flexible tool and you may modify it in order to refine the paper. One more important point is structuring the paper around the points made by you, not the ones borrowed from sources. However, the sources can add to your discussion if you integrate and interpret them. Make sure that you are able to specify your abstract or general points and, from the other side, you should make the relevant conclusions basing on the certain details.
  • Conclusion typically summarizes the complex sets of arguments and once again explains the importance of your work. Here you should move from specific points to the higher level of generalization.

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